The cool, dry, sunny days of winter are one of the best times to be outside and in the garden.

  • You can still plant in winter! Many people ask us when is the best time to plant. In Sydney the answer is actually autumn, but you can plant successfully at any time of year, including winter. Be aware that new plants still need sufficient water in winter, but in the colder temperatures they are transpiring much less, and water in the soil is evaporating much more slowly. Aim to keep the soil moist without leaving the plant sitting in damp, cold conditions.
  • In prolonged periods of dry weather, which are much more common in winter, your soil can tend to become hydrophobic. If you see water running off the soil surface without penetrating into the ground, it’s possible this is the reason. Hydrophobic soil has a number of potential causes and can be addressed in different ways – if in doubt, speak to a qualified horticulturalist as a first step.
  • Fallen leaves certainly look messy on paving or in the pool – many people are reluctant to plant deciduous trees for this reason. However, leaf drop plays a critical role in ecosystems and soil health. The decaying leaves create a natural mulch layer with multiple benefits to the soil underneath. Resist the urge to dump fallen leaves in your green bin and ship them off to a council facility – doing so is essentially removing plant nutrients from your property, which then have to be replaced. Instead, spread them generously over your garden beds (be careful not to bury your plants!) and allow to decompose naturally, or if you have the space, compost them separately and apply to the garden once a nice, rich leaf mould (leaf compost!) has formed.