Pandan (Pandanus amarylliifolius) has long been a staple in tropical food gardens in South and South East Asia. Its leaves impart a unique aroma and flavour to drinks, rice, cakes and desserts. As with all garden produce, the quality of freshly picked pandan surpasses that of the dried or the frozen equivalent. Fortunately, pandan is easy to grow in a subtropical or tropical climate, they make an attractive display, it is an easy plant to propagate and maintain in a kitchen garden.
“I decided to note down the 111 different things currently on the menu from my 300 square metre subtropical food garden. Ongoing drought has affected fruit production – I made just 340 jars of jams and marmalades this autumn instead of the usual 800…Whatever the weather, there will always be winners and losers in a garden, the key is growing a variety of useful, climate appropriate plants so there’s always food on the table”.
I’m waiting for the summer wet season to start. Until the rain arrives, there is little cloud to filter the hot sunlight.
Thank goodness for old net curtains and shadecloth!
I thought I would… Continue reading
Nature strip gardening can beautify streets capes, improving the retail sale prices of real estate. Reseach has proven nature strips provide valuable social and environmental services.
Public safety is vital. Plants in nature strips should not be spiny, caustic, toxic or allowed to overgrow, or cause trip hazards, impede wheelchairs, or block lines of sight. The effect should not be overgrown, full of litter or claustrophobic, it should be park-like.
With 100 square metres of good soil you can feed a person all year round. That’s what my ‘Dig for Victory’ grandparents taught me when I was a teenager in London. Here in… Continue reading
Here’s my subtropical food garden’s current autumn menu. Plants marked with an asterisk are volunteers, that is they are self-sown. Currently I have 38 different volunteer crops.
Question: “Hey Jerry, we’ve found mosquitoes to be a real problem for us on the northside this year. An electronic device has been recommended, do you have any views on it?” Barnaby via Facebook Reply: Hi… Continue reading
Here’s my subtropical food garden’s current summer menu of 107 different kinds of root, shoot, leaf, petal, seed and fruit.
I own a critically endangered plant. It comes from Madagascar, an island degraded by human activity and peppered with endangered species. When I discovered the news that my Gerold’s Thornless Crown of Thorns… Continue reading
After gardening in the heat and humidity of a Brisbane summer’s day, I find Turmeric Tea (Curcuma longa) most refreshing, especially if chilled and served with fresh, finely chopped mint leaves or lemongrass… Continue reading
Dear Sister, If you’re with Auntie Sheila when you get this message, remind her that for Xmas 1976 she bought me this book about woodland insects. Sheila encouraged me to pursue my interest… Continue reading