Plant Now for Great Colour at Christmas
It is just over 8 weeks to Christmas. If you are looking to wow your Christmas guests with a fabulous garden full of colour then now is the time to plant out annuals such as petunias and vincas.
Vinca's have definitely found a place in my garden. I find them to be more sun tolerate, to have a longer flowering period, and most importantly to require less water, than petunias. In fact, gardeners who overwater these hardy annuals will find that they rot off, so be sure to water more deeply less often. Both, of course, make a fabulous show and can be relied upon to bring colour and cheer to your garden just when you need it.
These sun loving annuals need at least 6 hours of sunshine a day, are perfect in a pot, hanging basket or in garden beds, and once established really are very easy to care for.
We recommend soaking seedlings and advanced seedlings in a weak solution of Seasol for an hour or so prior to planting. Dig over your beds well, adding organic matter such as compost as you do so. Plant your freshly soaked seedlings into the soil, water in well, again using a seaweed solution, and mulch your plants. If your garden has a more than healthy snail population, then you might like to protect your young seedlings by placing a glass cloche over them (a glass jar is fine), or by crushing up dried egg shells and scattering them around the seedlings. An application of Yates Droughtshield will also benefit newly planted seedlings by reducing transplant shock (Droughtshield is also useful to apply during times of extreme heat or wind - one application lasts approximately 8 weeks under normal plant growth).
A regular fortnightly liquid feed for flower and fruit will ensure your plants have good root and leaf growth, as well as plenty of energy for fabulous flowers just when you need them most - Christmas!
There are some fabulous colour combinations out this season, from bold purples, reds and pinks, to muted pinks, blues and yellows. What will you plant this season?