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Fact Sheet: Gardening - Autumn gardening


Fact Sheet: Gardening - Autumn gardening

Now that daylight saving has ended, it's no use pretending that the garden is winding down towards winter. But that doesn't mean there's no work to do! Five key autumn tasks:

1. Plant brassicas (cabbages, cauliflowers, broccoli). All of these hardy veges take 4-5 months to head up, so don't delay getting them into the ground. Space seedlings at least 50cm apart (about double what you can get away with in summer) so they get as much light as possible in the dull days ahead. For faster cropping, try all the Asian cabbages like wong bok and bok choy. They can be ready in as little as 55 days.

2. Plant herbs and salad greens in pots (or cheap plastic buckets), so you can bring them around to your back door for handy picking without having to don your boots and trudge through the mud to get to your vege patch. The potting mix will also be a couple of degrees warmer than the soil in the ground, so your plants will grow more quickly, meaning you won't have to wait so long to start harvesting.

3. Sow broad beans and peas directly into the soil; and trays of mesclun for snipping for salads. Broad beans and peas are great because you can eat the tops/tendrils while you're waiting for them to pod up. Plus both don't mind frost.  

4. Rake up fallen leaves. Add them to your compost heap or just pile them into black garbage bags, poke a few holes in the sides and shove them behind your shed to make leaf mulch for spring.

5. Tidy up your flower garden. Instead of making bouquets of flowers, make table arrangements from summer's seedheads, mini pumpkins, autumn berries and faded hydrangeas.


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