Gardening Together As A Family: People, Plants, Place, Community.

In recent years, families who garden together have become the most prominent visitors to my annual Open Day. It’s delightful seeing these gardening families, because that was how I started life: in an English family that gardened and holidayed together.  Planning, harvesting, saving seed, cooking, bottling, gathering materials for gardening were activities we did together.

Sign The Petition To Ensure Genetically Modified Organisms Are Regulated in Australia, Back Friends of the Earth.

At a time when we urgently need stronger laws to regulate GM business, the Australian Government has removed regulations designed to keep us and our food safe. This means that from now, many genetically modified (GM) animals, plants and microbes will enter our environment and food chain with no requirement for safety testing or traceability.

On 13th November 2019 the Senate will debate whether to disallow these regulatory changes, and Labor Party support for the disallowance motion will be vital.



Now is the time to act. If you want to know that the food you are eating is GM free, please contact your local MP and senators to demand that all genetically modified organisms are assessed for safety and labelled for consumer choice.



Please sign this petition organised by Friends of the Earth, Melbourne.



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. As a student at Kew Gardens, this was a case study, and we were drilled about implementing ‘on site’ quarantine procedures to…

In Flower This Mid-winter’s Day At Bellis, Brisbane

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 352nd consecutive month of above average global temperatures.

Biodispersal: Another word for the dictionary

A student at Dekin Uni is writing about GM foods. She wanted my opinion, so here is my reply – it was published eight years ago in response to an opinion piece written by Jennifer Marohasy (a member of the Institute of Public Affairs, a pro-industry lobby group) in the Courier Mail…

Growing Australian Plants In London

When the Guardian published a few shots of Australian plants that can be grown in Britain, I had a flashback to my Australian-effect front garden in London.

Glyphosate, The World’s Favourite Herbicide

Glyphosate-based herbicides are bee-killing global pollutants of groundwater, rivers and surface water. More recently glyphosate has been detected in rain. The latest research reveals that glyphosate damages the beneficial bacteria in the gut of the honeybee, making them prone to to deadly infections. Previous studies have shown that pesticides such as neonicotinoids cause harm to bees,…