WHAT TO HARVEST
Cabbages, Cauliflower, Coconuts, Dragon fruit, Ginger, Lemons, Pears, Radishes, Rhubarb, Turnips
PLANT OF THE MONTH
Botanical name: A member of the Iridaceae family
Colour: Multiple Colours
Freesias have funnel-shaped flowers which come in shades of red, yellow, white or even mauve. Freesias are an easy fragrant plant to grow and one that naturalises happily in gardens. They grow best in full sun to light shade in any well drained soil and don’t need much in the way of care. The blooms last well in a vase and optimum picking time is as the first flower opens. They are particularly loved for their alluring fragrance.
NEWS FROM THE FARM
In Australia the passionfruit industry consists of a small number of around 80 commercial growers that are located between Northern NSW and Far North Queensland in the Daintree and the Tablelands.
In general, due to very high disease pressures there is a very heavy reliance on chemicals in particular fungicides. Therefore, it is vital to establish at pre-planting a well-draining soil that is high in organic matter / compost that is full of beneficial microbes.
To achieve this, growers use loose compost that is topped up with Organic Xtra in a user friendly pelletised form at around 500g per vine. The high concentration of fish extract in the blend promote the growth of beneficial fungi that help to suppress by outcompeting fungal pathogens much like weed growth in turf.
Through dry weather soluble fertilizers are delivered through the drip line whereas through the dry periods Eco88 (10-3-8 + Te) is favoured as a granular side dress due to its microbe friendly super low salt index with application rates at around 900 – 1200 kg / hectare.
WHAT TO PLANT
Tropical – basil, borage, ginger, oregano, marjoram, thyme
Sub Tropical – chives, coriander, Chinese parsley, dill, fennel, mint, oregano, marjoram, rocket, sage.
Cool/Temperate – chives, coriander, Chinese parsley, dill, fennel, horseradish, oregano, parsley, sage.
SOIL AND LAWN UPDATE
AUGUST IS A GOOD MONTH TO WORK ON YOUR SOIL
Turn handfuls of Organic Xtra into new garden beds to prepare the ground for new plantings. The potassium sulphate in Organic Xtra will ensure a spectacular display of flowers over the next few months. Keep beds well weeded or mulched, and ensure adequate water is given during this vital growing period. Gain long-term weed control by adding compost to garden beds to improve soil condition and stifle weed seedlings.
PROGRESS IN YOUR VEGGIE PATCH
“Winter” means different things to different people – it all depends on where you live!
In areas where night time temperatures may drop to 8 degrees C or lower and where the soil is also cold (15 deg C or less) sowing and planting of new crops into the garden is generally not recommended. When the soil is cold, sap flow in plants is sluggish, roots take up minimal moisture and nutrients and growth slows right down. Seeds will not germinate until the soil warms again in spring, and young seedlings may succumb to the cold before they have a chance to acclimatise and start growing. Mid-year in the south is mostly about harvesting the traditional winter crops while waiting for the weather to warm up in spring for the sowing and planting of summer vegetables.
In the warmer and tropical regions of Australia, temperatures during the day may range from the low to high 20s and even though nights may be chilly (below 10 in some parts), soils absorb heat from the sun during the day and retain most of that warmth overnight. That’s good news for those wanting to grow vegetables and herbs year-round!