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Basil can bolt to seed during hot weather so trim back flowered stems and repeat sowings every two to three weeks to keep up a constant supply.
Basil won’t mind a bit of shade during really hot weather, so plant it among other vegies and even in the garden where shrubs offer some shade. Liquid feed using Yates Thrive All Purpose Liquid Plant Food which is taken up through both the roots and foliage as you water.
Basil tip – bees love basil flowers, so leave a few flowering stems on basil to encourage these important pollinators into the garden.
Chives are a wonderful herb to have on hand to add a mild onion flavour to salads, soups, sandwiches and pasta dishes.
They grow in a clump (20-30cm tall) with fine dark green leaves and pretty edible purple flowers. You can sow these from seed now in all areas, directly where you want them to grow in the garden.
Use in rows or in clumps and they are also terrific in pots and useful as a pretty border plant. Chives grow well in full sun or part shade, and are a great companion for tomatoes, carrots and roses.
Feed regularly with Yates Thrive All Purpose Liquid Plant Food and chive plants will go on producing season after season.
Yates Success Ultra Insect Control Concentrate will protect your tomatoes from tomato potato psyllid, which is a sap sucking insect that causes damage to leaves and can transmit serious diseases. Spray when psyllids are first seen and repeat each week while pests are still active. Add Yates Spray Fix Wetting Agent to ensure thorough leaf coverage.
Did you know that spinetoram, the active ingredient in Yates Success Ultra Insect Control Concentrate, has a ‘trans-laminar’ action, which enables it to move from the upper to the lower leaf surface, helping to make it rainfast and also protect it from UV light.
It takes a significant amount of energy for tomatoes to grow trusses of delicious fruit. Keeping tomatoes well fed throughout the fruiting season is the key to maximising your summer harvest. Mixing 2 capfuls of Yates Thrive Natural Tomato Vegie Plant Food Concentrate in a 9L watering can and applying around your tomato plants each week will help keep plants healthy. It contains nitrogen for green leaf growth and is enriched with potassium for better flowering and fruiting.
Harvest tips: Tomatoes taste best when vine-ripened, but hot weather can scorch or even cook the tomatoes on the vine. So during very hot weather harvest tomatoes just as you see a blush of colour and ripen the tomatoes indoors on a bright windowsill or in a paper bag along with a ripe banana to encourage fruit to ripen.
Carrots, radishes and baby beetroot can all go in now from seed. Yates Radish Salad Crunch is a quick, reliable and easy crop for kids to grow and learn how to look after plants. The mild flavour means kids will enjoy eating their harvests too.
Try combining freshly harvested Radish Salad Crunch with some chilled watermelon chunks for a taste sensation. Yates Radish Salad Crunch was voted number one out of 24 varieties of radish in a summer trial conducted by New Zealand Gardener magazine!
Keep root vegies like carrots, radishes and beetroot productive by regularly applying a fast acting liquid fertiliser like Yates Thrive All Purpose Liquid Plant Food, which contains nutrients for both healthy leaf growth and good root development.
One of the key ingredients for summer salads is lettuce and it’s so easy to grow your own!
Yates Lettuce Baby Combo is an interesting blend of baby leaf lettuces that come in a range of attractive greens and reds. They can be grown in a vegie patch and are also ideal for containers. They are fast growing, and you can start cutting from just 6 weeks.
Here are the easy steps to growing your own gourmet lettuce:
Lettuce tip: watch out for snails and slugs, which just love chomping through lettuces! Control snails and slugs by scattering a few Yates Blitzem Pellets over the soil around the lettuces.