You can’t beat fresh peas out of the pod. The trick, says Jackie French, is combatting all the other creatures (and kids) that will beat you to it. She’s been trying to grow peas for years… The best way not to grow peas is to have wallaby companions in the garden. Wallabies will crawl through … Continue reading Tips for a top pea crop
You put in some seeds… but nothing came up. Poor seed germination can be mystifying and frustrating for the home gardener, but there are a number of common causes, from temperature to soil depth and lots in between. Was it too hot or too cold when you sowed them? Before you sow, always check the … Continue reading Seed no-show?
Snapdragons make a cheery addition to beds and flower pots, and come in a wide range of colours. They need a sunny spot, and a well-drained soil with compost added. Avoid heavy and sodden soils, as the plants are prone to root rot in these conditions. Instead, grow your ‘snappies’ in pots filled with premium … Continue reading Plant snapdragons
Established strawberry plants produce lots of runners, which are long side shoots that end in mini plants called plantlets. When strawberry plants are young and productive, these runners should be cut off, so that energy is channelled into fruit production. As the strawberry plants age and become less productive (normally after three years), the plantlets … Continue reading Propagate strawberry plantlets
Established perennials that have started to spread and multiply in the garden can become the source of free plants for yourself and your gardening friends. Once their flowers have faded, check out clumping and spreading plants, such as shasta daisy, delphinium, armeria, ajuga, daylily, society garlic, heuchera, diascia and catmint. You can even split up … Continue reading Divide and multiply perennials
Q My usually prolific tomato plants have been a disaster this year, with all the leaves curling, browning, drooping and dying back. First, the Grosse Lisse, then the Burnley Surecrop and now the Romas have all succumbed. If it is verticillium wilt, how long will it persist in the soil? A In the pics you sent … Continue reading Q&A: What’s killing my tomatoes?
Has your soil been giving you a bit of pushback? You water, but it doesn’t seem to soak in? When conditions are dry, a waxy residue forms on soil particles, causing soils to become hydrophobic or water repellent. Even after a thorough watering, you can scratch the soil surface and find large dry patches below. … Continue reading How to fix dry soil