Preparing for Winter

Winter is often considered downtime as far as gardening goes in many parts of the globe. However, in Cape Town, the average winter temperatures are high at 20C (68F), with a lows average of 12°C (54°F).

Cool-weather crops such as spinach, broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, and lettuce are happy to produce, and the occasional cold snap adds more flavour to these plants. 

Fortunately, snow is extremely rare in Cape Town and unlikely to occur in Simons Town, just outside Cape Town, where I live. 

Clean Up and Repair
Fall is the best time to make repairs to beds, trellises, tools, etc., so that I will be ready to go when the winter and spring growing seasons come along.

I remove all dead foliage from garden beds. If plants have died of a disease, such as verticillium wilt on tomato plants, I bag them up and send them out with the rubbish. I do not add diseased foliage to a compost pile! 

Due to the hugelkultur method I use , my raised garden beds soil level drops down as the plant material breaks down over time. I take the opportunity to add additional garden soil , one foot deep, to my raised beds to compensate for the Hugelculture caused soil level drop and work it into the existing soil to invigorate future plants' growth.

 The added soil makes it difficult for surviving pests or their eggs to survive.