Hello, Emerald City! Tour Singapore With Jerry Coleby-Williams, 22-26 July 2016.

Gardens take pride of place in tropical Singapore. It’s never been a more exciting time for an Australian gardener to visit. Singaporeans are obsessed with chlorophyll… They have long talked up the benefits of a city upgrade – from one of the world’s leading garden cities into a 21st century garden utopia. Now, they’re building it. Gardens by the…

Barcaldine In Bloom: Get Gardening! Expo 2015

Two years without rain is a long time between drinks in the garden town of Barcaldine, but it’s not out of place in western Queensland’s desert uplands. With a population of under 1,400, Barcaldine’s Get Gardening Expo attracted 600 locals and tourists to celebrate the region’s best food, wine, art, plants, gardens and gardeners. Not bad for a region where even desert cacti need shade, occasional watering, and have been known to explode in summer.

Remembering Turfculture At The Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney

Vale, John Morgan of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney: greenkeeper, gardener, ranger, friend since 1992. I’m reminiscing about the Turfculture team, a vital service, where John Morgan began his career in my department. Together, from 1992 to 2003, our team transitioned the lawns from conventional horticultural management to almost organic standards. When I moved to Brisbane,…

Rice Growing in Vietnam, From Paddy to Plate

The Vietnamese depend on rice (Oryza sativa) for food security. There’s a long list of ways rice can be served, this staple grain is routinely eaten three times a day – rice noodles for breakfast, either rice noodles or rice for lunch, and rice for dinner.  Growing this staple in Vietnam’s fertile soils and wet tropical climate…

In Production Today: My Subtropical Harvest Festival, May 2015

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 sunny subtropical Brisbane you also need a minimum of 7,000 litres of stored water, ideally 10,000 litres, to sustain that production through…

23rd Bee Species Found At Bellis Identified

When I started my garden at Bellis in 2003, it consisted of Queensland Blue couch, fences and a house. Starting a garden completely from scratch is a rare opportunity for many gardeners. This was my first chance. I wanted to record the transformational effect of gardening sustainably. One way to record progress was a species…

Queensland Cucumber Mosaic Virus Alert

Cucumber mosaic virus is a threat to food security. Last year this highly destructive disease was identified on a farm near Bundaberg, and now it has been found on a Charters Towers watermelon farm. As a student at Kew Gardens, this was a case study, and we were drilled about implementing ‘on site’ quarantine procedures to…

How Can ‘Dog’s Vomit’ Have A ‘Hive’ Mind? Enter The Kingdom Of The Slime Moulds

“Truly alien creatures…are all around us” Professor Christopher Reid, University of Sydney At dawn you could mistake them for vomited curry, something people find disturbing. They surface during the night, forming moist, sulphur-yellow pools and then tiny stalagmites emerge from them, forming miniature landscapes. As the sizzling Brisbane sun rises their colour quickly fades to…