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Cultivated News
In the news...

Stolen crops are becoming a growing concern according to the May issue of Grower magazine. .

Many of the crimes on crops (kumara, corn, avocado etc) go unreported as people feel the amounts taken are too little to gain the attention of police.

Once stolen, the crops are likely to be sold at a local market or passed off fairly quickly to pre-arranged buyers.

The best plan of attack is to be observant and if you notice anything suspicious call the police. See the May 2010 issue of Grower magazine for more details.

Tool time

Now is the time to give your gardening tools a once-over and sharpen your secateurs, hoes and spades.

If your tools are showing signs of rusty old age, a good trick is to sand the rusted area with a wire brush and wipe the bare metal with a light coat of oil. This will ensure they last longer.

Quality garden tools are an investment and if you look after them properly can last for seasons on end.

Burning questions

How can I repel possums from my garden?
Try spraying the plants with a brew of Neem oil and fish-based liquid fertiliser. Possums are put off eating the roses and other goodies by the smell - so are rabbits and hares for that matter.

How do I rid my plants of whitefly?

This is a great recipe for repelling whitefly.
1 cup soya bean oil
1 tablespoon dishwashing liquid.

Place both ingredients in a jar and mix well. Add 30ml of the mixture to 1 litre of water and spray affected areas every seven to 10 days until whitefly is eliminated. Repeat as necessary.
Prune now for knockout roses this spring

Now is the perfect time to prune your roses and while they might look like bare twig arrangements when you’re finished with them, it’s a small sacrifice to make for great blooms in spring. So this month I’ll give you a guide to achieving knockout roses.

The best time to prune roses is when they’re dormant. This is when their leaves and flowers have fallen off. It’s important to prune on a nice sunny, dry day as rain on the cut branch could lead to die back. This is when the branch starts to turn yellow/brown in colour and dies back towards the base. Also, remember to use clean, sharp secateurs to ensure clean cuts and prevent diseases.

Click here to read more.
Tod Palenski – Awapuni Nurseries

Krafty kuts for kidz

Why not help some feathered friends this winter by getting the kids involved and making a bird feeder? All you need is yarn, peanut butter, bird seed and a pine cone. This easy to make feeder will have birds flocking to your feeder for breakfast, lunch and tea. What better way to spend a weekend – bird watching with the kids.

Click on the picture to see how it’s done.
High-five to Highbury

SuperGrans is a group of volunteers who teach people basic life skills such as gardening and cooking. Awapuni Nurseries have worked with SuperGrans on different projects and even sponsor their regular radio segment on Access Manawatu.

Tod Palenski, our gardening guru, has made regular appearances on the show and has helped many gardeners with questions on pest management and seasonal planting.

Recently Awapuni Nurseries donated seedlings to the Highbury Library in Manawatu. Fortunately, the weather held long enough to get them in the ground on 21 May. And the rain they’ve had recently will give them a good head start – here’s hoping!

A SuperGran will visit the library fortnightly to teach a local kindergarten group, and any other interested locals, about running a vege garden.

Good luck Highbury Library! We wish you all the best on your new gardening venture.

June is a good time to...

Fertilise your soil! A good general fertiliser for this is nitrophoska blue - available at your local garden store. If your soil is wet and hard or your lawn isn’t drying out, try using Gypsum. Gypsum breaks down soil and encourages drainage. If you spend time fertilising and caring for your soil now, you’ll reap the benefits come spring.
June is also the perfect time to plant garlic, spring onions and beet. Click here to learn more about where and how to plant them and how to make a tasty and healthy base or compliment to add to your meal.
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