This newsletter is short and sweet. Tomatoes are the most popular vegetable that gardeners want to grow successfully, so this month, I’ve dedicated a new article to help you do just that. I also introduce you to an insect you might see in your garden – the Assassin Bug. Friend or foe? Read on to find out!

Check out my March tips wherever you live. Plus a special download for what to do in your garden in subtropical Queensland for local gardeners in my climate. Planning is just as much fun as planting so think about your design to optimise space. You can also grow microgreens as mini indoor gardens like these gorgeous colourful baby leaf greens.

Microgreens six different varieties of herbs and vegetables

Microgreens: six different varieties of herbs and vegetables you can eat raw in 7-21 days


Top Tips for Growing Terrific Tomatoes

In my Tomato Growing Guide, you’ll discover top tips for:

  • Selecting and growing tomatoes.
  • How to prepare your soil.
  • Sowing, harvesting and pollination.
  • Health benefits +
  • My yummy super-easy tomato sauce recipe.

Take me to the TOMATO TIPS!

March in the Garden - These indeterminate cherry tomatoes gave me a healthy harvest

My indeterminate cherry tomatoes produced a healthy harvest with amazing flavour



The Health Benefits of Growing Plants Indoors

Are you working from home or spending more time inside like 90% of Australians? If so, I invite you to read my recent article in Garden Culture Magazine (p72-81). You may be surprised to learn how an indoor garden can considerably improve your health and wellbeing.

Polluted indoor air contaminated by volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is recognised as a major cause of building-related health conditions. These include headaches, nausea, lethargy, nose and throat irritation, and loss of concentration. Few people likely suspect an invisible enemy may be contributing to their health issues.  Click here to discover how your plants can come to the rescue!

The Health Benefits of Growing Plants Indoors Garden Culture Magazine p72-81

‘The Health Benefits of Growing Plants Indoors’ p72-81, Garden Culture Magazine



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Gardening Tips for March

Here on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland Australia, it’s steamy and most days are in the high 20’s. Typical summer weather! Many people get confused thinking March is the beginning of autumn here, but it’s not. We have a long summer lasting four months from December through March. So we have to be patient for the humidity and temperatures to drop. Based on previous annual weather patterns, this is usually around the end of the month.

Locally, my advice at this time of year is: Keep on top of weeds. 10 minutes daily makes a difference. Grow microgreens and save some as seedlings to transplant early autumn. Use green ‘waste’ prunings, lawn clippings, food scraps and organic matter wisely to build healthy soil with compost. Lock in summer soil moisture with mulch. Sow lots of flowers. You’ll need pollinators for autumn fruiting crops. March is the best time of the year to sow garlic and potatoes, so source quality plant material and be ready to sow in harmony with the moon phases for best results.

Subtropical SE Queensland – What to Plant Now

READ Gardening Tips for March for what to do now in SE QLD, pests to watch for and more. (Download PDF)

Subtropical Planting Guide – a laminated perpetual guide to the 5 seasons in SE QLD

March in the Garden - Get ready to plant new season seedlings

Getting ready to plant new season seedlings

Not sure what to grow in your climate?

See What to Plant and When for resources to help you, wherever you live.

Northern Hemisphere Gardens

In the northern hemisphere, many of my clients in the US and UK are excited that spring is approaching. A time for sowing seeds, refreshing potting mix and preparing the garden for planting as the warm sunny weather arrives.



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Help for your Garden

Get in touch if you’d like one-on-one personalised advice via a live chat or onsite garden consultation. One hour can make a BIG difference to your confidence and shortcut you to success with an action plan.


Assassin Bugs – Pests or Predatory Insects?

Have you ever seen this insect in your garden? These bugs are ferocious predators that help manage pest insect populations.

Assassin Bugs - beneficial predatory insects that help pest manage

Assassin Bugs – they look different as they grow through their life cycle

The Assassin Bug hunts and ambushes its prey then injects a fast-acting paralysing fluid (saliva) that breaks down internal tissue. Using their curved proboscis or beak, they suck up the bug’s body fluid. Sounds quite horrific, doesn’t it? They earn the name ‘assassin’ for good reason.

Assassin Bugs are in the order Hemiptera and Reduviidae family. They go through many ‘moults’ as they grow. There are many species of Assassin Bugs. They change their appearance and colours as they develop from young wingless ‘nymphs’ into mature adult bugs that can fly. Avoid touching them because their bite hurts!

Favourite foods? Thought you’d never ask! Caterpillars, aphids, flies, snails, leafhoppers and beetles. Next time you’re outdoors, keep an eye out for these garden helpers – at a distance!


Helpful Articles


Dig into my free online Article Library for more topics

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Want more inspiring ideas?

Each week I share photos and videos of what I’m growing, harvesting and eating from my garden and ways I use my homegrown food. Follow me for more tips and inspiration in between newsletters.

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I look forward to sharing more news and ways to grow good health next month.

Happy gardening!

Anne



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© Copyright Anne Gibson, The Micro Gardener 2020. https://themicrogardener.com. All rights reserved.

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