Gardening advice for January

By Wendyl Nissen

January can be tough month for plants as the hot weather kicks in with full force.

It is also the time when many of us go on holiday and leave our gardens to fend for themselves. Here are some easy ideas for effective watering:

• Check if you need to water by poking your finger into the dirt to see how dry the soil is.

• Don’t water quickly and only on the surface. Invest in a drip hose which feeds water gently into your garden over half an hour or so.

• Invest in a timer for your hose so you don’t forget to turn the water off.

• Water in the evening to allow the water to soak in overnight rather than being dried out by the sun during the day.

• Mulch around plants by using organic mulch such as grass clippings, chopped leaves, compost, paper or wood chips. Inorganic mulches include gravel, stones and black plastic.

• Mix water storing crystals into your potting mix.

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