Black Mountain gardening gurus reveal autumn gardening secrets

GARDENING GURU: Black Mountain Nursery's Kristy Youman reveals the best plants to use and what to avoid during the autumn months in a cool climate like Guyra and surrounds. Photo: Rachel Baxter.
GARDENING GURU: Black Mountain Nursery's Kristy Youman reveals the best plants to use and what to avoid during the autumn months in a cool climate like Guyra and surrounds. Photo: Rachel Baxter.

As the cold weather begins to creep in, so too have the rich colours that signify the very essence of an autumn in Guyra and the New England.

But as the temperature plummets, the threat of frost can deter even the most experienced gardeners from taking the plunge and making the most of the crisp autumn weather.

This week The Argus met gardening gurus at the Black Mountain Nursery, Kristy and Pam Youman, who said autumn is an excellent time to plant.

“It’s a good time of year to plant … there’s a lot of moisture around,” Kristy said.

Pam said for a show of colour in winter – pansies, primulas, snapdragons, poppies and polyanthus are ideal.

“For the veggie garden, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, spinach, kale, onions and broad beans are great,” she said. 

“We also recommend planting land cress to help with the white moths that seem to like the winter veggies too.

“The deciduous trees and shrubs are all turning colours with the cold weather and a little way off will lose their leaves.

“Shrubs of all kinds, evergreen and deciduous can be planted now.

“Planting now will allow them to settle in ready for spring.”

But Pam said there were still some plants to avoid.

“The only things to steer away from would be things that die down over winter, like hostas, aquilegias, citrus and any plants that may have come into the nursery recently from a warmer climate,” she said. 

“We suggest applying slow release fertilizer to the hole and it will start releasing when the ground temperature warms up in spring or maybe a little later here.

“Water your plants in and still water occasionally during winter if there isn’t any rain.”

Golden Ash, Claret Ash, Gleditsia, Tulip Trees and Crepe Myrtles are ideal in Guyra and throughout the New England. 

“Any other trees or things that have been outside and have been through a frost should be fine,” Kristy said.

“Anything from your ornamental plums, ornamental pears and various cherries, ashes, oakes and the maples have coloured up really well.

“Crepe myrtles do well.”

Kristy said it was a combination of the climate and soil type that caused the trees to burst into rich colouring throughout autumn.

“You’ll find that in warmer climates the trees won’t colour up as well,” she said.

“It’s a little bit to do with soil type as well – but a lot to do with climate.

“You could plant these sorts of plants maybe in Tamworth where it’s warmer and you just won’t get the colours that we do.”

For more advice, call the team on 6775 0117 or drop by the garden.