We live in Wellington on a dry hillsite with yellowish clay, about 200m from the sea. About 6 years ago, the previous owners has cleared some 2nd generation bush when they planned to build on it. The rest of the area around this 'hole' is nice, healthy bush with some older beech trees further above and Rewarewas.
We are planning to revegetate the steep bank, with natives of course. The trees seed and grow quite happily, but very, very slowly.
We have been wondering whether and how we can give the bush a helping hand - perhaps with some gentle, organic fertiliser? Or is it better not to interfere?
Many thanks in advance.
You can of course apply some organic fertiliser - what were you thinking of? Blood and Bone? Liquid Fish? - but most native plants grow well without
added fertiliser even on 'hard' sited with poor soil. Do the plants have
enough water? What is the weed competition like?
Any organic fertiliser should be applied in moderation.
Liquid fish more in the winter, early spring.
Yes, we were thinking of Blood and Bone, but wanted to make sure we are not
doing more harm than good. Water is certainly a problem, particularly in dry summers like the last one. The soil turns almost into concrete.
The weeds are sprouting - mostly the horrible, rough fern with one leaf
only - not sure what it is called. The gorse I managed to cut back or pull
out and is less of a problem now, with only new seeds germinating of course.
The strange weather over the last year also brought us more salt in the air
with storms, which has burnt off many leaves of prime bush and old beech
Overall, the bush took a severe bashing, and we were wondering whether we
can lend it a helping hand to recover more quickly. Do you think we should
irrigate more systematically?
Thanks a lot for your advice
If you want to give a helping hand to those natives the first priority is WEED CONTROL,
the second one a little irrigation, but not too much as the plants shouldn't get used to luxury water and thirdly supplying some Blood and Bone sparingly.