After the heat…

We got off lightly here in Adelaide – only Thursday, Friday and Monday were over 40 degrees, and only one night has the thermometer remained over 21. Not such a heatwave as it might have been, but a reminder that this is the kind of weather we will see more and more of in the summers to come. Hope your garden has come through in good shape. Keep up the water to those plants in need of help to recover, and a bit of seaweed extract and worm wee would be welcome too.

I had a few spaces laying fallow over the past couple of weeks, so these have now been refreshed with compost, manure, blood and bone,  a good deep watering and a fresh layer of mulch. The old mulch has been moved on to beds that will receive native plants in autumn, so as to reduce the buildup of any pests and diseases in the vegetable beds.

It’s a bit late in the season to get some of these heat-lovers established if they’re to fruit before the winter shade encroaches, but I’m giving it a go anyway, with advanced seedlings in the hottest west-facing part of my back garden:

  • apple cucumbers up a trellis against the shed
  • capsicum, eggplant and chilli in front
  • will fill in the gaps with basil

Bamboo canes leaning up against the trellis provide a framework to support shadecloth while the seedlings are settling in and during any further heatwaves. This set-up has proved successful for tomatoes and basil along the north-facing fence which was previously very hot and glary through summer.

The only thing in the garden which really suffered in the heat was the nashi tree, which has only been in the ground for six months, and which I forgot to cover on a 45-degree day. Poor thing. Some of its western leaves and one fruit got fried. Apart from that, it looks as good as ever.


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