This blog is about my garden located in Melbourne, Australia, where summer heat and long periods without rain can make gardening a challenge. It is the gateway to a series of my blogs showing you how I deal with these conditions....John Ashworth 22/04/2017.
Latest Update 24th April 2017. Growing Ornamentals.
I used to have a fine garden full of colour and vigour, and then came a 13 year long drought which changed my mindset considerably.
Its almost 7 years since I retired, and by coincidence, the drought broke in Melbourne and we have had adequate rainfall ever since.
For a while I focused my energies in retirement on developing a highly efficient vegetable, herb and fruit growing system which used the most advanced organic methods I could find to grow my crops.
I used wicking bed methods to limit water use to a minimum to grow my veggies and drip line irrigation for my other plants.
18 months ago I turned my attention to restoring some of the beauty in the garden which I had lost during the drought starting with a new lawn.
Many organic gardeners consider lawns to be unsustainable and have replaced them with perennial plants with low nutritional and water requirements.
Lil insisted I replace here beloved small patch of lawn in the front garden, so I did. However, I decided to make it as sustainable as possible by carefully incorporating lots of home made compost in the soil, spraying the roots of the pre-grown turf with aerated compost tea, and installed a sub-turf drip irrigation system.
This buffalo grass lawn is now 18 months old and needs only an hour of irrigated water once a week in the hotter months and only rainfall for the rest of the year. It is mowed on the thickest setting, and fed with 9 litres of sieved home made compost once a year in autumn.
The following links take you to my blogpages which cover most of the ornamental plants in my garden (including the lawn). These pages contain a botanical name, the variety grown, its preferred growing conditions, soil preparation, propagation, growing instructions and pest control.