June Gardening Tasks

Brrrr winter has now arrived with frosts occurring in the southern regions of the country. Garden centres are now overflowing with new seasons trees and shrubs, so it’s an ideal time to get planting. 


Rejuvenating Rhubarb

After five to six years in the same position rhubarb plants can lose their vigour and become woody. Rejuvenating plants by lifting and dividing them promotes strong growth and healthy stems. 

Gently lift the old crowns from the soil with a garden fork and divide into smaller sections using a spade or sharp knife, removing any dead growth. Make sure each new piece has a bud and some roots. Prepare your soil well with plenty of Garden Time Compost and Garden Time Chicken and Sheep Pellets before replanting your new divisions and space them so there is enough room to thrive. 

Vegetable Garden

Continue to harvest traditional winter vegetables including, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, leeks, parsnips, silver beet, spinach, and turnips. If replanting vegetable seedlings, enrich the existing soil by incorporating fresh compost and raising the soil level to ensure adequate drainage during wet winter months.

Trees and Shrubs 

As garden centres are now fully stocked with new seasons plants, it’s an excellent time to carry out new planting. Always plan extensions to the existing garden carefully to allow enough room for new additions as they mature. Read our How to Grow Ornamental Trees and Shrubs Guide for tips and advice.

Rose Care

In many parts of New Zealand June is the main month for pruning bush, standard and climbing roses. However, if temperatures are still warm in your area, delay pruning until July.

Since roses bloom on new growth, it's important to trim back a significant portion of the plant every year, particularly the older wood. Prune to outward-facing buds, as this is where new growth will emerge in spring. 

For climbing roses, identify the main leaders and train them horizontally; new flowering growth will sprout from these leaders in spring. Be vigilant in removing all pruning’s and leaves to prevent the carryover of rust and black spot diseases into the next season.

Blooming Beauties

Early flowering winter annuals, such as alyssum, calendula, cornflower, pansies, poppies, snapdragon, stock, violas, and sweet peas, are beginning to bloom and brighten up gardens. 

Finish dividing your perennials (see our May notes for instructions) and take advantage of garden centres stocked with new varieties, perfect for extending perennial borders, replacing old plants, or adding something new to your garden.

Weed your flower beds regularly and check for any low-lying wet areas, as these can lead to root rot and other issues. 

Lawn Care Planning

Lawn care during winter involves less mowing due to slower grass growth. Be on the lookout for damp spots indicating drainage issues and plan how to address them during the drier summer months. Start considering lawn pest prevention strategies for the upcoming growing season.

Fruit Tree Care

It's time to prune apple and pear trees. Since these trees can grow quite tall, prune them to a maximum height of four meters for easier harvesting. They will still produce plenty of fruit, as apples and pears yield the best quality and quantity on two-year-old wood. Pruning recycles fruit-bearing wood, replacing old wood with new. Remember to clean your pruning tools before and after use to prevent the spread of disease.

For young citrus trees, frost protection might be necessary; build a small frame around the trees and cover them with frost cloth.

Berry Care 

Remove all canes that produced fruit last season to encourage new growth. Attach this season’s growth to a fence or strong supports to help the plants grow upright and ensure they receive ample sunlight. This practice promotes healthier plants and more juicy fruit!

Herb Garden

This time of year the herb garden is probably at its least productive. However, some herbs do better when grown in containers over winter, than in the ground. Pot up cold-hardy herbs like parsley, thyme, chives, oregano, and mint using Daltons Premium Potting Mix which provides proper drainage and nutrients to support healthy growth throughout the winter season. Place the containers in a sunny spot, and water as needed.


Use lukewarm water for watering and consider relocating indoor plants to areas with better winter light. Dusting your houseplants leaves will also help improve their ability to absorb light.

Increase humidity levels indoors to counter dry air, which can be detrimental to houseplants, by frequently spritzing leaves with lukewarm water or place trays of water near your plants. 

Check for pests and diseases, as indoor conditions can sometimes exacerbate these issues during winter.