When creating any new plantings saving water is an absolute must and adding quality soil improvers into the soil, clay additives if your garden is primarily sand and wetting agents to ensure the water penetrates the root zone. Dig soil additives in to a depth of at least 30cm and don’t forget the blood and bone with Potash or Powerfeed Granular plant food. Cut flower varieties need to flower prolifically so a fertiliser specially formulated for flowering will be your key to success. Potassium is the nutrient that will intensify the perfume and colour of flowers, increase the number of flowers, strengthen stems of plants and increase the plants resistance to pests and diseases. Always finish off the garden area with a thick chunky mulch to a depth of about 100mm. Coarse mulches are ideal as they allow the water to soak into the soil, reduce evaporation and keep the soil cool so the plants don’t stress on those extra hot days.
As the plants grow the use of a liquid fertiliser regularly is an ideal solution for picking gardens to ensure an abundance of flowers for a long flowering season. Soluble liquid fertilisers when applied over the foliage of a plant are absorbed 400 times faster than if it was applied around the root system. Not only is this great for the plants, but it’s a great environmental solution as well. There’s minimal leaching of nutrients into the soil because they are absorbed so quickly and there’s almost no wastage.
To extend the life of cut flowers remember to cut early in the morning when temperatures are cool. Recut the stems again when arranging the plants and remove as much foliage as possible under the water line.