May 2011

In the news...

Check out this amazing photograph from Time Magazine of a colourful field of flower bulbs, in Lisse, The Netherlands taken at the end of April.




Burning question...

My spinach has gone to seed, can I just cut it back and keep eating it?

You can if you want but it will taste pretty bitter. The best solution is to start again and stagger the planting of your spinach. This means as one plant goes to seed you’ll have another ready to eat.

Click here to email Tod your burning question today.




May is a good
time to...


Prune any bushes, spread some mulch around and just do a general garden tidy up. This will mean less work and maintenance to do do in the winter months. Now’s also a good time to fertlise your lawns and garden because any rain will help disolve the fertiliser. And, while you’re at it – throw around a bit of lawn seed where you need it.




Praying mantis back in the spotlight

It seems like we’ve started a bit of a debate about praying mantises. In March we suggested a praying mantis can be a good biological pest control against pests on your plants. Bob, a Cultivated News subscriber, then advised readers to watch out for praying mantises eating monarch caterpillars. And now this month, Anne, another subscriber of ours, has asked us to remind you all the New Zealand praying mantis is under threat from the South African variety and need all the help they can get. (South African praying mantises have a very thin neck compared to the Kiwi version.)

So we guess the lesson in this, is keep an eye on what type of praying mantises you have in your garden and watch what they’re eating! And keep sending us your comments. We enjoy hearing what our readers have to say!

Henri Ham
Awapuni Nurseries


Get practical with parsley and pretty with pansies

I’ve said it before, but hanging baskets really are the garden for anyone. Got a couple of acres with every fruit, vege, herb and flower you can think of? Hanging baskets are perfect for growing the plants you use regularly – like herbs – and hanging near the kitchen door.

Live in a small apartment on the 10th floor of a city building? Hanging baskets will add colour, scent and a bit of the outdoors to any living space – no matter how small.

As I like to say, they are the perfect combination of practical and pretty. So this month I’m going to show you how to plant a hanging basket. You can grow virtually whatever you want in a basket, but I’m going to stick with the theme and plant practical parsley and pretty pansies.

So get down to your local supermarket, Bunnings, or The Warehouse and grab a Pop’n’Grow pot or Traditional Value bundle of parsley and pansies. Alternatively, head to our online store and get the plants delivered right to your door.

Click here to read more.


All you need to know about mulch

As you know, now is the perfect time to mulch the garden. So what’s the best mulch to use, how should you apply it? For the answers to these questions read more on mulch – the number 1 gardening secret.


Protect plants with parsley

Parsley is a great companion plant. It’s especially good for planting next to roses as it secretes a smell that deters aphids from the roses.



Gutter gardens

Stuck for space at your place? Why not try a gutter garden? They take advantage of vertical spaces around your home, create a divider or privacy screen and you don’t have to worry about any crawling pests – just the flying variety.

Visit aHa! for a step-by-step guide on how to make a gutter garden.

Henri and Paul Ham, Awapuni Nurseries Ltd
Pioneer Highway PO Box 7075 Palmerston North 4443 NEW ZEALAND

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