Aerating of garden beds and lawn areas
Why is aerating important?
Aeration helps to improve the health and integrity of your lawn and garden beds by allowing water and fertiliser to enter the soil, improving oxygen circulation, and preventing weeds from establishing in the compacted ground. Moreover, and on that latter point, compacted soils have too many solid particles in a certain volume or space, which prevents proper circulation of air, water and nutrients within the soil. Excess lawn thatch or heavy organic debris buried under the grass surface can also starve the roots from these essential elements.
When should aerating be done?
It is recommended that aerating be done throughout the growing season. That way, your lawn and gardens have an opportunity to heal and fill in any open areas that are left behind during the aeration process.
Laying of mulch
Why is it important to lay mulch?
Covering soil with mulch helps to conserve moisture and improve soil health, which in turn leads to healthier gardens. Mulch also helps to prevent root competition by suppressing weed growth and preventing weed germination.
When should you lay mulch?
Mulch should be laid on garden beds after planting, and spread evenly as a 2-3 inch layer on the surface of your soil. When laying mulch it is important that you apply mulch correctly, otherwise, you risk stimulating the growth of fungus, attracting insects, and starving the plant’s root system of oxygen.
What is the best mulch?
Shredded bark is one of the most common types of mulch, and is one of the best mulch types as it breaks down relatively slowly.
Why is fertilising important?
You have probably heard of the saying, ‘the key to a good garden is good soil’…and yes, that couldn’t be more correct. Essential nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are needed for plants to thrive. Unless you are returning all waste matter back to the soil (such as leaves, twigs, and clippings), the soil will need to be fertilised to replace lost nutrients. Applying organic material and natural fertilisers to the soil not only promotes plant growth, but it also helps to improve soil quality and texture; thereby increasing the soil’s ability to hold water, reducing erosion, and raising the soil’s pH.
When should you fertilise your lawn and gardens?
It is important to realise that different plants require different fertilisers, and at different times of the year. As a rule of thumb, it is best to apply fertiliser to lawn and plants when they are actively growing, such as in Spring. Feeding plants at the wrong time of the year may render the fertiliser ineffective, for example, feeding plants when rain is expected can result in run-off; whereby the fertiliser does not have the opportunity to be absorbed by the soil and root system but rather goes into your drains.
Can you over-fertilise?
Yes, it is possible to over-fertilise your lawn and gardens. Over time, various nutrients can build up in the soil, and therefore, should additional (unneeded) nutrients be added to the soil, it can disrupt pH levels and lead to toxic accumulations of harmful elements. Overfeeding plants can also make the leaves of plants softer and more susceptible to disease – for example, soft-leaved plants are commonly affected by grey mould.
Pest and disease control
Why is pest and disease control important?
Plants, like humans, are subject to disease and illness. Left untreated, the consequences can get serious. In saying that, healthy and vigorous plants are much more resistant to disease, so it is important to keep on top of pests and diseases should they present, and also be proactive when it comes to promoting a healthy growing environment.
What to be mindful of when treating pests and diseases?
All gardens are teaming with insect life. Yet, very few of the species you see in your backyard are damaging, so it is important to assess the situation before spraying all kinds of harmful chemicals to eradicate the problem – broad-spectrum insecticides kill all insects, both good and bad.
Why is hand watering important?
Hand watering prevents over-watering by allowing you to target specific plants that are in need of additional water, and in doing so, this reduces the risk of runoff that has the potential to remove topsoil. Although many parts of Australia are susceptible to water restriction, hand watering is generally permitted, provided it is with a handheld hose fitted with a trigger nozzle.
How often should you water your lawn and gardens?
Water is a necessary factor behind a healthy garden, but in saying that, over-watering should be avoided. Likewise, under-watering can have severe and negative consequences. Generally speaking, gardens should be watered intermittently and, in the morning, so as to promote strong root growth.
Leaf blowing and vacuuming
Why is leaf blowing and vacuuming important?
Nothing beats a neat and tidy garden, and this can only occur if all unwanted leaves and garden debris are removed. Handheld leaf blowers and vacuums allow for large areas to be cleaned up in an efficient manner by easily removing debris and mulching them into tiny pieces, which can then be disposed of in an eco-friendly manner.
Removal of all grass and garden trimmings
Why is it important to remove all grass and garden trimmings?
A pile of unsightly green waste has the potential to distract from a beautiful garden, and also gives the impression that any garden work is incomplete. Moreover, leaving excess garden debris on lawn and garden areas has the potential to suffocate growth.