Best Garden Maintenance Products
Gardens are supposed to be a place where we can unwind, but keeping them well-maintained can be anything but relaxing. From raised garden beds and potting mix to weed killer and fertiliser, we take you through some pointers so you can find the right products to help keep your yard healthy and looking great.
Best Garden Maintenance Product
With a self-watering wicking system and a protective cover to protect plants from pests and UV, the Vegepod Raised Garden Bed Kits can help you grow your own greens at home.
The Organic Garden Co’s Raised Garden Bed has an ergonomic working height, a quick-to-assemble design, and rolled safety edges to make gardening that little bit safer.
If your garden is in need of a little TLC, then the Season Seaweed Concentrate may be the plant food it needs. It promotes strong root growth and flowering, helps your plants take in nutrients, and increases their ability to cope with changing weather conditions.
Latest review: Must use safely as per directions. I highly recommended it for killing weeds that grow along your fence line or driveway. This beats anything we’ve ever used. Including Round Up and is half+ the p
Latest review: I have a forty meter lillypilly hedge two and a half mtrs high that has been decimated by Calypso beetle over the years. I sprayed with Yates Baythroid advanced insect killer using a pump pack with
If you prefer to avoid weed killers with harmful chemicals, it’s worth trying the Slasher Organic Weedkiller. Free from glyphosate, which is fatal to bees, this weed killer aims to destroy weeds the organic way.
If you want to walk barefoot through a lush, weed-free lawn, the Yates Weed ‘n’ Feed Liquid Hose-On may help you out - although we recommend reading reviews to see if it’s suitable for your lawn.
Latest review: Best lawn fertiliser I have ever used, my lawn looks amazing! I started using it two years ago after advice from a curator and I have recommended it to my friends
Latest review: We had nuisance ants and nuisance millipedes. I laid a trail down in front of the door for the ants and noticed the invading millipedes were dying almost on contact. I left the light on inside
Latest review: Followed instructions on packet to the letter. Lawn and weeds (clover) did burn. Killed more lawn than weeds, and when growback started the clover is coming back as green as ever, faster than the
Latest review: Much more water resistant than others and more lethal but toxic to pets and worms (yes I am serious and for many gardeners this matters). The best halfway product are the new iron based slug and
Latest review: The unit has been very satisfactory from 2019 I just filled the unit up and was lifting it and one side of the clips that holds the top to the bottom broke so it is now unusable I would suggest
Latest review: Same as others have said already - product doesn’t work at all - just white stains and weeds keep growing. The packaging is also terrible as the sprayer stops working. Would give zero stars if p
Latest review: I bought 6 boxes of these munns professional sun and shades grass, it grows after 6 weeks then dies in summer , it’s a waste of money/time /water and expensive the only good thing about it the birds c
Latest review: I have mixture of couch and sir walter. 2.5kg used over 100sq m. Grass is always green and grows in winter, it isnt fully watered in and doesnt burn
Latest review: The reason everyone is having problems is that the dip tube is too wide and the water suction isn’t enough to draw the solution up the tube. Try inserting a smaller tube inside original which narrows
Latest review: Sprayed at the beginning of spring and now all of the bindii (and we had a lot) clover and dandelion weeds are gone. Hurray. Thank you Yates Buffalo Weed spray. But what to do with the winter
Latest review: Fantastic mix for vegetables and fruit trees but only on top and around . If plants grow in this to root levels the roots will burn. Also could have worm sporns in this mix as my fruit trees and veg
Latest review: Never ever buy this product. It contains traces of mercury, lead and cadmium all heavy metals which a plant can absorb and put into the vegetable it produces.This is a serious health hazard if your
Latest review: Found many small pieces of artificial materials, such as painted material, plastic and poceline. Above all, I do not feel it is safe for health to use it for planting vegs or
What does garden maintenance include?
Garden maintenance refers to anything you’d do or use to tend to your garden, and for different people, it means different things.
Some common garden maintenance products that Australian green thumbs (or budding green thumbs) use include:
- Fertilisers, to promote plant growth.
- Weed killers and garden pest control products, to stop insects from destroying plants.
- Soils and mulches, including potting mixes, to use when potting or repotting plants.
- Garden beds, to house any herbs, veggies, or flowers you want to grow.
- Lawn care products, such as synthetic grass.
What is a fertiliser?
Plants - like us - need food to grow. Plant food, or fertilisers, can do a variety of things, such as improve seed germination, reduce transplant shock, and promote root growth, flowering and fruiting.
A variety of elements are necessary for them to be happy and healthy, and of these, nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus are needed in the largest amounts.
Fertilisers should display the percentage of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium they contain - this is called the N:P:K ratio. Looking for a higher ratio means that you’re more likely to provide your plants with the nutrients they need.
What are specialty fertilisers?
You can also find specialty fertilisers for specific plant groups, such as natives, lawns, citrus, and fruit trees, which makes choosing the right fertiliser easier for less avid gardeners.
Native Australian plants, for example, are sensitive to phosphorus, and so usually require a specialty fertiliser with a lower amount of this mineral.
What are the different types of fertiliser?
You can find fertilisers in either liquid or solid form.
Liquid or water-soluble fertilisers immediately give nutrients to plants, allowing for quick uptake. They don’t last particularly long in the soil, however, as they’re quickly leached away with watering. They’re usually well-suited for use during spring or summer, while the plant is growing, flowering, or fruiting.
Solid or granular fertilisers gradually release nutrients for the plants to eat up. These are the cream of the crop for lazy gardeners, as they can slowly release nutrients for up to 12 months.
Inorganic vs. organic fertiliser
Inorganic fertilisers are synthetic forms of usually naturally occurring minerals that are beneficial to plants. They have concentrated nutrients and are often intended for a particular group of plants, making it easier for you to tend to a specific variety.
Organic fertilisers contain ingredients derived from living things, such as manure. They’re slow releasing and are less likely to harm the plant (and environment) if too much is used.
Types of weed killers
Not all weed killers have the same purpose - some prevent the germination of seeds, while others kill established plants. Here are the different types to look out for.
- Pre-emergent weed killer: Pre-emergent weed killers kill weeds before they start growing. They’re generally recommended to use in early spring so they don’t harm plants that have an established root system.
- Post-emergent weed killer: These kill established weeds that you can see on your lawn. Just ensure you don’t apply them to your lawn or established plants, as it could destroy them.
Weed killers can also be distinguished by how they work, however some may be both a contact and a systemic weed killer.
- Contact weed killer: These weed control products kill plants they come into physical contact with very quickly - you’ll usually see results in just an hour. They’re generally more effective at getting rid of lighter weed growth and foliage, but may take a few applications to eradicate a plant.
- Systemic weed killer: These are absorbed by the leaves of the plant and enter the root system, impairing the weed’s ability to get nutrients from the soil. They work more slowly, and usually yield results in 1 to 3 weeks. Perennial weeds are usually treated with this type of weed killer.
Weed killers can be expensive, and it’s difficult to find the right balance between effectiveness and value.
How about "weed and feed" products?
Weed and feed products, such as the , combine fertilise with pre-emergent herbicide so that you can conveniently kill weeds while providing nutrients to your lawn. Just ensure that you use a product intended for your specific turf species so that your weed spray doesn’t destroy your lawn.
Some people even find success with homemade weed killer, using everything from boiling water, salt, vinegar, and cornmeal to get rid of unwanted greenery.
Raised garden beds
If you want to start a vegetable garden and don’t want to start digging into your lawn, then you may want to buy a raised garden bed (if you don’t feel up to the task of making one yourself).
What's the point of a raised garden bed?
Raised garden beds offer plenty of benefits, but that doesn’t mean they’re suitable for all gardens. Here are some advantages and disadvantages of having a raised bed.
Find the right size
Consider the length, width, and depth of your garden bed. One advantage of having a raised garden bed is that it can make gardening easier on the back if it’s high enough, so if you can see a garden bed in store, see how much you have to bend over to reach different areas.
Raised beds should generally be kept to a maximum of 1.2 to 1.5m wide depending on your reach, so that it’s still easy to reach the middle of the plot. Keep in mind that beds backed against a wall or fence should be half this width as you’ll only be able to access it from one side.
If you’re looking to plant deep-rooting crops, then look for at least 30cm of soil depth.
Choose a material that suits you
Garden beds are subject to the elements, as well as constant moisture and potentially insects, which is why you should consider the right material for your plot. Here are the main options.
- Wood. Timber raised garden beds are durable and attractive, however they can be susceptible to rot. Some wood fares better than others - cedar, for example, is durable and quite resistant to moisture and rot, however often costs more and may be sourced unsustainably.
- Galvanised steel. While it may not be the prettiest material, galvanised steel is durable, resistant to rust, and economical.
- Stone. Stone is more common in homemade garden beds rather than ones you can buy in store. It can be expensive, but will last longer than most other materials.
Potting mix can make or break a plant, so if you want to do right by the new green friend you picked up at your local nursery, then invest in a decent mix.
Look for potting mixes that meet Australian standards
There’s an Australian Standard for bagged retail potting mix, and mixes that meet them have passed a series of tests to prove their quality.
Look for black and red ticks on a potting mix bag. Black ticks indicate a regular grade mix that you need to add fertiliser to when you do your potting. Red ticks are premium grade mixes that last longer and have fertiliser in them.
Try and get the freshest mix you can, as the longer the mix is in the bag, the more nutrients the microorganisms in the potting mix will consume.
Match the mix with the plant
Some plants prefer rich, fertile garden soil, while others benefit more from sandier soils. Different plants also have different pH preferences, which is why selecting the right potting mix can be tricky work if you don’t go for a general purpose soil.
Plants in indirect light or shade don’t lose water as rapidly as those in direct sunlight, which is why a lighter mix may be better for these plants. Your green friends in full sun will generally prefer a medium-weight mix that holds water well.
You can also find specialty potting mixes that are formulated to give specific plant varieties the nutrients they need.