The best types of plants to grow are those that are:
More saleable – ie the consumer really wants them and can’t get them anywhere else
Not weed varieties
Look attractive by November
Smaller to medium growing – it is harder to find a place for large plants in the garden
Annuals which are always replaced in spring
Smaller natives just because it is ecologically sound !
Use proper potting mix not “soil”.
Larger pots may take up to 20% compost if it is friable and airy (not gooy)
Potting mix needs to retain a certain amount of water and let a certain amount go (drain).
Proper potting mix is engineered to strike just the right balance between moisture and drainage. This is what the “Australian standard” label means.
Soil can “smother” root growth.
Always mix soluable fertilizers (Thrive, Aquasol) according to directions. ¼ to ½ strength for seedlings. Overfertilizing will kill young plants but a little starvation wont. Feed plants according to growth rate, ie don’t pot up in July August then give them a good feed to make them grow! Only the warmer weather will make them grow.
A liquid feed in the last month before sale is a good idea, actually it’s essential for flowers.
If we get bulk commercial potting mix it will need a slow release fertilizer such as Osmocote added (and a sprinkle of lime for Lavender, Cistus, green veges). This will give a general background level of fertility. The rate is debatable? 1-2 teaspoons per 140mm pot, or one spoonful now (mixed in) and another in October (top dressing) depending on the plant. A small amount of non-native Osmocote is OK for natives.
Seasol isn’t a fertilizer but it will boost all plants as the weather warms. (It makes the roots happy so they feed better.)
Always pot up one size at a time. Don’t put little plants in whoppoing big pots. All pots must have drainage holes. (Obvious! some didn’t at last years sale). Don’t put pebbles or broken pottery in the bottom for drainage. A few bits of bark or fly screen can be used if too much mix falls out the holes. There are plenty of pots of various sizes near the shade house for the taking. There are more near the shed (grounds compound). Wash them before potting! Be creative and pot up old boots or kettles etc., just put in drainage.