Preparing for Summer
Preparing your garden and lawn for the summer in Adelaide is a rewarding task that promises vibrant blooms and lush greenery. As our area experiences a Mediterranean climate, with mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers, timing and the right techniques are essential for a flourishing outdoor space. Here’s a comprehensive guide to get your Adelaide garden summer-ready.
Understanding Adelaide’s Climate
Adelaide’s summers are known for their heat, which can be tough on gardens and lawns. Understanding this climate is crucial for choosing the right plants and lawn care strategies. Opt for drought-tolerant plants and warm-season grasses that thrive in Adelaide’s conditions.
Start with the soil, as it’s the foundation of your garden’s health. In late spring, enrich your soil with compost or a well-balanced fertiliser to provide nutrients necessary for growth. If your soil is clay-heavy, consider adding gypsum to improve its structure and drainage.
Mulch is your best friend in conserving water and keeping the soil temperature consistent. Apply a layer of organic mulch around your plants to reduce evaporation and suppress weeds. Use materials like straw, bark chips, or lucerne, which will break down over time and add to your soil’s fertility.
Choose local native plants or those adapted to a Mediterranean climate as they require less water and maintenance. Hardy varieties like lavender, rosemary, and Australian natives like bottlebrush and grevillea are excellent choices. Plant them in well-draining soil and give them plenty of space to grow.
Watering is critical in the Adelaide summer. Do it early in the morning or late in the afternoon to reduce evaporation. Consider installing a drip irrigation system for efficient watering. During total fire bans, be mindful of water use and restrictions.
For your lawn, choose a warm-season variety like buffalo or kikuyu, which can handle the heat. Raise your mower’s cutting height to leave the grass longer, as this shades the roots and helps retain moisture. Aerate your lawn to improve water penetration and consider a wetting agent if water is running off rather than soaking in.
Pest and Disease Management
Keep an eye out for pests and diseases that thrive in warmer weather. Treat infestations promptly with eco-friendly options like neem oil or insecticidal soaps. Regularly inspect your plants for signs of stress or illness and address issues quickly to prevent spread.
Pruning and Deadheading
Pruning encourages healthy growth and flowering. Trim off any dead or diseased branches, and deadhead spent blooms to encourage new ones. For deciduous fruit trees, pruning should be done in late winter, but summer is a good time for light maintenance pruning.
Feed your plants with a slow-release fertiliser early in the season to support growth. For lawns, use a high-nitrogen fertiliser to promote lush, green growth. Be careful not to over-fertilise, as this can lead to excess growth that will struggle in extreme heat.
Protect sensitive plants from the harsh sun by using shade cloth or planting taller plants strategically to cast shade. This can be particularly important for vegetable gardens, which often need a respite from the afternoon sun.
Maintaining Garden Equipment
Ensure your garden tools and equipment are in good condition. Sharpen mower blades, clean secateurs, and check irrigation systems for leaks or blockages. Well-maintained equipment makes garden care easier and more efficient.
Enjoying Your Garden
Finally, don’t forget to create a comfortable space to enjoy your garden. Whether it’s a shaded seating area, a vibrant flower bed, or a productive veggie patch, make sure there’s a spot where you can relax and enjoy the fruits of your labour.
By following these steps, you can ensure that your garden and lawn are not only prepared for the Adelaide summer but will thrive throughout the season. Happy gardening!
If you need any assistance with lawn maintenance our team is always happy to help and you are welcome to give us a call on 1300 571 154. We can offer one off services and monthly seasonal maintenance packages.