With temperatures slowly rising and the deafening sounds of cicadas filling the air, this can mean just one thing – it’s summer in Australia. Summer brings longer days and the opportunity to spend more time pottering in the garden.
For many gardeners, your warm-season plants were planted after the last frosts, usually early spring. But fear not ‘late-comers’, with temperatures staying warm in many areas right through to April, it’s not too late to plant many of those summer favourites.
Let’s spend a bit of time thinking about what you will grow this summer because when you get to the nursery or start reading that seed catalogue, there’s every chance you’re going to purchase things you don’t really want.
Are you thinking about trying something a little different this summer? Do you want to make the most of a small space? Or, are you looking for those old family favourites you remember eating as a kid? Make sure you plant what you’re going to eat, and then experiment and expand.
Purchasing seed is an economical way of growing veggies, and there is much more variety available. However, they do require a lot of attention, especially when starting them in punnets. You should still have enough time be able to grow many of your vegetables from seed, but if you don’t get a move on, you might need to consider planting seedlings which cost more and have limited varieties available.
At the flick of a switch, you can get access to many ‘What to Sow When’ guides. A word of advice, firstly, make sure it’s for the southern hemisphere and secondly make sure it’s for your climate.
Now you’re ready to make your purchases, think about selecting high yielding varieties that will maximise your return. Here are a few of my summer favourites you might like to consider.
Tigerella is a high yielding variety of heirloom tomato. It produces medium-sized, juicy, red-fleshed fruit with a red and yellow stripe and tender skin. Grows in full sun to 150cm so needs staking. This variety has great flavour and good disease resistance.