May 2012

Burning question...

When should I prune my roses?

Around now your roses will start to go dormant (the leaves fall off). You don't need to worry about pruning them until about July. And, we'll give you a guide on what to do closer to the time.

Click here to email Tod your burning question today.

Battling brussels sprouts bugs

Got aphids attacking your brussels sprouts? Try this citrus spray to rid your mini cabbages of pests. It also works on passion vine hoppers and caterpillars. Simply grate the rind off two lemons and put aside. Bring one litre of water to the boil. Add the rind to the water and remove the pan from heat. Cover and let stand for 24 hours. Strain into a clean spray container and spray over your sprouts.
May is a
good time to…


Dig over your soil and prepare for planting your winter veges and flowers. Now is the time of year when everything is finishing but not quite started. The weather is cooling down but the soil is still warm enough to kick-start your next round of planting. So, apply compost and fertiliser to your flowerbeds and vege gardens and plant broccoli, broad beans, carrots, onions, peas, spinach and cauliflower. Lastly, rake up your leaves for composting
Did you know?

There's a character in the book Asterix and the Falling Sky named Centurion Polyanthus. Did you also know Polyanthus is part of the Primula family?
Buy online and win

We've done some maths and decided if you planted six bundles of seedlings (around 40 seedlings) every two months for 12 months it would be enough plants for a household for a year. To be in to win this great prize, all you have to do is make a purchase from our online store during May. So, what are you waiting for?


Changing times

Times have certainly changed since my father, Ton, arrived in New Zealand from Holland in 1960 and established Awapuni Nurseries a few years later. My parents could never have imagined we'd be selling our seedlings online. They wouldn't even have known what 'online' meant!

In the same way we've moved with the times, so too have newspapers. Papers are getting thinner and there's a rumour the New Zealand Herald is going to soon change its format from full broadsheet size to a smaller tabloid version. As you know, all our packaging is made out of recycled newspaper. So this means we're starting to stock pile paper.

Unfortunately, sometimes we have to make changes we don't want to. Now is one of those times. Due to increasing costs for labour, seed, potting mix and couriers, as of 1 July the price of our Traditional Value bundles (the ones wrapped in newspaper) will increase from $3.85 to $4.29 each. Our Pop'n'Grows (the ones in biodegradable pots) will remain the same price.

What's not changing is our total satisfaction guarantee. If for any reason you're not totally satisfied with your seedlings (no matter where you purchased them), give us a call on 0800 33 2000. We're also not changing the fact we're the only company in New Zealand selling seedlings in bridgeable packaging. And we'll still be the best value for money when it comes to buying seedlings with individual root systems. We're sorry we've had to make this change, but we hope you'll continue to support us as we strive to provide you with the best herb, vege and flower seedlings on the market.

Happy gardening

Henri Ham
Awapuni Nurseries


Thinking onions? Think red'

Plan ahead: that's always been my motto. And if you follow this fail-safe philosophy when it comes to planting your spring garden, you'll already be thinking about getting the perfect salad and pizza topping in the ground - red onions.

Packed with the antioxidants vitamin A and E, as well as vitamin C, calcium and iron, these red delights are also great on burgers and sandwiches, or a delicious grilled toastie. You can also throw them in the frying pan, but keep in mind they tend to lose their wonderful purple colour when cooked.

The best thing about red onions, though, is that you can plant them wherever you like, as long as the soil is friable (goes crumbly when you touch it). Just dig the soil over, and add a little fertiliser. Make rows 20cm apart from each other, then plan the onions 10cm apart within the rows. While you're at it, why not plant a bit of spinach in between the lines of onions? It's ready to harvest a lot earlier, so it's a good use of the space, given that you'll need to wait 20 - 24 weeks before the onions mature.

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Give the gift that grows

Everyone loves to get flowers. But more often than not, they're dead and gone within a few days.

A plant that keeps on growing is the gift that keeps on giving. So, this Mothers' Day forget about a bought bouquet and instead give your mum a potted plant.

Got kids? Whether the gift is for your mum or their mum, get them involved in the potting and planting.

Go one step further and help them decorate the pots. Terracotta pots and water-based house paint test pots are best for this.
Is your mum a whizz in the kitchen? Give her a potted herb.

Does she love fresh flowers? Why not plant her some polyanthus or primulas?

I'm a big fan of growing polyanthus in pots because you can keep them in or outdoors. Further more, they grow easily and there's a wide range of colours to choose from.

So, what are you waiting for? Head down to your local supermarket or garden centre and grab some Awapuni Nurseries polyanthus seedlings.

While you're there, don't forget to get a pot to plant your flowers in.

If you think the pot will live inside, consider how water will drain out of the container.

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Make your mark

Here’s another fun activity to do with the kids in your garden. Grab those water-based, house-paint test pots and create some garden marker masterpieces.



Chop, chop, chop

Cutting an onion can be trickier than it looks. Here's a step-by-step video with one way to master the art of chopping onion .

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

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