It may be the heart of winter, but that shouldn’t keep you out of the garden. July is a busy month of pruning roses, cutting back trees and sowing late plantings of your favourite winter veggies. Find more planting tips and ideas to attract feathery friends to your garden in this July gardening guide.
Spotlight on: Attracting wildlife to your garden Having birds in the garden does not only help us manage pests naturally but also allows our bodies and minds to relax when we listen to their sounds. There’s a short supply of food during the winter months, so make an extra effort this season to attract birds and other wildlife with these tips:
Plant an indigenous aloe in your garden – its nectar attracts birds and insects beneficial to your garden.
Grow vygies and rock roses as a source of food and water for birds. Vygies also attract various insects with their small pollen deposits. Rock roses attract insects when their flowers are in bloom, which is beneficial to both your garden and birds.
Make sheltered space in your garden for a bird feeder or birdbath.
ON YOUR TO-DO LIST FOR JULY
Plant & Sow
Ferns are not only trendy but have great air-purifying benefits too. Plant some easy-to-grow species in your garden or in pots, such as the dainty maidenhair, striking yellow sword fern, tough holly fern and evergreen leatherleaf fern varieties.
Plant colourful flowers in your garden, such as pansies, violas, snapdragons, calendula, primulas and gazanias.
When pruning hydrangeas, remove all damaged, diseased or dead growth. Cut back the stems above thick, round, green buds.
Pruning roses encourages bigger, better blooms. Mid-July to mid-August is a good time to prune hybrid roses, tea roses and miniature roses. Water once a week now to allow them to rest. Seal cuts thicker than a pencil with Steriseal and spray with Lime Sulphur.
Cut back trees that are getting too big.
Feed winter-flowering annuals with foliar fertiliser, like Multifeed Flowergro, every two weeks.
Fruit trees and roses should be fed with slow-release fertiliser such as Atlantic Fertilisers Fruit & Flower.