Lismore Garden Club News

Autumn in our neck of the woods is the best time of the year for growing vegetables and also many herbs because they prefer the milder temperatures with lower humidity that autumn brings. If you haven’t made a start on soil preparation it’s important to start right now as the autumn clock is ticking away.

Firstly skim the surface of the vegie patch with a chipping hoe to get rid of the weeds. Then turn the soil over with a digging fork. After this it’s important to dig in some homemade compost, aged animal manure or prepared organic plant food such as Searle’s 5 in 1, and also some dolomite at the rate of one cup per square metre. Cover the bed with a good organic mulch and water in with Seasol. It’s important to leave it for about two weeks before planting.

When you plant your seed or seedlings be sure to also water them in with Seasol as it gives them a good start. Then after germination, or a week after planting, water them with half strength soluble fertiliser to get them up and going. Remember to protect your seedlings with snail bait, taking the normal precautions.

Tomatoes seem to get a lot of pests and diseases in summer but they will do a lot better now. You can also plant beans, beetroot, broad beans, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celery, Chinese cabbage, herbs, leeks, lettuce, onion, peas, radish, silverbeet, spring onion, swede and turnip.

I must give you an update on the self-sown tomato that came up in gravel in our backyard. It has been cared for like a baby and as a result has grown to about two metres tall and has kept us in tomatoes for some time now. It still has about 30 tomatoes on it and doesn’t look like giving up producing anytime soon.

The Lismore Garden Club is taking a coach trip to the Gardening Australia Expo in Brisbane on Friday, April 16. You don’t have to be a club member; anyone can go. The cost is $40pp and this includes morning tea, luxury coach travel and entry into the Expo. Seats are limited so phone Phyllis now on 6624 6993 and book your seat.

Finally: I had a bit of a cackle when I read about the results of the chook house competition in the Gardening Australia magazine. The winner was called “Chookingham Palace” and had an axe hanging over the door, obviously as an encouragement for the chooks to lay.

Happy gardening

Ron Burns

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