Hippeastrum: Somewhere Over The Rainbow

If ever there was a plant perfectly suited to the sets of the Wizard of Oz, it’s Hippeastrum. These flamboyant flowers are dead easy to grow and  Australia is fortunate to have the likes… Continue reading

Paddy to Plate: Gardeners and Gourmets To Tour Vietnam, 2015

There is so much to learn about growing and preparing tropical food plants. What fascinates me is that many of the fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices growing in south east Asian food gardens… Continue reading

Surprisingly Nutritious Vegetable Damper Recipe

This damper recipe includes green pawpaw (Carica papaya) and Warrigal greens (Tetragonia tetragonioides), which are currently abundant in my garden. Both are self-sown crops. Served either as damper or used as a pizza… Continue reading

Community Rose Garden Brightens North Burnett

Just under 700 people call Biggenden home. In 1954 this country town, in Queensland’s North Burnett region, 339 km north of Brisbane, established a community rose garden along its main street. It became a… Continue reading

In Production Today, September 2014

Spring is over in my garden. Winter crops are flowering – my garden is transitioning into its seed saving phase.

Father’s Day 2014: Concerning Seaweed And Quadratic Equations

This is a fictional letter. My father, John, who had been living for some years with Alzheimer’s, died shortly after I emigrated to Australia. My sister and I looked after Dad at home… Continue reading

Petal Power: Edible Flowers

Edible flowers have a long history of being grown for making dyes for food and fabrics, or as decorations for cakes, salads and garnishes. What’s surprising is how many commonly grown flowers are… Continue reading

The Ultimate Hibiscus?

I have been instructed by Denise Horchner (of Perennial Poppies) to write about my Phillip Island Hibiscus, Hibiscus insularis. This is what I call my ‘signature plant’ and as far as I’m aware,… Continue reading

Go Queensland! Winter Open Day At Bellis, 2014

If you attended this winter open day, congratulations, you were part of gardening history. A record breaking number of guests visited Brisbane’s thrifty sustainable house and garden. And what a jolly, generous, patient… Continue reading

Want A Rainforest Garden? Then Plant Dry, Not Wet…

The word rainforest makes you think of hot, humid, dense, leafy, evergreen forest, such as the Daintree, the world’s most ancient rainforest in far northern Queensland (FNQ).

In Production Today: August 2014

Here’s my subtropical food garden’s winter menu: Edible roots Arrowroot, Canna edulis Carrot, Daucus carota ‘Paris Market’ Cassava, Manihot esculenta Cassava, Manihot esculenta ‘Variegata’ Cocoyam, Xanthosoma saggitifolia Jerusalem artichoke, Helianthus tuberosus ‘Dwarf Sunray’… Continue reading

Succulents: Chlorophyll With Character

My first flower memory is of a cactus. I was about three years old and peering up into a huge, red Epiphyllum flower. It sprouted from an old, much-loved plant belonging to my… Continue reading

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