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Good Organic Gardening Issue#7.2 - 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

2 min
welcome to the issue

Within days of Jo Immig filing her piece on microplastics in our oceans and all the horrors that entails, the ABC ran a story on the same subject in its Catalyst program. The program showed how the levels found in the bodies of sea creatures were measurable and scary, providing yet more bad news about our food sources and cause to think more deeply about food safety. And what can be safer than growing your own? So what are we growing in the pages of this issue? Jennifer Stackhouse writes on sweet potato, olives, cauliflower and mushrooms, as well as clever crops jaboticaba and marrowfat peas — the kind used for English-style mushy peas and Japanese wasabi peas. Meanwhile, Melissa King says it’s time to plant sage and oregano, flavours no cook…

4 min
the grapevine

MARINE PLASTIC POLLUTION: THE NEW TOXIC TIME BOMB An astounding statement was made at the World Economic Forum earlier this year: If we continue on the same trajectory with the level of plastic pollution going into the oceans each year (one tip-truck full every minute), by 2050, there will be more plastic by weight than fish. Nothing short of a revolution in the regulation, manufacture and use of plastic will be able to address this gigantic pollution problem. In what some are now calling the Anthropocene (anthropo “human” and cene “new”) era, we humans have the dubious honour of being the first species to become a planetwide influence — and aware of its impact. Now, if only we could speed up our evolution and actually do something before it’s too late. Plastic pollution…

3 min
what’s hot right now

SPRING MEADOW MIX The plants: This mix allows you to quickly and easily create your own flower meadow with just a shake of a seed packet. It’s a flamboyant collection of blood-red Flanders poppies, sunset-orange Californian poppies and vibrant blue cornflowers mixed with coriander, a unique addition, with aromatic foliage and umbel flowers, which attract beneficial insects such as hoverflies. Growing: Plants in this mix grow best in full sun in free-draining soil. Prepare beds now with compost and rake the soil over for sowing in early spring (can also be sown in autumn). To spread the seeds more evenly, try first mixing them in a bucket with a bit of sieved garden soil or washed sand, then scatter the seed/soil mix over the garden area. Water and liquidfeed regularly and you…

2 min
jaboticaba myrciaria cauliflora

Jaboticabas are strange fruit to see growing. They form in bubbling clusters along the stem and branches of this rainforest tree from Brazil. The species name cauliflora describes this habit, which is also known as cauliflory. “Cauliflory” is a word botanists use to describe plants that cut out the middleman — the stem or shoot — when it comes time for buds to form. It literally means stem flower. Many rainforest trees are cauliflorous, including some of Australia’s figs and lilly pillies such as Syzygium moorei and S. cormiflorum. This type of flowering is a clever adaptation as it allows the plant to make use of small animals as pollinators. Small pollinating animals can easily access the flowers as they climb up the trunk and along the main branches, while ground-based, fruit-eating…

2 min
marrowfat peas pisum sativum

Every time we are in the tinned-food section of the supermarket, my English-born husband scans the shelves looking hopefully for mushy peas. They’ve long disappeared from the shelves of our supermarket but recent news suggests these peas may have a clever future ahead. Mushy peas are made from a large, starchy pea developed for canning. You may have eaten them with a pie floater — a meat pie served on a bed of peas — or accompanying fish and chips. Mushy peas are at the opposite end of the pea spectrum from the fresh green baby peas or sugar snaps grown by most gardeners. As well as being suited to canning, it turns out that marrowfat, or marafat peas as they are known, can be eaten as a snack food. They are…

4 min
spud love

If you did a survey of which vegetable people eat most often, you know what the answer would be. Yes, potato, at least in the Western world. Many people eat them at every main meal — they are the staple vegetable. But this wasn’t always so. Europeans only started eating the potato in the 16th century when it was brought back from the Americas and it didn’t get to those most enthusiastic of spud eaters, the Irish, until the 17th century. According to food activist and writer Michael Pollan, it was the failure of the potato crop in the mid-19th century due to blight that demonstrated the downside of largescale monoculture in Ireland. In The Roots of Civilisation John Newton writes, “It has been estimated that potato blight killed 1 million Irish…