Summer heat can ward off even the most dedicated of gardeners! So for this summer, we have a new product announcement plus some summer plant care tips! Read on to help your plants thrive (not survive) this summertime.
Introducing the Vegepod Shade Cover!
We thought of the Vegepod Shade Cover last October, after some of our customers noted their plants still needed extra protection from the harsh Australian sun.
The Vegepod Shade Cover provides approximately 75% shade rating using commercial-grade crop cover mesh, and helps safeguard veggies and plants on scorcher days, when the weather is above 35 degrees.
While the regular Vegepod Garden Cover comes with a 17% shade rate it's not a 'Shade Cover' as its function is more to create a protective micro-climate that lets the light shine through.
Our new Shade Cover blocks out the sun and protects from intense heat with ultra-fine, UV stabilised weave that's food safe. It comes in small, medium and large sizes and its mesh is made from the same material commercial farmers use to protect their plants, so you know it’s the real deal - sturdy and top-quality.
A few tips for use
The Vegepod Shade Cover easily affixes over the existing canopy or you can remove the canopy altogether and replace it with the Shade mesh.
We don’t recommend leaving the Shade Cover on for more than 48 hours! Any more than that can be detrimental to plants' growth and health, as they'll be deprived of sunlight.
Check out our Extra Covers page if you are interested in shade cloth for the summer season ahead! For hot summer gardening tips, read below!
Summer Gardening Tips
Tip 1: Water Early On In the Day
This is an oldie but a goodie. Watering during the cooler times of the day reduces the risk of mildew and other fungi attacking the leaves. Morning is best but afternoon (giving the plants time to dry before sunset) also works a treat.
Tip 2: Feed The Plants Through Your Water
If you are only able to water infrequently, make sure when you do, you provide lots of it to the plants and add a soluble fertiliser to the mix. Added seaweed is also beneficial and will help correct any mineral deficiencies caused by the hot weather.
Tip 3: Protect Your Seedlings
New plants are likely to need a bit of sun hardening when they first begin to shoot up. If it’s extremely hot, use a shade cloth for the first week or two. Cover the Pod with some palm fronds or old net curtains, or of course, use a Vegepod Shade Cover for extra protection during this period.
Alternatively (if you can manage it) place the Pod in a strategic position outdoors where it is only in direct sunlight for a certain amount of time during the day.
Tip 4: Boost Trace Elements In The Soil
Summer sun can leech soil of its vitality. For a comprehensive list of tips to rejuvenate soil, check out our blog ‘How to Rejuvenate Raised Garden Bed Soil’. However, for summertime specifically, try adding some magnesium to your water - add 1 heaped tsp of Epsom salts to 4.5L of water and spray leaves and/or roots.
If leaves are looking yellow and mottled, boost iron content by adding iron chelates to the soil. Results will come within a month or so.