Planting in Season for your Unique Location

One of the biggest challenges in gardening is learning what to plant when. To save time and money and get the best results, it’s wise to plant in season.  That simply means that you work WITH nature to sow or transplant when the weather and season is most favourable to growing what you want to plant.

Learn the right time to plant in your zone - it will save you time and money! | The Micro Gardener

Ever had a seedling or plant die shortly after planting? Your climate zone and time of year can play a big role in gardening successfully.

 

How to Determine What to Plant and When

 

Climate zones for Australia from the Bureau of Meterology.

Once you know your climate zone, you can follow a planting calendar that suits your area and makes it easy to know what to plant when.

 

  • Use a planting calendar – if you are unfamiliar with what to plant when, then a calendar is a useful tool to help you learn and remember which plants grow well in different seasons.  Some vegies will wilt in summer heat, whereas others thrive in cold weather.  It’s a waste of resources to plant at the wrong time!  (Read on to find out more about calendars.)
  • Check your space – What you grow also depends on the length of your growing season, how much sunlight your garden gets and the size of your planting space.  If you have a lot of shade, this will limit the varieties of what you can grow whereas sunny gardens will offer more alternatives.  Some gardens only get enough sun at certain times of the year.  You may have to look at your garden and maximise vertical growing space to get access to enough sun and increase the variety of what you can grow.
  • Maximise Success with Moon PlantingGardening by the moon has been practiced for many thousands of years and is not about planting at night but about being in harmony with natural growth patterns!  Understanding how to work with nature brings a whole host of benefits and it can be as simple as using a moon calendar.

 

Perpetual Moon Gardening Calendar | The Micro Gardener

Perpetual Moon Gardening Calendar – a tool you can use for a lifetime anywhere in the world to help increase yields & save you time & money.

 

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven; A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck that which is planted.” – Eccl 3:1-2

 

Garden Calendars & Planting Guides

Depending on where you live, there are some useful online planting calendars, that will help you determine your climate zone and suitable plants to grow.  Some of the best I’ve found to work with are:

  • Gardenate – Provides a handy garden calendar with general information; optional monthly email reminders to prompt you on what plants are suitable for planting right now; and plant profiles with details about many edibles.  It covers all climate zones in Australia, New Zealand, UK and the USA.  You just simply choose your country and zone from the drop down list.
  • Gardening Australia Vegie Guide – This vegetable planting guide is for all climate zones within Australia – you can quickly identify your area on the map.  Select the month and you are provided with a list of suitable vegies to plant.  Brief vegie profiles are also in this guide.

 

Planting at the right time will ensure success. | The Micro Gardener

Online planting guides are a useful tool to learn which edible crops to plant in different seasons in your climate zone.

 

 

Useful Organic Gardener’s Tips

 

Get your planting organised – I personally use MyFolia (an online garden tracking & organising community) to keep a regular record of my plantings (most of the time!)

MyFolia - The Micro Gardener Journals | The Micro Gardener

I also record seasonal observations via journals and share/swap ideas, seeds and tips with other gardeners interested in growing the same plants.

 

On MyFolia, you can also join groups specific to your interests like Kitchen Gardens, Herbs or Container Gardening. Check out my journals and plantings to get an idea of how to use this free tool.

Resources

There are also seasonal activities that you need to attend to at different times of the year – not just sowing and planting, but also pruning, pest and disease management, garden maintenance and harvesting.  You will find a wealth of seasonal gardening advice in these notes from Green Harvest:

  • Winter Green Notes (building healthy soils; winter citrus care; actions to take in the garden; what to plant in May/June; attracting insect-eating birds to your garden; coping with an abundant harvest of lemons or limes; fruit tree pruning and maintenance tasks.)
  • Spring Green Notes (growing delicious home grown tomatoes; tomato relish recipe; reducing plant disease problems; spring citrus care; organic strategies for nematode problems; salad mixes; seed sowing; sowing and planting guide; asparagus; what to do in the garden from July – October in sub-tropical zones.)
Seedlings ready for planting. | The Micro Gardener

Sowing seeds and raising seedlings are easy, money saving tasks for the organic home gardener. Planting at the right time will maximise your crop.

 

  • Summer Green Notes (summer citrus care; what to do in the garden November to January; coping with the heat; planting guide for summer; seedling survival strategies; organic weed control; how to organically remove pests from your home; choosing fruit trees; extending the harvest; and growing your own chook food.)
  • Autumn Green Notes (improve the pest balance in your garden; using the rosella harvest; what to do in the garden February to April; what to plant in autumn; herbs in permaculture and autumn rose care in warmer areas.)

 

Watering the flower garden. | The Micro Gardener

Keeping a garden journal can be a useful tool for remembering when you sowed, transplanted, fertilised, pruned, harvested, watered and other important seasonal activities.

 

Want to know more? You’ll find ideas in Tips & Tricks and check out How to Grow Your Own Food from Seed; Harvesting Vegetables & Herbs and some simple ideas in Getting A Small Kitchen Garden Started.

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© Copyright Anne Gibson, The Micro Gardener 2016. http://themicrogardener.com. All rights reserved.