Droughts and floods, one extreme to the other, and this is what we have come to expect in the Lucky Country. The purpose of this article is to show you how your trees and garden plants can survive through the extreme weather in Australia. It can be difficult to predict what the weather is going to do, but we have to plan for any outcome, and be ready to deal with it.
Plants need water
To keep your trees and garden plants in top condition, ready to fight against whatever the weather throws at us, the first and most important requirement is water. On hot days, in particular, watering in early morning and in the late evening is the best plan. This will allow the plants to take in the water early, before the heat comes; and the heat will evaporate the surface water. Watering again in the evening after the sun goes down will give them that extra reprieve from the heat of the day.
So does the lawn
Hot, dry summers can be challenging when you want to keep your lawns green and healthy. Grass does respond quickly to watering, as you would notice when there is a day of rain after weeks of dry weather. To help your grass to remain green, think about setting up an irrigation system, or even a basic sprinkler that you can move from place to place. Set the sprinkler so that it releases the water slowly, for a longer time, so that the water can gradually soak into the ground.
Plan your plants
Don’t plant delicate plants if you live in a hot, dry area. There is a lot of information out there about what sort of plants would do well in the various environments in this country. Put in the wrong plants, and you will certainly be discouraged and disheartened when they do not thrive. But be careful of planting something that may become a weed, and take over your garden when you don’t want it to.
A storm in a treetop
We know what storms can do. The TV news is quick to show the damage that occurs when a major storm strikes an area. You can storm-proof your trees. Start by pruning the trees before summer storms strike. Regular tree care service and maintenance, for example getting rid of dead branches, is essential. Make your tree strong by watering them regularly, feeding them regularly with good fertiliser, as well as looking after their upkeep. The stronger the tree, the more likely it is to survive the storms.
You can protect a tree from storms, and the debris and winds that come with the storms. Think “Tree Wrapping”. This is practised by people who want to protect young trees, or thin-barked trees, from damage caused by extreme weather. A recommended wrapping is burlap or hessian, both easily available. You could make a protective “fence” by inserting stakes in the ground and attaching the material to prevent debris stirred up by the wind from damaging the tree. Don’t leave the wrapping on the tree forever, it could lead to rotting.