Things to do in the garden:
Now is the time to take cuttings which will be well-rooted and already strong enough to plant out before winter comes around again. Plants to propagate are all the vygies, pelargoniums, daisy bushes and lavenders.

If your beds need late summer colour, plant seedlings of celosias, red salvias, vincas, portulacas and marigolds. All of them will hold the fort for the months ahead.

Feed fruit trees like mangoes, avocados and lemons as well as granadilla vines this month. Apply the specialised slow-release fertilisers for fruit and flowers.

Prune overgrown shrubs and thin out deciduous climbers like wisterias, Boston ivy and ornamental vines.

Refresh your petunias if they have become lanky and listless by cutting them back and giving them a good feed. This will encourage another flower flush well into early autumn.

Garden containers, young seedlings and indoor plants must now be fed every two weeks with water-soluble all-purpose fertilisers or plant foods. Mulch around all plants and veggies using a light 5 – 10 cm layer of mulch (dried leaves, straw, bark, coarse compost) that allows the water to penetrate easily. It can reduce watering requirements down to 50%, and weeds are smothered and discouraged too.

Pull out the old flowering stems of Inca lilies with a firm tug. You can dig up some roots and new shoots and replant them in other parts of the garden.

Cut spent lilium flowers, leaving the leafy stems to produce enough food for next season. Keep them well-watered and well-fed until they die down.

Sow clivia seeds, which should be a good shade of red by now. They must be sown into seed trays while fresh.

Feed the lawn with slow-release fertiliser to maintain a good colour. Keep an eye open for infestations of lawn caterpillar.

Azaleas and camellias need their acid fertiliser and deep water regularly, to help them set buds.

Watch out for hawk moth caterpillars feeding at night on impatiens, arum lilies and fuchsias – remove them by hand.

Plant more seedlings of tomatoes, chillies, basil, lettuce, celery, parsley and brinjals.

Spring Summer Garden Calendar - January
Spring Summer Garden Calendar - January
Spring Summer Garden Calendar - January
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