Winter Gardening Guide

Winter is nature’s resting time and a period of dormancy for many plants in the garden. However, for the keen gardener, there are many jobs to be done in the garden. Winter is an excellent time to plant trees and shrubs. Roses and fruit trees have arrived along with new seasons ornamental deciduous trees.


Now is the time to plant bare rooted roses. We have many varieties to choose from–see our latest catalogue online for our full range. It is advisable to add some Chandlers Organic Compost to the existing soil and mix well just prior to planting. Watering your rose in with a sea-weed solution such as Seasol will help reduce transplant shock.
When pruning your established roses ensure that they are pruned to an outward facing bud to increase airflow through the centre and allow light to the base. Remove any dead, small or weak stems. A lime sulfur spray in winter will help protect them against fungal diseases that may appear in the spring.

Veggie Garden 

There is still plenty to do in the vegetable garden at this time of year. Dig through some manure or compost before winter planting to replace nutrients that would have been consumed by last season's crop. Most brassicas love garden lime, so it’s always a good idea to apply some lime at planting time to keep your vegetable garden’s soil alkaline. Weed gardens prior to planting to ensure there is no competition for nutrients. Herbs such as oregano, coriander, mint, parsley, chives, and thyme grow well over the cooler months.
Seedlings to be planted now: Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, spinach, silverbeet, lettuce, peas and broad beans.
Seeds to be planted now: Onions, snow peas, peas and broad beans.
Certified seed potatoes have also arrived. We stock a great range of popular varieties. Seed potatoes can be planted now in frost free areas or purchased now and stored until frosts have passed. Seed potatoes can be planted direct into garden beds, or potato planting bags are great if ground space is limited.
Rhubarb and asparagus crowns are in their dormant state and are ready to be planted through winter.
Several varieties of garlic cloves can also still be planted. Apply some lime, blood and bone and some rock minerals such as Munash Rockdust when planting garlic.
Green manure crops can still be planted in preparation for spring planting. Dig the crop through just before it flowers to add nitrogen back into the soil.

Fruit Trees and Other Edibles

Winter is an ideal time for planting bare-rooted fruit trees and many other edibles. The deciduous fruit trees arrive mid-winter, and there is also a large range of citrus trees in stock, with more to follow in later in the season. Mix through some organic matter or manure with existing soil prior to planting. If your limited for in-ground space, dwarf fruit trees are available and grow happily in a pot or a half wine barrel. When planting in pots ensure to use a premium quality potting mix, and water in well after planting.
Kiwi fruit, strawberries, currants, pomegranates, blueberries, raspberries, persimmons and quinces are among others that are perfect for winter planting.
If you have established summer fruiting raspberry canes you can now prune out all dead canes, as well as any weak canes. Whilst many deciduous fruit trees and edibles are dormant, it’s a great time to inspect for dead wood and disease, and prune and shape as required.

Ornamental Garden

New seasons bare rooted deciduous trees arrive in June so it’s the perfect time to add some foliage colour or spring blossom to your garden. Please see our catalogue online for our full range.
Many varieties of camellias and azaleas commence flowering in winter, and now is the time to plant as new season stock arrives. Rhododendrons will start flowering from mid-winter and there are plenty of varieties to choose from.
When planting acid loving plants such as camellias, azaleas, daphne, rhododendrons and gardenias, add some Chandlers Organic compost through the soil. Ph is very important for acid loving plants, so why not test your soil prior to planting. If you are not sure of the pH of your soil, we have testing kits available that are simple and easy to use.
The flower garden can still look inviting and colourful in winter. Instant colour can be added to garden beds by using our potted colour.
Winter flowering potted colour includes:
Pansies, violas, stocks, primulas and polyanthus, snapdragon, poppies and sweet William.
Seedlings to be planted now:
Cineraria, cyclamen, lobelia, pansies, primulas, polyanthus, primrose, poppies, lupins and violas.
These will give colour in winter and through into spring, and can be either left in the garden to self seed, or replaced with spring flowering annuals.
Summer flowering bulbs can be planted now to enjoy vibrancy through the hotter months. Peony roses, dahlias, gladioli, liliums, hippeastrums, and lily of the valley are all available in store.


Winter is also a time of maintenance in the garden. Fruit trees and roses should be pruned during this period. If you are unsure on pruning techniques, it would be best to visit us in store and we can advise you.
Deciduous ornamental trees can also be pruned now if required. We recommend sanitising your secateurs after each use, with diluted methylated spirits.
Some fruit trees are prone to pests and diseases. Preventative sprays can be applied in winter, whilst dormant.
Click here to view our fruit tree spray program.
Roses are also susceptible to an array of pests and diseases. Spraying in winter can assist in preventing outbreaks in spring and summer.
Click here to view our rose spray program.
Manure or compost can be dug into vacant beds in preparation for spring. Cow or sheep manure is great for improving soil structure and adding organic matter. Organic compost is also effective and can also be added on top of existing soil and act as a mulch, releasing organic matter into the soil as it breaks down.
Now is a great time to get on top of the weeding. The soil generally contains more moisture in winter which makes hand weeding easier, and weed growth rate has slowed right down due to cooler weather. Hand weeding is best in veggie garden beds, and there are some handy tools available to make this task easier. Paths and gravel areas can be sprayed with a herbicide called Path Weeder.
There are also a range of different herbicides on the market including organic options, which can be used in other areas of the garden. Be sure to follow the product’s instructions.
Weedkiller for lawns can also be used now to control bindii and clover, using a selective herbicide such as Yates Weedkiller for Lawns. Get on top of weeds in lawns now, so that when spring arrives, they are easy to keep at bay.
Happy gardening!