How to start a community garden

Much has been written of Community Gardens of late. We all know gardening is good for us, we need more green spaces and that there are numerous benefits afforded by community gardens. But few offer advice on how to start one. Why? read more >>

Bee Friendly

As gardeners, there is much we can for the good of our planet. Sarah Thornton meets a gardener who's championing the cause to help our bees. read more >>

20 seed sowing tips

Spring is the main season for starting your own plants from seed. It's hugely satisfying and can save money too! read more >>

A watched seed - by Sarah O'Neil

I have sown the vast majority of my seeds in the warmth of my greenhouse. Most but not all. Experience has taught me caution. I remember not so fondly the year I first got a big plastic greenhouse that was more like a tent than anything else. read more >>

Camellia Time - by Ruby Ward

Spring is hard to ignore now that it's September. After what was in my area, a fairly wet and cold August the sun now shines higher and the lighter mornings make it easier to rise (just wait until daylight saving kicks in!). read more >>

Street Trees - Why we need more!

Why should you care about whether there are trees on your street, or on the streets nearby? Well, besides the obvious - that they make a street look more attractive - street trees are proven to provide numerous benefits to residents in terms of property values & more read more >>

Flax - Kiwi Icon

For the first New Zealanders it was indispensible; used in clothing, shelter, for catching and storing food, and as medicine. These days flax endures as one of our most important plants read more >>

Petunias on show!

Worldwide, petunias are the most cherished flowers for window boxes, pots and hanging baskets. And never have we had so many gorgeous varieties to choose from. read more >>

How to make compost

A good composting system will consume all your garden debris and food scraps, rewarding you with one of nature's most fundamental allies. Compost feeds your soil, which in turn feeds your plants. read more >>

Under Cover

Spot a backyard greenhouse and you could be forgiven for imagining a resident 'expert' or 'plant-nut'. But these days, greenhouses aren't just for diehard gardeners. They're for anybody - from novice to expert - whatever the climate. read more >>

Cabbage

Eating lots of cabbage - and other brassicas, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cavolo nero, kale and Chinese greens - helps keep us 'regular' and reduces our risk of cancer. read more >>

Perfectly Petunia

How do you like your petunias? Big and blousy or dainty and diminutive? Spreading and tumbling or chunky and upright? Striped, starred, multi-toned or plain? Bright brazen reds, pinks and . . . read more >>

Save our bees

Bees play a vital role of pollination in New Zealand agriculture and horticulture industries and in our home gardens read more >>

 

Legionnaire's disease

Gardening is an enjoyable and healthy pastime. However each year a few gardeners contract legionnaires' disease. There are simple steps you can take to lessen the risk.

 

Lay slug bait to protect the shoots of newly emerging perennials such as hostas and delphiniums.
Plant cauliflower and cabbage seedlings outdoors.
Plant broccoli seedlings outdoors.
Check clumps of daffodils which have failed to flower. Destroy any soft bulbs containing the grubs of narcissus fly. Divide and replant overcrowded clumps.
Deadhead and feed pansies and violas to prolong flowering.
       
Sheep pellets are an excellent soil conditioner and slow release fertiliser. Combine them with a layer of organic mulch to preserve moisture and insulate plant roots.