Why now is the perfect time to plant your plants?
Spring has well and truly sprung in the south eastern part of Australia, so now is the perfect time to start your new garden planting. The spring the soil is warmer, encouraging root growth, which is why many of the nurseries now have new and healthy stock ready for planting. The warmer weather will also give your plants the chance to establish themselves and acclimatise to their new environment before our hot summer arrives. It may be obvious to state; that for any plant to thrive and the garden look its best, you must choose plants that are suited to your local climate or position within your backyard. Sensitive plants with soft leaves or large broad light-coloured leaves are often susceptible to burning in summer and frosts in winter, so be sure your work with your climatic environment and recognise where the sun is most intense in your garden.
Once you have chosen your plants; not only those that look great but will also be suited to your area and garden layout, it is time to start planting. Be sure to dig the hole deep and wide enough to allow your plant to comfortably fill the hole, however, ensure that the crown of the plant is not below the soil level, otherwise you can suffocate or drown the plant when you backfill causing rot and decay.
Check the preferred soil type of your plant. Does the plant require well drained, sandy, moist soil etc., and ensure the plant has soft quality soil directly below where you intend to plant (ie. not rock or concrete directly below) so the roots can easily spread. Most plants like a well-draining loam type soil that is soft allowing for easy root penetration where the roots do not stay wet and drown. Teasing out the roots after you have removed the plant from the pot or container is optional and can be beneficial if pot bound, but not essential in all cases.
When planting be sure to face the front of the plants (yes plants have sides too) towards the best aspect you want showcase as they look best with the leaves or stem facing to the front (not the vain side) and be sure to back fill the hole with good quality potting mix. Note for clay-based soils, you can add Gypsum to break up the clay. Firmly press down around the edges of the new plants root base to remove any potential air pockets around the new plant and the existing soil as exposing roots to air can often lead to damage or death of the plant. Be careful though not to compact the soil too much around the crown or base of the plant as this can also cause damage.
Once planted and you are happy with the position, you must give the plants a good watering to minimise stress and to promote new growth helping the plants to adapt to the new environment – this is a must and whilst does not have to be done straight away if planting multiple plants, the soon the better. Be sure to keep up the watering; we recommend every second or third day for the first two weeks to help establishment. Keep an eye on the weather, as more frequent watering will be required in hot weather.
For a list of the best plants for your area download our free plant guide today.