Category Archives: Ornamentals

Watering in drought conditions

This week, two readers have asked me about garden problems caused by lack of water. As you know, it is extremely difficult to keep gardens well-watered in drought conditions. However, as plants can only absorb the nutrients they need for … Continue reading

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Ladybird larvae

Stressed plants attract pests and where you find pests you will also find beneficial insects that feed on pests. During extreme weather conditions you may notice some of these strange little creatures on various plants in your garden. These are … Continue reading

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Bees welcome

¬†Although we do not use pesticides, in recent years we have noticed fewer bees in our garden. In response we have set up a hive under a white mulberry tree, and added a ‘bee garden’ in a corner of our … Continue reading

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Time to plant spring bulbs

Just a reminder that April is a good time for planting spring-flowering bulbs in most areas. Gardeners in warmer climates can put bulbs into the vegetable crisper of the fridge for a month’s chilling before planting in May. Add plenty … Continue reading

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Heat wave protection

Some parts of Australia are enduring extremely hot weather and, apparently, there is more to come this summer. Periods of intense heat can cause scorching in many gardens. Although European-based garden texts recommend full sun for most vegetables, where summers … Continue reading

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Windy weather

Garden beds dry out very quickly in windy weather, including those beds protected by mulch. The reason is that plants maintain some humidity around them by drawing water from the soil and releasing it through tiny holes in their leaves, … Continue reading

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Lime Sulphur

Agricultural lime or elemental sulphur are recommended to modify soil pH to a range that suits healthy growth of particular plants. A reader recently asked me if “Lime Sulphur” was suitable to use around roses in her organic garden. ‘Lime … Continue reading

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Seeds that need light

Most seeds germinate in dark, damp conditions and need to be covered with a suitable depth of topsoil. However, some seeds need light for successful germination. In the vegetable patch, only varieties of lettuce, Cape Gooseberry, Tomatillo and the Asian … Continue reading

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Pot plant stress

Forecasters are warning of more hot days to come. During heat waves, pot plants become stressed more quickly than plants in garden beds, and your pot plants may not getting as much water as you think. If potting mix dries … Continue reading

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Greenpatch Organic Seeds

With some women it’s shoes or handbags, but with me it’s seeds, so I have to practice restraint when I go to Greenpatch Organic Seeds, as I did recently. Greenpatch supply a wide range of open-pollinated, organic seeds for vegetables, … Continue reading

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