Yay, it’s winter time which means it’s time to start enjoying the last of your most recently sown produce like your broccoli and carrots to name just a few as these veges will all be ready to cook and serve right now. It’s called the last of the Autumn crops. As professional gardeners the most common question we get asked this time of year is what can we grow now that winter is upon us. Many people are not too motivated to head out into the garden once it gets too cold but if you are keen to get a winter garden going then there are still a lot of great vegetables you can grow in winter.
What you can grow depends mostly on what kind of winters you have where you are located. For example if where you live mostly escapes the frosty mornings and evenings you will have great success with the likes of spinach, onions, lettuce and cabbage but you will need almost no frost at all to succeed.
For those of you reading this that get a lot of frosts our advice is to not waste your time planting anything as it’s just not worth the time and money. Plants do not like severe frosts and the ones that you plant that actually make it through the winter and into spring will nine times out of ten go to seed. If you do happen to get a lot of winter frosts there are still options available if you really wish to keep enjoying your homegrown veges throughout the winter months. A small glasshouse or any other improvised outdoor grow room will get you back in your gumboots before you can blink. This will open up a wide variety of growing possibilities you never thought possible during winter.
Herbs like Parsley, Thyme, Coriander all grow well in glasshouses as do Broccoli, Silverbeet, Spinach and Lettuce but there are a few catches to glass house growing during the winter. The two main catches are to always allow good ventilation throughout the glass house and make very sure to not over water the plants. Stick to these two rules and you will see good growth. Just be sure to shut off all ventilation before the sun goes down or the frost will creep into your grow room.
When shopping for your winter seed varieties always choose a variety that indicates on the packet that it grows well in winter, most varieties will have a strain that performs well over the winter period. This is kind of a must for successful winter harvests. And finally to those of you that prefer to hang up your gardening gloves during the colder months the best thing you can do is prepare your garden for springtime. For spring preparation we suggest a good fungus/bacteria spray on all your garden beds and plenty of good quality manure. Take the time to do this (Many dont) and you will see fantastic results as soon as your spring crops are planted. For further advice give gardening services Auckland a call for some good friendly advice.