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Gardening Australia

Gardening Australia March 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

March might be the official start of autumn, but in this hot land of ours, the challenges of summer continue unabated for many gardeners. As milder conditions push in, though, it does spark a feeling of wanting to ‘get into it’. That, of course, is fine if you still have a garden to ‘get into’. So many people have lost so much, while others are only just hanging on, trying to save trees and special plants through an unrelenting drought. There is almost a sense of guilt among gardeners who have been spared the ravages of drought, fire and flood, but are feeling the pain from a distance. We are putting together stories on bushfire recovery for the next issue and beyond, and encourage you to write to us if you have…

2 min

Start planning your spring bulb display now with new colours in the Renaissance Ranunculus range, including (clockwise from right) white and purple ‘Bianco Striato’, rich red ‘Ciocolato’, pretty pink ‘Salmone’ and purple-edged yellow ‘Striato Giallo’. These long-lasting, fully double blooms come in many more colours, and look spectacular planted en masse. They grow best in well-drained soil in full sun or semi-shade, producing up to 10 flowers per corm. tesselaar.net.au Euphorbias are tough, low-maintenance plants. Euphorbia ‘Silver Swan’ provides year-round foliage colour with variegated grey-green leaves with a silvery edge. Cream flowers appear from late winter to spring. This drought-tolerant plant likes full sun, and grows 75cm high by 75cm wide, making it ideal for containers and the front of borders. Note that the milky sap is an irritant, so…

1 min

If you only have a small outdoor area, such as a patio, courtyard or balcony, a great way to dispose of organic kitchen waste while growing vegetables is the updated Composta – a worm farm and garden in one. The central canister contains the worms, and is where you put food scraps, while the outer section is for growing herbs, leafy vegies, strawberries or flowers, which receive nutrients directly from compost produced by the worms. Unlike regular worm farms, it can be placed in the sun, as the garden protects the worms from the heat. composta.myshopify.com Okay, so it’s not the kind of item you’d normally see here, but we love this glimpse of a future where everyday items go into our compost bins, not landfill. The Very Good Bra is…

2 min

THE SKILL OF FLOWER ARRANGING EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW Gregory Milner Woodslane Press If you’ve always wanted to learn how to create beautiful flower arrangements, whether for your home, workplace or a special event, this book will tell you everything you need to know. It’s a comprehensive guide that is easy to read and offers clear instructions, with more than 1200 images. The author has extensive experience in commercial floristry and teaching, both within Australia and overseas, and is a qualified national and international judge of floral competitions. He has brought together his knowledge and skills to cover all aspects of flower arranging in a book that will appeal to present and aspiring floral artists, designers and hobbyists of all skill levels. PLANT NAMES A GUIDE TO BOTANICAL NOMENCLATURE Roger Spencer and Rob…

4 min

VICTORIA All month Australian Plants Revealed Tue–Fri 10am–4pm, Sat–Sun 1–4pm. Karwarra Australian Native Botanic Garden & Nursery, 1190–1192 Mount Dandenong Tourist Rd, Kalorama. (03) 9729 1538. Free. Exhibition highlighting banksias and unique Australian flora. apsvic.org.au 1 ST Summer Heritage Fruit Tree Festival 10am–3pm. Werribee Park Heritage Orchard, Werribee Park Farm, Gate 5, K Rd, Werribee South. 0411 720 283. Free entry (gold coin for parking). Sale of stone fruit trees, orchard tours, grafting demos, market stalls, makers, live folk music, food vendors, kids’ activities. werribeeparkheritageorchard.org.au 6 TH –7TH Welshpool 59th Autumn Garden Show Fri 1.30–5pm, Sat 10am–4pm. Welshpool Memorial Hall, South Gippsland Hwy, Welshpool. 0481 385 122. $3; children free. Dahlias, on-site nursery, plant sales, country-style refreshments. 7 TH –8TH Plant Collectors’ Sale & Garden Expo 10am–4pm. Ferny Creek Horticultural Society, 100 Hilton Rd East, Sassafras. (03) 9728…

4 min
failsafe bulbs for warm climates

Colourful spring bulbs pushing up from the ground, surrounded by the bare branches of deciduous shrubs and trees. It’s an irresistible image for most gardeners. The welcome colour and delicate floral shapes of spring bulbs can transform a stark landscape into something magical and full of promise. But it’s a picture most often associated with a cold climate, where the transition from winter to spring is cool and gradual. In a warm climate, spring is often short and to the point, lasting only a few weeks before summer-like conditions arrive. Thankfully, with careful selection and appreciation of the different types of bulbs available, warm-climate gardeners also have plenty of opportunity to enjoy spring’s bounty through bulbs. Many traditional spring bulbs flower and finish earlier in the season than in cooler zones. Some…