“There is one rainforest plant from northern Australia every coastal garden should grow: Phaleria clerodendron, the scented daphne. This compact tree can be grown as far south as Sydney and it will fill a garden with fragrant flowers up to three times as year…unless Australians discover and grow this magical plant, who else will?”
“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.”
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.
“This gardener wonders if the Carnival of Flowers date will alter in order to keep up with changing climate?
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
The gift that keeps on giving: In 2013, Annette McFarlane gave me a young Elephant Yam, Amorphophallus paeoniifolius. This tropical, forest-dwelling, winter herbaceous perennial root crop is native to India, SE Asia, Papua… Continue reading
Question: When do I sow pumpkin? I read in gardening magazines pumpkin can be sown from spring to autumn in the subtropics. But advice on seed packets (and some magazines) suggest that pumpkin… Continue reading
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
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
For Brisbane to skip one winter is forgivable, but to skip two winters in a row seems somewhat careless. May was the hottest month on Earth since records began. June 2014 is the… Continue reading
I love seeing well grown plants used to maximum effect. Outside the Wynnum office of the Queensland Transport grows Callistemon ‘Little John’, a native bottlebrush. It’s growing as a boundary hedge, and it’s… Continue reading
Thirty four years ago, I graduated at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.