RENEW, REJUVENATE, REVITALISE
These are the three Rs of the Wet Season.
Self-proclaimed tree hugger, Dan from Down 2 Earth Gardens and Landscapes, is a long time Territorian having arrived in the Top End in 1995. In 2008, Dan gave up his air-conditioned corporate career to pursue his passion for plants, permaculture and (sustainable) productivity.
Operating since 2011, Down to Earth is a small business with big ideas looking after Darwin homeowners, like you. Whilst the big message each wet season is to: "Turn off your irrigation when it rains!" - there are also lots of other ways you can make the most of your garden during the Wet. Be sure to take a look at Dan’s tips below.
The ‘Wet Season’! That time of year when we retreat to the cool comfort of our air conditioners. Where for most of us, the thought of working on our gardens in this heat is a bit on an onerous task. However, for plants in the Top End, the Wet Season is a very special and exciting time.
Have you ever noticed that it seems the entire bush is alive with anticipation of the impending rain? And those beautiful bright green shoots that grace us with their presence when the clouds have passed and the sun comes out of hiding.
To compliment this change in season, we owe it to our gardens to whip out our gardening hats as the plants gear up for some serious growing and reproducing.
Here is a little check list of things you should be doing to your garden in preparation of what we hope will continue to be a 'big wet' this year;
- Fertilise – it’s best to use a slow release general-purpose fertiliser that is 100% organic. Another option is animal manure, which can often be cheaper.
- Mulch – whether it be hay, pine or bark chips, or regurgitated palm fronds; it’s always a good idea to consider the source of your mulch. Using local produce and layering it about 70mm thick is a great way to protect your soil from erosion, the draining of nutrients and will help to increase your soil quality.
- Plant/Re-pot – want to create a new garden bed or add some more plants? Then this is the best time to be getting them in the ground. Regardless of being regularly watered, plants will tend to slow their growing progress come the Dry Season. When the humidity kicks in the opposite occurs resulting in a good time to re-pot any plants that may have outgrown their homes.
- Prune – just like our own regular haircuts, build up and Wet Season is a good time to give your large shrubs and small trees a bit of a ‘trim’. If your cuttings cannot be replanted, try popping them down under your layer of mulch or put in your compost.
- Produce – pumpkins and sweet potato make excellent ground covers that will thrive in the wet and protect your garden beds. Asian greens, eggplant, zucchini are all year round and bananas will go gangbusters - remember the Wet Season is the Growing Season!
Don't have much of a green thumb or would like some help this wet to save money and be more water efficient? If so, Living Water Smart currently offers a $300-$500 Garden Tune Up rebate including an in-garden consultation by a registered irrigation specialist, review and adjustment or your current irrigation schedule and advice on smarter ways to use water in your garden.