31 Dec 2018

What Winter Plants Will Attract Birds?

Winter is a great time to see birds in your garden.

Seeing the antics of the flying creatures throughout the day creates a warm vibe in the frosty weather. So, add a few of these winter plants to your garden before these birds become flies.

Sasanqua camellias will attract a lot of birds that will dart in and out of the shrubs feeding on the nectar-rich flowers. Even though the individual flowers are short-lived, there are so many buds still to open that the birds will be eating well for quite a few weeks to come.

The japonica camellias are also a great flower to attract birds. Although they bloom later in the winter season, having a few camellias in the garden provides a bird buffet for months.

Sea of colour

Our team of experienced landscapers in Sydney thinks that you should consider adding coral trees (Erythrina x sykesii) to improve your garden’s appearance. Imagine this tree in full bloom in the winter – a red slash against the bare, wintery paddocks.

When the coral tree starts to open, the lorikeets arrive. From June to early August when the trees are blooming, your garden will be filled with the sounds of them chattering and bickering among the flowers.

Although it is a great bird tree, coral trees are not really ideal as an avenue planting. They have thorny trunks and brittle branches that a liable to break off in the wind. On the plus side however they grow from a branch, are bare in winter letting the sun stream through and are very drought hardy.

Native offerings

None of the plants mentioned so far are native Australian plants but they are all winter flowering, laden with nectar and attractive to native birds. Adding some native plants to the mix – particularly more that flower in winter – means even more birds visiting your garden.

Banksias are among the best of all native plants to grow to feed birds and there are many species and named varieties so there’s one for just about every garden.

Grevilleas are also bird attracting. Their spidery or toothbrush flowers are full of nectar and highly attractive to native birds. Most grevilleas flower for many months and come back into bloom after a light trim.

As winter turns to spring the bottlebrush burst into bloom providing rich pickings for the birds.

Seed-eaters

Don’t forget the seed-eating birds as you plant your garden. One of the best plants at all, from the birds’ point of view, is winter grass. The seeds provide food for little birds to help them grow big and strong.

Wattles, also blooming now, will soon be laden with seedpods for the larger seed-feeding birds such as native pigeons. She-oaks are a favourite of the black cockatoos and also provide a fast-growing screen tree in gardens.

You don’t have to add all of these plants to your garden. Select a few to improve your garden and liven up your backyard with some beautiful birds.

And if you don’t know where to begin, call us (1300 374 273) or email us for an Onsite Consultation and we’ll be more than happy to give you a hand.

31 Dec 2018

How to Use Pavers to Improve Your Garden

A beautiful and usable garden is more than just flowers and grass.

To make the most of the space, you should consider adding hard surfaces for dining and seating, and this is where you should  use pavers.

As well as being functional, pavers add interest and direction to pathways, driveways and entertaining areas. They come in tons of different designs and colours. From cost effective tinted concrete squares to beautiful natural stone. You can even use bricks!

A solid material like road base is perfect. It’s worth spending time to get an even finish. And make sure you compact it, as this will prevent dips and cracks from forming in the future.

Then you need a layer of river sand to sit your pavers on. Once they’re in position, sweep over plenty of fine sand to fill the cracks to help hold the pavers in place.

For a modern look, why not try large format pavers. If you’ve got an undulating driveway, think about using deco granite. It’s really flexible so it goes over those bumps and it allows water to soak through it, so it’s better for the environment.

Another option is using recycled materials, like these bricks. They’re cheap, easy to lay and give a nice rustic cottage feel. And you can lay them in a number of designs. This one is a herringbone layout to draw the eye up the garden path to the front door…

Finally, you have an existing concrete slab it’s much easier to use tiles rather than pavers.They can be laid straight onto the slab or even over old existing tiles, for instant modernisation!

Dr Garden, your team of landscapers in Sydney, can help you install interesting pavers into your garden, so you don’t have to worry. Call us (1300 374 273) or go to our main page to request an Onsite Consultation.

31 Dec 2018

10 Ways to Spruce Up Your Garden for Spring

Springtime in Australia is right around the corner, and it’s time to start thinking about your garden.

It’s a great time to start a vegetable garden, establish new garden beds, plant just about anything, renovate your lawn, and spruce up neglected areas. Now is a great time to ‘spring clean’ your outdoor space. To help get you started, check out the checklist below.

Our Landscapers in Sydney’s Spring Garden Checklist:

1. Feed

Gardeners love to nurture their gardens. Early spring is the best time of the year to give everything in the garden a good dose of fertiliser. After the next fall of rain, scatter slow-release or pelletised fertiliser over your garden. As it breaks down and filters into the soil, it is absorbed by growing roots and used to fuel growth and flowering.

2. Lawn update

Apply a slow-release complete lawn food to all grass areas. Use a metal rake to remove any buildup of thatch (dead growth giving lawns a spongy feel underfoot). If the lawn is looking sparse, reseed or returf bare areas. Before replanting, dig in organic matter and water over the area with a soil wetting agent. Keep everyone off areas that are being renovated until the new grass is growing vigorously.

 

3. Plant vegetables

Early spring is a rewarding time to plant vegetables, whether you’re starting a new garden or popping some herbs in a sunny window box. Vegies and herbs to plant now (or after the last frosts in frost-prone areas) include summer salad vegies such as tomato, snowpeas, capsicum or chilli, lettuce, cucumber, basil, rocket and parsley.

4. Quick colour

Flowering spring annuals can be planted now to give your garden a quick lift. Add instant colour with pots of cineraria, pansy, polyanthus or flowering bulbs such as daffodils and tulips. Also plan ahead for flowers later in the year. Buy punnets of late spring and summer flowers including petunia, phlox and impatiens (a good choice for shade). Seedlings can be planted in garden beds or popped into large pots for strategic bursts of colour.

5. Plant just about anything

Early spring is a rewarding time to plant trees, shrubs and annuals. Remove plants that have died or are past their best, or extend your garden to accommodate new plantings. Prepare for new plantings by clearing grass and weeds, then digging organic matter into the soil. When working out where to place a new plant take into account the amount of space that’s needed as it grows both across and up (see plant labels for information on plant size).

6. Clean and mend

Warmer weather means more time spent outside eating, relaxing and entertaining. Check outdoor furniture and outdoor sitting areas in preparation for convivial times ahead. Wooden furniture may need to be repainted or re-oiled. Nuts and bolts should be checked and tightened. Canvas chairs may need to be cleaned or re-covered. Also, clean the barbecue and replenish gas bottles. Paving and other hard surfaces benefit from a vigorous sweep to remove accumulated leaves and dirt. Mossy or slippery paths can be cleaned and treated with a once-a-year product.

7. Repot

All container-grown plants, including indoor plants, which have been in the same pot for several years, or that have outgrown their current pot, can be re-potted now. Place plants into slightly larger pots with fresh potting mix or trim roots and replant into the old pot but with fresh potting mix. If you only have a few pots, buy a bag or two of potting mix. If you have a large number of pots, buy a load of premium potting mix from a landscape supplier to save time and money.

 

8. Prune

Plants that have already bloomed or have frost damage can be pruned to encourage new growth. Also remove old canes from perennials and grasses to make way for fresh spring growth. To keep shrubs, perennials and annuals in bloom over the months ahead, remove spent flowers regularly.

9. Top up mulch

A quick way to spruce up the garden, cut weeds and save water at the same time is with a load of organic mulch. Remove weeds and encroaching grass from under trees and throughout garden beds and then spread mulch over exposed soil.

10. Water features

Top up water features and clean out ponds by removing accumulated leaves and rubbish that’s blown in over winter. Remove dead stalks from pond plants and scoop out algae. Re-pot water plants such as waterlilies before returning them to ponds.

If you’re overwhelmed with where to begin, give Dr Garden’s team of landscapers in Sydney a call (1300 374 273) or visit our main page to request an Onsite Consultation from our Garden Maintenance crew, and we’ll be right over to help you out.

31 Dec 2018

7 Insect Repellant Plants

Every garden is sometimes riddled with pests, such as grasshoppers, caterpillars, and spiders, and it can be hard to get rid of them. Most people go straight to some kind of pesticide spray, but that’s not always necessary.

There are certain plants that can be planted in your garden that can help repel insects, or at least confuse them with their strong scent. If you have other plants in your garden and they’re planted near the insect repelling plants, they will contribute to keeping insects at bay. Here are 7 plants our team of landscapers in Sydney think that you should consider adding to your garden bed to ensure a pest-free season.

1. Oregano

 

2. Marigolds

 

3. Lavender

 

4. Garlic

 

5. Basil

 

6. Sage

 

7. Rosemary

 

To get a beautiful garden crafted, get in touch with Dr Garden’s team of landscapers in Sydney today!

31 Dec 2018

Protect Your Plants with an Irrigation System

An Irrigation system will become your best friend, being an affordable and very effective way of delivering water to plant roots with minimal water use & no effort!

Automatic Irrigation keeps the water bills down and plants healthy. It allows for minimum workload, as we program the system to turn on and off as required on a daily basis.

There are lots of different irrigation techniques and Dr. Garden is keen to ensure the perfect system is installed in your garden to suit your lifestyle and needs. The two systems our team of landscapers in Sydney recommend and use combined or separately, depending on our clients’ needs are listed below.

1.  Sprinkler Systems 

Sprinklers can cover large areas and are available in both manual and automatic systems. Dr Garden recommends automatic systems and will set your timer to the correct setting for your plants and garden or turf areas. Let Dr Garden set, so you can forget!

2. Drip Irrigation

This system suits a small backyard or for watering individual plants – particularly in mulched areas because it can directly soak the soil without washing away the mulch. Drip irrigation supplies one to four litres of water per hour directly to the soil.

We offer a two (2) year warranty on parts and labour for irrigation systems installed by Dr. Garden. Prepare your plants for the hot weather that is looming with an easy and affordable irrigation system that you and your garden will love. Contact us today to ensure a happy and healthy garden this summer that all your neighbours will be jealous of!

 

Get an irrigation system set up with our experienced team of landscapers in Sydney us here.