Gardening In ‘New Summer’

October 2007 is the month that Tim Flannery, Australian of the Year, advised that in 2005 the concentration of CO2 equivalent in the atmosphere passed 450 ppm. Also this month a German study revealed that we passed Peak Oil in 2006. I can think of few more momentous happenings for human civilisation. Certainly for human…

Mantis Mealtime

Hedge Grasshopper,  Valanga irregularis Brown Praying Mantis, Archimantis latistyla Observed whilst pruning native raspberries last Friday morning.The mantis ate the grasshopper’s thorax and abdomen but left the gut intact…nice to see biological control in action.

Brisbane’s Water Emergency Worsens

Shortly following revelations that our Water Commission has increased its own water consumption, the same organisation today announced that it wants personal water consumption to be reduced from the current 180 litres per day to 140 litres per day. Our personal daily water consumption at ‘Bellis’ has remained stable at about 116.66 litres since last…

Wetting Agents – Are You Buying Trouble?

Water repellant soils can be improved a number of ways so that they absorb and retain water more effectively, prolonging the benefits of watering and rainfall. Well-composted, well dug soils that are appropriately mulched may completely dry out, but they’re rarely water-repellant. Healthy soil biology is an important and overlooked aspect. It’s important for soil…

Speech To Aussies Sustaining Australia

Good evening I acknowledge that this is aboriginal land and I hope that the gathering here can help to forward reconciliation by caring for this land as well as the aboriginal people did. I’m Jerry and my partner, Jeff, and I retrofitted an elderly queenslander so that it harvests solar energy and rainwater and recycles…

Rohin’s Organic Botanic Garden

An upcoming story on Gardening Australia will feature Rohin Miles, a Gardener of the Year Award entrant. The story features Rohin, a 20 year old gardener. His passions range from ornamentals, productive and heritage plants, exotics and natives. He’s an apprentice gardener with Tweed Shire Council in the Northern Rivers of NSW. We filmed at…

Vale The ‘Green Revolution’

A busy day in the garden…rain was forecast, so I cut and spread dolomite on George’s Sustainable Lawn, hoping it would wash it in. It didn’t, so I ended up rinsing it in with recycled water. I want it looking OK for this Sunday’s National Sustainable House Day. I knocked up a temporary bamboo screen…

Planting Dates For The Future

The date palm is an ancient and productive symbol, an icon whose feathery fronds fringe desert oases. In terms of the speed of return for your outlay, dates plod to maturity. But once they’re fully matured at around fifteen years old, a date palm, Phoenix dactylifera, will crop handsomely.