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In the garden: February


Sow seeds of cineraria, calendula, hollyhock, primula, and stock for gorgeous winter-spring flowering display. Choose a sunny spot with well-drained soil improved with organic matter prior to sowing. Keep the seed bed moist to promote germination. Once seeds have germinated, thin them out to allow space for plants to grow well.

Keep a watchful eye for the lily caterpillar. It can destroy the foliage of crinums and clivias. Spray thoroughly with Success Ultra.

Lightly trim NSW Christmas bush to help keep it compact and tidy.

Prepare vegies beds for autumn planting. Remove spent vegies, dig them over and improve with plenty of organic matter and compost. Check the pH to see if beds need lime. Maybe try a ‘no-dig’ garden bed. Late February is an ideal time to sow winter vegetable seeds: broccoli, kale, cauliflower, carrot, parsnip, onion and leek. Make a frame to fit over your veg bed over which you can throw a net to discourage Cabbage White Moth, the scourge of brassicas!

For fruit-fly affected crops, gather the affected fruit from the ground and pick any remaining on the tree or bush. Bag and bin to help prevent the spread.

Some seeds are coated with thiram, a common fungicide that helps prevents issues with damping-off. This isn’t prevalent with all seeds, so if you have had issues with seeds rotting in the past, water in seeds with a suitable fungicide, like Mancozeb when sowing.

Sasanqua camellias are budding up. Keep them watered and mulched to prevent the shallow roots from drying out. Don’t feed camellias until the flowering is finished then use a camellia fertiliser such as Kahoona (Neutrog).