GARDEN DEVA SPRING 2019
Spring is the most productive season for gardening as the soil is moist and the sun shining, which translates to perfect growing weather. It is THE time to feed and plant most things. Click here for what to do in Spring.
WIN a $50 fruit tree voucher. This competition is open to all Garden Deva clients, past and present. Simply take a photo of your edible garden and text to Cherise on 0423 385 568 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org with TASS ONE COMPETITION and your name. Entries will be judged by Joe from Tass One Trees. Competition closes October 12th 2019.
RATS RATS AND MORE RATS
Rodents can be a huge problem in the edible garden.
Nobody I know likes poisoning rats and mice but sometimes it simply has to be done. If you are understandably worried about secondary poisoning with birds and owls, use Racumin, which has a lot less chance of harming not target animals. https://www.farmersweekly.co.za/agri-technology/useful-products/kill-rodents-and-nothing-else/
OR: Borrow a (slightly hungry) Jack Russell.
Apparently cat or dog fur in a stocking in their rat runs may act as a deterrent. I am currently waiting on some chihuahua fur to trial this (as my dog is useless and the rats will probably suss this if I use his fur!)
If you have chooks – feed small amounts more often or use an enclosed chicken foot operated feeder (google Grandpa’s Feeders – or make your own).
FOOD CUBES – new urban farming system for gardeners.
Food cubes, by Biofilta are Australian engineered, designed and created wicking beds using 88% recycled plastic and, excitingly, are on their way to Perth. Linda and Paul from GREENLIFE SOIL are taking pre orders now. www.greenlifesoil.com.au
Boring side garden getting you down? How about giving it a bit of an edible green makeover? You can build a simple structure like this and grow no chill raspberries (Heritage variety – needs some shade in summer), grapes or arched/espaliered mulberries, apples or pears. Pic courtesy of Adam from Admire Landscapes
CITRUS LEAF MINER is active as the weather warms up past 25C. Suffocate the insects on <4cm new growth with Eco Oil, or Yates Nature’s way potassium soap, which also knocks off mealy bug. As the weather gets over 30C and it becomes too hot to spray, switch over to a CLM trap – very effective and lasts for months.
Do you love strawberries and want to grow lots of them?
Why not try growing some in a recycled olive barrel? These are available from Gumtree or WA Barrels on Facebook for $25-30 – and are also excellent for fruit trees.
TIP - place olive barrel on a heavy duty pot trolley so you can turn it every now and then to get even sun exposure. Ensure adequate reticulation or consider growing them hydroponically like pic shown.
Pic courtesy of Greenfingers Hydroponic and Aquaponic Centre.
Phyto-remediation is the use of plants to help clean up contaminated waste sites (think sunflowers and Chernobyl). An enormous variety of plants are now being trialled globally for their phyto-remedial properties, including our native myoporum and dianthus. Indoor plants are also phyto-remediaters, helping to filter polluted air. Speaking of indoors…
REDUCING TOXICITY INDOORS
Exposure to toxins is, unfortunately par for the course if you live in an industrialised country like Australia. Many people don’t realise that life indoors can be as equally polluting as that of outdoors.
Inside many homes, these chemicals are commonly found: ammonia (window cleaners, floor waxes), xylene (paint, leather, rubber), Benzene (plastics, dyes, furniture wax), formaldehyde (paper bags, tissues, paper towels) plant Trichloroethylene (paints, varnish). It’s all a bit scary. Go natural wherever you can with cleaning products, paints, recycled paper products, cosmetics etc. Luckily indoor plants can greatly contribute to reducing the toxic load found inside your home. Click HERE to learn which ones are the best…
FREE INDOOR PLANTS – just add water!
Does your friend have an indoor plant you lust after? Or do you need to do some pruning and would like to increase your plant stash?
Try these easy ones:
Syngonium (also helps other plants root), Philodendron/pothos, Tradescantia, String of pearls/bananas (Senecio sp), Peperomia.
SPOTLIGHT on…. KENTIA PALMS
Kentia palms (Howea forsteriana) are elegant and beautiful plants which give structure to the indoor landscape. These popular plants are reasonably forgiving of neglect and grow in low (ish) medium + high light positions indoors or outside in some shade. They also help suck up formaldehyde.
KINGS PARK FESTIVAL - on all of September https://www.bgpa.wa.gov.au/kings-park/events/festival
SUSTAINABLE HOUSE DAY Sunday 15 September – this is much like an Open garden scheme, but more for getting loads of cool eco ideas for building or retrofitting your house (and garden). www.sustainablehouseday.com
Got some spare time on a weekend? Grab a friend or family member and be inspired by a visit to an open garden. Most places offer morning/afternoon tea, some have live music, special events, plants and artwork for sale. For garden lovers, it is a lovely way to while away the hours soaking up ideas, taking photos and supporting charities. Check these ones out and see if any appeal:
5 THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT FRUIT FLY
1. Mediterranean Fruit fly was discovered in Perth in Claremont in 1895!
2. They avoid flying low, usually only stinging fruit 1.5m or above but love hanging out in citrus trees (= a good place for traps)..
3. Fruit fly adore traps made from vegemite, mango and strawberry/guava drink and vanilla essence. Holes in traps should be 2mm and smooth. Rough edges deter them.
4. Some fig varieties (most probably the lighter skinned ones like White Genoa) are much less attractive to fruit fly.
5. Place traps in shade in summer and sun in winter for best effect.
TIP Eco Natralure is an excellent splash bait to use with traps.
Alternatively, bagging fruit or netting trees (tie on trunk, away from the ground) is 100% effective against the dreaded fly if done properly.
Happy gardening and don't forget to send me your competition entries!
0423 385 568