Category Archive: Gardening Australia

Miscast Mistletoe: Environmental Health Indicators Hiding In Full View

“Parasites aren’t all bad, and mistletoes deserve a rethink. If you study them, you’ll discover that they’re fascinating Australian plants making a valuable contribution to the environment.”

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.… Continue reading

Mangelwurzel Harvest

I imagine everyone is outdoors, harvesting their mangelwurzels (Beta vulgaris subsp. maritima) today like me. A friend is thinking about brewing mangelwurzel beer, they’re supposed to make a potent drop. Alcohol is not… Continue reading

Stranglers, Temu And Big Num Nums: Trees And Plants Of Cultural Significance At Ormiston House

‘Stranglers, Temu and Big Num Nums: Ormiston House, A Guided Tour of the Trees and Plants of Cultural Significance’ Notes prepared for a tour by The Australian Garden History Society (Queensland branch), 2nd… Continue reading

One Name To Rule Them All: Get With Gomphrena

What is the scientific name for Batchelor’s Buttons? Does it matter? Can it help? Maybe. If you learn the scientific name of a plant, you have a unique key to unlock information about… Continue reading

Nanny’s Cabbage Companion Confirmed Caterpillar Killer By University Of Queensland

In London in 1975, my maternal grandmother, Dorothy Connor, had her best ever crop of cabbages, despite record-breaking drought. From then on, she always grew Landcress (Barbarea vulgaris) amongst her brassicas. Thirty nine… Continue reading

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… Continue reading

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

In Production Today, September 2014

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

In Production Today, May 2014

May 2014 was the 351st consecutive month of above average global temperatures. Or put another way, any gardener under 30 years old will never have experienced normal growing conditions. This month’s weather has… Continue reading

Stingless Bees: Factory Farming With A Future

Sugarbag bees are fun. Young kids are always surprised to discover some Australian bees are both tiny and without a sting. Once they understand these bees are safe company, they can’t resist taking… Continue reading

In Production Today, March 2014

The most widespread recorded drought in Queensland’s history has meant most of my gardening effort continues to be spent on watering and soil improvement. At least I’m able to keep fruit trees productive and… Continue reading

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