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Good Organic Gardening Issue#6.5 - 2016

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

3 min
welcome to the issue

As we are putting this issue together, it’s not even summer yet and we’re having 37-degree days — in spring! By the time you are reading this mag, it has no doubt been even hotter. Do you have insect problems — in the garden and your living spaces? Read Jo Immig’s column to get a different outlook on all the tiny, helpful creatures that inhabit out world. Of course, there is another side to the story. Though we may be willing to share our crops with them — who cares about a few holes here and there? — there are times when they are so numerous they want to devour the lot and leave us nothing; that’s when we sometimes decide to control them in a very targeted way. Caterpillars, for…

4 min
the grapevine

LIVING WITH INSECTS Insects, on the whole, get a bad rap. Sure, they can ruin a picnic and a good night’s sleep, but does that warrant an all-out war on bugs? Ever since pesticides were redeployed after World War II to kill insects instead of people, pesticide use has skyrocketed with no apparent end in sight. Dousing the planet in pesticides is having a significant impact on insect numbers and diversity. It’s also messing with our health as a growing number of pesticide residues are being detected in our bodies and the environment, causing impacts ranging from the feminism of frogs to cancers. Insects are the most diverse organisms on Earth, representing three-quarters of the animal kingdom — an evolutionary feat to be admired. Insect diversity is greatest in tropical regions, which are…

3 min
what’s hot right now

‘MOTHER AND CHILD’ ROSE The plant: ‘Mother and Child’ is the new sister rose to the beautiful ‘Mother and Daughter’ rose, following in the same tradition of raising funds for Motor Neurone Disease Research. This newest addition to the family continues the celebration of the unique bond between mother and child. It’s a stunning rose that displays clusters of highly scented lavender-pink flowers. With up to 10 blooms per stem, it flowers non-stop from spring right through to autumn. Growing: Roses like good drainage and plenty of sunshine. Prepare the soil well before planting with compost and organic matter. Feed throughout the growing season to promote a longlasting display of colourful blooms. Design: ‘Mother and Child’ is a hybrid tea rose with a delightful fragrance, so make a feature of it in garden…

2 min
cucumber’s cool cousin

If I were to give a vegetable an award for cuteness, the mouse melon would win hands down. It looks like a watermelon for the little folk. The small fruit, which are produced prolifically, is light green with darker green stripes, and about 3cm long. Its cuteness makes it highly appealing to children and could entice vegetable-phobic kids to eat their greens. Although known as a melon, it is better described as a tiny cucumber. The fruit is crunchy and can be eaten skin and all. It has a cucumber-like taste with a slight sour kick from the skin. It’s eaten raw like a cucumber, diced as a salsa or sliced and added to a stirfry. I’ve even seen it suggested as a substitute for an olive in a martini! Like many…

2 min
pretty in pink

DRAGON FRUIT LABEL Common name: Dragon fruit, pitahaya Botanical name:Hylocereus undatus Family: Cactaceae (cactus family) Requires: Full sun, well-drained soil, regular fertiliser Dislikes: Frost, prolonged cold conditions Suitable for: Trellis, fence, wall, post Habit: Climbing cactus Needs: May need hand pollination Propagation: Cutting (leaf) Difficulty: Easy Ripe dragon fruit are as spectacular as the mouse melon (page 14) is cute: hot pink with lime-green scales. When cut open, the contrast between the pink outer skin and white flesh peppered with tiny black seeds is striking. Because of this eye-catching appearance, they are popular in restaurants and with caterers. These fruits are often first discovered on the fruit platter at a breakfast buffet in a hotel while holidaying in Asia, where they are widely grown and sold at markets and on juice stands. They are also sold in Australia at greengrocers and produce markets,…

5 min
all hail king basil

If ever a plant were poised between heaven and hell, it would be Ocimum basilicum, otherwise known as basil. In India and Haiti, the herb is used to ward off evil. In parts of Mexico, it supposedly attracts good fortune. Some ancients believed it opened the gates of paradise for the dying, while others saw it as a symbol of the Devil. The Romans were convinced that if you chopped it up and put it under a rock, a scorpion would be born. A royal plant or a symbol of poverty, a poison or a panacea — whatever the legend, basil is believed to be native to India, where it’s considered sacred and has been used ceremonially and medicinally for 5000 years. In fact, in courts of law under British rule,…