Early spring brings a change to the garden, enjoy what it has to offer!

Early spring brings a change of pace in the garden as plants start to grow, flower and fruit. Bare earth is replaced with clumps of flowering bulbs while fallen leaves disappear under the canopy of new foliage. Grey turns to green as leaves return, and short, dark days make way for longer, sunnier ones. This is the time to rejoice in the garden’s renewal by spending time outdoors. Visit parks and local gardens to enjoy their spring show, and pop into your local garden centre or hardware store to invest in new plants for a burst of instant colour or fragrance that tells you it’s spring.

Removing Weeds

Weed Watch!

It’s not only the plants that are taking advantage of the warm spring sunshine and longer days – so too are weeds and garden pests. Take time to hand weed emerging weeds before they take over. In the vegie patch, use a hoe to weed between the rows of vegies. Cover any bare soil with a light layer of organic mulch to slow weed germination.

Removing young weeds cuts down on chores as the weeds don’t have time to spread or set seed! If you have weeds emerging between pavers or along the driveway, spot spray them with EarthCare Organic WeedKiller spray.

Glyphosate free, it is a non-selective natural herbicide which controls a broad range of weeds and lichen, algae and moss. Be careful when spraying near your favourite plants, as it’s a contact spray. it will kill anything it comes into contact with.

Pest Watch!

As you stroll in the garden keep an eye out for signs of pest damage such as silver trails on pathways (a sure indication that snails and slugs are about) or chewed leaves (a caterpillar has been feeding). Examine new growth shoots for clusters of aphids that can be gently squashed or hosed away. Pay particular attention to roses, citrus and annuals such as pansies.

Before reaching for harsher treatments check plants for signs of ladybird activity as adult and young ladybirds feed on aphids and will soon bring them under control!

If you find you have a large infestation, try a natural pyrethrum spray such as EarthCare Natural Pyrethrum insect spray. Broad-spectrum, and rapid action, it is a quick knockdown of insects and pests.

Revitalise your indoor plants with Seasol

Indoor plant care for spring

The excitement of spring isn’t restricted to the outdoors. Indoor gardeners can succumb to spring fever too by giving their plants a bit of TLC. Move plants closer to windows so plants can enjoy extra light, remove dead foliage, dust down leaves and re-pot plants that have outgrown their container or potting mix.

Use a premium potting mix such as Seasol Indoor Potting Mix. It has everything in the bag to take the guesswork out of growing and looking after indoor plants. When planting or replanting, water your plants in with Seasol to reduce transplant shock and aid plant establishment.

Liquid feed all plants with PowerFeed Indoor and Potted Plants ready-to-use trigger spray. No mixing, no mess, simply spray it onto the soil. If possible, rest plants outdoors in a sheltered spot to help them put on new growth before they are brought back indoors. Increase watering and apply Seasol every 7-10 days to help indoor plants withstand the rigours of life in the home.

Keep harvesting asparagus

One of the joys of early spring is harvesting fresh asparagus from your garden. Asparagus spears are young new shoots that emerge from the soil.

These green tender shoots are poised for growth and rapidly become tall with ferny leaves. If they grow, they become woody and no longer good to eat, so check plants daily for fresh shoots and cut them off just below soil level.

If you haven’t got an established bed of asparagus, look for potted plants at your local garden centre or hardware store but remember, it takes two to three years of growth before the clump is strong enough to harvest.

Asparagus can also be planted in winter while the plants are dormant. They like rich, well-drained soil and their own bed. Well cared for asparagus plants are productive for many springs to come!

A nurturing spirit in spring

Spring is the perfect time to nurture your entire garden and lawn with a feed of fertiliser and compost as warmer air and soil temperatures encourage and fuel that burst of new growth. While some plants need regular feeding throughout the year, all plants benefit from an early spring feed to encourage strong growth, flowers and fruit

The range of fertiliser products can be daunting and confusing, so many gardeners wonder which product to use to feed their plants. There are lots of good fertilisers, so make your choice based on the types of plants you grow, preferred fertiliser formulation (such as liquid or granular) and frequency of application.

For a general, all round, fast-acting liquid fertiliser that is safe on all plants including natives, apply PowerFeed All Purpose including Natives. As a liquid fertiliser, it can be reapplied regularly (every 2 to 4 weeks) throughout the growing period. This is ideal for all plants including rapidly growing plants such as annuals and vegetables, as well as containerised plants indoors and outdoors.

For those who don’t want to be constantly applying fertiliser, select a controlled-release or slow release formulation, which will feed slowly over many months. These products are good to select for a general feed of all plants and the lawn during the growing season. For a total garden slow-release fertilisers which feeds your plants and soil, try PowerFeed with Troforte All Purpose including NativesMix into the soil every 6-8 weeks. For the lawn, use PowerFeed LawnFeed, which is suitable for all lawn types including Buffalo. Apply it every season to your lawn during the growing season, For all granular fertilisers, don’t forget to water them in thoroughly after application.

There are also plant foods designed to feed specific plants such as tomatoes, roses, citrus, orchids, natives and lawns. For example for tomatoes, apply PowerFeed PRO SERIES Tomatoes & Vegetables as a liquid every 2 to 4 weeks or PowerFeed Controlled Release for Tomatoes & Vegetables as a granular controlled release fertiliser every 6 to 8 weeks.

Most gardeners find they need a combination of liquid and granular products with some specialised formulations. When applying fertiliser always follow the instructions on the container. For more information on specific plant food, check out the Seasol and PowerFeed range.

TIP: Don’t forget to add a few spadefuls of aged manure, garden compost and/or Seasol Super Compost under large shrubs such as camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas and around bulbs that have finished flowering.

Love the lawn

The long, warm days encourage lawns to start to grow. In preparation for more regular mowing, give your lawn mower a service (or drop it off at the local lawn mower repairer to get it done for you). A pre-spring service includes changing the blades so they are sharp and ready to cut and changing spark plugs so the mower starts first go. Fuel left in the tank over winter may also cause starter problems so kick spring off with fresh fuel. Also check that insects haven’t built mud nests in the exhaust pipe and there are no spiders lurking around.

The first mow of spring should be a gentle cut. If you spot lawn weeds emerging, weed them out by hand (or with a weeding tool) or apply a natural spot herbicide such as EarthCare Organic WeedKiller. It is a non-selective natural contact herbicide which controls a broad range of weeds.

Bare spots need to be reseeded, planted with runners or even returned to stop them from becoming weedy Protect newly planted lawn areas until the patch is actively growing and apply Seasol Lawn & Turf Starter every week for the first six weeks to promote strong root development and healthy green growth.

Lawn irrigation and feeding

While you’re in the shed looking after the mower, locate hoses and sprinklers ready for the first hot dry day when the lawn will need a good soak. Make sure they are all working and you have the necessary joiners and hose fittings for taps. If you have a built in irrigation system, test that it is working and hasn’t suffered damage or blockages over winter.

Also, check the soil moisture of your lawn. If you water your lawn and it pools on top or runs off, then it could be dry and repelling water. Applying a soil wetter such as Seasol Super Soil Wetter & Conditioner hose-on will help to overcome this. It retains moisture at the root zone and reduces drying of soil.

If the lawn is starting to grow and particularly after rain, apply lawn food such as PowerFeed LawnFeed (or PowerFeed Buffalo LawnFeedfor buffalo varieties). For newly planted lawns or newly laid turf Seasol Lawn + Turf Starter is ideal and the hose-on application is easy and fast to use.

For more lawn advice including top dressing and irrigation check out our spring lawn maintenance guide.

Seasol's Guide to Understanding Lawn Fertilisers