Well, as we are experiencing the mid-summer heat right now, I thought I’d give you some tips for growing in the subtropical summer.
1. If you are planting seedlings, you will have more success with getting them to take, if you plant them under shade cloth for the first 2 weeks. This is also true for plants you are growing from seed.
2. Water twice a day, every day, on really hot days you may need to water your veggies around midday too. If you are going to water when the sun is on your plants, take great care to only water the roots and soil, not the leaves – else you will burn them.
3. Plant your seedlings out in the evening, so they have 12 hours to settle in before the heat of the day. Water well.
I follow all of the guidelines above to keep my farm growing through summer. At the moment I am growing greens – salad mix, baby leaf greens (beet leaf, baby leaf kale, spicy mix, rocket), carrots, cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant, snowpea shoots, herbs and a selection of summer flowers. The plants are doing well, however, it is very hot farming at this time of year…so I am often up early to farm and harvest, as it is the most pleasant time of day…I am also often at the farm during the evenings, for the same reasons… which makes family life tricky as a farmher. This is the first year that I have grown throughout summer, and I am learning so much every day from the experience.