Tag Archives: New Zealand gardening

Banksia rose

This lovely climbing rose is a popular addition to many gardens. The Banksia Rose, (Rosa banksiae) or Lady Banks Rose, originated in China, and is named after the wife of famous botanist Sir Joseph Banks. An evergreen rose with few, … Continue reading

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Purple potatoes

Not only do organic ‘Midnight Purple’ potatoes add interest to a potato salad, purple potatoes are very good for you. Like richly-coloured berries, purple potatoes are full of anthocyanin pigment, an excellent anti-oxidant that we are told is important in … Continue reading

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Leaf-eating ladybird

This ugly little creature is the larva of the leaf-eating ladybird. Stressed plants in prolonged hot, dry conditions attract these pests. The larvae become almost black as they reach pupa stage. Both adults and larvae of leaf-eating ladybirds are particularly … Continue reading

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Blossom end rot

A common problem affecting otherwise healthy tomato and capsicum plants during heat waves is blossom end rot, where partly formed fruit develops a dark, sunken patch furthest from the stem. This is caused by calcium deficiency, and is not a … Continue reading

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Winter tomatoes

  There is nothing like the taste of vine-ripened tomatoes, and this is how my neighbour, Cheryl, keeps her tomatoes cropping through winter on the Mid-North Coast of NSW. The tomato plants self-seeded in the rose garden in front of … Continue reading

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Revised edition of my book

The 2012 edition on my book Easy Organic Gardening and Moon Planting has been re-printed with the section on Moon Phases and Best Gardening Days updated to the end of 2022. This book is not just about growing food – … Continue reading

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Bindii or Jo-jo

Early winter is the time to eradicate this weed pest, although I’ve noticed young growth of this weed in May on the Mid North Coast of NSW. Bindii (Soliva pterosperma), or “Jo-Jo” as it is called in some places, or … Continue reading

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Heat wave help

  With high temperatures predicted for many areas of mainland Australia this week, I would like to remind you that you can find tips on helping your garden to survive extremely hot temperatures here: Heat wave protection

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Aubergine (eggplant)

Have you ever wondered why they were called eggplants? This variety is the reason. The small white fruit, which look like hens’ eggs hanging on a bush, has a delicious flavour but has been very difficult to find in recent … Continue reading

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Healthy tomatoes

A strong, healthy root system that allows your tomato plants to absorb enough water and nutrients is essential for producing a good crop and allowing your plants to produce their own pest-deterrents. Tomatoes in their natural state, grow along the … Continue reading

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