3 Winter Gardening Tips from a Leading Johannesburg Nursery
Passionate about gardening? Are you dying to get stuck into your garden this winter and do all those things you wish you did in summer, but just never got around too? Blessed with sunshine for at least three hundred and ten days of the year, South African winters are just a mini break from our world-renowned hot summers. A season that is both slow and active, there is no better time to get stuck in the garden and plant and prepare. Slow in chilly and frosty regions, and busy in warmer and sub-tropical regions, June is a very interesting month for gardeners throughout South Africa and if you’re looking to get a head-start on summer, then start with these 3 winter gardening tips and ideas.
#1 Mulch, Mulch, and Mulch Some More
A mandatory winter garden ritual with benefits that make it worth the effort, mulching new and existing beds, trees and herbs will help conserve moisture, moderate soil-temperature fluctuations, protect plant roots from frost, inhibit weed germination and growth, keep weeds from germinating around new plants, and add nutrition to your garden. After turning and aerating the soil, simply cover sections with a thick dressing of grass clippings, wood or bark chips, decaying leaves, compost, peat moss and straw, or pebbles, and let nature do the rest.
#2 Plant New and Prune Your Old
Winter is the best time to plant trees and shrubs and not only because of the spectacular winter varieties available at nurseries, but also because winter and spring are the ideal seasons for trees to establish their root systems. Just as it is important to plant new greenery, it’s just as important to prune your old ones. Rejuvenating and stimulating growth in trees and shrubs, pruning boosts trees with extra root and energy reserves that will support new growth on the remaining branches.
#3 Root Your Favourite Trees, Fruits and Plants
A season where growth is slow – if you want to propagate and root, then do so indoors in winter. Many people forget how easy it is to take a seed or a cutting and root it. Love pineapples or avocados? Grow them. As soon as you’re done with your pineapple and avocado, take the avocado pip and pineapple top, and place them in a small glass with water. Changing the water at least twice a week, within a week or two, you will notice small white roots shooting out on both the pip and the pineapple top. Once the roots are at least a few centimetres long, plant them in a bag with well composted soil and leave outside until they are ready to go into the ground, which should be around September. Nurture, feed and prune them over the next few years and you will never have to buy another pineapple or avocado again.
There is nothing more gratifying than a scented outdoor space that is productive, polished, colourful, and alive with birds, bees and butterflies. If you’re looking for a wholesale plant nursery in Johannesburg that can help you develop your outdoor space this winter, then our team at Windy Willows can help you. From annuals, groundcovers, plugs, perennials, wildflowers, ornamentals, shrubs and herbs, to vines and bulbs – we stock over 200 indigenous and exotic plants.