What to do in the garden in December

The first day of summer kicks off in December, which means longer days and warmer nights. This month is the perfect time to take advantage of all your garden has to offer and help it survive the heat. 


What to Plant

Now is the best time to plant basil, brunfelsia, jacaranda, lilly pilly and sandpaper vine. Marigolds, cosmos, sunflowers and ageratum make great companion plants too. Not only do they attract beneficial insects and repel the nasty ones, they’re easy to grow and add lovely colour to your garden. 

In tropical regions, you can get into the veggie patch and plant sweet potato, beetroot, eggplant, artichoke, radish, cowpeas and watermelon. It’s too hot for most herbs, but you can still go for chili, chives and lemongrass. 

If you live in a sub-tropical area, pop some beetroot, capsicum, cucumber, squash, sunflower, chili, chives and ginger into your patch. 

Temperate climates are ideal for asparagus, along with beetroot, parsley, pumpkin, radish and sunflower. 

For the colder regions, it’s a good time of year in the veggie patch. Add some favourites like asparagus, beetroot, broccoli, capsicum, pumpkin, potato, rhubarb and tomato along with a range of herbs such as chives, dill, coriander, rosemary, oregano and parsley. 


What to Pick

If you’ve been waiting to enjoy some refreshing watermelon, they should be ready to pick. Your tomatoes and zucchini are also ready to be picked and added to summer salads. 

In temperate areas, capsicum, celery and eggplant are ripe for the picking while cooler states can enjoy their homegrown celery, along with basil, broccoli, cabbage and rockmelon. 

It’s a good idea to pick and freeze some of your fruit so you can continue to enjoy it long after summer has gone. It’s a great way to avoid wastage too.


What to Do

Our Aussie summers can be pretty harsh so it’s important to take a bit of extra time caring for your garden so it survives and thrives during the hotter months.

Make sure you use mulch – it’ll keep the soil moist, give protection from the sun and it’ll also help to keep weeds at bay. Lightly mulch your potted plants and keep them out of the harsh sun as much as possible. 

Water your garden deeply but less frequently to encourage strong and healthy roots. It’s also a good idea to do your watering in the morning before it gets too hot; your garden will stay hydrated for longer and it also helps to reduce the risk of fungal disease. 

It’s important to aerate your lawn with a fork to get more oxygen into the soil and allow water to penetrate the roots. Don’t forget to raise your mower blade too – longer grass means longer roots and cooler soil.

Avoid chemical fertilisers as they could dry and destroy your plants. Environmental impact liquid fertiliser is great for seedlings when they crave water. 

Shade cloth is a great way to protect your seedlings and plants during summer – especially if you’re going away. If you are planning a trip, consider installing a drip irrigation system so your plants still get the water they need.

As a finishing touch, add some colourful flowers to your garden to create the perfect setting for entertaining. 

For more great garden ideas, check out our full garden range


D.I.Y. To Do This Month

How To Grow Vegetables 

How To Maintain Your Lawn 

How To Plan a Garden Irrigation System 

Cherry Plant

Planting & Growing How to plant and grow a cherry tree Sweet or sour, cherries are a popular summer treat around the world. Lovely and narrow, the cherry tree is suited to areas with cold winters, creating a stunning display of blossom in spring followed by the much-loved fruit.

plant pots

Planting & Growing How to grow and care for indoor plants For people unable to garden outdoors, growing indoor plants allows them to indulge in a hobby that gives great pleasure.

bird of paradise plant

Planting & Growing How to grow and prune a bird of paradise Hardy, easy to grow and architecturally dramatic with some of the most stunning and bizarre flowers you will ever see—that’s the awesome bird of paradise.

Apple Tree

Planting & Growing How to grow and prune an apple tree Nothing beats the crunch and taste of a fresh apple. So why not grow your own? An apple tree can be so much more than just a fruit tree.

basil

Planting & Growing How to plant grow and harvest basil An attractive garden plant that’s easy to grow and is an essential ingredient in a multitude of dishes. That’s basil!

Bougainvillea

Planting & Growing How to plant grow and prune bougainvillea If you’re looking for a plant with vibrant colours to bring a tropical look to your garden, then you can’t go past bougainvillea. Find out how to grow Bougainvillea's with this handy guide from bunnings warehouse.

How to design a herb garden 01:23

Planting & Growing How to design a herb garden Turn your back or front yard into a beautiful, productive space by creating an edible garden that looks good and will tastes even better. For this project, we’re grouping our herbs into three pots – one for tea, one for smoothies and one for cocktai...

Choose a sunny spot and watch 01:40

Planting & Growing How to grow strawberries You’ll love the taste of home-grown strawberries. It’s a great activity the whole family will have fun doing.

Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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