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Pre-Holiday Proofing Your Garden

Updated on January 27, 2024
Eileen Hughes profile image

There are so many different and beautiful plants to grow in your garden that have a lovely fragrance or perfume.

Lay newspapers or cardboard between vegies and cover with weeds or sand
Lay newspapers or cardboard between vegies and cover with weeds or sand

Mulching Tips for your Garden

Pre-Holiday proof your garden

Water wise your Garden

Pre-Holidays for the gardener is a time for both excitement and nervous tension. Will the plants survive while we are away? The majority of gardens will survive for a week as long as you give it a good watering before leaving. It needs at least three to four inches or approx ten centimeters of water.

The best way to check this is to purchase a water testing kit. Spread the containers around your garden, and then turn on your sprinklers to test the water spread evenly to that depth in each cup.

Mulching with your Leaves

Lawn mower

Garden with paper and lawn clippings

Garden left untouched resulting in loads of weeds

Mower blade

Maxpower 331981B 21-Inch Universal Gold Metal Mulching Lawn Mower Blade
Maxpower 331981B 21-Inch Universal Gold Metal Mulching Lawn Mower Blade
My husband bought these when he had a lawn mowing round.

Vegetable Gardens

There are many ways to protect your gardens before you go away. Automatic sprinklers are great if you can afford to have them fitted. We had one installed in our meter box for the bore. The problem is, every time there is a power failure, you have to be there to reset it, and you need to be a technician to understand it.

Therefore, we received a quote to have one installed directly onto our bore. We have two stations, the front, and the back and we cannot have them on together as there is not enough pressure. The person quoted us over $1000 so we have given that a big miss.

In my wisdom, what with the increase on fuel prices, we have to cut expenses, not increase them. I have come up with a cheaper solution. I laid layers of paper in between my vegetables, and then threw all the weeds back on top of the newspapers to hold them down. If you need the garden to have an aesthetic appearance, then you could throw more sand over it all. And if you can afford the extra money, then put a thin layer of mulch on top to make it look nicer and more pleasing on the eye. You can also use cardboard, this will take longer to break down.

Yes, I know, the slaters will congregate under the papers, wrong. I put slater powder down before laying the newspapers. In addition, if you can afford it you could mulch in the first place. Although the whole idea was to do it on the cheap, so using a good wad of newspapers is much cheaper. Before leaving home give it a deep watering, the same as before at least, three to four inches. The water will then soak down to the roots.

If you are going away for longer than a week, you could put a timer on the taps, to run a soak hose through the vegetable patch. In extreme heat circumstances, you could put a shade cloth cover over the most important areas.



Cut the lawn short, not too short so the sun will burn the roots. Then before you leave, water well with ten centimeters of water so that it will soak right down to the roots.

Weeds and flower blooms

Pull out all the weeds and pick off the excessive flower buds to put the goodness back into your garden. When you return, the flowers should have formed new buds or back in full bloom, depending on how long you are away. You could always ask a neighbor to check now and then and return the favor when they go away.

Have a great holiday, free from worrying about the garden

Please Note: We went on Holiday for Six Weeks

When we came back, where I put the newspaper there were no weeds, Oh boy but the rest was about 3 foot high. Before we left I added a heap of lawn clippings.

So now you know how to recycle with lawn clippings and old newspapers.

Therefore where my plants were growing the weeds were the worst. So next time I will place a lot more papers around the actual plants that I need to protect.

Very good trial and error experiment. Now I have proof that it sure works and keeps the moisture in as well. While away they had upwards of 35 degrees temperatures most of the time and no rain, so it turned out to be a good test.

© 2007 Eileen hughes


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