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Gardening Australia

Gardening Australia October 2019

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Australia’s number one monthly gardening resource, ABC Gardening Australia magazine is packed with step-by-step advice and stunning design ideas from its popular team of experts. Whether you are a novice gardener or have a green thumb and years of experience, you’ll find the advice you need.

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2 min

I can’t grow clematis – I’m in the wrong climate. But that doesn’t stop me loving it, and oohing and aahing when I come face to face with one. What a magical-looking plant it is! If you’re lucky enough to live in the cooler zones, as our writer does – Jennifer Stackhouse reckons the ability to grow clematis was one of the reasons she moved to Tasmania – you’ll find expert growing advice on page 21. Another magical climbing plant is passionfruit, and this one I do grow. It’s got a pretty knock-out flower of its own, which I don’t think I ever really noticed when I was a kid. We had a vine growing over a bushhouse, and one of the few times my brother and I were asked to…

2 min
on the shelf plants

Clematis have large, eye-catching flowers, followed by ornamental seed heads on a deciduous vine. Clematis jackmanii ‘Alita’ is a new-release compact variety that produces magenta-red blooms with bold yellow stamens from December to March. It likes a sunny spot and, growing only 1–2m high, is perfect for containers. Prune it hard in early spring before new growth starts, to ensure a mass of flowers. tesselaar.net.au Clematis viticella ‘Alba Luxurians’ is a vigorous climber featuring unusual white flowers with green tips. The flowers are small (3.5cm in diameter) and appear en masse in late spring and autumn. This clematis is able to handle more sun than the larger-flowering varieties. Grow it over a pergola or an obelisk to support its height of 3–4m. tesselaar.net.au Marguerite daisies flower prolifically through spring and summer, and…

2 min
on the shelf books

GARDENING THROUGH THE YEAR IN AUSTRALIA MONTH-BY-MONTH PLANNING, INSTRUCTIONS & INSPIRATION Ian Spence, DK Australia The main section of this updated Australian edition comprises chapters covering each month of the year in an easy-to-use format with abundant illustrations. Each month has an overview of key gardening tasks, practical lists, reminders and tips, and a pictorial showcase of ‘Star Plants’. Also included is comprehensive guidance on plant care, maintaining garden features, when and what to prune, practical projects and inspirational ideas. An A–Z Plant Directory appendix lists close to 350 plants, with photos, descriptions and growing information. The author recognises the varied climatic conditions in our country, and the challenges of changeable global weather patterns. This comprehensive book is a handy reference for new and experienced gardeners. Available in October. FEEDING THE BIRDS AT…

1 min
on the shelf products

Are you killing your potted plants with kindness by overwatering? The Sustee Aqua Meter monitors the soil’s moisture and tells you when your plant needs a drink. Insert the meter into the soil and wait for it to change colour. Blue means the soil is moist and your plant is hydrated; white indicates your plant needs watering. The meter’s inner core lasts 6–9 months before it needs to be refilled. sustee.com.au The spring garden is a hive of activity, with plenty of pruning jobs to do. Make removing larger branches easier with Gardena’s Bypass Pruning Lopper EnergyCut 750B, which can cut fresh wood up to 42mm in diameter. Equipped with lightweight aluminium handles and an extra-narrow cutting head, it also enables you to access fiddly or tight spots in the garden,…

8 min
what’s on in october

NEW SOUTH WALES 5 TH – 7TH & 11TH – 13TH Leura Gardens Festival 9.30am–4.30pm. Various locations, Leura. 0431 095 279. $8 per garden; $30 for all gardens. Ten cool-climate spring gardens to visit. Music, art show, plants and garden accessories for sale. leuragardensfestival.com.au 11 TH – 13TH Southern Orchid Spectacular Fri & Sat 9am–4pm, Sun 9am–2pm. Sutherland Basketball Stadium, Waratah Park, Rawson Ave, Sutherland. 0417 406 374. $5. Displays of exotic and native orchids. Plants for sale from 15 vendors. Expert advice. Giant raffle. Cafe on site. 12 TH Orchid Potting Demonstration 11am & 1.30pm. Hunter Region Botanic Gardens, 2100 Pacific Hwy, Heatherbrae. (02) 4987 1655. Free demonstration; $3 garden entry. One-hour beginner-level demo led by Stu Webb. Lucky door prizes. Orchids for sale. Guided tour of orchid enclosures. huntergardens.org.au 12 TH – 13TH Albury Wodonga…

4 min
star performer

For me, one of the big attractions of moving to Tasmania from the mainland was the prospect of growing cool-climate plants. Up there on my must-have list, along with peonies, snowdrops and trilliums, were clematis. I’ve been planting these lovely climbers throughout my garden since moving to the north-west of the state about five years ago. There are more than 200 species of clematis. Several are native to Australia, such as Clematis aristata, which grows naturally in eastern Australia, including Tasmania. There are also hundreds, if not thousands, of named varieties, and many of these are broadly grouped as large-flowered hybrids. It was these beauties I had dreamt about growing. It didn’t take me long, however, to work out that the clematis I love the best is the small-flowered C. montana, which…