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Planting Calendar

Planting Calendar

Friday, May 22, 2009 New Zealand
Here are some guidelines for the kinds of activities you should be undertaking in your garden on a monthly basis. The secret to productive gardening is to work consistently and plant regularly - plant something every day if possible. See our guidelines below for what to do, harvest, and plant every month.

Your at home edible garden

Your at home edible garden

Saturday, July 18, 2009 New Zealand
When most people hear ‘edible gardening’ they imagine the vege plot around the back of the house. Straight rows of caterpillar eaten lettuce and wilted silver beet! Today; as garden’s become smaller and lives busier, edible gardens have the opportunity to become the main garden. As we are faced with issues such as genetic engineering and high l...

Growing Vegetables From Seed

Growing Vegetables From Seed

Wednesday, August 12, 2009 New Zealand
A punnet of six seedlings from the garden centre costs around the same as a packet of seeds which will, depending on the type of plant, have over 100 seeds in it. You do the math’s on which is more cost effective! There is something very satisfying with raising vegetables from seeds. Seed raising will open up a huge world of hard to find, heirl...

Chickens (eggs and pets!)

Chickens (eggs and pets!)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009 New Zealand
Chickens make great pets, they are docile, easy to keep and happily consume all your kitchen scraps, converting them into delicious eggs and rich manure. They are also excellent workers with their natural scratching and pecking put to use they weed, clean up fallen fruit and eat bugs. The trick with them is to devise a system where they work for yo...

Collecting Your own Seed

Collecting Your own Seed

Wednesday, August 12, 2009 New Zealand
If you collect seeds from your own plants you can truly become self sufficient with your vegetable growing. Let a few plants of the type you want to grow again go to seed. You may want to choose a variety that you particularly enjoyed eating, or most pest resistant or still grew with little watering or care. By choosing these sorts of plants you ar...

Attracting bees to your garden

Attracting bees to your garden

Wednesday, August 12, 2009 New Zealand
Creating a Bee Friendly Garden Nothing evokes the sense of an organic garden like the hum of honeybees toiling among sun-warmed summer flowers. Honey bees are important for pollination of all our fruits and berries and many of our vegetables crops. They don’t need us but we certainly need them. World wide their numbers are on the decline...

How to Store your Garden Harvest

How to Store your Garden Harvest

Wednesday, August 12, 2009 New Zealand
How to ‘squirrel’ your Produce For centuries families have squirreled away their garden surplus to feed their family through winter. Plenty of crops will keep for months if stored correctly with no need for freezing, bottling or preserving. The golden rule is to store only fruit and vegetables that are in perfect condition. Allow air circul...

Make a 'Bug Hilton' (Beneficial Insect Habitat)

Make a 'Bug Hilton' (Beneficial Insect Habitat)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009 New Zealand
Beneficial insects, or as I call them the good guys, play a very important role in any organic garden, maintaining the natural balance. Beneficial insects include many wasps, ladybirds, lacewings, damselflies, hover flies and different types of bees. Unfortunately like many organisms beneficial insects are under threat from pesticides, spreading su...

Gardens for Children

Gardens for Children

Tuesday, August 18, 2009 New Zealand
In today’s world any way to prise children out from in front of the TV or Xbox can be a real challenge for parents. One way to get kids outside can be to involve them in gardening. By designing the garden with the kids in mind it is possible to develop an exciting adventure playground and fantasy world within your own property boundary. A child’s w...

List and map of community gardens in NZ (Good magazine)

List and map of community gardens in NZ (Good magazine)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009 New Zealand
Find community gardens in New Zealand via an interactive map on the Good Magazine web site.

Companion Planting

Companion Planting

Friday, August 28, 2009 New Zealand
Companion planting is a method of gardening that minimises the risk of pests and disease, without the use of pesticides and fungicides etc. Plants that complement and support each other are planted together. Some combinations works because of scents and chemicals the companion plants release which repel undesirable bugs, or attract desirable bugs.

Otautahi Urban Foraging (Christchurch & Canterbury)

Otautahi Urban Foraging (Christchurch & Canterbury)

Saturday, August 29, 2009 New Zealand > Canterbury > Christchurch
All over the city there is food that is being grown by nature, which falls on the ground and rots without being utilised. The Urban Foraging group will function as a treasure map for the city, displaying information about foraging throughout the Christchurch area which are publicly accessible. This map is also open for persons who have food growing...

5 Great Immune Boosters

5 Great Immune Boosters

Sunday, August 30, 2009 New Zealand
Here's five great immune boosters to keep you healthy.

The Benefits of Native Plants

The Benefits of Native Plants

Wednesday, September 02, 2009 New Zealand
t makes sense to add native plants to your garden. Because they were ‘home grown' over millions of years natives can be quite well suited to our conditions, in some cases thriving with a minimum of fuss. This saves you time on watering and maintenance, so you can relax and enjoy your outdoor surroundings. They also hold the soil well on slopes. ...

Myth: You need lots of land or space to garden

Myth: You need lots of land or space to garden

Wednesday, September 02, 2009 New Zealand
Apartment-dwellers need not miss out on the pleasures of gardening – plenty of plants thrive in pots and garden bags, set up in small areas. They are a good option for people who want to garden but don’t have any access to land. They add a nice "green feature" to flats and apartments, adding living colour to verandas, patios, steps, kitch...

Making your own Fungicides, Pesticides and Herbicides

Making your own Fungicides, Pesticides and Herbicides

Friday, September 04, 2009 New Zealand
Choose the natural way of keeping the pests out and diseases at bay!

Container Gardening - How to Video

Container Gardening - How to Video

Tuesday, September 08, 2009 New Zealand
Learn how to plant your container garden in this demonstration gardening video. It has great beginner gardening advice for container gardening.

New Zealand Fruit and Food Share Map

New Zealand Fruit and Food Share Map

Thursday, September 10, 2009 New Zealand
Share in your bountiful crop. Don't let your your surplus fruit go to waste. Add the location, type, time of year for harvest and any other instructions. You need to login with a google account, then click Edit, then add a place mark (top left of map) to be able to add locations. Add other interesting items like Community Gardens, markets, cy...

Crop Rotation

Crop Rotation

Friday, September 11, 2009 New Zealand
Crop Rotation is the practice of changing or rotating growing areas in your garden, to enhance the health and productivity of your plants.

Acid or Alkaline? What pH means for your soil

Acid or Alkaline? What pH means for your soil

Sunday, September 27, 2009 New Zealand
The pH of things is one of the mysteries of daily life. It comes up when the conversation turns to beer making, swimming pool water, dairy products or garden soil. This degree of acidity or alkalinity, is expressed as a number is called pH. What's really being measured is the concentration of hydrogen (H) ions -- the more hydrogen ions there are, t...

How to make a 'no dig' garden

How to make a 'no dig' garden

Sunday, October 04, 2009 New Zealand
Here is a quick video on the steps involved in constructing a no dig garden bed. You do not have to follow the video specifically, you can use different materials - just follow the general pattern of construction.

Manure for your garden

Manure for your garden

Friday, October 09, 2009 New Zealand
While most people would find tiger droppings offensive, there are millions of gardeners who look at look at manure as money in the bank.

Bring your herb garden indoors

Bring your herb garden indoors

Friday, October 09, 2009 New Zealand
For gardeners who like to cook, there's nothing like fresh herbs. But when the growing season ends, does it mean you have to resort to grocery store herbs?

Making compost

Making compost

Friday, October 09, 2009 New Zealand
Sooner or later gardeners come across the word "compost." As easy as it is to say, compost has a reputation for being difficult to master. Yet nothing could be further from the truth. If I can make hot, 160-degree compost during an Alaska winter (see photo below), you can too--no matter where you grow your tomatoes. It's easy. In fact, yo...

How to grow from seeds

How to grow from seeds

Friday, October 09, 2009 New Zealand
Tried-and-true tips to successfully grow your own vegetable, flower and herb seedlings and save money in the process.

A Pencil Is a Gardener's Best Friend

A Pencil Is a Gardener's Best Friend

Friday, October 09, 2009 New Zealand
Did you know that a No. 2 pencil can do extraordinary things, especially for gardeners who are looking for the right tool to do the right job? It's true. Pick up a pencil and roll it in your fingers. Think potential here. Like paper clips and toothpicks, pencils have more than one life. And for gardeners, it's a dream come true.

What Seedlings Really Want

What Seedlings Really Want

Thursday, October 15, 2009 New Zealand
At the very moment seeds germinate, they need extra attention. It's just like raising children. In this article we'll learn what your seedlings need to grow up to be healthy and respectable "kids" including how to compare soil to a slice of bread.

Dog Poo Composter

Dog Poo Composter

Thursday, October 15, 2009 New Zealand
A backyard solution to your dog waste woes.

Pesky Cats!

Pesky Cats!

Thursday, October 22, 2009 New Zealand
Safe and effective ways to shoo cats from your garden

The Art of Weeding: Part 1

The Art of Weeding: Part 1

Friday, October 23, 2009 New Zealand
A year-round strategy for organic weed control.

The Art of Weeding: Part 2

The Art of Weeding: Part 2

Friday, October 23, 2009 New Zealand
A year-round strategy for organic weed control.

Creating Your Own Urban Orchard

Creating Your Own Urban Orchard

Friday, October 23, 2009 New Zealand
Many people think that it is not possible to have an orchard in the city but there are many cleaver ways of cramming fruit bearing trees into a small space. My personal tree philosophy is don’t just choose a tree on its looks but choose a tree which will produce an edible crop for you as well. The secret to creating an orchard in a small space i...

Growing and Making Birdhouse Gourds

Growing and Making Birdhouse Gourds

Friday, October 23, 2009 New Zealand
Grow a craft project in in your garden this summer? Growing birdhouse gourds and then making a bidhouse is a great outdoor project to do with the kids. A good winter project when winter gardening is not very comfortable! Gourd birdhouses are attractive to many species of birds including Sparrows, Wax eyes, Swallows and Chaf-finches. It all dep...

Growing Tomatoes in New Zealand

Growing Tomatoes in New Zealand

Wednesday, November 04, 2009 New Zealand
Growing tomato plants is one of the big items for gardeners at this time of the year and even non gardeners will likely have a go at growing a plant or two. Some gardeners are very fastidious in their selection of types grown, the special culture methods used and like wines, some years have better vintages than other years. From garden centre...

Cucumbers more than just a food

Cucumbers more than just a food

Wednesday, November 11, 2009 New Zealand
Gardeners keen on growing their own cucumbers will be purchasing plants about now for establishing in sunny, sheltered positions or for growing in their glasshouses. Cucumbers along with watermelons and rock melons need warm settled weather to do best and if the weather is not settled they will sulk and preform poorly. I find that in Palmerston N...

Baby Carrots

Baby Carrots

Tuesday, December 01, 2009 New Zealand
Carrots are brilliant sweet staple vegetable to grow, and baby carrots are particularly versatile. They are easy to grow, cheap to sow so will save you dough! In December, get your carrots on baby! The most cost effective way to grow vegetables is growing from seed. Seeds are cheap as chips and you can grow a heck of a lot of seedlings from a bag ...

Using ocean plants for your garden - sea weed etc

Using ocean plants for your garden - sea weed etc

Wednesday, January 27, 2010 New Zealand
Seaweed, which originates from the ocean's garden, is one of the best materials for an earth garden. For one thing, kelp helps stimulates soil bacteria. This, in turn increases fertility of the soil by humus formation (which feeds on the bacteria), aeration and moisture retention.

Healthy soil for a healthy garden!

Healthy soil for a healthy garden!

Monday, February 08, 2010 New Zealand
Gardeners are always looking for new ways to improve their gardens whether it be their vegetables, roses, ornamentals or fruit trees. The goal is to have very healthy plants, wonderful roses, great lawns and high yielding crops. There are a number of things that you can do to improve your gardens such as improving your soils. The optimum is to ha...

Growing avocado

Growing avocado

Thursday, February 25, 2010 New Zealand
Avocados are health and delicious but can be on the expensive side to buy. But did you know that you can grow an avocado from the stone in the middle of an avocado purchased from the shop? All you need to do is put it suspended over a jar of water with just one end in the water and once it has sprouted, transfer it to a pot until it grows too big f...

Three Lettuces - Keeping vegetables for longer

Three Lettuces - Keeping vegetables for longer

Friday, April 16, 2010 New Zealand
Three identical lettuces were purchased at the same time and stored for ten days in three different ways. Check out the methods and results!

Thinking of Keeping Bees?

Thinking of Keeping Bees?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010 New Zealand > Hawke's Bay
I have been thinking of keeping bees for a while now and I have done research into the different options that are available. What initially struck me was the cost and the amount of gear required to run a conventional hive. To buy a new hive and all the required tools can easily set you back $800. The other surprise is the amount of equipment requir...
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Setting up a worm farm

Setting up a worm farm

Thursday, April 29, 2010 New Zealand
A comprehensive step by step guide to setting up and looking after a worm farm.

Plant your potatoes!

Plant your potatoes!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010 New Zealand
Po-tay-to, po-tahh-to – however you say it, now’s the time to plant one of New Zealand’s favourite veges. So get outdoors and gear up for spuds this summer. You can start by purchasing seed potatoes from your local garden centre. Seed potatoes look like any other spud (but smaller!) and can be bought in various flavours and quantities. The t...

Tips for Gardening in February

Tips for Gardening in February

Saturday, January 29, 2011 New Zealand
February is usually the driest and hottest month of the year. It’s the time when a lot of the earlier plantings of vegetables have reached maturity and been harvested. It is also the second to last month to plant out crops for winter harvesting, so make sure the empty spaces are ‘manured’ and replanted with winter vegetables. Watering is likely to...

Growing Vegetables

Growing Vegetables

Sunday, November 06, 2011 New Zealand
Growing vegetables and fruit has always been one of my main concerns in gardening since I was a tot. If you can eat it, grow it - all other plants are for show. This does not mean that I don't like my roses, annuals, ornamental trees and shrubs. They all serve a good purpose - I can enjoy them when my belly is full of my own home grown produce.

STRAWBERRY TIME

STRAWBERRY TIME

Saturday, May 25, 2013 New Zealand
Strawberry plants have started to arrive in garden centres through out New Zealand, a little later than normal because of the mild, dry autumn. They are a woodland plant from Europe and North America. One of the keys to their successful growing is to realise that they are woodland plants and should, if possible, be given woodland conditions. Ther...

NEW SEASONS POTATOES

NEW SEASONS POTATOES

Saturday, June 01, 2013 New Zealand
New seasons seed potatoes are now available from a number of garden centres. They are too early you may say but even down Southland the first varieties; Agria, Jersey Bennes, Nadine, and Rocket are now in store. I would presume the same varieties will be available in most areas and it certainly not too soon to buy your seed potatoes and start th...

Gardening with raised beds

Gardening with raised beds

Saturday, July 13, 2013 New Zealand
Raised beds for gardening is a great way to make gardening easy and at the same time produce a good range of vegetables or flowers. The advantages as I see them are; less bending, tidy gardens, attractive gardens, less weeding, no digging, superior produce or plants, ease of watering, great drainage, ease of harvesting and a pleasure to garden eve...

Germinating Seeds

Germinating Seeds

Sunday, July 28, 2013 New Zealand
There are two basic places to germinate seeds, one is where they will ultimately grow and mature the other is in suitable containers to germinate and then to transplant out into open ground or larger containers latter on. Firstly it is always best to plant any seed in the spot where it will grow and mature. The reason for this is because when a se...
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