Plants for . . .

In the pink
Spring is the season for some of our most spectacular flowering trees, all the more beautiful when they flower on bare branches or in unison with newly emerging spring leaves. Best of all, you don't need a huge garden to enjoy them
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Safe swan plants for spring Monarchs
Here's a few tips to help newcomers to raise successful butterflies
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Spring in bloom
Every garden deserves at least one showy flowering tree or shrub to welcome the new season. If the flowering of some seems all too brief, generally the shorter the season, the more spectacular the display.
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High flyers in the dry
With water conservation on our minds in the post-Christmas months, it's nice to know there are some stunning plants that will stand up to drier, hotter weather conditions and still look sensational.
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So cool Salvias
There's not much we can do to control the mercury when it comes to Summer's heat, but we can certainly tame the colours in the garden to provide a soothing and cooling palette that's restful to the eye.
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Summer Baskets
Today's huge choice of fast growing, incredibly free flowering plants make it easy to create an impressive display that continues right through summer
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Summer fragrance
Fling open a bedroom window and inhale the perfume of summer roses. Sit outdoors on a summer evening or soak in the spa pool surrounded by tropical sensations. Welcome your guests with a waft from exotic smelling delight. Summer is a key time to enjoy some of our most beautiful fragrant plants.
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Summer's hottest climbers
Any empty fence, wall or pergola is the gardener's equivalent of a blank canvas. Even when the available vertical space is taken, there's always a way to make more
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Autumn gold
As befitting a grand finale, the colour dial turns full volume at summer's end. Plant these time-honoured treasures to add to the richness of your late summer garden.
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Flowering annuals for Autumn and Winter
Autumn, when rains fall on soil that is still holds summer's warmth, is generally a great time for planting. Flowering annuals can establish their roots in readiness for winter and spring flowering.
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10 colourful winter shrubs to plant
The winter garden can be surprisingly colourful - here's ten of the best shrubs for winter interest
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25 fabulous shrubs for small gardens
Planting evergreen shrubs is one of the easiest ways to achieve a low maintenance garden that looks great all year round.
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Fruit in small spaces
Stepping outdoors to pick fresh home-grown fruit is something every gardener deserves to do. With a bit of planning, even a tiny, inner city courtyard can accommodate a good range of delectable edibles.
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Little hedges
There is nothing like a neat little hedge to bring a beautiful a garden into sharp focus. And there is nothing like classic English box to do the job. Or is there?
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Plant for birds
Next time you're choosing plants for your garden, spare a thought for our feathered friends. The rewards are numerous
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Plants for indoors
There's nothing like a festive home environment to keep spirits high during the busy build up to Christmas.
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Providing nectar for butterflies in Winter
What flowers in winter to provide nectar for our butterflies?
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Seven ways to grow apples in a small garden
The fresher the fruit, the crunchier, sweeter and more nutritious it is. The best way to eat an apple is straight from the tree. Autumn is harvest time and it's also the very best time to plant a new apple tree.
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Super slim apples
Being able to pick fresh fruit from the garden is one of the greatest joys a gardener can have. But for many of us, it's not so easy to grow the fruit trees we grew up with - not for lack of experience or knowhow, but for sheer lack of space - Not any more!
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Trees and shrubs for winter colour
Whether you live in the subtropical north, the snowy south or somewhere in between, planting a garden with winter in mind can turn the chilly season into a time of great delight.
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Winter giving
Whether it's something for Mum, a birthday treat or a simple gift to raise winter spirits, no gift delights a gardener more than a gorgeous plant for home and garden.
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Bee plants for gardens
Much of the best food we eat is pollinated by bees. Unfortunately, with loss of habitat and the increasing use of pesticides, the world's bees are at risk. As gardeners, we can play a part in helping their survival.
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Out of Africa
For decades, we've been charmed by their colours and forms, but lately there's been something of a protea renaissance - and an influx of exciting new varieties.
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Pink Perfection
The old fashioned 'Pink' is making a comeback as breeders from opposite sides of the globe deliver increasingly beautiful, high performance forms of this romantic garden plant.
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Plants for paving
Whether it's the track to the front door, a meander through trees and shrubs, a pathway through the vege beds, or the way to the clothes line, any path and the plants to accompany it can be one of the most enticing features in a garden.
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Simply striking
Structure, movement, excitement, and colour. 'Electric' Cordylines have all the hallmarks of a first class landscaping plant. And they're fantastic in pots.
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Solving a slope
Once the challenges are overcome a successfully planted slope can be a thing of great beauty, enhancing the environment while requiring little in the way of maintenance.
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Timeless treasures
Hostas are among the most adored foliage plants for shady parts of the garden. They look magnificent when mass planted under trees, in pots or garden beds on the shady side of the house.
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Tuff as they come
Lomandra 'Lime Tuff' is the latest in a new generation of easy care landscape plants bred in Australia. This is one import from our cousins across the ditch we should be happy to keep!
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Banksia's for birdlife
The sight and sound of birds in the garden lifts the spirits and soothes the soul. Studies show that birdsong can even increase your property value.
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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.
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Bringing in the Copper butterflies
Let's plant a Copper Butterfly highway.
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Coastal colour
Coastal gardening is not without its challenges. The soil can be less than ideal. And worse, there's that punishing salt laden wind
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Downsizing
Whether home is an apartment, retirement unit or town house, Heuchera 'Cuties' fit perfectly into a smaller garden.
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Hot plants for dry places
More than ever we're facing extremes of wet and dry weather and long spells without rain. We need to factor this into the way we garden, and what we plant
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Houseplants for giving
Excellent value for money and lasting much longer than fresh flowers, a beautiful flowering plant is a timeless, never fail gift for any occasion.
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Prize winning performance
A shipshape little shrub known as Grey Box Westringia has become a top seller, popular with home gardeners and landscapers alike.
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Shade Stars
The shadier parts of a garden can be challenging. But they also present an opportunity to create something of subtle beauty and sophistication - a cool revitalising space to retreat to on hot summer days.
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The magic of nectar
I didn't know much about nectar for butterflies when, early in 2007, we were invited to stage an exhibit of butterflies inside the Canterbury Museum. Sure I knew that butterflies (like bees) were sustained by nectar, but not much more.
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The modern romantics
Grandma's garden is back in vogue. Or is it? At first glance, today's top performing perennials may look like the romantic 'cottage garden' flowers of yesteryear, but looks can be deceiving
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Walls and floors
When creating an outdoor space that's as easy to live in as it is easy on the eye, we need plants that are both practical and pretty. It's no coincidence that native plants are highly rated among garden designers
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Welcome to the Wild Bird Café
When the early settlers arrived in NZ, the dawn chorus was deafening. The loss of much of our native forest means the birdsong is less these days. But there are some helpful things we can do
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24-Sep-2017