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Garden Tasks for September

Flowers and shrubs

- Plant begonias, alyssum, lobelia, nemesia, sweet peas, azaleas, chrysanthemums, delphiniums, gladioli bulbs, sunflowers, roses, carnations, daisies, petunias, dahlias, gerberas, snapdragons, marigolds, rhododendrons, wisteria

- Keep deadheading late winter/ early spring flowering annuals such a primulas, pansy, cineraria, and feed with a liquid food such as Yates Thrive - this will help prolong flowering and give you colour until summer annuals come to life

- Choose and plant Camellias now while they are in flower and you can choose your preferred colour - remember to prune them back once they finish flowering

- Prune all other spring-flowering shrubs as soon as their flowering is finished too

- Start feeding roses with Rose fertiliser - water well after feeding or feed after rain

Sweetpea image via
Vegetables and fruit

- September is starting to get warmer so it’s a great time to prepare your vege patch. Dig over the soil to break up any large clods and mix in lots of organic compost. Then use a general garden fertiliser when you put your seedlings in

- Plant peas, lettuce, brussels sprouts, parsnips, silver beet, capsicums, celery, eggplants, broad beans, leeks, courgettes, cucumber, spinach, celeriac, feijoas

- Sow a few lettuce seeds every couple of weeks for a continuous supply

- It’s berry planting time - plant strawberries, raspberries, currants, gooseberries, blueberries, boysenberries, blackberries. Berries are quite happy to grow in pots and containers. The container needs to be large though as they have a large root system - at least 3 times the size of a normal bucket. Plant into Tui Strawberry Mix, feed with Strawberry Food and place in full sun

- Spray stone fruit trees with copper to protect from leaf curl disease

- Many fruit trees will be full of blossom by now. You can still plant citrus trees in September, but get in quick before the drier summer weather. And don’t forget to stake young trees to enable the roots to anchor themselves into the soil for the first few seasons - they need this support to grow well. All fruit trees require a position in full sun, and shelter them from prevailing winds if you can

- Feed all your established fruit trees with citrus food

- When frosts have finished it’s time to prune back your citrus trees. Pruning promotes new growth which means more fruiting power and capacity. It also allows more light into the plant/tree. Always remove dead and diseased wood. Fertilise with Tui Citrus Food around the drip line after pruning

- Prune apples, pears and apricots, and prune feijoas once fruiting is over

- Peaches and plums should be pruned in summer rather than now, to limit their spread.

Strawberry image via
Pests and general tasks

- Aphids, green fly and slugs and snails will actively be looking for food. Keep an eye out for these unwelcome pests, and put plenty of slug and snail bait around young plants.

Aphid image via