Spring has arrived and this marks the third edition of the Seasonal Planner series! This planner is specifically crafted for the Gauteng (Highveld area) of South Africa!
- Remove dead, damaged and diseased plants (the 3Ds)
- Prune remaining healthy plants focusing on dead, damaged and distressed parts.
- All that plant waste goes to the compost heap!
- Only throw away or deeply bury diseased plant matter!Requires 1 person, 1 pruning shear and 30 minutes. Read more about general gardening rules here!
2. Fruit tree pruning time
- Several fruit trees still require pruning, especially the stone fruits (Apricot) and berry bushes
- Includes heavy and structural pruning
- Check pruning guides for your trees here (I am so not going to make my own when it comes to these!): The Basics PDF, Quick Step-by-Step, Detailed Step-by-Step and a Long-term Guide
- Remember to add some honey (store-bought will do) to those open pruned areas to assist with healing and minimize infection!
3. The first round of fertilization is required to ensure strong growth during the the season while rain is plenty and it’s not too hot:
- The soil requires nutrients for the plants and animals to thrive (especially the soil organisms). No soil food = no plant food = no human food!
- Add a generous 10 – 20 cm of matured organic compost. If the compost smells bad, don’t add it as it has not broken down properly yet. That applies especially for manure based compost because it has far too much nitrogen and will likely burn remaining plants.
- No compost? No problem, get yourself some organic slow-release fertilizer, I highly recommend Talborne Organic’s – Vita Fruit and Flower
- Got Earthworm Juice? Good, chuck some of that black-gold on there too!
- Read more about Compost, Soil Horizons and Conservation Agriculture here!
4. Pest tend to rather enjoy all the tender green shoots, thus it is important to remain vigilant regarding these:
- Control pest population explosions along with new fresh plant growth
- NO SYNTHETIC PESTICIDES ALLOWED! STEP AWAY FROM THE DOOM!
- See my environmentally friendly pest control recipes for a myriad of nasty-control
- Else, let their predators loose on them! You can find a list of Biological Control posts here!
5. I am quite aware of how tempting it is to start planting and sowing seeds, but I would strongly recommend holding out until the Spring Equinox (or about a week before). There are several reasons for this:
- Firstly, it allows all the ground work (i.e., fertilizing and mulching) to settle and the soil organisms to start drawing in nutrient into the soil.
- Secondly, plants that are sown/transplanted around the time of the Spring Equinox grow faster and are stronger (structurally and pest resistance-wise) than those planted earlier (such as August).
- Thirdly, our rainy season officially starts in September and hopefully it would have rained enough for there to be a decent amount of built-up soil moisture to make it easier and less stressful for the seedlings to grow
- Here is the list of spring veg and fruit (those in the library so far have links):