Author Topic: Australian Gardening Thread  (Read 35620 times)

HappierAtHome

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #150 on: September 05, 2016, 07:15:54 PM »
Personal Gardening Consultant (Dad) explained that the reason why my seeds aren't germinating is because I'm setting them up on my porch, which faces West. I now have them along the side of the house facing North, which is apparently much better for that. The things you learn.

Two siblings expressed interest in using my Diggers Club membership, and possibly sharing orders of bulk wildflower seeds. Yay!

Biggest recent undertaking has been the removal of most of my ornamental pear trees from the back yard. Three out of seven remain, though I have a taker for one. Brother has used four to fancy up his garden as part of getting his house ready to sell. My back yard now resembles a dirt pit, but on the plus side, nephlings had a great time digging and playing there on the weekend.

Plan is to replace them with citrus and avocado trees (I want evergreens because the trees will eventually function to block a neighbouring house's line of sight into our yard should that house ever be sold to someone who actually uses the second floor, and because I think evergreens do a better job of making that space lush and green). I need to map out which citrus varieties I want to complement those I already have in pots. In an ideal world I want fruit harvesting to be spread over as many months as possible.

Unfortunately Dawson's, which Personal Gardening Consultant says is his pick for the best nursery in Perth, has such a long waitlist for avocado trees that they have declined to add me to it. I have a few leads for other nurseries that may stock avocado trees.

Potted dwarf citrus out the front are looking good, buds are continuing to inch closer to flowering.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #151 on: September 06, 2016, 03:46:49 AM »
Is it worthwhile attempting your own avocado germination? Or would that take too long?

JLR

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #152 on: September 06, 2016, 05:37:35 PM »
Is it worthwhile attempting your own avocado germination? Or would that take too long?

I hear it takes 7 years from seed to fruit. Probably not quite that long to get to a size that might start to make your yard look green and lush, but still quite a few years to get to a decent size to block the neighbours.

HappierAtHome

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #153 on: September 06, 2016, 06:38:48 PM »
Is it worthwhile attempting your own avocado germination? Or would that take too long?

I hear it takes 7 years from seed to fruit. Probably not quite that long to get to a size that might start to make your yard look green and lush, but still quite a few years to get to a decent size to block the neighbours.

They also don't grow true to type, so not a great strategy when a) I want to produce avocados to eat, and b) mature plant size is a crucial factor due to only having a small space.

Would be a fun project with kids though!

deborah

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #154 on: September 06, 2016, 08:50:41 PM »
When I chose fruit trees for my garden, I decided to get fruit that was not readily available in the shops. Well, that isn't strictly correct. I had to have an apricot and a lemon tree. They are a given, and I would be unhappy if my abode didn't have these.

But once I had the mandatory trees, I thought about things. I have a thornless blackberry and numerous raspberries. These were already there when we arrived. We LOVE raspberries, but they have been very disappointing. I am currently trying to get these transplanted to other parts of the garden before they start to bud, but I have to make room for them first. They are currently in one of my vegetable beds, and I want to grow vegetables there. However, whenever I have transplanted them in the past, they have taken but died in summer (and come back up in the vegetable bed). The same thing has happened whenever I have bought raspberry plants. The blackberry is corralled into a small portion of the garden. Each year it is stopped from suckering, and reduced to the space allotted to it. It produces oodles of fruit. Besides which, blackberries are expensive in the shops.

Canberra is marginal for citrus. We have a grapefruit that I planted when I came here. It produces oodles of grapefruit most years, and gets a trim back to keep it confined each year. The grapefruit are good, but we never eat them all. The lemon usually has loads of fruit, and we struggle to get through it all, but last year it set very few fruit, so we don't have our usual lemon supply this year. I have a Seville orange - if your orange isn't going to be sweet because citrus is marginal, why not get an orange that is supposed to be bitter? It is only in its third year of fruiting, but it was an excellent choice - I have never seen Seville oranges on sale, and there are a lot of recipes for them, that are often made with sweet oranges simply because the Seville oranges are so rare. So I can make these things with the right orange - and they taste so much better! I have also planted a lime and a cumquat recently because the other citrus are doing well in that area. Citrus is good because it ripens when nothing else is available, and can stay on the tree for a long time.

I have a peach. It produces fruit, but I often don't notice that they are ripe until it is too late. Blackberries, apricots and peaches are all ready at the same time, usually when heat is at its peak, at the beginning of January. So often the peach misses out. We don't really eat peaches (why would you when you have blackberries and apricots coming out your ears?). The tree has had a hard life. Whenever my behind neighbours trimmed one of their trees (since departed), branches fell on my peach. Twice I taped the top half of the tree to the bottom half in the hopes that it would survive. As a result it isn't the best looking of trees, and it has weaknesses, so branches loaded with fruit have been known to break off. It keeps on being told it is about to go, but last year I made some divine peach syrup and bubbly drink that was really outstanding, so it hasn't been cut down this year.

Cherries. I have a sweet cherry (it is the first thing to ripen in summer), and I love cherries. But I also have three sour cherries (Kentish and Morello - they taste different), again because they aren't available in the shops.

Plums. I have a Greengage, a Victoria and a Coe's Golden Drop (if it doesn't produce good fruit this year, it's gone). The Greengage and Victoria are really nice fruit, which isn't available in the shops. They ripen later than the other things, which gives me a longer fruit season. I planted a Japanese blood plum which is furiously blossoming at the moment, and hopefully I will get a few fruit from it this year. It is right beside the peach, so it will have enough room when the peach goes.

So most of my fruit is either non-existent in the shops or is very expensive. There is some point in growing things that are readily available, if they taste better from your garden or if you wouldn't buy them, but you will eat them if you grow them (one way of consuming more vegetables and fruit).

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #155 on: September 06, 2016, 11:12:32 PM »

Plums. I have a Greengage, a Victoria and a Coe's Golden Drop (if it doesn't produce good fruit this year, it's gone). The Greengage and Victoria are really nice fruit, which isn't available in the shops. They ripen later than the other things, which gives me a longer fruit season. I planted a Japanese blood plum which is furiously blossoming at the moment, and hopefully I will get a few fruit from it this year. It is right beside the peach, so it will have enough room when the peach goes.

So most of my fruit is either non-existent in the shops or is very expensive. There is some point in growing things that are readily available, if they taste better from your garden or if you wouldn't buy them, but you will eat them if you grow them (one way of consuming more vegetables and fruit).

I am totally jealous right now. My grandfather was an orchardist and had the most amazing fruit trees in his retirement garden. Green gage plums were my absolute favourite.

The last time I had green gage plums was when Husband and I bought some from a roadside stall in Tasmania about 10 years ago. So sweet and delicious.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #156 on: September 06, 2016, 11:30:08 PM »
Yes, the greengage is one of my favourites. Honey turned into a fruit. If I ever move, a greengage will be a mandatory tree. I got it (like most of my fruit trees) from Bob Magnus (https://www.woodbridgefruittrees.com.au/) who posts them to people. But I think you're in Brisbane, so it might be too hot for plums.

What else did your grandfather have?

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #157 on: September 06, 2016, 11:47:44 PM »
From memory, and just in the back yard:

Fig, mixed fruit salad trees (he grafted onto stock), one was granny smith / red delicious / golden delicious, one was apricot / almond / green gage plum, blood plums, yellow plums, peaches (a couple of varieties), nectarines, cherries, walnuts, couple of different pears and maybe another few apple trees? The whole back yard (about 1/2 an acre with a small house) was covered with fruit trees. It was an awesome place to grow up.

But yeah, western Vic and I don't think a lot of those would work up here.

HappierAtHome

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #158 on: September 07, 2016, 05:49:01 AM »
Time for me to pick two citrus trees for the backyard.

Already have a Eureka lemon, Tahiti (Tahitian) lime and seedless Japanese mandarin, all in pots.

I'm contemplating a grapefruit and either an orange or another mandarin. I like grapefruit for eating or juicing (especially with some gin!). I like orange juice too, but find oranges to be a bit annoying to eat. I guess grapefruit are fiddly to eat too, but the juice is more exciting to me than orange juice. Mandarins, of course, are super easy to peel and eat.

Anyone want to weigh in / share some citrus wisdom?

I am also tempted to get a lemonade tree to pop in another pot out the front. Mostly because sweet lemons will have so much novelty value. I wonder how well lemonade juice goes with gin?

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #159 on: September 07, 2016, 02:32:36 PM »
Are you into Thai curries? A kaffir lime might be good. They have very interesting looking fruit, but, of course, you want the leaves. And Perth would be hot enough.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #160 on: September 07, 2016, 08:03:13 PM »
Mulberry season! My mulberry tree (about 5 years old now) has hit its stride and established itself in my chicken run. My freezer is full of mulberries and I'm taking them to work to push onto coworkers. Jam! Liqueur! Wine!

I'm also trying to encourage my lychee tree, which is progressing slowly. Any hints?

HappierAtHome

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #161 on: September 07, 2016, 08:12:45 PM »
Are you into Thai curries? A kaffir lime might be good. They have very interesting looking fruit, but, of course, you want the leaves. And Perth would be hot enough.

I wouldn't use the leaves enough to justify a whole tree when there are so many fruit trees I want and only a limited amount of space for them (similarly, I've shelved plans for a curry tree and bay tree for now).

On a happier note, I've realised that I have the perfect space for two or three blueberry bushes. Yay!

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #162 on: September 07, 2016, 10:13:04 PM »
But a bay tree can be quite small. Many people keep it in a pot and cut it into a chupa-chup shape.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #163 on: September 07, 2016, 10:15:12 PM »
Mulberry season! My mulberry tree (about 5 years old now) has hit its stride and established itself in my chicken run. My freezer is full of mulberries and I'm taking them to work to push onto coworkers. Jam! Liqueur! Wine!

I'm also trying to encourage my lychee tree, which is progressing slowly. Any hints?
Where do you live? Lychees are tropical. The one we had in Brisbane grew well (we didn't know about lychees and thought it was ornamental - WHAT A WASTE!)

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #164 on: September 07, 2016, 10:33:57 PM »
I'm contemplating a grapefruit and either an orange or another mandarin.

Anyone want to weigh in / share some citrus wisdom?


We used to have a bunch of trees (orange, lemon and mandarin as our citrus) and I highly recommend a mandarin tree. I was never a mad-keen mandarin fan before, but that tree ruined me for shop bought mandarins for life! It was very low maintenance, fruited well, etc. I also loved our peach tree, but had so many problems with fruit fly. The mandarin tree didn't have any troubles like that. TBH after the kids went to bed I used to pick 5 mandarins a night and sit there peeling and eating. Glorious!

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #165 on: September 07, 2016, 10:40:52 PM »
But a bay tree can be quite small. Many people keep it in a pot and cut it into a chupa-chup shape.

Yeah, but it still takes SOME space. I need to prioritise and then, if I have room left over once I have enough citrus, avocados, almonds, apples, blueberries and nectarines, THEN I can start allocating space to other, lower-priority edibles.

I will also need space for roses.

I'm contemplating a grapefruit and either an orange or another mandarin.

Anyone want to weigh in / share some citrus wisdom?


We used to have a bunch of trees (orange, lemon and mandarin as our citrus) and I highly recommend a mandarin tree. I was never a mad-keen mandarin fan before, but that tree ruined me for shop bought mandarins for life! It was very low maintenance, fruited well, etc. I also loved our peach tree, but had so many problems with fruit fly. The mandarin tree didn't have any troubles like that. TBH after the kids went to bed I used to pick 5 mandarins a night and sit there peeling and eating. Glorious!

So you found the mandarin tree to be more enjoyable than the orange?

I already have a Japanese seedless mandarin, so I'm contemplating the addition of a SECOND mandarin tree versus an orange tree. The relative ease of eating is what's swaying me. With two mandarin trees I could extend the fruiting period over more months, too, which would be useful.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #166 on: September 08, 2016, 05:16:37 PM »
Where do you live? Lychees are tropical. The one we had in Brisbane grew well (we didn't know about lychees and thought it was ornamental - WHAT A WASTE!)

I'm also in Brisbane, so quite pleased to hear that yours did well. Did you do anything in particular to it to make it grow?

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #167 on: September 08, 2016, 06:21:19 PM »
Where do you live? Lychees are tropical. The one we had in Brisbane grew well (we didn't know about lychees and thought it was ornamental - WHAT A WASTE!)

I'm also in Brisbane, so quite pleased to hear that yours did well. Did you do anything in particular to it to make it grow?
Nothing at all. In fact, it was the seed from a plant that was in a front yard I passed on the way to school. I was really interested in the seedpod, and took one and planted the seed. Surprised that mum didn't get rid of it!

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #168 on: September 09, 2016, 07:50:07 PM »
I have been thinking about food thieves.

Sweet Cherries would be impossible without netting. Each year we take the netting off after we have harvested the cherries, and the remainder are gone within the remaining daylight hours that day (we leave those that have been pecked, are beginning to rot or are just too far to reach). Before we got cunning, we put the net around the tree, and the birds would sit on the net poking their beaks through and eating the cherries. They say that Australian birds (and parrots in particular) are the most intelligent birds, and their methods for getting at cherries back that claim up, so we were getting very few cherries. And cherries have cherry slug.

Apricots have it hard. The Eastern Rosellas love putting their beaks on both sides of an Apricot branch in blossom and zooming up the branch, reducing the number of apricots gained significantly. Cockatoos like green apricots, and sit on the electricity wires with one foot, while the other is holding the apricot and gently rotating it against the beak. Wattle Birds love poking a hole in each apricot (I think it encourages insects that reduce the apricot to mush that the wattle birds then treat as nectar), and trying to stop you from picking the apricots.

However, even though we have possums, they seem to avoid the apricot tree (and possums love apricot jam sandwiches, so they must like apricots). In fact, they seem to avoid all the edible plants, and concentrate on the Pin Oak - the nice tender juicy leaves just after the tree is in bud and the acorns. And it's not like we only have the occasional possum. We rarely look for possums in the tree, but our neighbour has counted as many as 15 in the tree at one time. And we certainly hear them, and see their presence most of the time.

Actually, just about everything LOVES the Pin Oak. The cockatoos leave detritus piled several inches high on the concrete each week of acorn season, and it is rare that cockatoos, correllas, king parrots or eastern or crimson rosellas are not eating acorns during acorn season. It is very rare to go under the Pin Oak at that time of year without something descending on you from above. Perhaps the Pin Oak does serve a purpose (other than annoying the whole neighbourhood with its leaves) - to divert wildlife from the things I want to eat.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 07:56:09 PM by deborah »

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #169 on: September 09, 2016, 08:12:15 PM »
Oooo, I might plant a pin oak! (Whatever that is!)

Off topic kind of: Recently I borrowed Rhonda Hertzel's Down to Earth book from the library. Reading it makes me feel so peaceful and relaxed but also very inspired, so I have big dreams of growing and preserving things now. Maybe I should just concentrate on actually getting something grown first, but.. I just got a breadmaker for just $10 from a FB sale group - downloaded the manual and it says I can make JAM!! First things first, to clean the thing and check it makes bread..


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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #170 on: September 10, 2016, 05:41:11 AM »
Jam in a bread maker is easy. I went through a phase of making a whole lot, but  I was the main consumer, which was not good for me. I'm glad I got to taste REAL strawberry jam at least once in my life-time - its unreal. Rhonda's blog go the into this whole thing - I was looking for a way to bankroll quitting work and just doing simple living.  I met her  on a recent book tour and she's just like the Rhonda in the blog.

Strawberries are  in season - my Coles are selling them for $1 a punnet...great timing for strawberry jam ;)
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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #171 on: September 10, 2016, 10:01:28 PM »


Off topic kind of: Recently I borrowed Rhonda Hertzel's Down to Earth book from the library. Reading it makes me feel so peaceful and relaxed but also very inspired.

I really enjoy her blog.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #172 on: September 10, 2016, 10:02:48 PM »
My gardening tip is to go away on holidays for three weeks and come home to an epic harvest!

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #173 on: September 10, 2016, 10:21:48 PM »
So I assume that you are now up to about 10kg total or more! Much better than 2! And you've got a long way to go yet. How long do tomato plants last in Brisbane? I have just sewn the seeds and expect to plant in November - and they last until May here. Your tomato plant is probably just getting into production mode.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #174 on: September 11, 2016, 12:45:12 AM »
Unsure how much longer I'll keep the vines in. They're looking pretty ratty. I'm keen to devote my small cultivated area to zucchini and corn for summer. Might keep one or two tomatoes.


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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #175 on: September 11, 2016, 02:38:15 AM »
Gorgeous tomatoes PDM!
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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #176 on: September 11, 2016, 03:36:54 AM »
Fantastic PDM! And thanks for the tip-off on the strawberries, Happy.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #177 on: September 12, 2016, 12:39:02 AM »
My super dwarf nectarine is flowering! For the last few months it's looked like I accidentally planted a dead stick. Now it's covered in beautiful soft pink blossoms.

When I get a chance to take a decent photo I'll post it here.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #178 on: September 12, 2016, 03:24:05 AM »
My super dwarf nectarine is flowering! For the last few months it's looked like I accidentally planted a dead stick. Now it's covered in beautiful soft pink blossoms.

When I get a chance to take a decent photo I'll post it here.
That's fantastic!

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #179 on: September 13, 2016, 05:57:47 AM »
Nectarine blossom :D

happy

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #180 on: September 13, 2016, 03:37:38 PM »
So pretty!
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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #181 on: September 13, 2016, 05:52:28 PM »
Yum. I love nectarines. Is it a white or yellow flesh?

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #182 on: September 27, 2016, 07:16:05 PM »
Yum. I love nectarines. Is it a white or yellow flesh?

Yellow flesh. I don't eat stonefruit at all (though I will at least try our homegrown nectarines!) and Mr H only eats yellow flesh nectarines.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #183 on: September 27, 2016, 08:03:52 PM »
I bought ALL THE TREES yesterday:

Two wurtz avocados
One hass avocado 
One mandarin 
One dwarf granny smith
One dwarf cox's orange pippin
Four blueberry bushes
Twelve strawberry plants

This week I want to get everything planted except the pippin, which will be living in a temporary pot until I've cleared the right space for it (they're hard to find, so I wanted to get one while I could).

Meanwhile, the seeds I've started are not doing much. One zucchini seed has sprouted into a real, if little, plant - maybe 10cm high? - and I have one amish paste seedling. Everything else is just dirt so far. I think maybe it's the unseasonable cold weather we've been having?

My flower seeds from Diggers have arrived, so I'm going to seed a few narrow flower beds and hopefully have some Summer colour. I picked varieties that can be sown this time of year and that attract bees and other beneficial insects.

If anyone in Perth is looking for wurtz avocados, they're on super long waiting lists at all the real nurseries but there's this somewhat shady backyard nursery in Leeming that stocks them, and its trees were in great condition and well priced. I'll definitely be going back there! I can PM the details to anyone who wants them.

I still have a few trees I want to buy within the next 6 - 12 months. A ruby red grapefruit, two dwarf almond trees, and *maybe* another nectarine (I'm in two minds about that last one).

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #184 on: September 30, 2016, 02:20:58 AM »
If flowering fruit trees are the thing, I suppose I had better post a few. Firstly the trees that are under threat - the peach and the Coe's Golden Drop Plum (its plums are always mealy)

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #185 on: September 30, 2016, 02:31:25 AM »
Next, the apricot (Moorpark), the Japanese Plum, the sweet cherry and the greengage plum

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #186 on: September 30, 2016, 02:40:33 AM »
If you want to see pictures of the tulips, weeping cherry and a king parrot, you need to go to my journal.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #187 on: October 02, 2016, 09:51:09 PM »
Gorgeous flowers!

I've had a batch of seeds recently that took forevverrrr to sprout, but they finally did (3 weeks or something) and now I have a bunch of baby pea, squash, and kailan plants. Beans still nowhere to be seen. I was slightly mystified by the seeds needing the northern wall thing, then later I followed 'Beyond Gardens' on facebook and they just posted that seeds need 18-20 degree temps to un-hibernate. So I've brought my latest tray inside and I'm planning to leave them in the bathtub for a week or so...

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #188 on: October 03, 2016, 03:19:05 AM »
Harvesting asparagus, lettuce, silver beet, coriander, rocket and broccoli.
Black scale has attacked the garlic...its still at the "shallot" stage, with no bulbs. I've prayed with white oil.  I doubt I'll get a mature crop now, and it was looking really good. They ate all my chives also.
Having a low strike rate with germination right now, not sure why, but have 4 tomato plants and some basil coming up.
I finally have a 2 small lines of snow/snap peas and one of beans about 10-15cm high.
Several things I left to self seed last season are growing - feverfew, parsley, calendular, and another flowering plant I don't know the name of.
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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #189 on: October 03, 2016, 05:39:02 AM »
So many good growing stories! My next gardening adventure is demolition. I'm removing a nasty spikey palm-type plant with some family assistance this week. Will post before & after if I remember to take pictures.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #190 on: October 03, 2016, 05:51:45 AM »
I finally did some gardening today.

I fertilised all of the fruit trees (guava, apples, nectarines plus grapevine). The strawberry plant out the front is loving all the rain and has a million flowers and is growing beautiful big green leaves.

I hacked back the roses down the side fence (I'd pull them out but they are well suited to the climate) and put the clippings in the compost heap. Normally I just leave prunings as mulch but I have learnt the hard way that usually rose prunings turn into barbed wire mulch.

I also hacked back some of the kale which has now gone through 3 winters and still going strong. It's bolted to flower and I suspect the weather has been too warm recently and the leaves will be bitter. However, it too is loving all of the rain and is now as tall as the washing line (when wound down), hence needing to hack it back so we can hang stuff out to dry. When it's not raining, that is.


englyn

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #191 on: October 03, 2016, 08:56:04 PM »
I've prayed with white oil. 
haha praying as a method of pest control is probably about as effective as all the other methods I've tried

Freshwater

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #192 on: October 03, 2016, 11:02:47 PM »
I've prayed with white oil. 
haha praying as a method of pest control is probably about as effective as all the other methods I've tried

I should try that on our possums! While we have been building possum proofing for our veggies they have moved into a nest under our solar panels! Next project is a nesting box for the furthest tree.

Does everyone else buy potting mix or make their own or just use compost when they are filling raised beds? We did a lasagne method to cheaply fill our raised beds (top layer was bought potting compost) but they need topping up as the layers rotted and everything sank to half the size. Costs a fair bit. Plus, do people buy straw to mulch their toms etc or just use whatever is to hand?

HappierAtHome

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #193 on: October 03, 2016, 11:16:44 PM »
I buy potting mix, and I haven't bought mulch yet but I think I'll get some straw mulch for the strawberries when they start fruiting.

englyn

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #194 on: October 03, 2016, 11:26:35 PM »
Get onto that mulching before spring finally gets here and starts frying everything! Up to 10cm deep for best results.

happy

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #195 on: October 04, 2016, 01:26:41 AM »
I've prayed with white oil. 
haha praying as a method of pest control is probably about as effective as all the other methods I've tried

I should try that on our possums! While we have been building possum proofing for our veggies they have moved into a nest under our solar panels! Next project is a nesting box for the furthest tree.

Does everyone else buy potting mix or make their own or just use compost when they are filling raised beds? We did a lasagne method to cheaply fill our raised beds (top layer was bought potting compost) but they need topping up as the layers rotted and everything sank to half the size. Costs a fair bit. Plus, do people buy straw to mulch their toms etc or just use whatever is to hand?

LOL @ typo. New method of weed control: spray and pray!

I do a combination. I'm blessed with an eternal supply of leaves and bark and also have guinea pig bedding (wood shavings) with manure and hay in it. I also usually end up with a pile of leftovers from their bale hay.
I have compost piles on the go, but I cold compost, not being devoted enough to do the hot version.

I do buy potting mix for when I'm planting in pots.
Journalling at Happy Aussie Downshifter

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #196 on: October 06, 2016, 04:04:57 PM »
My coffee plants recently flowered and have set fruit. Hooray. Much like brewing beer and baking bread, I consider this apart of my plan for after the apocalypse. I'll be rich! Oh oh want real fresh ground coffee? That'll be a bar of gold please. Or maybe a box of ammunition.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #197 on: October 06, 2016, 06:38:06 PM »
Get onto that mulching before spring finally gets here and starts frying everything! Up to 10cm deep for best results.

We've been able to coast because the last owners of our house mulched generously. Now I have to actually mulch myself?! Wut. Learning new garden stuff every week at the moment.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #198 on: October 06, 2016, 07:13:52 PM »
The Victoria Plum is finally flowering. It is one of my favourites, and last year it had 5 flowers and no fruit. Also some of the apples are flowering - Pink Lady, Huonvale Crab (a large crab or a small apple) in the back.

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Re: Australian Gardening Thread
« Reply #199 on: October 06, 2016, 07:16:13 PM »
Along the side the Gravenstein, Luxton's Fortune, and Egremont Russet are also flowering. So hopefully this year I will get a few apples.

All the apples have been cordoned along the fence. That way they don't take up much room. I worked out that I should get apples more or less over a whole year because the ones along the side all fruit at different times. However, the book I consulted was English, and they fruit differently here than there. This will (hopefully) be the first year I have more than just a couple of fruit, so I'm really looking forward to it. It has been a long haul with the apples. So much so, that I started planting along the back fence as well to see if they did any better there. I lost several and replaced them with others (I think the Gravenstein was a replacement), then they didn't flower. Having fresh apples from the tree year round makes them quite attractive to me so I have persevered.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2016, 07:26:02 PM by deborah »