The Garden Diaries: South Australia in February

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The Garden Diaries: South Australia in February

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Hero plant this month: Succulents

It’s normally hot and dry in February but that’s when succulents come into their own. This group of plants are an absolute favourite with gardeners, they are easy to take care of and come in a great range of colours, sizes and architectural shapes. What’s even better is, they are just as happy inside as they are out. Plant them in a pot in a sunny spot and don’t over water.

An all-time favourite is aloe vera. This evergreen succulent is often grown for the medicinal properties of its fleshy stems. The gel in its leaves is soothing and can be used to treat sunburn. Grow in a sunny spot with good drainage.

Aloe vera is easy to propagate. Known as pups, small plants form at the base of the plant, just separate these and put them in a separate pot. Use cacti and succulent mix for good results.

Succulents and cacti

What else to plant

Think about investing in some edibles too. Put in some herbs in pots in a sunny spot in the garden and use in cooking. For a refreshing summer tea, try growing peppermint, to keep it contained grow in a pot, use a quality potting mix and put it in a shady spot.

Another easy-to-grow winner is a blueberry. These produce delicious fruit, rich in antioxidants right through summer. If you don’t have room in the garden, they do well in a pot.

If there’s some space in your garden, try stone fruit. For smaller backyards and pots there are many dwarf varieties available. Ask in store for advice on what to plant.

A stone fruit tree

Maintenance

This month, extreme heat can last for days in South Australia. Make sure you water your plants regularly, so they stay refreshed. Pay special attention to citrus and avocados because they need more water as they are coming into fruit.

Keep an eye on potted plants. If water drains straight through the potting mix, this means the soil has dried out and is hydrophobic. A good tip to get it back into shape is to place the pot in a bucket of water and leave it there for a couple of hours. The water will soak through and re-hydrate the soil and plant roots.

A person watering the garden

Harvest

If you’ve already got fruit growing, now is the time to harvest. Stone fruits, such as nectarine and peach, are coming into season and taste delicious fresh off the tree, grapes are ready too. It’s also apple season, depending on the variety you’ve got in your garden, they will start ripening through to autumn.

Make the most of the last month of summer, so get out this weekend and enjoy your garden.

A mix of different fruit

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Check out the wide range of plants online or visit your local Bunnings Warehouse to find out how you can bring your garden to life.

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