October gardening tips: Your guide to successful spring planting

October is all about beautiful blooms so we’ve rounded up some simple hacks to help you make the most of this wonderful time of year


October gardening tips: Your guide to successful spring planting

+ Few hearts can fail to be moved by the sight of trees covered in spring blossom. For bird lovers they’re even more of a treat as cherry trees and kowhai in flower signal party time for tui.

+ Deciduous magnolias, crab apple and michelia are also covered in gorgeous blooms at this time of year. If you fancy a spring-flowering tree in your garden, now is a good time to check them out in neighbours’ gardens, parks, garden centres or your local botanical gardens to see which ones you like; there are varieties to suit gardens of every size and some will even grow in pots. To enjoy long-lasting blossoms choose somewhere out of the wind to plant your tree.

+ With summer on the horizon plants need as much help as they can to cope with dry soil, especially those in pots. Granular soil wetting products such as Saturaid help retain moisture in the soil, as does good old-fashioned mulch.

+ Subtropical plants will often sulk if planted in cold soil. Spring, when the earth has warmed up, is the best time to plant heat-loving subtropical climbers such as beaumontia, stephanotis, mandevilla and passiflora. Choose a sheltered, sunny spot, keep soil moist and they’ll reward you with flamboyant, often fragrant blooms.

+ When buying flowering annuals for pots choose smaller plants with a few buds. Flowering depletes the energy of a plant meaning plants in bloom often suffer from transplant shock when re-potted.

Words by: Carol Bucknell.

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