We have made a set of cards designed to help with garden planning, what to plant where, when, and how, using techniques from our Serious Backyard Abundance workshop.

Rather than four seasons (Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring) in the south Queensland, northern NSW region, we typically only have three summers when we start thinking about climate conditionsrather than months and days – Tropical Summer, Mediterranean summer, and summer a Cool Temperate Summer.
So using this as a thinking tool to plan our gardens means that we are seeing to the requirements of the plants, which in turn give us what we want rather than ‘force a function” because the calendar says so.

A Tropical summer is in our summer. This season has warm to very hot nights and days with high humidity. Rainfall can be heavy, but there are also dry periods. When planting out your garden in a tropical summer, think about what would grow in this particulate climate from different parts of the world, such as the Asian Tropics.

A Mediterranean summer is in our Spring and Autumn. This season has cool mornings initially, then becoming warm, warm to hot days with low humidity and low rainfall. When planting out your garden in a Mediterranean summer, think about what would grow in this particulate climate from different parts of the world, such as Italy and Spain.

A Northern European summer is from the end of autumn and winter. This season has cool mornings and warm days and is humid and wet
initially, then dry. When looking at planting out your garden in a Northern European summer, think about what would grow in this particulate climate from different parts of the world, for example, Italy and Spain.

Crop Rotation

When we are thinking about crop rotation, there is a nice little rhyme we can remember – leggy, leafy, fruit rooty (Legumes, Leaf, Fruit,
Root) Understanding this little rhyme makes it simple when rotating crops through our gardens. A legume (peans, beans etc.) is followed by a leaf crop (silverbeet, cabbage etc.) which is followed by a fruit crop (tomatoes, Eggplants), then a root crop (Carrots, onions etc.). This will help keep the plants healthy and help stop the build-up of soil pathogens.

Water requirements

When we are looking at the requirements of what our gardens will require (on average, 5 litres per square metre per day in the middle of summer) and understanding the water requirements of the plant means, we can build in our management plan so that our plants get
what they need.

Seed to Harvest

Knowing the seed to harvest timetable can help us when we plan sowe know how long until we can get the yield from the garden. We
will learn how long that vegetable will take up the space so we can start to plant from the following season.

How to sow.

While many different methods are knowing the ‘best practice’ willgive you the best chance of success. For example, some seeds like to
be directly sown, and others prefer to start in a seed tray and be transplanted later.

Per 30cm Square (square foot)

As home growers, we can plant more in our garden beds than in commercial agriculture because of the simple reason we are doing it
by hand. Knowing how many we can grow in a 30cm square space (square foot) means planning how our gardens maximise the space
used.

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