Starting Annual Vegetable Seedlings Indoors

In a cold climate, such as in Melbourne, Australia, the summer is never quite long enough to grow all your summer annuals vegetables, such as tomatoes, chillies, capsicums and so on. The best way to get a long productive season is to start the seedlings early indoors, so they can be planted out in theContinue reading “Starting Annual Vegetable Seedlings Indoors”

How to Build a Small Water Garden

A serene, reflective pool has its allure, it’s something that has always drawn mankind. There is something about water that relaxes us, that makes us feel peaceful and calm. It resonates with a deep inner part of us, a part perhaps long forgotten, but the connection is still there. After all, water is the veryContinue reading “How to Build a Small Water Garden”

How to Make Compost in 18 Days Using the Berkeley Hot Composting Method

Regular composting, also known as cold composting, involves placing a variety of organic materials in a compost bin, enclosure, or even just in a large heap, and leaving it there until it breaks down several months later. It’s a very slow process and typically takes 6 to 12 months. It can be sped up byContinue reading “How to Make Compost in 18 Days Using the Berkeley Hot Composting Method”

How to Graft Eggplant onto Devil Plant

A veriety of “Devil Plant” , giant devil fig Solanum chrysotrichum for grafting eggplant Would you like to grow an eggplant tree, yes you heard right, a tree, that can produce dozens of eggplants, and not die down in winter? Well, you can if you graft eggplants (or tomatoes) onto a perennial Devil Plant rootstock.Continue reading “How to Graft Eggplant onto Devil Plant”

How to Build a Self-Cleaning Rainwater Tank from a Wheelie Bin

Wheelie bin as a water storage container You can never have enough water storage, and a spare wheelie bin makes a handy water carrier that can easily be moved around (when it is empty of course, a full one can’t be moved!) This design was my first ever water storage solution, and being rather experimental,Continue reading “How to Build a Self-Cleaning Rainwater Tank from a Wheelie Bin”

How to Make a Rainwater Tank from Recycled Plastic Drums

Rainwater is a valuable resource that is largely under-utilised in urban environments. It’s one of nature’s free resources that we can use to grow food, and considering that Australia is the world’s driest continent, rainwater is a very valuable resource, far to valuable to let it run down the drain! Why Small Rainwater Tanks AreContinue reading “How to Make a Rainwater Tank from Recycled Plastic Drums”

Backyard Orchard Culture, a New Approach to Growing Fruit Trees in Limited Spaces

This article is an introduction to the gardening technique of Backyard Orchard Culture – a system of high density planting of fruit trees which allows for a wide variety of fruit to be grown in a limited space, and harvested over a prolonged period of time. Typically, most people grow fruit trees the same wayContinue reading “Backyard Orchard Culture, a New Approach to Growing Fruit Trees in Limited Spaces”

Urban Food Forest Garden Yields, One Year In

Here are the annual figures for the garden yields for the period of Oct 2008 – Oct 2009, the garden’s first year. The annual production for this garden was: first year: 133 kg The total garden bed area is 686 sq. feet (64 sq. metres). The average monthly amount of produce was just over 10Continue reading “Urban Food Forest Garden Yields, One Year In”

How to Build a Capillary Watering Tray for Raising Seedlings

A self-watering capillary tray is a wicking tray with its own water supply, which can keep seedlings in pots watered. All you have to do is occasionally top up the main water reservoir, and that’s all! They’re great for watering seedlings, freshly rooted cuttings, and anything other plants that require constant moisture. How Does aContinue reading “How to Build a Capillary Watering Tray for Raising Seedlings”

How to Make Plant Labels from Recycled Plastic Containers

Plant labels are an item that gardeners use aplenty, but there’s no need to ever run out when you can make your own by recycling polypropylene plastic food grade containers. A white plastic container can be cut with a pair of scissors to produce around a dozen labels in a few minutes. The bottom ofContinue reading “How to Make Plant Labels from Recycled Plastic Containers”

How to Build an Espalier Support Trellis

What is an Espalier? An espalier (pronounced “es-PAL-yer”) is a tree that has been trained to grow in a flat plane against a wall,fence, or trellis, though the term has also been used to  describe the technique of training a tree to grow this way. The technique was invented by the ancient Romans, and furtherContinue reading “How to Build an Espalier Support Trellis”

How to Build a Timber Raised Garden Bed

A raised garden bed is an elevated garden bed that sits higher than the surrounding soil, or the ground that it sits on, and is usually supported by some sort of frame or enclosure, though this is not always the case. Timber Raised Garden Bed Construction Timber raised garden beds are built using planks ofContinue reading “How to Build a Timber Raised Garden Bed”

How to Build a Grape Vine Trellis

Here are the instructions for the construction of a basic 2.0m x 2.4m (6′ x 8′) grape vine trellis as shown below. Construction materials required are as follows: 2.4m (8ft) steel star pickets (x3) Plastic coated or galvanised wire, 2.0mm or 12 gauge (x30ft/10m) Turnbuckles (x3) – or some other means of tensioning the wireContinue reading “How to Build a Grape Vine Trellis”

Companion Planting Table

  Good Companions Bad Companions Apples Chives, Horsetail (Equisetum), Foxgloves, WallflowersNasturtiums, Garlic, Onions Grass, Potatoes Apricots Basil, Tansy, Southernwood Tomatoes, Sage Asparagus Tomatoes, Parsley, Basil   Basil Tomatoes, Asparagus, Parsley, Apricots   Beans Carrots, Cucumbers, Cabbages, Lettuce, Peas, ParsleyCauliflower, Spinach, Summer Savory Onions, Garlic, Fennel, Gladioli, Sunflowers, Kohlrabi Beans, Broad Potatoes, Sweetcorn, Dill   Beans,Continue reading “Companion Planting Table”

What is Companion Planting and How Does it Work?

What is Companion Planting? Companion planting is the practice of planting two or more types of plants close together for some kind of benefit, such as the control of pests, increased health and vigour, resistance to disease, or higher yields. These are termed “good companions”. Companion planting is also concerned with plants are detrimental toContinue reading “What is Companion Planting and How Does it Work?”