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Gardening Australia

Gardening Australia January 2020

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 love a botanic garden. To start with, it’s a great place to get a feel for an area you’re visiting for the first time – the different vibe, the unfamiliar trees, the vistas inside and beyond the garden. It’s also got to be one of the best and cheapest ways to energise the mind, calm the nervous system, and lift the spirits! This issue, we visit an out-of-the-way botanic garden as well as two other landscapes where Aussie plants are on show. First is the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden, about 300km north of Adelaide. This is one of Sophie Thomson’s favourite places, a quietly beautiful collection of plants (Australian and exotic) that are so resilient they grow on just 250mm of rainfall a year. Secondly, there’s Hobart’s Edible Precinct, a…

2 min

New avocado variety Secondo is a cross between the popular Hass and Sharwill avocados. It’s self-fertile, so you don’t need to grow a second tree for pollination. This delicious variety, originally grown in Australia by an Italian man named Secondo (twin brother of Primo!), produces green, pear-shaped fruit with creamy flesh. Avocado trees grow to 8m high and wide, but can be kept much smaller with regular pruning. They need perfect drainage and will not tolerate wet feet or heavy clay soils. daleysfruit.com.au Bush Glow, a new release in the Bush Gems range of kangaroo paws, produces a profusion of golden-orange flowers on strong stems. Position it in containers or clustered together in the garden in full sun, which beautifully highlights the flowers’ orange tones. The plants grow 50cm high by…

1 min

Enhance urban living with the pleasant sounds of running water and visiting birdlife with a Murano Column Solar On Demand Bubbling Fountain, which doubles as a birdbath and gentle fountain. Using a pump run by solar power, coupled with a back-up battery, it trickles water even on cloudy days and into the evening. There’s also an option for night-time use only. Made from glass-fibre-reinforced concrete (GFRC) and featuring a mosaic tile design, the column stands 62cm tall, and the bowl holds 10L of water. smartlivinghg.com.au If you love the art of maintaining miniaturised trees, you’ll find creating a bonsai tree from seed even more rewarding, as you’re in control of the entire process from the beginning. The new Jacaranda Bonsai Starter Kit contains jacaranda seeds, four biodegradable pots, soil pellets and…

2 min

THIS CHICKEN LIFE STORIES OF CHICKENS AND THE AUSTRALIANS WHO LOVE THEM Fiona Scott-Norman with photography by Ilana Rose Plum/Pan Macmillan Australia This delightful and whimsical book celebrates chickens and some of the Australians, including Costa Georgiadis, who love them. Accompanied by vibrant and often quirky photographs, it’s a fascinating collection of people’s stories about their association with chooks. Also included is helpful information about choosing breeds, naming your chickens, how their pecking order works, and the history of chooks in Australia. Plus, there’s a playful glossary of terms. GARDENER’S QUIZ & PUZZLE BOOK 100 BRAINTEASERS FOR GARDENERS WHO KNOW THEIR ONIONS Simon Akeroyd & Dr Gareth Moore Exisle Publishing This beautifully illustrated book entertains and informs. Whether you’re experienced or a beginner, you can enjoy testing your gardening chops with puzzles and questions designed…

2 min

NEW SOUTH WALES All month Pick Your Own Berries 10am–5pm. Clyde River Berry Farm, Lot 22, River Rd, Mogood. (02) 4478 1057. Pick blueberries and strawberries. Buckets supplied for picking, but BYO takeaway containers recommended. No pets allowed in the orchard. clyderiverberryfarm.com.au 11 TH –12TH Lavender, Herb & Chilli Festival 10am–5pm. Crystal Brook Gardens, Lot 257, Tyrl Tyrl Rd, Laggan. (02) 4843 3333. $15; children free. Learn about growing, drying, distilling and cooking with lavender, and propagating and using herbs and chillies. Plants for sale. lavenderatlaggan.com.au 11 TH –27TH Mayfield Garden Summer Festival 9am–3pm. Mayfield Garden, 530 Mayfield Rd, Oberon. (02) 6336 3131. $35. Explore Mayfield Garden (pictured) and the Hawkins Family Private Garden. Lake rowing, box-hedge maze, croquet, amphitheatre, cafe, nursery sales. mayfieldgarden.com.au QUEENSLAND 17 TH –19TH The Ginger Flower and Food Festival 9am–5pm. The Ginger Factory, 50…

6 min
7 superb trees for a small garden

When space in your garden is tight and you can fit only one or two trees, choosing the one can be tricky. What you really need is a multi-tasking tree. It should look good year-round, but also provide further benefits through the seasons, such as fruit, flower or berries, shade in summer and sometimes sunlight in winter, and maybe birds, butterflies, bees and other beneficial insects. Before planting a tree, consider its expected height and width at maturity, so you don’t end up with a tree that forever needs pruning. Keep in mind, too, possums can develop a taste for some trees and can easily access canopies from a fence (see overpage for tips on managing this). Here are seven trees I’d recommend for a small garden – of course, there…