Spring has sprung…and weeds are everywhere!

After the low energy of winter, spring in Australia has gonePink blossoms on dwarf nectarine tree off with a BANG!

Canberra had its warmest first day of spring on record.

Then we had our earliest ‘summer’ storm. (Finally, some rain!)

Sydney has had its earliest fires to start the bushfire season. 🙁

The top half of Australia has been sweltering, breaking more records…while it’s been cool and very windy down south.

So, what does it mean for the garden?

First, it’s spring…so it’s time to get the garden ready for planting summer food plants.

Second, it’s clear that climate change is upon us.  And that means that summer’s likely to be more extreme than average.

And that means that it’s time to get a move on…before the worst of summer hits. (And if you’re in the northern hemisphere, it’s time to get your garden prepared for winter.)

Top of my list of things to do over the next month is:

Deal with the weeds.

Every garden gets weeds.  They’re simply plants growing where you don’t want them to grow.

But weeds can also be a great resource.  That’s because they are wonderful for feeding your soil and keeping the moisture in…for free and with no greenhouse gas emissions from transportation.  Now that’s sustainable!

Some weeds are great for bringing up nutrients from deeper in the soil.  Weeds can also be great food for your chooks or other poultry.

And if you don’t have poultry to control your weeds, you can simply slash or pull them and use them for mulch…as long as you get them before they set seed and they aren’t the type that spread vegetatively.   And it can be great exercise.  (I’ve had 2 great workouts over the last couple of days and now I feel great!)

But what if they have already set seed?  There’s an old gardners’ adage that:

1 year’s seeding = 7 years’ weeding

But you can cover seedy weeds with thick layers of cardboard or newspaper and lots of mulch.  Or bury them at the bottom of a wicking box or bed.  That way, you get to use them as fertiliser but not have to deal with more weeds.

And if they are the sort of weed that spreads vegetatively?

I use 2 options.  The first is to leave them to dry to a crisp in the sun and wind, then use them as mulch.

But that can look a bit messy.  If piles of drying Domestic liquid fertiliser maker from old metal urnweeds isn’t your idea of garden ornamentation, you can try my other option I use is to submerge them in water.  There they break down to make wonderful liquid fertiliser.  And, I make sure that there is a lid on the container – to keep mosquitoes and methane in.  An old hot water urn does the job nicely and makes for easy dispensing. 😉

In about a month, when the weeds are under control, planting areas prepared and the weather a little warmer, I’ll be able to plant my summer vegetables out in the open. 🙂

In the meantime, spring is moving very quickly…so we’d better get moving fast!

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Till next time…be gentle to yourself and our world!