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Good Organic Gardening

Good Organic Gardening Issue#6.1

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

6 min.
gardening nature

Tom and Zaia Kendall and their 14-year-old son Marlon live on 34 acres in Kin Kin, in the lush Sunshine Coast hinterland northwest of Noosa. About a third of the property is managed (farmed would be the wrong word) according to the principles of permaculture. To the untrained eye, the Kendalls’ “managed” 10 acres are all but indistinguishable from the surrounding subtropical rainforest — and Tom and Zaia wouldn’t want it any other way. Permaculture is a sustainable system of agriculture, environmental design and habitat maintenance that takes its cues from nature itself. The concept was coined in the 1970s by Australians Bill Mollison and David Holmgren from the words “permanent (agri)culture”. Mollison described permaculture as simply “a philosophy of working with, rather than against, nature”. Tom has farmed and gardened all his…

5 min.
magic dirt

Diatomaceous earth (DE) — the powdered, fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton or diatoms (hard-shelled algae) — is the pesticide you can eat. In fact, you probably already do. Although it destroys insects, DE is harmless to mammals. Our grain foods are often stored with diatomaceous earth to prevent the predations of bugs, so there are few of us who haven’t consumed the stuff. Cautions • Only ever use the highest-quality food-grade diatomaceous earth you can find, never pool-grade, which contains dangerous levels of crystalline silica. • When using DE, whether for your own consumption, on your garden or on your chooks and other animals, be sure to protect eyes and mucous membranes — yours and theirs! — from any airborne DE dust. Also called diatomite, the off-white talc-like substance is fatal for creepy-crawlies with an…

1 min.
simple curried chicken with eggplant

Star ingredient: Eggplant Serves 4 Ingredients • 4 chicken thighs • 1 large or 2 medium eggplants • Celtic sea salt • 2 tbsp coconut oil or ghee • 2 onions, peeled and diced • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced or crushed • 3 tsp curry powder • 1 cinnamon stick • 4 fresh or 2 cups canned diced tomatoes (liquid included) Method 1. Pre-heat oven to 160°C. 2. Dice the chicken into bite-size pieces and set aside. 3. Wash and cube the eggplant, then place in a colander set on a dish and sprinkle with several pinches of Celtic sea salt. Mix to combine well. Let sit for 1 hour, then rinse thoroughly and pat the eggplant dry. 4. In a large saucepan, heat coconut oil or ghee. Add half the eggplant and sauté until cooked through. Remove to a large casserole dish…

2 min.
jerusalem artichoke

Helianthus tuberosus Iwas first introduced to Jerusalem artichokes in a delicious creamy pasta sauce at one of Sydney’s best restaurants. The edible roots of this plant have a delicate, nutty flavour and shouldn’t be confused with the spiky globe artichoke, which has an edible flower bud. The Jerusalem artichoke is a member of the sunflower family. In fact, you will sometimes hear it called the sunchoke. In the garden, it is a pretty herbaceous perennial that grows up to 3m tall, with lots of sunflower-like flowers, so it makes a great flowering windbreak or summer “filler” in the herbaceous border. It’s the edible tubers, though, that are of most interest to food lovers. The knobbly roots or tubers vaguely resemble a ginger root and, in addition to making a unique sauce, can be…

1 min.
health benefits

Mushrooms are not vegies or fruit. They’re not even plants — they’re macrofungi. However, they offer many health benefits that make them complementary to fruit and vegies in the diet; in fact, you could replace one of your five serves of vegies with a serve of mushrooms. Mushrooms produce vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, converting their abundant ergosterol to ergocalciferol (vitamin D 2 ). Commercially grown crops aren’t generally exposed to the sun, but you can give your own home-grown mushrooms a blast of sunshine after harvesting to make them rich in this important vitamin. They also contain beneficial amounts of the vitamins B 2 , B 3 , B 5 and folate, as well as significant amounts of the minerals chromium selenium, copper, phosphorus and potassium. These little powerhouses help fight…

8 min.
short days, long nights

Depending on your location, as the days shorten and the nights lengthen, your edible garden will go through some changes. Soil temperatures drop, insect activity levels change, weeds aren’t as prevalent and vegetables and herbs that were powering along may finish or go dormant, making way for a range of other choices that prefer the cooler weather. This may suit you to a tee or it may not. Let’s take a look at how soil and air temperatures affect plant growth and production; how to possibly lengthen your growing season and understand what grows when and where; and how to combat the cooler weather and some of the climatic obstacles that may occur during wintertime. SOIL & AIR TEMPERATURES Understanding how various vegetable, herb and fruit-tree species are affected by the seasons can make…