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5 Aug 2021

Getting ready for spring with tips from Community Greening

We are so lucky in Sydney that we can be growing fruit and vegetables essentially all year round! Here are some things to be doing in your garden in late winter and early spring from the experts at Community Greening

Be on the lookout

Cabbage moths, or cabbage butterflies might look like pretty white butterflies flitting around your cabbages, kale, broccoli and other vegies in the brassica family, but each time they land on a leaf, they are laying eggs! Their caterpillars hatch out and immediately start munching along – treating your vegies as their personal buffet!

Cabbage Moths might look pretty but they have no place in the veggie patch.

If you notice holes in your vegie leaves, look carefully for the soft, green caterpillars on the underside of leaves, or along the stems. You can also look for the yellow cylindrical eggs on the underside of the leaves. You want to keep on top of these before they eat everything! If you’re lucky enough to know chickens, they’ll be happy for a snack of tasty caterpillars!

Slugs and Snails


These hungry beasts will be leaving silvery trails behind after their nights of feasting. Try putting out a trap to lure them. I’ve heard that if you use warm water to dissolve the last bit of vegemite in the jar, that yeasty brew works just as well as a beer trap.


As the weather warms up and plants put on that tender new growth, the aphids will come looking for a sweet snack. Keep an eye out for them as well, and use a blast of water from the hose to rinse them off.

Aphids are commonly found in gardens.

Weeds be gone

Clear out the old to make room for the new! Make sure you bag and bin any weeds with seed heads on them. We don’t want those spreading through our compost.

Build up the soil

Vegetable plants are like hungry teenagers, eating all the time. But instead of the refrigerator and pantry, they’re getting their nutrients from the soil. So before you plant again, feed the soil first. Working some well-rotted manure, compost, or blood and bone a spade’s depth into the soil and letting it rest for a week or two before planting will give your vegies a strong start.

Think and plan

What worked well last season? What do you want to change for this season? Is it time to rotate crops? What new things do you want to try? Start organizing the seeds you have and collect the seeds you want to grow this season. You can start some seeds indoors in a sunny windowsill to get a jump on the spring season.


I’m sure I’m not the only gardener who ends up with a messy shed. Now is the time to give pots a scrub, clean and polish the tools, and bring a little order to your supplies. To minimise diseases, give everything a good clean so you’ll be ready to go at planting time.

This year I am looking forward to trying my hand and growing glass corn, which I got in a seed swap with another gardener. To grow corn, you can start early by starting seeds indoors. When the soil warms up, plant out 12 plants per square meter to improve pollination. Fingers crossed that I’ll get a good harvest! What are you excited to grow this spring?

Glass Corn

What to plant in your garden now?

Sow in August   Harvest (weeks) Sow in August   Harvest (weeks)
Asparagus D 2-3 years Parsnip D 17-20
Beetroot Ds 7-10 Peas D 9-11
Cabbage Ds 8015 Potato D 15-20
Cape Gooseberry Ds 14016 Radish d 5-7
Capsicum 2 10-12 Rocket Dd 21-35 days
Chilli S 9-11 Shallot D 12-15
Eggplant S 12-15 Snow peas D 12-14
Globe artichokes S 12-15 Spring onins D 8-12
Kohlrabi D 7-10 Strawberries S 12 months
Leeks Ds 15-18 Sunflower Ds 10-11
Lettuce Ds 8-12 Thyme S 42-52
Mint S 8-12 Tomato* Ds 8-17
Mustard greens D 8-12 Watermelon* Ds 9-14
Onion Ds 25-34      

Key: D= sow direct, S= sow in seed tray, DS = sow direct or seed tray *=frost tender

Happy Growing

For more gardening inspiration visit our Gardening at Home page and let us know how your veggie patch is looking by tagging us on social media.
Category: Horticulture
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