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.
Spring Follows Winter. But Can You Set Your Calendar By That?
“This gardener wonders if the Carnival of Flowers date will alter in order to keep up with changing climate?
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…
Living With Mosquitoes In The Subtropics
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 Barnaby, I had to adapt to living with mosquitoes when I moved to the subtropics from warm temperate Sydney in 2003. I’ve…
Rarity Is Commoner Than You Think
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 was on the brink of extinction, I had a flashback to planning the Rare & Endangered Plants Garden for the Royal Botanic…
Thoughtful Gifts Influence Lives
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 in nature, saying that a knowledge of pollinators is as important as a knowledge of fruit trees, and that knowing both is the perfect marriage.
Living And Gardening With Koalas
Question: “Hi Jerry, Great to see you at the koala rally on Wednesday. Our next plan is to try and have a meeting with the developers. We were wondering if you might be able to help us with an alternative landscape plan to present. Cheers, Sandy R”. Answer: Dear Sandy, six years ago I interviewed…
Organic Win: Nematodes Defeated In Wynnum
Root knot nematodes can be a curse in warm, moist garden soils. Feeding by these minuscule, transparent, work-like creatures inside the root tissue of many crops causes the roots to develop tumour-like growths which retard the flow of water and nutrients through conducting vessels, weakening crops. What to do?
In Production Today: October 2014
Brisbane’s warm, dry, breezy inter-season, sprummer, (the period between spring and summer) is intensifying, hastening the production of seed from winter crops. The seed of Ethiopian cabbage (Brassica carinata), Chinese cabbage ‘Tokyo Bekana‘, mizuna, flowering turnip (aka rapini, Brassica rapa var rapa ‘Cima di Rapa Quarantina’) and mustard ‘Osaka Purple’ have already been harvested.
In Production Today, September 2014
Spring is over in my garden. Winter crops are flowering – my garden is transitioning into its seed saving phase.
Cocoyam Recipes – 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 – 3,229 – visited Brisbane’s thrifty sustainable house and garden. And what a jolly, generous, patient and enthusiastic bunch you proved to be. The very best Queensland has to offer. Best of all, there were…
Open Day At Bellis, August 2014
FULL DETAILS SEE: http://www.opengarden.org.au Leave Brisbane’s suburbs behind as you visit 813 square metres of rural Wynnum. Check out my award-winning, thrifty sustainable garden: blue bananas, stingless bees, home grown bath sponges, and turf mostly mowed by guinea pigs. See how a decade of organic gardening has converted uncompromising acid sulphate soil into a wonderful,…