Anna's August Garden Journal

August in your edible garden.

It is still winter and it is still very cold, but the days are slowly getting longer, and the odd day feels milder.

We are currently harvesting broccoli, spinach, silver beet, celery, leeks, miner’s lettuce, rocket, coriander, thyme and parsley. The glasshouse is still housing various salad leaves, and the kitchen window sill is covered with an abundance of microgreens at various growth stages.   

This month we focus on:

  • August is the perfect time for growing nutrient-rich microgreens
  • Preparing the soil and clearing out the old
  • What to sow in trays in the glasshouse and directly outside

August is the perfect time for growing nutrient-rich microgreensMicrogreens in crystal glasses on a windowsill

Growing microgreens

It’s the perfect time of year to be regularly planting various microgreens. This will give you a continuous supply of flavour-packed greens and is a super-easy way to get your nutrients.

Preparing the soil and clearing out the old

It is time to start preparing the garden for spring this month. You can start by tidying up the plants that have done their thing and also by removing any old leaves off plants you are still harvesting. This will encourage more growth. Silver beet is a good example of a plant likely to do well from a tidy up. Once you have removed the old outer leaves, you can either chop and drop them onto the garden or add them to your compost bin. As the month proceeds, start dedicating some time to feeding your soil with compost, old, rotted-down horse manure and some more mulch. We want the soil humming with loads of goodness, ready for spring planting.

 What seeds to sow in August

While it’s still pretty cold, unless you live in a warm climate, I suggest you sow seeds in trays and keep them in a protected environment for now. A greenhouse, sunroom or similar are perfect. Sow leafy greens such as spinach, coriander, mizuna, rocket and chicory. Peas can also be sown inside. Broad beans can be sown outside.

Seed potatoes in a paper bag

If you love having new potatoes for Christmas, it’s time to get some seed potatoes. Lay them out in a box somewhere warm and dry and let them start to sprout before you plant then. It’s known as “chitting the potatoes”.

What to plant in August

If you have space in pots in a protected area, keep planting spinach and mesclun winter mixes.

Freshly picked brocoli on a bench

Plant directly into the ground, broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, silver beet, spinach and Bok choy. Depending on the climate where you live, the growth will vary. Here in Wānaka, growth will be slow.

Until next month

Anna xxx