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News & Views

February 2016

Daltons Sunflowers in Kindys 2015

Te Rapa Early Education Centre Waikato Tallest Sunflower

KiNZ Mission Heights Kindergarten Auckland Widest Sunflower

On 11th December 2015 we announced the regional winners of our 2015 Daltons Sunflowers in Kindergartens project. Over 12,800 budding preschool gardeners have learnt a little more about gardening by growing their own sunflowers throughout the project. We want to give a big thank you to our partners Kings Seeds and Warehouse Stationery for all their support. We also want to thank the staff at Daltons who put in many hours making the project a success. Awards were given to regional winners of the Tallest Sunflower, and the Sunflower with the Widest Head. Each kindergarten also named their Daltons Best Little Gardener who received a special certificate and prize. Te Rapa Early Education Centre in the Waikato grew a sunflower that measured in at a staggering 3.12 metres tall! Head Teacher, Margaret Collins, says; “This process has created such a delight for all our children; each child is growing two sunflowers to take home for Christmas presents for their families to enjoy. Thank you to Daltons for creating this amazing opportunity!” Participating kindergartens were also eligible to win one of two gardening workshops with TV personality and award winning landscape designer, Xanthe White. The lucky winners were Rawhiti Kindergarten in Matamata and Kidsfirst Kindergarten Sunbeam in St Albans, Christchurch. Meadowbank Kindergarten

Aberdeen Kindergarten with Laura Klein Waikato Widest Sunflower

All regional winners receive prize packs from Daltons and Warehouse Stationery. Every child will also receive their own certificate as a special keepsake. Feedback from teachers who took part this year included positive comments around how their participation opened up further learning opportunities for the children, such as the importance of plants in our world and discussions around the environment etc. This year Daltons have added a ‘Late Bloomers Awards’ to acknowledge the geographic disparity between the regions throughout New Zealand and those areas that have been impacted by the weather. The Late Bloomers competition ran from Monday 14th December to Tuesday 9th February to allow the sunflower plants to bloom during the summer holidays. Central Kids Tokoroa Early Learning Centre took out the Late Bloomers Tallest Sunflower award with their sunflower plant measuring in at an impressive 3.21 metres – now the tallest ever grown in the project! Ranui Kindergarten in Auckland won Late Bloomers Widest Sunflower Head award with their whopping 51cm wide sunflower head which weighed in at a stunning 7kg! It’s the widest and heaviest ever in the project.

Meadowbank Kindergarten with Lila Stuart – Overall Best Photo


Daltons New Water Storage Crystals

New Product Clonex

Tokoroa ELC with Lydia Haugh Late Bloomers Tallest Sunflower

in Auckland took out the Overall Best Photo with their picture of Best Little Gardener Lila Stuart (4.5yrs) with Sunflowers.

Taupaki Kindergarten, sunflower through the roof! – Auckland Tallest Sunflower

2 W hat’s inside

Helen Deem Kindergaten Dunedin Tallest Sunflower

Ranui Kindergarten, Auckland Late Bloomers Widest Sunflower


Gardening with Xanthe White

What’s happening at the Plantation

Daltons latest truck graphics

Water Storage Crystals Water retainer for soils and substrates Excellent for • Baskets • Pots • Containers • Dry Soils

Daltons Water Storage Crystals act as a water retainer by absorbing and retaining large quantities of water and nutrients.

Water Storage Crystals • Absorb up to 500 times their weight in water • Release 95% of absorbed water into soil • Significantly reduce water and nutrient loss due to leaching • Increase water holding capacity for 1-3 years • Protect against drought • Increase aeration in clay soils • Non-toxic and bio-degradable

For more information contact your Daltons Sales Representative 0800 808 150

New product available at Daltons

Clonex is a thick gel which has been designed to stay in contact with and around the stem, sealing the cut tissue and supplying hormones and vitamins needed to promote root cell development and promote new root tissue. Clonex has a full spectrum of primary nutrients and trace elements to nourish the young roots plus anti-microbial agents to protect against fungal contamination. Available in 5L and 1L bottles.


Formulated for SEMI HARDWOOD CUTTINGS The perfect all rounder.


Talk to your Daltons Territory Manager about which product is best for you – P 0800 808 150

Gardening with Xanthe White Some years by the end of February, I’m pleased to see summer pass by. As the whirl of the holidays is replaced by an unrelenting heat and mosquito broken sleep. But this year I’m not quite ready to say goodbye to the lazy days of summer and nor is my garden. The expected dry has been broken by the perfect amount of rain spaced evenly through the season. I’ve barely bought out the garden hose and my lawn is still green apart form the scorch marks still remaining from the New Years garden party fire. I know that autumn is on its way but I’m not yet ready to pack up and move on. Still though, I know that at some point it’ll become time to clear up the summer’s growth. This year my autumn job is pruning. Over the summer the garden has risen several meters further up the mountain. While I hesitate to prune back the trees that keep us up to date with Tui politics and other feathered affairs, I’m looking forward to opening up our views again. In New Zealand we are not good tree pruners. We tend to let them become too big and then they get the chop instead of a little bit off pruning every year. We plant trees for a reason; to frame views and screen our neighbours kitchen windows. Then when they get too large we curse them. I often meet with clients who have acquired a new garden and quickly removed a tree only to find that once it’s down they are then faced with an ugly view they’d not realised was hidden, or a strong wind they’d never noticed before. The problem is sometimes poor planning or random gardening, but more often than not it’s more about maintenance of trees from a young age to make sure they grow as intended. Pruning trees should be done ideally in autumn so we get more winter sun, and they grow better for the summer to give us shelter from the deep summer’s heat. It is also less stressful on



the plant as the temperatures cool, growth naturally slows and many trees are heading for a period of dormancy. Pruning should always start with removing any dead or diseased limbs that the tree will probably drop in winter storms anyway. Put aside now, they can be used for kindling later. Then you need to think about the desired shape of the tree. Sometimes the best approach is to open a tree to let light through the branches. This is normally the case when privacy or shelter is needed or with larger trees that have not been pruned prior and would look unusual if topped. Thinning out the branches is also good practice for fruit trees as they mature, to get light and sun into the centre of the tree and encourage fruiting. The other approach is to remove the top and side growth and shape the tree. If doing this, decide if you want a formal effect, in which case you should prune it evenly all over. This will give you a solid form like a hedge. Alternatively if you want keep the tree loose and natural; prune the branches at slightly different lengths similar in shape to the natural form of the tree. As a rule taking up to a third out of a tree each season is not going to cause stress to a plant. You may sometimes need to take more if the job as been left undone for a few seasons, but in this case check the variety with an expert. There’s plenty of good advice about pruning online, but the best advice I can offer is take some time once a year to keep trees healthy and doing the job they were planted to do so you can enjoy them for years to come.

Xanthe White


in Autumn


When green foliage starts to push through the soil apply

Daltons Premium Bulb Fertiliser


in Spring

What’s happening at the Plantation Wow Autumn has arrived – so fabulous with the fresh mornings and beautiful days with a bit of rain added here and there – perfect! February has proved very busy for the kitchen garden orchards which means our chefs are kept busy! We grew potatoes this season, for the first time ever and they were phenomenal!

we did manage to salvage some buckets of nectarines. We even got plums which excited all of us as we only planted the trees a few months ago (must be something to do with the mix and fertilisers)! We have picked loads of apples with the last little trees to do now. So you see we can actually tell our dining customers – fresh from the garden!

Also we grew capsicums for the first time and we were delighted with them. The tomatoes have been and are still prolific and delicious as are the courgettes and cucumbers, brassicas, lettuces, beetroot etc. Just wonderful to have continual fresh veges – didn’t know how excited I could get over all these yummy fresh veges… and then there’s the fruit. Unfortunately our stone-fruit got summer rot, but

It was great to have Growing Spectrum here last week on a staff day out. They had lunch with us and a look around the gardens – amazing to see the Amphitheatre “all grown-up” now and a much sought after garden for weddings – so thank you again for all the trees and plants you gave us for that whole garden – we hope you admired it as much as our other visitors.

P 07 888 8999 E

Showcasing Daltons latest truck graphics Daltons VERY FIRST Kenworth!

Contact us




0800 808 150

266 Hinuera Road West Matamata 3440

Daltons Professional News February 2016  

February 2016 issue of Daltons news for professionals. Find out what we've been up to, new product releases, scientific studies, as well as...

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