As the Northern Hemisphere is hanging up its coat to embrace the summer, we Western Australians are preparing for the chilly winter months, which usually means staying inside and avoiding the rain. Unfortunately, cold temperatures and heavy showers encourage many of us to neglect our gardens.
However, because winter here is far from freezing and most plants adore rain, it’s easy to add natural, vibrant colours to your backyard as well as grow some delicious edibles that will be ready in time for spring.
At Instant Gardens, we believe you deserve to enjoy your private outdoor space year-round, and our Perth landscape designers aren’t afraid of any season if you need a helping hand.
All it takes is a few garden additions and insight into winter harvesting to create a yard that welcomes you to enjoy regardless of the season. Plus, now is also an ideal time to prepare your outdoor area for the coming spring and summer.
If you’d rather let the professionals do the hard work while you enjoy the heated indoors, our landscape designers in Perth are only a phone call away. However, the tips detailed below will prove to be invaluable for those who prefer a hands-on approach.
Experienced gardeners will know that winter is no time to take a break from growing edibles, but seen as many among us can admit to knowing less about being self-sufficient as we’d like, we can help you decide what to fill your patches with as the sunny skies give way to grey clouds and regular rain.
You’ll be glad to know that some traditional favourites thrive in cooler temperatures, such as carrots, potatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli. You can plant all of those veggies towards the end of autumn or during the winter, and they should be ready to harvest in as little as a few months.
Also, artichokes, asparagus, broad beans, spinach, radish, and onions will be ready to fill your stomach by the time spring comes back around.
Vegetables aside, winter provides ideal conditions to plant a few bare-rooted deciduous fruit trees that will provide a sustainable source of food for years. You should learn how to prevent pests and fungal infections to ensure healthy growth, but you’ll soon be enjoying nectarines, peaches, apricots, almonds and other stone fruits if you get it right. Also, regarding your Perth garden design, bear in mind that leaves could prevent sunlight reaching other crops during spring and summer.
Just because the temperatures are low doesn’t mean colourful flowers can’t bring your yard to life. Some flowers are perfect for planting underneath the shade of your fruit trees, whereas flowers of various colours, such as Flanders Poppy and Cosmos, grow healthiest in direct view of the sun.
Coleus, admired for its multi-coloured foliage, grows to a height of around 20cm and a width of about the same, and the smaller Lobelia is a beautiful blue trailing plant that’s perfect for walled trellises. To add a feminine touch to your winter yard, add Bedding Begonia with its vibrant pink or red petals and the 90cm-tall, glowing purple Honesty to your garden.
Examples of annuals that prefer direct sunlight include the aromatic, rainbow-coloured Sweet Pea, the two-metre tall Hollyhock, and the multi-coloured Petunia. Most flowers available as seedlings or transplants, which is the quickest way to shape up your garden.
Most winter annuals grow best in freely draining, high-quality soil rich in organic nutrients. Add clay to sandy soils, and ensure the PH is slightly acidic. Only a few plants, such as Dianthus and Sweet Pea, prefer slightly alkaline soil. If any of this sounds at all confusing, contact our expert garden designers in Perth.
Before you know it, winter will be over, and you’ll likely want a yard in full swing for the spring and summer. Priming your garden for the coming months will be well worth the effort because thoroughly thought-out backyard designs in Perth can add value to your home as well as make you happier to live in it.
The most urgent task is to trim your trees because low hanging and far-reaching branches are commonly responsible for accidents, bushfires, and power failures during the windy, wet winter. Ideally, you should have a clear space of 2.5 meters to the side and two metres below branches.
For elegant, vibrant and healthy summer flowers, you might like to lay down some manure that’s full or organic matter at this time of year. Laying manure down well in advance lets it dry out and consequently prevents it from burning flowers when you’re ready to sow your spring seeds. Avoid using fertiliser until the cool temperatures subside.
It’s best to prune flowers, hedges and bushes towards the end of winter to clear space and help flowers blossom with thick foliage in spring. Also, kill and remove all weeds while the temperature is still cool so that plants and vegetables don’t need to compete to absorb all the moisture and nutrients they require.
As you can see from above, lots of plants and vegetables can survive in a temperate garden without a problem, and you can too with a few decorative touches. Awnings and parasols are smart purchases because they provide shade during summer and shelter in winter.
It’s probably best to keep portable gas heaters away from said furnishings, but they provide sufficient heat to enjoy dry days. Fire pits work wonders for your yard’s aesthetic appeal, though the only real way to benefit from their warmth is to hover right above them.
There are lots of things you can do to make your yard more inviting until the summer returns, and the best way to do so is by contacting our professional garden designers in Perth. We’ll put the ideas in your head onto the drawing board before making them a reality, allowing you to relax indoors while we create a striking yard that will beckon you outside regardless of the season.