Organic Gardening Calendar

ORGANIC GARDENING CALENDAR

FEBRUARY

The Organic Food Garden

by Kath Irvine www.ediblebackyard.co.nz

excerpt taken from “Organic Garden Calendar” by Kath Irvine

Did your food garden grow well this year? Now’s a good time to create solutions for any problems you’ve had. Crucial things to reflect on, and improve if necessary, are:

  • Drainage – good drainage is essential for healthy crops.
  • Biodiversity – did you have enough to manage your pests naturally?
  • Compost – are you making enough/ are your systems working well?
  • Wind Shelter – are your crops protected?
  • Animals – are your animals productive and healthy and integrating into your garden well?

In the Vegie Patch

Seed to sow:

salads – some colder-weather greens can start to be sown now – like spinach, miner’s lettuce, corn salad.

vegies – keep up brassica sowings for Winter harvest, silverbeet, spring onion

herbs – parsley, coriander

direct sowings – rocket, beetroot, carrots

flowers – alyssum, calendula, chamomile, wallflower, cornflower, larkspur, snapdragon, sweet william, delphinium

green crops – can be sown in any spaces you have between crops.

Plant out:

  • salad greens
  • brassicas need to be going in now if you want to eat them over winter. Be ready to deal with cabbage whites – either spray seedlings every 14 days with BT or Dipel till May; or cage your crop. Don’t forget that rocket and mizuna are brassicas too!
  • Stocks, calendula, chamomile and holly hocks can all be planted now.
  • Leeks can go in now for Spring harvest

Other tasks:

  • keep an eye on tomatoes from now on in for blight – especially after dewy nights. If need be spray with a copper oxychloride
  • keep up liquid feeding
  • hunt out self seeded treasures and transplant them if they aren’t in a good spot already
  • collect seeds
  • make compost tea
  • manage mildew on zucchinis by plucking off badly affected leaves and spraying with dilute milk, or baking soda
  • prepare beds for Winter crops – chop down green manures, add compost, rock dust, worm castings, lime. Feed them up for fast strong growth before Winter’s cold comes and slows them right down.

In the Home Orchard:

  • mulch persimmons
  • keep on top of your bird protection
  • make a plan for your Autumn fruit tree/ wind shelter planting
  • thin feijoas
  • plant strawberries for next year
  • summer prune your stone fruit
  • keep up with codling moth lures