Planting guides are a guide only as to what you can plant at a particular time of the year. There are a number of factors to take into consideration when determining what will or will not grow in your home garden at any point in time.
As we all know, Canberra has fairly extreme weather, even by Australian standards! So, the length of winter, the number of frosts we get each year and the length and heat of summer are all major contributors as to how our garden grows. Did you know that the residents in Downer suffer from heavier frosts than those that live in Watson and Hackett? So, with only a kilometre or so separating us, we actually all live in micro climates that will affect how one person’s crop is compared to another. Very annoying! On top of this, add the Australia wide concern of how much rainfall we either do or don’t receive, and you’d think it’s enough to put even the toughest green thumb off! But read on as it gets better…
We also have a clay based soil, which makes planting herb and vegetables directly into it a waste of time and money. So before you take the leap to grow your own produce, have a look at the Yarralumla Nursery website. They have very good fact sheets that explain things in layman’s terms, for everything from planting a vege patch to making a bush habitat.
I have put the seasonal planting guide together based on my understanding of Canberra, however I welcome feedback and suggestions. Also, in the school garden, we do have the advantage of the green house, so what we are planting at school will not always correlate with what is easily sown or planted in the home garden. This guide is for the home gardener.