What to plant and do in the Melbourne garden this month
Spring. You giveth wamth, and then you taketh away.
But finally, finally we can trust you.
Well November is here. And despite Melbourne doing what it does best at this time of year with radical temperature changes, at least the frosts should be behind us, and the clock is ticking for those summer crops, so if you haven’t got them in the ground, now’s the time to do it!
What to plant…
= sow seeds in ground
= sow seeds in cloche / greenhouse
= plant in ground
For those nightshade summer crops it’s probably best to be going straight to seedlings:
- capsicum & chillies
You’re going to want some herbs to eat them with, and you can never have too much basil! And why not some dill, so under-appreciated?!
- spring onion
Cucurbits (cucumber family) for the win. You can still grow from seed, but seedlings might give you a bit of a head start.
You can create ‘three sisters’ companion planting with a cucurbit and a climbing bean and corn. Usually it’s best to just grow the latter two from seed.
Leafy greens can be planted now too.
Did you say sweet potato = leafy green? Not only is it a tuber, but the greens are good eating!
Why not also plant some:
Also in the veggie patch
When you’re planting out, give those new seedlings a boost with compost and worm castings.
Mulch is your friend, but it can also provide a bit of habitat for slugs, snails and slaters, so keep it fairly thin especially while your seedlings are vulnerable.
Consider a classic beer trap – or if the snails are really getting you down, seize a dewy night to reduce the population manually.
Drown in basil ocean
One of the great things about home veggie gardening is that you never have to shirk on the basil again. You can live on basil island. Get lost in the basil forest. Drown in the basil ocean. Basil is the new lettuce! Indeed, one of our favourite varieties is ‘lettuce leaved basil’, with it’s sweet slightly aniseed flavour, it’s available as seed from many Italian grocers and with a leaf big enough to service an entire sandwich. Or simply wrap it around a sun warmed tomato, straight from the vine.
In the orchard
Now’s a good time to pinch off any unwanted growth (especially from below grafts) on your fruit trees, before it becomes a sizeable branch.
- Mulberries, loquats (two under-appreciated fruits, although most loquats are seedlings and not necessarily the best ambassadors of their type) are already falling from the trees. The first of the apricots may be amongst us next.
- In the veggie garden we’re pulling out a huge quantity of broad beans, silverbeet, lettuce, spring onions, big cauliflower heads, broccoli and more.
Plan your future garden
If you want to grow food for spring and summer but haven’t got your own garden yet, now is a great time to install and plant a garden. Not sure where to start? We can help you with customised DIY sustainable timber raised garden bed and wicking bed kits to suit your garden, or we can install any of these options for you.