Good Organic Gardening Issue #12.4 - 2021

Gardening with goodness at its heart — fresh, organic and fun. This magazine is 100% real. We are unashamedly earthy, reflecting the spirit and culture of people who just love to get their hands dirty. Our emphasis is on productive gardening. We just love the satisfaction of growing your own and finding new ways to bring produce to the table. The magazine includes features such as Amazing Gardens, Celebrity Chefs, Celebrity Gardeners, Clever Crops, Flavours of the month, Garden solutions, Kids Corner, Living Organics, Weekend Gardening, What’s New and a guide to What’s on Where. Purchase includes the Digital Edition and News Service. Please stay in touch via our Facebook Page.

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6 Issues

in this issue

2 min
this issue

You’re probably reading this in late spring/early summer but we put this issue together in late winter — albeit a pretty mild one, at least here in this part of the Hunter Valley. While some of the trees, like the glum-looking jacaranda, are completely bare and shivering, the grevilleas and banksias are bursting with flowers as well as with the preposterous colours of the darting lorikeets and rosellas that love these flowering natives. There’s something similar happening in the gumtrees as well, which twitch all day with skirmishing miners and lorikeets and the occasional pair of more dignified galahs. It’s one of the glories of the Australian bush that it’s in winter, when there are fewer pollinating insects around, that many eucalypts choose to put out some of their fancier stuff to entice…

4 min
the grapevine

JO IMMIG Jo is an environmental scientist, photographer and writer. She has worked in the environment movement for decades and is co-ordinator of the National Toxics Network, an organisation dedicated to creating a toxic-free future. She has written many articles for magazines and is the author of two books: Toxic Playground and Safer Solutions. SOME ASS HOLES ARE USEFUL Herds of feral donkeys and horses roam the world’s deserts, including parts of northern Australia. Descended from beasts of burden and the workhorses of previous labour forces, they are seen as pests and targeted for mass eradication. However, new research shows they perform an important task that could prove useful as environments become more arid and the climate continues to warm. Both donkeys and horses dig wells, known as “ass holes”, up to two metres deep…

2 min
what’s hot right now

CHLOE THOMSON A horticulturist, writer, presenter and passionate organic gardener, Chloe uses her social media profile Bean There Dug That to educate and inform likeminded gardeners, using fun, creative videos and posts. Find her on Facebook and Instagram @beantheredugthat HYDRANGEA MAGICAL RUBY RED PBR, HYDRANGEA MACROPHYLLA ‘KOMARU’ The plant: Deep ruby-red petals make this new hydrangea a real standout! Set against dark-green, almost black foliage, the flowers are long lasting and showy. A beautiful plant to display in decorative pots throughout your entertaining areas — and its Christmassy colours tie in perfectly with the festive season. Growing: Prefers to grow in a partially shaded spot where the soil stays moist. Grows 90cm tall (and wide) in full flower, so it’s well suited to growing in pots, large beds or planter boxes. Plants Management Australia, NASTURTIUM…

2 min
the coniferous spice

That distinctive sharp flavour of gin is down to the fruit of a spiky evergreen plant called juniper, which is a conifer and part of the cypress family. Although the fruit is smooth and round like a berry, it is technically a modified cone. The link between gin and juniper is a long one as the word “gin” actually derives from an Old French word for juniper. In northern European and Scandinavian countries, juniper berries are also used in brewing to flavour traditional beers and ales. There are many species of juniper (Juniperus spp.) and all produce berries but it is mainly common juniper (J. communis) that is used to flavour gin as its berry is edible. The juniper berry is also used as a spice to flavour foods: strongly flavoured game meats…

2 min
coastal berry

If you’ve never heard of sea buckthorn you’re not alone, as it isn’t grown widely in Australia, although it has quite a CV as a medicinal and therapeutic plant. It’s closely related to Elaeagnus, which is often grown as a hedge plant in cool and coastal climate conditions. As its common name suggests, sea buckthorn is a coastal plant and native to northern Europe and Asia. Its name may be familiar from cosmetic labels as it is used in face creams and lotions. The berries in particular are rich in vitamins (including A, B and C) and in antioxidants and are added to some cosmetics as they are said to have anti-ageing properties. The berries are also used in sunscreen lotions, to treat burns and to combat a range of minor ailments from…

4 min
ears to you

CORN IS A HUNGRY PLANT SO IT’S BEST TO FOLLOW A LEGUME CROP SUCH AS BROAD BEANS. It’s thought sweet corn was first domesticated in Mexico about 10,000 years ago and since then it has become a staple food for many. If you’ve only ever eaten supermarket corn you’d be forgiven for thinking all varieties are yellow. In fact, heirloom corn comes in a rainbow of colours and flavours, each with its own unique qualities. Sweet corn, as the name suggests, refers to varieties bred to be more sugary as opposed to their maize corn relatives, mostly used for cornmeal or popping corn. In the commercial growing world, many sweet corn varieties are now genetically modified to make them resistant to weed-killing herbicides such as glyphosate or to produce proteins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt),…