Category Archives: Gardening Information

Soil Chemistry Fundamentals, Part 2 – How to Change Soil pH in Organic Gardening

  Most plants prefer a neutral soil around pH 6.5 to 7.5, but many will grow favourably in the broader pH range of 5.5 to 8. When soils become too acidic or too alkaline, some essential plant nutrient will become … Continue reading

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The Difference Between Nightingale and Hachiya Persimmons

Nightingale persimmon pictured, and Hachiya persimmon both have stunning autumn foliage, making them excellent fruiting and ornamental trees   There tends to be some confusion about Nightingale and Hachiya persimmons. Despite what some claim, they are not the same thing, … Continue reading

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Soil Chemistry Fundamentals, Part 1 – Understanding Soil pH and How it Affects Plant Nutrient Availability

What is soil pH? How does it affect soil microorganisms and nutrient availability to plants? What is the optimum soil pH for plants? In this article we’ll answer all those questions and more, explaining soil chemistry in a practical way … Continue reading

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What Materials Can You Put Into Your Compost Bin and What Not to Compost

Composting is Mother Nature’s ultimate recycling process which converts everything that was once living back into soil. We can compost a lot of organic matter in our homes and gardens, and use it to improve the quality of our soil, … Continue reading

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Which Variety of Grape Vine Has Edible Leaves for Making Dolmades?

  Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) are a popular dish in Greek and Middle Eastern cuisine. These appetisers are made of meat, rice, various herbs and spices, all of which are wrapped in grape vine  leaves and cooked. When cooking, it’s … Continue reading

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Citrus Problems – Citrus Fruit Has Thick Peel and Hollow Core

Nutrient imbalances and deficiencies can adversely affect the quality of citrus fruit. Excess nitrogen combined with low phosphorus will cause citrus fruit to be misshapen, with thick peel, a coarse and roughly textured rind, coarse pulpy flesh without much juice, … Continue reading

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Why Is My Aloe Vera Plant Turning Yellow and Brown?

Aloe vera is a hardy, succulent, semi-tropical plant native to North Africa and the SW Arabian Peninsula, which can tolerate quite harsh conditions. It will grow in poor soils in hot, dry sunny  locations with very little water, but can … Continue reading

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Emergency Survival Prepper Gardening – Part 4, How to Sow Seeds Directly Into the Ground and Into Seedling Trays

Sometimes governments do give sound advice to their nations… During World War I and World War II, in a an effort to reduce the public demand on food supplies and leave more food to send to the soldiers fighting overseas, … Continue reading

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Emergency Survival Prepper Gardening – Part 3, When to Sow Seeds and Plant Seedlings

Sometimes governments do give sound advice to their nations… During World War I and World War II, in a an effort to reduce the public demand on food supplies and leave more food to send to the soldiers fighting overseas, … Continue reading

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What Are The Best Rocks to Use for Building Wicking Beds

One of the questions that many people have when constructing wicking beds is what are the best rocks to use in the water reservoir section underneath. Coarse scoria is the recommended material, but are there any reasonable substitutes? As a … Continue reading

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Emergency Survival Prepper Gardening – Part 2, How to Prepare the Soil

Sometimes governments do give sound advice to their nations… During World War I and World War II, in a an effort to reduce the public demand on food supplies and leave more food to send to the soldiers fighting overseas, … Continue reading

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Emergency Survival Prepper Gardening – Part 1, Selecting a Location for a Food Garden

Sometimes governments do give sound advice to their nations… During World War I and World War II, in a an effort to reduce the public demand on food supplies and leave more food to send to the soldiers fighting overseas, … Continue reading

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How to Control Queensland Fruit Fly in the Home Garden, An Integrated Pest Management Approach

(Image credit – source image from NSW Department of Primary Industries, modified and edited by Deep Green Permaculture) Queensland fruit fly or Qfly (Bactrocera tryoni) is one of the most damaging pests of fruit and vegetables in Australia. This insect … Continue reading

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Australian Native and Exotic Fire Resistant Trees and Plants for Fireproof Landscapes

Fire protection is especially important in Australia, the driest continent in the world, which is plagued by periodic bushfires. These fires can burn uncontrollably in wilderness and rural areas, tearing through forests or grasslands, consuming dry combustible fuels which build … Continue reading

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Winter Pest and Disease Control with Lime Sulphur

Winter is the traditional time to prune and spray deciduous fruit trees and vines. Spraying is carried out at this time to eliminate pests and diseases which can overwinter and emerge in spring. Two separate treatments are usually employed in … Continue reading

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Permaculture Plants – Australian Indigo, the Nitrogen Fixing Tree for Small Sites, an Alternative to Tagasaste for Urban Gardens

In permaculture, tagasaste (tree lucerne) is used as a nitrogen-fixing tree on large sites and rural properties, but it can grow around 5-7m tall and equally wide, which is way too large for smaller urban properties. Luckily for Australian permaculture … Continue reading

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Permaculture Plants – Tagasaste, the Nitrogen Fixing Tree for Large Sites

Photo credits for all images in this article – Narelle Dandy, https://simplyorganicmag.com.au/   Permaculture is all about energy-efficient design, and if you can add a single design element to a site that can perform many functions, then that’s an incredible … Continue reading

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What is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

The problem of garden pest control is as old as agriculture itself, which started when humanity first cultivated plants for food more than ten thousand years ago. Modern conventional pest control methods often use chemical controls as the first option, … Continue reading

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Formative Pruning, Central Leader Form – How to Prune Young Fruit Trees in the First Three Years

Fruit trees are trained into particular shapes to make them more productive, easier to manage and better able to support heavy crop loads. Formative pruning (also referred to as framework pruning) is carried out in the first three years of … Continue reading

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Should You Tease Out Plant Roots When Transplanting?

Any gardener who has ever transplanted or repotted plants has seen first-hand how plants that have been grown in pots can sometimes get rootbound, with their roots spiralling or circling around the rootball. This is quite an unnatural way for … Continue reading

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