Home & Garden
ABC Organic Gardener Magazine

ABC Organic Gardener Magazine Nr. 108

Organic Gardener Magazine is a guide to organic gardening, providing informative and inspirational stories on everything you need to know to grow your own fruit and vegetables- without the use of harmful chemicals. Each issue includes practical tips and advice from leading organic gardening experts.

Nextmedia Pty Ltd
Read More
$6(Incl. tax)
$34.99(Incl. tax)
7 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
bees are back

“With bees in peril around the world, perhaps we humans are now naturally coming to the rescue by supporting them in our gardens, schools and city farms.” We’ve been running quite a few stories on bees recently – in fact, we’ve decided to have a regular story on bees in each issue. The focus will be mostly on the practical aspects of beekeeping, which has seen a big surge in interest in recent years. I was fascinated to learn about this new movement, having also seen chooks and poultry become increasingly popular over the last decade as gardeners and those interested in a more self-reliant lifestyle have continued to expand their skills, interests and goals. Just getting a small organic herb garden or vegie plot started can be a major step and turning…

3 min.

PETER CUNDALL HANGS UP HIS MIC Gardening legend Peter Cundall has retired from radio after more than half a century of hosting talkback gardening shows. The now 92-year-old announced his decision at the end of the final ABC Radio Hobart Saturday morning gardening show of 2018. “I said, ‘Thank you very much’,” Cundall says. “‘I’ve been doing this for 52 weeks a year for 50 years and this is the last one. What a privilege it’s been.’ And that was it.” Cundall says he is stepping aside “to let someone else have a go”, and was looking forward to listening to his replacement, Gardening Australia presenter Tino Carnevale. “Tino’s on the ball,” Cundall says. “He’s really fantastic.” Cundall’s radio career started in 1968, when he was working as landscape gardener in Launceston and pruning the roses…

1 min.

INTERNATIONAL COMPOST WEEK A raft of activities are planned throughout Australia to celebrate and boost awareness of compost’s value to the world. Whether you are already composting or are looking to learn, check out the workshops and events. You’ll become part of the composting community, improve your soil, and our future. WHERE: Various events nationally WHEN: May 5–11 DETAILS: compostweek.com.au BALLARAT APRON FESTIVAL The apron strings you’ll see at this festival are tied to a rich history of sewing, baking and traditional crafting. It’s a unique opportunity to explore all things apron related, including handmade crafts, woodworking and, of course, delicious baked delights. It’s the only apron festival in the world! There is still time to enter the popular apron competition (before May 10). WHERE: St Patricks Cathedral Hall, 3 Lyons St Sth, Ballarat Central, VIC WHEN: May…

3 min.
blooming healthy

herbal goodness There’s nothing better than being able to pick some fresh leaves or flowers straight from the garden while the kettle’s boiling to make your own home herbal brew! Southern Harvest has a wide selection of plants suitable for herbal teas, including wild bergamot, anise hyssop, sage, lemon balm and winter savoury. Available for $3.50 from southernharvest.com.au or call 03 6229 6795 for more information. hemp is in Hemp Foods Australia specialises in edible hemp products, ranging from oils and seeds to flour and snack bars. Their certified organic hemp oil is cold-pressed and contains omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. It can be used in the same way as olive oil (in salad dressings, smoothies and pastas) and has a fresh nutty flavour – delicious and nutritious! Available for $16.95 (250ml) from…

2 min.

EGGPLANT SEED DISASTER An OG reader has recounted a seed saving disaster she recently had with eggplant and would like to warn readers of potential pitfalls. In an attempt to speed up processing, she used a home blender to pulverise eggplant flesh and free up the seeds. Previously she had followed advice in an early edition of Suzanne Ashworth’s book Seed to Seed , which was to hand grate eggplants. To be cautious, our reader (who doesn’t wish to be named) used a blender with plastic blades but it didn’t reduce the size of the eggplant cubes so she tried a metal blade. She gave the eggplant and water mix just a brief whizz – and managed to damage about 70 per cent of the seed. Checking through the literature, the first…

2 min.
a healthy harvest

‘IMPERIAL’ MANDARIN (Citrus reticulata) Mandarins prefer well-drained friable soil with plenty of organic matter. They can be planted all-year-round. Their shallow root system requires regular watering and no competition from vigorous rooted plants. Feed in spring, summer and autumn, with organic fruit tree fertiliser as well as liquid seaweed every 2–4 weeks. Remove flowers on trees for the first 2–3 years to allow them to establish. Watch out for citrus gall wasp. ‘Imperial’ is a strong growing upright plant, with tasty fruits that have few seeds. The orange fruit of mandarins contains lutein and betacarotene, both carotenoids that contribute to eye health. Lutein has been shown to help prevent macular degeneration. CLIMATE ZONE KEY: REDCURRANT (Ribes rubrum) Redcurrants are small deciduous shrubs that thrive in cooler climates. They need regular watering to fruit well, partly due…