Category Archive: Ornamental

Bellis Open Day, Mother’s Day Weekend, 13 – 14th May 2017

MEDIA RELEASE: This is your opportunity to visit the amazing and affordable sustainable garden of well-known Gardening Australia presenter, Jerry Coleby-Williams. Get a first-hand look at what can be achieved on a suburban block… Continue reading

Footpath Gardening: To Boldly Garden Where No One Has Gardened Before…

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.

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,… Continue reading

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… Continue reading

Bunya: Prehistoric Plant, Ancient Australian Food Tradition

“Young Australians need to be educated about what a Bunya tree looks like, what the sound of snapping cones and breaking branches sound like, and to avoid lingering underneath them in high summer. When I was at primary school, we had a Bunya in the schoolyard. We knew what to do, how to harvest them, and no one was ever hurt.”

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… 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

Father’s Day 2014: Concerning Seaweed And Quadratic Equations

This is a fictional letter. My father, John, who had been living for some years with Alzheimer’s, died shortly after I emigrated to Australia. My sister and I looked after Dad at home… Continue reading

The Ultimate Hibiscus?

I have been instructed by Denise Horchner (of Perennial Poppies) to write about my Phillip Island Hibiscus, Hibiscus insularis. This is what I call my ‘signature plant’ and as far as I’m aware,… Continue reading

Want A Rainforest Garden? Then Plant Dry, Not Wet…

The word rainforest makes you think of hot, humid, dense, leafy, evergreen forest, such as the Daintree, the world’s most ancient rainforest in far northern Queensland (FNQ).

Succulents: Chlorophyll With Character

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

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