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Ready, set, grow!

Get fresh!

starting out

GROWING NON-STOP SALADS practical advice

dealing with slugs and snails masterclass

shrubs and small trees for early spring colour ISSUE 03/2013




Fresh Start


t’s spring - the best excuse we’ve had all year to indulge in all things gardening. Like no other season,


spring inspires the greenie within us and it’s a great time to grow something new. No matter how young or old, rich or poor, green or

black thumbed, we can all get the buzz that comes from seeing our plants grow. Gardening projects don’t have to be time consuming or expensive. One of life’s simplest pleasures is to grow something from seed. Our Kids Go Gardening project on page 34 is just one example of a mini gardening activity that’s loads of fun. For anyone wanting to start a small vege patch, now’s the time. Nothing could be easier than salad greens, but maybe your new challenge is to keep them coming all spring and summer long. Sarah O’Neil offers advice on page 17. Even for experienced gardeners there is always something new to learn. Perhaps the best thing about gardening is that it gets us outdoors.


Engaging with nature and breathing fresh air is scientifically proven to be good for our physical and mental health. Chemical reactions in our bodies work most efficiently when we inhale air that has high levels of oxygen. Breathing fresh air helps us think better and sleep better. It promotes healthy lungs, healthy skin, and may even help with weight loss. Plants indoors and out are our best air fresheners, reducing toxins and increasing healthy oxygen. There is also strong evidence to support what we instinctively know - that sunlight increases the happiness chemicals in our brain. So, forget spring cleaning! Spring is no time for household chores. As the days get longer and warmer, and the garden is bursting with new life, it’s time to head outdoors!

Happy spring gardening, Editor

Sue Linn


Lee Kretschmar

Subeditor Sarah Thornton

nginz The Nursery & Garden Industry Association of New Zealand

Advertising Debbie Pascoe, phone 09 236 3260 Printer Webstar Publisher

Nursery & Garden Industry New Zealand phone 04 918 3511 email

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go gardening spring


Go Gardening is published by Nursery & Garden Industry New Zealand. Articles in Go Gardening are copyright and may not be reproduced in any form, in whole or part, without the written permission of the publisher. All rights reserved in material accepted for this publication, unless specified otherwise. The opinions expressed in Go Gardening are not necessarily those of, or endorsed by, the publisher.

3 Shop window What’s new in garden centres 11 Real gardeners A thriving community garden 15 Tui Schools Competition 17 Starting out Non-stop salads 21 Edibles The new Potato Tom 22 Pest watch Coping with slugs and snails 25 Real gardeners Downsizing in Nelson 30 Perennials Beautiful new nemesias 32 Practical advice 12 time savers for gardeners 34 Kids Go Gardening 36 Natives Colourful NZ flax 40 Masterclass Spring in bloom 47 Edibles Family friendly fruit trees 48 Roses The Flower Carpet story 50 Noticeboard Spring events 52 Be in to win Exciting products for your garden

what’s new

SHOP WINDOW It’s time to celebrate a brand new season with exciting new things for the garden.

Cordyline ‘Salsa’


Born and bred in Te Awamutu, Cordyline ‘Salsa’ takes the stage this spring - throughout New Zealand and across Europe too. Colour is what sets new ‘Salsa’ apart. New leaves emerge bright pink with deep red stripes. Colours intensify with age resulting in a multi-coloured effect. A dense clump in the early years, ‘Salsa’ will eventually develop a classic cabbage tree trunk. Part of the ‘Dancing Cordyline’ collection. Find out more at Grows 1.5m tall, 3m at maturity Tolerates light frost and dry soil once established Likes sun or part shade and well-drained soil Nectarine ‘Button Bright’


Nectarine ‘Button Bright’ is a new member of the unique Flatto™ fruit range. This productive little tree bears loads of flat, yellow-fleshed fruit. Sweet and juicy, it’s just the right size for lunch boxes. Grows 4m tall by 3m wide Flowers spring Harvest summer


An exciting new sport of English Box, Buxus ‘Supergreen’ is set to delight gardeners with its quick growth and rich year-round colour. With a more elongated leaf and twice the growth rate of ordinary Buxus, ‘Supergreen’ is ideal for topiary and formal hedges.

Buxus ‘Supergreen’ Buxus sempervirens

Ideal for trimming and shaping Tolerates dry conditions once established Likes sun or shade 3

what’s new Dianthus ‘Waterloo Sunset’

Michelia ‘Inspiration’



New Michelia ‘Inspiration’ is a compact form of much-loved Michelia yunnanensis with glossy leathery leaves spread with exquisitely scented, porcelain-like flowers. This bushy evergreen is quite frost tolerant once established, and responds well to pruning. It makes a superb hedge or standalone specimen tree. Plant it wherever you might plant a camellia. Grows upright to 3m tall Flowers spring Likes sun or part shade

With cheerful red stems and a delicious flavour, new Rhubarb ‘Grans Favourite’ is an ideal choice for cold climate gardens. Turning dormant to survive a very cold winter, it will reappear with gusto in spring. Easy to grow in most NZ climates, ‘Grans Favourite’ loves moist rich soil. Rhubarb ‘Grans Favourite’

Grows 50cm tall and wide Tolerates cold winters Likes sun or part shade

REPEAT PERFORMERS Belarina® Primulas

repeat their outstanding flowering performance year after year (unlike the familiar seedling primulas and polyanthus). Available for the first time in NZ, in five stunning colours, these spectacular perennial plants revive the double form of the English woodland primula, now rare in the wild. Find out more at Grows 18cm tall x 30cm wide Flowers from early spring Likes part shade

Primula ‘Buttercup’


go gardening spring

Primula ‘Cream’

Primula ‘Cobalt Blue’

FRAGRANCE FOR GARDEN AND VASE The latest ‘Magnifi-Scent® Pinks’ have just arrived from England. These exceptionally long flowering perennial Dianthus cope brilliantly in tough conditions, remaining colourful, compact and easycare throughout a long hot summer. The fragrant flowers have strong stems for picking. Dianthus ‘Rebekah’ and ‘Waterloo Sunset’ are this spring’s exciting additions to the range. Find out more at Grows 30 to 40cm tall x 60cm wide Flowers spring through summer Likes full sun

THAT’S INCREDIBLE! Is it a tomato that thinks it’s a potato or a potato that thinks it’s a tomato? Either way you win because this amazing plant produces both - potatoes and tomatoes on the same plant. We’re not kidding! Turn to page 21 to find out more about new

Apple ‘Thumbelina’


The new ‘Thumbelina’ apples, ‘Candy Crunch’, ‘Golden Crunch’ and ‘Ruby Crunch’ are perfectly sized for small hands. These brightly coloured mini fruits are a quarter of the size of regular apples, and they grow on mini trees. Read more on page 47. Find more fruit trees for home gardens at Grows 3.5m tall Flowers spring Harvest late autumn

‘Potato Tom’

by incredible edibles. Grows 1-1.5m tall Harvest summer and autumn Likes sun

HANDY HELPER The new Joseph

Bentley Garden Trug, brought to you by

Tui, is the perfect garden accessory for gathering your lovingly cultivated spring harvest. Find out more at and go to page 52 to be in to win!

BREAKTHROUGH MICHELIA ELEGANT EDGER To create perfect definition between garden and lawn, use the Joseph Bentley Garden Edger and enjoy the carefully finished solid oak wooden handle and stainless steel head. Find out more at and go to page 52 to be in to win!

At last the beauty of Michelia yunnanensis can be enjoyed as a groundcover, complete with the fragrant white flowers and glossy evergreen foliage. Michelia ‘Free Spirit’ is a superb prostrate form with spreading branches bearing masses of scented upward facing flowers. Grows 50-60cm tall x 2m wide Flowers spring and summer Likes sun or part shade Michelia ‘Free Spirit’ 5

what’s new

SHADES OF A SUMMER EVENING In deep purple black with bright gold and cream stars, distinctive tricolour Petunia ‘Twilight’ offers a stylish, sophisticated new look that’s perfect for summer pots. The upright, mounded plants are among the first petunias to commence flowering in spring, continuing their generous display throughout the season. Turn to page 52 to be in to win! Grows 20-30cm tall Flowers spring and summer Likes sun or part shade

Petunia ‘Twilight’

NATURAL IMMUNE BOOSTER Daltons Organic Bio-Fungicide is a groundbreaking development in the fight against plant diseases such as damping-off and root rot. The 100% organic, Bio-gro certified product range protects seeds and plants the natural way, by strengthening the plant’s immune system. It is non-toxic to humans, animals and wildlife. Find out more at Turn to page 52 to be in to win!


Consistently inconsistent, dramatic Petunia ‘Blue a Fuse’ blends beautiful shades of violet, yellow and white. No two flowers are identical on this fantastic new variety. The upright, mounded plants are ‘self-cleaning’, so there is no need for deadheading like most other petunias. This high impact petunia is especially effective in patio pots or hanging baskets. Turn to page 52 to be in to win! Grows 20-30cm tall Flowers spring and summer Likes sun or part shade 6

go gardening spring

Petunia ‘Blue a Fuse’

Hardenbergia ‘Regent’


New Baby Bio Orchid Food Drip Feeder is a super easy way to keep orchids in peak condition, and flowering for longer. Especially formulated to match orchids’ nutritional needs during their growing season, each feeder lasts for a month and there are four feeders per pack.

• Outstanding free flowering geranium available in many colours • Thrives in warm sunny gardens or pots and very low maintenance • Plant now for Spring, Summer & Autumn profusion of colour

CoMPACT COMPOSTER Turn kitchen scraps and garden waste into beautiful rich compost to nourish your garden. The Tumbleweed 150L Compost bin is perfectly proportioned for small urban spaces. Find out more at


Grows 1 to 1.5m tall Flowers late winter and spring Likes sun and moist well-drained soil

AD 13/620

The Australian native wildflower, Hardenbergia violacea, usually occurs as a climbing plant, but not always. New Hardenbergia ‘Regent’ is not a climber, but a compact shrub form with leathery leaves and masses of purple pea flowers. This colourful shrub tolerates some frost. It looks great in a pot or as a hedge. A trim each year after flowering keeps it tidy and compact.



BERRY BERRY NICE Among the earliest perennials to flower, nemesias quickly transform a barren post-winter garden with colour and fragrance. With bigger than ever blooms, new ‘Berry Delight’ Nemesias offer a tapestry of mauves, blues and pinks. The low mounding compact plants quickly cover a generous ground space and they’re a top contender for hanging baskets and pots. Find out more on page 30 or Grows 30cm tall x 60cm wide Flowers late winter and early spring Likes full sun and well-drained soil Cordyline ‘Electric Star’

Nemesia ‘Raspberries and Cream’


Striking new striped Cordyline ‘Electric Pink’ and Cordyline ‘Electric Star’ are perfect for creating permanent garden highlights, planted in groups or as single accents. These easy care evergreens do not develop a trunk but expand slowly sideways to form a dense clump. Both grow well in large pots. Grows 1.2m tall x 1m wide Tolerates dry conditions and frost Likes sun or part shade, well drained soil

Cordyline ‘Electric Pink’

Flower Carpet ‘Pink Splash’

BRAND NEW FLOWER CARPET Consistently among the most disease-resistant roses ever bred, Flower Carpet roses are long standing favourites. Naturally compact and easy to prune, they don’t require spraying to stay healthy. During their extremely long flowering season, they drop their petals cleanly so there’s no need for deadheading. Gorgeous new bi-colour Flower Carpet ‘Pink Splash’ is more compact than the original Flower Carpet® Pink. Find out more at Grows 60-80cm tall x 1m wide Flowers late spring till winter Likes sun and well drained soil


go gardening spring

Grow your memories to support theirs



Donation to Alzheimers NZ on every plant purchased


Living Fashion In-store or online for more information

QR Scan with your smart phone for our full Dianthus range (requires QR Reader download from your App Store)

real gardeners

Tilling the hearts of a community Sarah Thornton finds a thriving organic garden that feeds a community - in more ways than one.


ardens are created for a number of reasons; some to simply marvel at for their beauty, some to relax in, some to shade and feed us. But there’s a garden in the Hastings suburb of Flaxmere that has been created to fulfil a different need; the healing of a community. Flaxmere often makes the news for the wrong reasons – crime, social deprivation and gang activity. Councillor and relentlessly optimistic Flaxmere campaigner Henare O’Keefe is deeply involved in creating more positive futures for his community and in 2008, through his U-Turn Trust and the Te Aranga Marae, the Flaxmere Community Garden was established. Five years on, it’s flourishing.

Left: Busy in the garden in early spring are (from left to right) Jason Dolden, Pam O’Keefe, Gary Barclay, Steve Sinclair and Melissa Wharewhiti. Below: Te Aranga Marae. 11

real gardeners

“The garden has fed hundreds, if cauliflower are popular, as are the root Clockwise from top left: not thousands of people,” says Henare. vegetables like potatoes and parsnips. An old bath is now a worm “I love the fact that it is owned by the Silverbeet is also very popular as it’s farm; kale is a favourite crop people and fulfils its purpose. But it’s an essential ingredient in traditional at the gardens; a blackboard almost like the food is a bonus – the boil ups – we harvest around 1200 lets visitors know what’s ready garden has a very important social of those every year,” says Gary. to pick; the permaculture function in that it brings the whole Educating the community is garden is always colourful; community together,” he says. a big part of Gary’s work and also many plants are grown from The organic garden is set on ensures longevity of the crops. “If we seed in the shade house. 5.3 hectares and consists of large teach people about the correct way vegetable plots and an orchard. It to harvest, we can get more out of a is open 24 hours a day, seven days plant, for example, if you break off a have two composting stations on a week for people from all over the broccoli head in the right place, will each garden area and as we harvest, region to help themselves. Funded get you a second flowering – and more mostly by “good will” from corporates, growth equals more food,” he explains. we chop and dig in straight away,” Gary explains. Sprays are not used the community and a huge number As well as the “staples”, Gary and Gary says he’s “never seen a of volunteers, the day to day running is constantly looking at growing snail”. Systems and processes have of the garden is managed by Gary other vegetables that are rich in been developed over the years to Barclay, who also runs two ILP nutrients and that also have a ensure maximum productivity. (Onsite Education) NCEA Level 3 and longer producing life, such as kale. “We are more methodical now,” 4 horticulture courses at the site. The community garden is says Gary. “We keep comprehensive Although almost every vegetable completely organic, and uses its diaries and have a plan for each plot. imaginable is grown, root vegetables own compost based on the “lasagne” At the moment we’re resting a couple and brassicas make the bulk of the method, with layers of cardboard, Name: up FLAME_SYCR566_GO GARDENING T&Mnursery_Spring_Tumbler_Impatiens of plots – it’s essential to| rotate Size: 134mmH x 210Wmm Date: 02.08.13 | Round: F Mina Giang (account service) | | +61 2 9887 8500 plantings. “Brassica family vegetables paper, clippings, small prunings and Note: While Flame has taken great care in preparing this artwork responsibility for the printed artwork and copy accuracy lies with the client. The printer is responsible for checking artwork before plates are crops and ensure the soil is healthy. such as broccoli, cabbage and manure, covered with carpet. “We made, accuracy in measurements, plates tolerance requirements, registration and construction detailing. Any questions please contact flame before proceeding with the job. Copyright 2013 Flame. SP ™

Impatiens Tumbler has the perfect spreading trailing habit for all your hanging baskets, patio pots and mixed planters around your house. Perfect for masses of colour in morning sun to semi-shade positions, Tumbler will impress you with its profusion of flower power all spring, summer and autumn. Look out for the entire Masterpiece Tumbler Impatiens series available now at your local Garden Centre. Available in 7 highly fashionable colours, Tumbler Pink, Tumbler Rose, Tumbler Rose Star, Tumbler Salmon, Tumbler Scarlet, Tumbler Violet Star & Tumbler White.

Tumbler New Series


Tumbler Scarlet

FLAME_SYCR566_08/13 AD 13/647

e P

Problems with clay, don’t delay Apply now to improve soil quality and achieve healthy, vibrant gardens and lawns ClayBreaker™ has the unique ability to break up clay and loosen hard compacted soils enabling air, water and nutrients to penetrate plant roots. Apply now to help prevent hard, dry and cracked soil this summer. Available in 8kg and 25kg bags.

real gardeners

Plants and seeds come from a range of sources – education provider ILP in New Plymouth, public donations and often from those who have harvested, “returning the favour”. Over the next twelve months, Gary is reconfiguring the garden into six main plots, each measuring 53m by 20m. Corporates and individuals including Whole Foods USA, John Bostock, Anna Archibald, Unison and Holcim are helping with the transformation, providing guidance and funding for the work. As well as incorporating the existing plantings, the garden will have plots much like the English ‘allotments’ for Samoan and Tongan communities and schools. The orchard is also being extended and a citrus plot is planned for 2014. In two weeks’ time, volunteers will get their gumboots on and plant more than 1600 native trees to protect the garden against the prevailing westerly. The garden is a much loved and revered part of Flaxmere. “We’re not only growing vegetables here,” says Henare. “We’re growing relationships, understanding and tolerance. And we’re growing a community.”

Left, clockwise from top: emerging onion seedlings; cabbage and calendulas; straw mulch keeps weeds out and moisture in while feeding the soil for the next crop; popular brassicas, kale and cavolo nero. Below: Manager Gary Barclay (right) with horticulture student, Jason Dolden.

14 go gardening spring


SCHOOLS COMPETE FOR GARDENING HONOURS Tauranga based Tui Products is challenging schools throughout New Zealand to produce the best school garden. But this year members of each school’s community are invited to get involved.


ui’s School Garden Challenge now in it’s 4th year has motivated hundreds of Pre-School, Primary and Intermediate Schools to get pupils involved in gardening. Over 300 schools registered in the first week of this year’s competition. The competition demands not only a top gardening result, but the documentation of the entire learning journey of the students and their mentors in arriving at the end result. Schools are asked to plan, create and maintain a new or existing garden, so a great first step is for the schools to come up with a planting plan. Schools are encouraged to be innovative and have a focus on sustainability, for example implementing composting and worm farms, collecting rainwater, and using

recycled material in the garden. Communities can follow their school’s progress as students post their pictures and update their blogs on the Tui Website www. You can also vote for your favourite school on the Tui website, and the school with the most votes will win the People’s Choice Award. Final updates will be posted by 25th October and schools will anxiously await the judges decisions on the winners for each Category.

Eager to get underway with their 2013 gardens from left: Hinds School Mid Canterbury, St Albans Catholic School, and Bayview Kindergarten Auckland

TUI PURCHASES CAN HELP YOUR SCHOOL Buy any Tui branded products from a participating garden centre, give the receipt to your local school, and they can win a Duratuf shed, Tui products and a visit from Annabel Langbein! One lucky school supporter will win a trip to Wanaka for two to have dinner with Annabel Langbein in Wanaka. Simply put your contact details on the receipt for Tui products before you hand it over to the school. Visit to find your local participating schools and garden centres. 15


Greens to go!

Sarah O’Neil explores the delights of growing a constant supply of fresh healthy greens to feed the family - 365 days of the year.


at your greens! This has the cry from mothers for generations as they lovingly prepare nutritious meals for their families only to find their offspring are completely unenthusiastic about the leafy green portion on their plates. It doesn’t really matter how it has been prepared – in a salad, stir fry or side dish, kids seem to have a natural aversion to all things green served to them. But there is such a wonderful array of leafy green vegetables and even more amazing ways to prepare them, that to avoid a whole food group based solely on colour seems a

little misguided, especially as they are actually really good for you. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals, dietary fibre and all sorts of good things for growing bodies and anybody for that matter.

The very best way to get the most flavour and nutrients out of your leafy greens is to eat them as fresh as possible, and the best way to ensure they are as fresh as possible is to grow them yourself. The good news is growing your own leafy greens isn’t expensive, doesn’t take up much space and is actually really easy - so simple a child could do it. Getting a child to help out can

make things easier at the dinner table as a child who grows something is more likely to eat it willingly.

In the cooler months we desire greens that benefit from being cooked like silverbeet or the more glamorous rainbow beets, iron rich spinach, Asian greens, and the popular super food of the season – kale. For winter use, these crops are planted in autumn, but they grow well in spring too. You can harvest the leaves as you need them and preparing these gourmet greens has come a long way from the good old days when cabbage was boiled within an inch of its life. Today’s 17

edibles greens are cooked quickly to retain as many nutrients as possible, and have a vibrant bright green appearance that looks and tastes much better than the soggy grey of old.

Early spring is a great time to grow microgreens on your sunniest window sill, so you can be eating something fresh and crunchy while it’s still wet and wintry outdoors. There are specific microgreen seeds available or you could grow a selection of your favourite veggies. Sprinkle the seeds quite thickly and once the seedlings are a few centimetres tall with their first set of true leaves, cut them off with a pair of scissors and enjoy the nutrient rich salad crunch that is ready for harvest in less than two weeks.

18 go gardening spring

As the days get longer, we start to look forward to BBQs and alfresco dining, and an essential part of this experience is the salad. Whether it is a traditional iceberg lettuce (back in vogue!) or a mesculun mix with a balsamic dressing, a salad is a summer staple. There is nothing more satisfying than popping out into your garden and harvesting a few leaves that get sprinkled in dressing moments later.

The key to a constant supply of salad greens throughout the warmer months is to plant little and often. While a crisp fresh salad is what we feel like most on a hot summer’s day, the irony is that most salad greens actually prefer cooler weather. When temperatures rise they can quickly bolt to seed

and taste bitter. The best way around this is to plant about half a dozen seedlings every couple of weeks throughout the summer months, whether you are sowing your own seed or buying seedlings from your garden centre. Harvest any plants as soon as there is the slightest hint of bitterness coming through in the leaves. That way you can always guarantee that you will have the sweetest, tender leaves every time. Planting often can also allow you to try a variety of different salad ingredients throughout the season.

The widest choice of different salad greens comes from growing your own. Basically, there two kinds of lettuce – the loose leaf variety, where you can take the outer leaves as the plant grows. This is often referred to



as ‘cut and come again’ as you can harvest repeatedly from the same plant and it will keep on growing. Then there are the kind of lettuces that form a solid heart and it is best to harvest the whole plant. These can take up to eight weeks to mature, whereas the loose leaf varieties can be harvested within three weeks as tender baby greens.

Whether you prefer the spicy flavours of rocket and mustard greens, or the more sweet and nutty flavours of Buttercrunch lettuce, they can all be grown simply and easily in your garden or in a container by your backdoor. Garden centres offer a fantastic array of salad plants in punnets, including mixed packs of different shapes and colours so you are able to have an amazing mixed leaf salad that will tempt the pickiest of eaters.

Large flowers in vibrant colours Versatile in baskets, containers and beds Heat tolerant so blooms all summer Superb habit

visit our website for garden design inspiration, planting advice and plant care available from good garden retailers nationwide


LETTUCE TIPS: ,The faster your lettuces grow, the

better they’ll taste. Don’t let them run out of water or nutrients. If your garden soil is not well drained plant lettuces in container mix.


In hot summer weather some afternoon shade is beneficial.


Lettuces need lots of nitrogen but other nutrients too. For those growing in pots, supplement slow release fertiliser with liquid fertiliser or worm tea from your worm farm.

Seeds also offer a great deal of choice and you can purchase a specific lettuce or a mixed packet which gives you an assortment of salad leaves throughout the whole season. However, be careful not to sow the seeds all at once as there are generally around 1000 seeds in a packet. So unless you want a slimy mess – less is more!

An easy option for those unfamiliar with growing from seed, Yates Fusion range of seeds ensures a great crop of mixed greens. Ideal for planting containers, the seeds are combined in special clay pellets. Each pellet contains an interesting mix of lettuce varieties that will all germinate at the same time. The packet advises how many pellets you need for the size of your container.


Growing your greens in your garden is the freshest possible way to make sure that often maligned portion on the plate is elevated to the star of meal, and the cry ‘Eat your greens’ will be an invitation willingly accepted by everyone at the table. All year round.

,For the best nutrition and flavour,

pick leaves fresh for each meal rather than storing them in the fridge.

TIP: Mix herbs and lettuces for colourful displays in pots.

Yates ‘Fusion’ mix

20 go gardening spring




n what is a New Zealand first, and quite possibly a world first, Bay of Plenty based incredible edibles® nursery releases a novel new plant this spring. Potato Tom™ produces a crop of sweet and juicy ‘Gardener’s Delight’

tomatoes, followed by a crop of your favourite ‘Agria’ potatoes. Andrew Boylan, general manager of incredible edibles® says that the idea of grafting a tomato with a potato isn’t new; because potatoes and tomatoes are in the same plant family, a tomato will happily grow on the roots of a potato. But he believes this could be the first time anyone has succeeded at a commercial level. “Potato Tom™ is the perfect combination that produces a good crop of both potatoes and beautiful cherry tomatoes. You get tomatoes in summer, potatoes in autumn.” “We aim to bring new and exciting edible plants and ideas to the market on a regular basis,” says Andrew, adding that shrinking urban spaces mean multifunctional plants are increasingly in demand. Available in garden centres from late September. Find out more at

se a Choo ot and y sp , sunn in fertile t plan ost comp oil s rich




Tomatoes and potatoes on the same plant? For real!


Anyone who has grown tomatoes can grow a Potato Tom™. Treat and grow it as a tomato. As the crop of tomatoes grows the Agria potatoes are developing below. Once the tomatoes are all harvested, it is simply a case of digging up the potatoes. As with any tomato, it pays to avoid frosts. Choose a sunny spot and plant in fertile, compost rich soil or growing media. Stake and train as normal. Good news for apartment dwellers, Potato Tom™ also grows happily in a large container.

TIP: For best results, feed Potato Tom™ with Dalton’s incredible edibles® Potato Fertiliser and add Dalton’s Vegetable Mix to the soil (or your container) prior to planting.

Look for these plants at a Go Gardening Garden Centre near you. To locate stockists go to 21



ON THE SNAIL TRAIL Slugs and snails must be spring’s most despicable garden pests. Sarah O’Neil considers her options.


he garden is a dangerous place for young seedlings. The biggest threat comes from terrible creatures with their hearts set on devouring our precious seedlings. Slugs and snails, with their slimy icky bodies are no friend in the garden. There are many ways of keeping your plants safe from these pests. Some are a guaranteed success, others have been tried and tested and shown to be mostly reliable. Others seem hit-and-miss at best. Personally I don’t want to risk my crop on something that may not work, so I always reach for the little blue pellets – namely Yates Blitzem. To prevent the chickens or other animals from eating them or my seedlings, I put wire netting around my crop. If you are concerned about other creatures, put pellets in an upturned ice cream container with little doorways cut into it and remove the dead snail bodies first thing each morning. There are also pellets available that are safe for pets and wildlife. Try Tui Quash Slug & Snail Stoppa. If you want to try something more natural, there are alternative methods that have varying degrees of success.

22 go gardening spring

Hunting and gathering: This is

Copper: If you wrap a 5cm strip of

best done at night with a torch as this is when slugs and snails are most active. What you do with them once you catch them depends on how brave you are. If you aren’t too squeamish you can squish them quickly and firmly so they don’t see it coming; or you could feed them to the chooks. I wouldn’t recommend over the fence as the neighbours won’t be pleased and I have heard of a study where the snails were marked and taken away from the garden at varying distances and many actually came back.

copper around your pot, raised bed or plant, when the slug and snail slime comes in contact with the copper an electrical charge is created and they get a zap. This appears to have mixed results as once the copper oxidises it isn’t as effective and slugs and snails are quite cunning and will find a way around or over it.

Planking: Put a plank down in the garden for them to hide under after a hard night of eating your plants and all you need to do is lift the plank in the morning and pick them off and dispose of them as you will.

Beer: Slugs and snails love a good party and are drawn to beer like moths to a flame. Take an old margarine container and bury it in your garden so it is level with the surface and fill it with beer. In the morning the container will be filled with drowned snails - as if the party had been advertised on Facebook! Crushed eggshells: This is a popular technique. The theory is that slugs and snail’s soft bellies get all torn up on the sharp edges and they don’t like the way it feels, however I have seen pictures of snails crawling over razor blades so I’m not completely convinced about this one.

Salt: Sprinkling salt about can kill them quickly, however use it sparingly as you can make your soil hostile for your plants.

Coffee grinds: Many people swear by coffee grounds as a way of deterring slugs and snails, and caffeine has proven to be toxic to them, however there is uncertainty how effective this actually is with used coffee grounds. They do make fabulous mulch and will make your plants happy if they survive being eaten. Wool: The latest thing overseas for keeping slugs away is sheep wool pellets, which apparently irritate the slug and have the added benefit of providing slow release nutrients to the growing plants. Whatever method you chose, it is most satisfying to see your plants grow past the vulnerable stage and give you beautiful flowers or something delicious to eat. Don’t let these pests prevent you from reaping the rewards of your hard work in the garden.

Brilliant Garden Stars Michelia ‘Inspiration’ PVR

An upright, dense flowering shrub or small tree. Masses of fragrant porcelain-like flowers in mid spring. Ideal for smaller gardens

Jasminium ‘Southern Stars’ PVR Large white fragrant flowers with a pink blush. Easy to grow . Excellent hedging or espalie r against wall or fence.

Available from most Garden Centres


w ith s t r sta



Bana na

Pink Julip

Dark C herry

lour it in... o C Available now from all good garden retailers

real gardeners

Bringing the outdoors in

Sue Linn finds a beautiful Nelson garden designed to be enjoyed as much from indoors as out.


drienne Lorimer has cultivated a number of different gardens over the years, some of them quite large. But when she and husband Duncan moved from Christchurch to sunny Nelson, their vision was clear. “Now that we’re

getting older, we wanted a small, easy care garden”, says Adrienne. As well as a new garden, they were building a brand new house and were able to make the most of the opportunities that come from starting from scratch. For example, as Adrienne explains, “When the house

was in the design stage we decided to have windows down to the floor in the downstairs rooms so it would feel like we were almost in the garden.” Although the top level of their two-storied house gives them the most panoramic views, Adrienne and Duncan decided they wanted 25

real gardeners

their living room and master bedroom suite to be downstairs, for easier living if the stairs became an inconvenience. Their downstairs view of sea, sky and hills forms an idyllic backdrop to Adrienne and Duncan’s colourful and beautifully maintained garden. And it seems that every window frames a pictureperfect scene. “We do enjoy looking out at the garden from most of the windows in the house, and love the sea view that changes all the time with the tides.” Adrienne has chosen a planting scheme of mainly green, white, soft yellows and blues to complement the view rather than distract from it. There are occasional splashes of colour such as her deep apricot ‘Sunny Honey’ and ‘Mutabilis’ roses. Pathways and pots are in soft natural colours.


To help them with the garden layout, the couple consulted landscape designer, Nigel Monk, who drew up the plan for the garden and also implemented it. They’d planned to do all the work themselves but Adrienne had a hip replacement just weeks after they shifted into the house and, “Once we saw Nigel and his assistant doing all the hard work we realised such heavy work was beyond us”, she says. The landscapers leveled the section for the lawn and put in the retaining rock wall. They also built a raised vege garden, installed the trellis fences, and laid the path and lawn edgings. A couple of steps up from the pea gravel pathway on the east side of the house lies a flat area of lawn. How do they keep it so

smooth and green? “The lawn was readylawn so it looked good from day one,” tells Adrienne. “We strive to keep it well watered in the summer. To keep on top of dandelions and other weeds we both spray and dig them out with a special tool we got from Mitre 10. Duncan also puts lawn fertiliser on every year”. The garden is now four years old and they’re delighted with it, even though Adrienne agrees there are some concessions you have to make when you’re a keen gardener with less space than you’ve enjoyed in the past. “I think with a smaller site you have to identify your favourite plants and try to limit the number of different species.” If she had more space she’d grow her favourite hydrangeas and favourite trees such as dogwood and variegated elm.

Previous page: Flower Carpet roses border the main pathway. Below, from left: Neighbours Rachael, Greer and Tash are regular visitors in Adrienne and Duncan’s garden. Sheltering the garden seat are black flax and other wind hardy natives; Adrienne and Duncan enjoy watching the birds bathing from their living room window; Adrienne and Greer with Mutabilis rose.

26 go gardening spring

“Also you need to make sure your plants are appropriate for the growing conditions of the site,”, stresses Adrienne. The soil is poor and with hindsight they wish they had brought in a big load of topsoil when the garden was laid out. “It didn’t occur to us until after it was all done!” she confesses.


As well as imperfect soil, they have wind to contend with. “Because we are very exposed it has limited our choices in plants, trees especially. I would have loved to have had lots of maple trees but they don’t do well up here in the wind.” Mainly, they have planted native trees, such as Pittosporum, Griselinia and pukas, which are doing well. Three ‘Little Gem’ magnolias are also doing well, although as Adrienne explains, “when it’s very wet in the winter we get a lot of runoff from the section behind us, which causes the magnolias to drop more leaves.” In summer they have the opposite problem when the garden gets very dry and Adrienne spends a lot of time watering. An automatic watering system would help, she notes. “We are lucky that

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real gardeners Cleverly designed raised vege beds have wide edges at a comfortable height for sitting.



hedges, Faster than imbing trellis with cl tively ac plants attr areas y lit ti u screen rden and divide ga rooms.

28 go gardening spring

we installed a tank to collect the roof water so we always have that to use on the garden and I don’t feel like I am using up the natural resources”. Low maintenance was an important part of the design brief for this garden, but Adrienne and Duncan enjoy the time they spend in it. Duncan does the lawns and any heavy work while Adrienne does most of the planting and general maintenance. “We have bark mulch on all the garden beds so weeds are easy to keep under control. I pick out weeds when I see them as I walk around the garden. Apart from early spring and late autumn the garden doesn’t take much time to keep, but I do like just pottering around in it to keep it tidy.”

A raised vege garden is nestled neatly behind a fence in a sunny corner of the garden. They love the fact that the raised beds make it so easy to plant, cultivate and harvest. “We grow lettuces year round and cherry tomatoes in the summer. We also usually have perpetual spinach growing, as it does very well and is handy to have. We grow radishes, dwarf beans and strawberries. This year we have also planted leeks and celery, which are just about ready to harvest.” Adrienne says she finds gardening very relaxing, adding “there is also a lot of pleasure gained from looking out the window and marveling at the things each season brings – for example the tulips, cherry blossom and the michelias in spring!”

Nemesia ‘Raspberries and Cream’

Nemesia ‘Blueberry Ripple’

30 go gardening spring

Larger flowers and more compact growth make Nemesias better than ever!

Nemesia ‘Strawberry Ripple’

Nemesia ‘Berries and Cream’

Nemesias are savoured as the entrée to a spring cottage garden with those magical first blooms, now bigger and more fragrant than ever!


emesias originate from the sandy coastal regions of South Africa. Their ‘cheeky little faces’ appear on mass from late winter to early spring, quickly forming a delightful carpet of soft mauves, blues and pinks. As one of the earliest perennials to flower, they are valued for their ability to quickly transform the barren post-winter garden with colour and fragrance. UK breeder Martine Tellwright has dedicated much of her life to breeding nemesias with larger flowers, and more compact growth.

The new fragrant ‘Berry Delight’ nemesias are the spectacular results of this breeding program. The creamy bi-colours are a breakthrough colour combination, not seen before in perennial nemesias. The plants were also selected for exceptional hardiness and form. Ideal as ground covers, ‘Berry Delight’ nemesias quickly spread to form a colourful mat approximately 60cm across. With adequate watering, they are also spectacular in hanging baskets and pots. Nemesias thrive in light, moist and well-drained soils in full sun and will benefit from the addition of compost and fertiliser to fuel their extreme flowering performance and support longterm health. These hardy and easy care perennials have very few pest or disease problems making them very suitable for the gardener preferring a ‘no fuss’ plant. Flowering does continue with these new hybrids for an extended period well into spring. For more information visit


BERRY DELIGHT Nemesia ‘Raspberries and Cream’

Nemesia ‘Strawberry Ripple’

CARE TIPS ,Keep moist but ensure good

drainage and friable soil

,Compost and slow release fertilisers will assist optimum flowering performance ,Avoid intense afternoon sun as

nemesias prefer morning sun

,Keep moist but ensure good

drainage and friable soil

,Prune by half and apply a slow

Nemesia ‘Blueberry Ripple’


release fertiliser after flowering to maintain vigour 31

practical advice

TIME SAVERS A garden is a place to relax and unwind. If yours sometimes feels more like the opposite, here are twelve ways you can make your garden less time consuming.


Start well. Before

planting, prepare the ground thoroughly and be sure to get rid of all perennial weeds, especially if you are planting groundcovers. For effective weed eradication on larger areas, glysophate (aka Roundup) is one of the best time savers we have. For difficult woody weeds ask advice at your garden centre or go to


Cover the ground

with mulch or mat forming plants to keep the weeds down and conserve water. Top up with organic mulch every spring.

3 4

Choose plants

that love your

soil and climate.

Select disease resistant varieties for an ever-healthy

garden that never needs to be sprayed. For example, if you like roses, consider disease resistant Flower Carpet roses. Read more on page 48.


Plant mainly trees and shrubs. As their roots grow

deeper into the ground, trees and shrubs grow more and more self sufficient with age, surviving the summer with little or no water. Take care to choose those that will not outgrow their space in your time frame.


Patience pays. Beware of plants that grow so quickly that they need constant trimming or replacing after a short time. Plant mostly slow growing evergreens that only need trimming once every few years if at all.


Raise the height of garden beds, especially vege beds. This not only makes for easier maintenance, but also improves drainage.


Invest in quality tools


Grow flowering annuals in pots instead of garden

and maintain them well. Many garden centres offer a tool sharpening service.

beds. A few big pots are easier to care for than lots of little ones.


Invest in hard surfaces. A well-

designed and constructed patio or deck takes a lot less work than an expanse of lawn.


Install a watering system, ideally with a

timer. It will help save water, as well as time.


Keep it simple.

When designing a garden, avoid complicated wiggly edges. Straight lines and bold sweeping curves are easier to maintain. Small areas of lawn that are tricky to access may be less work if mass planted in easy-care groundcovers.

32 go gardening spring



r o f Ask xtra E % 50

New Guinea Impatiens • New bold and bright colours • Large showy flowers and disease resistant • Perfect for tubs or pretty borders in the garden

Makes 120 watering cans of plant food at the same cost of 80 watering cans of plant food

Plant now and enjoy continuous flowering from spring until the first frost.

Available at all leading garden retailers

• All purpose soluble food for a healthy garden and lawns • Use on all indoor and outdoor plants • 4 convenient sizes

Available mid September

Ask for Phostrogen at your local garden retailer

KIDS Grow a

er Call h all him iet, c ver Harr . Whate s ’ y Harr name, it a the to have g goin ry head! hai

You will need


e-high’) • Sock or stockings (ask mum for a ‘kne eyes • Things to decorate your head such as mix • Lawn seed • A jar • Soil or potting

1 Decorate your sock lawn seed 2

or stocking with eyes and other bits

and pieces.

in the sock end and then fill it with Put some until the face is soil, potting mix or compost. Fill the sock a knot in the filled out and the mix is packed tightly. Tie end of the stocking. filled with water Hang your sock or stocking over a jar . and leave it inside in a sunny, warm place


34 go gardening spring

In a week or so, your Harriet or Harry will have green hair! And give them a haircut if you find strange hair growing out of their nose or eye!

Get snapping for our


photo competition!

For a faster growing hairy head, use empty, clean eggshells and cress seed. Simply decorate or draw a face on the shell and put it in an eggcup. Put in a little bit of cotton wool or tissue and then carefully put some soil or potting mix in. Sprinkle the cress seed on top and water lightly. In a few days, your head will have some hair!


Egg head!

We’d see whalove to been upt you’ve in your to you gar at homeden .

The hair gets long quickly but that’s no problem – just cut it off and eat it!

What do plants need to grow? Unscramble each of the clue words. Copy the letters in the numbered cells to other cells with the same number.







age, contact details and a description of what’s in the photo to by Tuesday 1 October 2013.


O 1

O 2

Y 3





Well then grab your camera and start looking around your garden for some interesting, beautiful or downright strange plants, flowers, or creatures. Or if you’ve got your own garden, take a snap and let us know what you’ve planted. Anything goes – just use your imagination!

, Email us your photo, your



Fancy yourself as a photographer?




We’ll select two of the best entries and the photos will be published in the summer issue of Go Gardening. Each winner will receive a $50 Go Gardening gift card to spend at your Go Gardening centre. 35

Kiwi icon For the first New Zealanders it was indispensible; used in clothing, shelter, for catching and storing food, and as medicine. In the early 1900s its fibre was one of our most important exports. These days flax endures as one of our most important plants, in the fine art of weaving, in our natural environment - and in our gardens.

36 go gardening spring



he main difference between flax now and flax a hundred years ago is the explosion of different colours and forms, so unique and beautiful that they are sought after by gardeners all over the world. In the wild there are two main species. Phormium tenax (harakeke or swamp flax) reaches two or three metres tall, its stiff upright leaves and flower spikes rising as high as five metres. This is the flax used in maori weaving. It is also the one to plant if you have wet ground or want to plant a shelter that doubles as a bird magnet. The towering flower spikes attract tui and other nectar seeking birds. Phormium cookianum (wharariki or mountain flax) is shorter in stature with long twisted seed capsules. In the wild, two quite distinct forms of this species exist; one with weeping foliage, the other with stiff foliage. Phormium cookianum typically grows in coastal and mountain areas. These native species have donated their genes to today’s countless modern cultivars. The main focus in recent times has been on increasing the range of colourful little flaxes suitable for our smaller gardens. Smaller flaxes also make fantastic container plants. With so many colourful varieties, it’s hard go past flax for year-round colour. Use it as an accent, for mass planting on difficult slopes, for large pots and in mixed shrub plantings to invite more birds into your garden. Generally, the smaller cookianum types prefer well drained soil and are the most

tolerant of dry conditions. They’re also best for windy sites. Tall Phormium texax can suffer from shredded leaves in heavy wind. On the other hand, it is useful for soaking up excess moisture, including fluid from septic tanks. For small gardens in need of a plain green flax, Phormium cookianum ‘Green Dwarf’ is superb. Just 75cm tall, it has stiff upright foliage and beautiful yellow flowers, great for picking.

From left to right: Phormium ‘Jester’, Phormium ‘Yellow Wave’, Phormium ‘Rainbow Chief’ 37

Textured Foliage Effects


Heuchera ‘Apple Crisp’

Heuchera ‘Marmalade’

Heuchera ‘Obsidian’

Heucherella ‘Alabama Sunrise’

Living Fashion Available at your garden centre or by mail

38 go gardening spring

QR Scan with your smart phone for our full Heuchera range (requires QR Reader download from your App Store)


MAKING THE MOST OF FLAX For best colour and healthy compact growth, plant , in full sun.

Most of the low growing, colourful flaxes prefer well , drained soils.

Avoid very sheltered locations to minimize pests ,

such as scale insect and mealy bug. An insecticide mixed with spraying oil is an effective control for these pests. Mixing in detergent or spray fixing agent will help it stick. Alternatively remove pests with a soft brush and soapy water.

Bronze-red ‘Sweet Mist’ used here as a border, is one of the most compact flaxes available.

Most flax varieties are fairly frost hardy. If they are ,

damaged by frost, refrain from removing the burned outer leaves until the risk of frost has passed.

Water young plants in dry spells and feed in spring , with slow release fertiliser.

To keep flax tidy, cut old foliage cleanly from ,

the base with a sharp knife. Plain green growth appearing on coloured varieties should be removed before it takes over.

Lift and divide every few years to keep flax plants , looking fresh.

HOW TO LIFT AND DIVIDE FLAX Spring is a good time to rejuvenate flax plants and propagate more plants for your garden by lifting and dividing. Ideally it is done every few years. You’ll need a strong spade, a good sharp knife and bit of brute strength. First dig up the entire plant. Then divide it into sections, each with some roots and a fan of foliage. Don’t worry if you break some roots. They’re very tough. Trim long or damaged roots and trim the foliage by about half to make a fan shape. Replant into good, compost-enriched soil and water well.

From left to right: Phormium ‘Evening Glow’; Phormium ‘Green Dwarf’; Phormium ‘Veneer’; Phormium ‘Dark Delight’ 39

trees and shrubs

Spring in bloom

40 go gardening spring

Fairy Magnolia ‘Blush’

Eagerly anticipated, exciting and colourful, spring is one big glamorous party with superstar guests in very best dress.


he early arrivers come in all shapes and guises – from the elegant michelias with their evocative fragrance, to the dazzling brilliance of magnolias, rhododendrons and bridal white viburnums. It’s a party worth celebrating as it only comes round once a year; every garden deserves at least one showy flowering tree or shrub to welcome the new season. If the flowering of some seems all too brief, remember there is an upside; generally the shorter the season, the more spectacular the display. And like the best fireworks it’s one worth waiting for. A long-living tree or shrub is an investment you should only have to plant once. Pick one to suit your climate and site then plant it with care, and it’ll bloom bigger and brighter with each passing spring, providing flowers for picking, as well as food for the birds and bees.



Magnolias are among the gardening world’s most famous flowering trees and there is one to fit almost every garden. Rounded shrubs just 2m tall, the star magnolias (Magnolia x soulangeana) are a good option for compact gardens. The saucer magnolias (Magnolia soulangeana varieties) are

Left: Magnolia x soulangeana

also relatively small trees, with an elegant low-branching framework smothered in white, pink or rosy purple tulip flowers. The Jurys of Taranaki are recognised internationally for their work with magnolias and have brought us a range of compact and very showy magnolias, such as ‘Apollo’, ‘Milky Way’ and ‘Vulcan’, deciduous trees which bloom at a young age. One of today’s favourite evergreens, Michelia yunnanensis (aka Magnolia laevifolia) is especially stunning in September, when its masses of fuzzy brown buds release fragrant creamy-white flowers. This elegant shaped shrub (or small tree) has dark green leaves with russet brown velvet undersides. Michelia yunnanensis makes a beautiful hedge and grows well in sun or shade, although at least half-day sun is recommended for best flowering. The species cross-pollinates easily, which means we have a range of cultivars to choose from, all with cream flowers, but offering subtle differences in form and foliage.


Recently, botanists reclassified the plant genus Michelia as Magnolia. For now, most nurseries are sticking with the name Michelia. Whatever you call them, these beautiful flowering evergreens are increasingly sought after for their mass of spring flowers, attractive foliage and extremely versatile form. They’re extensively used as small feature trees, as hedges, for topiary and in containers. The last few

years have seen the release of some excellent new varieties, including the ‘Fairy Magnolias’, bred in New Zealand at Jury’s nursery. Today’s choice includes ‘Fairy Blush’, ‘Fairy White’ and ‘Fairy Cream’. These extremely free flowering varieties offer quick but very compact growth, ideal for trimming and shaping as topiary or hedges.

trees and shrubs


Left: Fairy Magnolia ‘Cream’ Below: A cool climate rhododendron Bottom: A sub-tropical Vireya rhododendron


Flamboyantly dressed in almost every imaginable colour, rhododendrons and azaleas are among spring’s most glittering shrubs. They hail from misty mountain habitats where the air is cool and moist, and their roots are frequently washed by rain trickling through rich porous soil. In New Zealand these needs are most famously met in Taranaki, Manawatu, and Otago. Despite their prevalence in big rambling parks and botanic gardens, they’re not just for large gardens. Compact rhododendrons (which include azaleas) are perfect for small gardens too. The sub-tropical vireya rhododendrons thrive in our warmer humid regions. They make fantastic container plants with thick shiny leaves and waxy flowers. Having evolved near the equator where the daylight hours are constant, vireya rhododendrons can flower at any time of year.

RHODO TIPS , Plant in part shade. Improve drainage on heavier soils , by planting in raised beds or on a slope.

Keep roots cool and moist under a , layer of organic mulch. Rhododendrons have fine roots that grow close to the soil surface and are very prone to drying out.

Water regularly in the early years , and during dry weather.

Feed in spring with slow release ,

fertiliser or blood and bone. Avoid lime. 43

KIWI Gold Pseudopanax ‘Moa’s Toes’

Choisya ‘White Dazzler’

Helleborus ‘Ivory Prince’

Cordyline ‘Chocomint’

Acacia ‘Limelight’

Laurus ‘Pride of Providence’

Lomandra ‘Lime Wave’

Weigelia ‘Wine & Roses’

Latest in colour, texture and style proudly grown by Robinsons Nursery

Shrubs that sit stark and leafless through winter are some of spring’s most spectacular. Although some will grow quite large, these old fashioned lovelies deserve to be planted more often and they are easily contained with a trim after flowering. The deciduous viburnums have the X factor in early spring and are often supremely fragrant. Viburnum carlesii and similar Viburnum x burkwoodii are irresistibly fragrant early bloomers. Later in spring the beloved snowball tree, Viburnum opulus ‘Sterile’ comes into bloom, a real show stopper with its showy balls of lime green to cream. The pink snowball tree, Viburnum plicatum ‘Roseace’ produces pink flushed snowballs and deeply veined dark green leaves with a bronze-purple tint. Viburnums like moist well-drained

soil. They need plenty of sun to flower well, but in a hot climate are best with part day shade. Other deciduous gems include Stachyurus, Forsythia and vibrant orange and gold deciduous azaleas, which are also fragrant. For an early season spectacle on a smaller scale consider Weigela, Spiraea, or Deutzias. In a cool climate, many of these shrubs also have colourful autumn foliage.

For the bees – Viburnum – Escallonia – Pyracantha – Lavender – Hebe – Chaenomeles (flowering quince) – Camellias

trees and shrubs


Clockwise from top: Viburnum carlesii; snowball tree; pink snowball tree. 45

trees and shrubs

For native birds – Kowhai – Kakabeak – NZ Flax – Protea – Banksia – Callistemon (bottlebrush) – Grevillea


Spring is show time for some of our most colourful flowering natives. Kowhai (Sophora) make lovely trees for small gardens, especially if you want to attract native birds. If space is limited consider the very compact Sophora ‘Dragons’ Gold’. Beautiful kakabeak (Clianthus puniceus) drips with bright red, pink or white flowers in spring. Although it can be quite short lived, this endangered native shrub is well worth planting, both for its spring colour and the tui and bellbird it attracts. Its sprawling habit can be kept in check with pruning after flowering. For colourful flowering natives less than a metre tall, select from the huge range of hebes (be sure to choose a variety to suit your climate) or try a beautiful red rata (Metrosideros carminea).


Proteas and their close cousins, the Leucospermums are some of spring’s most impressive shrubs with flowers that are prized for picking. They grow well in coastal gardens and on slopes. They need very free draining soils because their highly evolved roots are extremely efficient at absorbing water and nutrients. While relatively frost hardy once established, most members of the protea family need protection from frost when young. Regular pruning from a young age encourages a strong bushy structure, but take care as most do not recover if you prune back into wood without leaves.

For the vase

Left: Kowhai Below left: Hebe ‘Heebie Jeebies’ Below right: Leucospermum

46 go gardening spring

– Protea – Leucadendron – Leucospermum – Banksia – Camellia – Magnolia

sized portions. Most children will eat more fruit if it is small, or cut up for them.

We know it’s good for them, but getting children excited about fresh fruit can be trying. One time-honoured approach is to think bite-sized portions for pintsized people. These colourful new mini fruits from Waimea Nurseries are childfriendly, tasty and easy to grow - perfect for a family garden.



ENCOURAGING KIDS TO EAT MORE FRUIT , Don’t overwhelm them with over-

, Keep a bowl of fruit on the kitchen table for easy snacks.

, Slice fresh fruits onto breakfast cereals or pancakes.

, Make your own fresh fruit ice-blocks as treats.

, Arrange colourful fruit on a ‘miniplatter’ for afternoon tea.

, Look for dwarf trees that produce fruit in easy reach.


, Let your child choose a fruit tree to plant in the garden.

CUTE NEW MINIATURE ‘THUMBELINA®’ APPLES Grown especially for kids by Waimea Nurseries, the new ‘Thumbelina™’ range of apples are perfectly sized for small hands. Golden Crunch and Ruby Crunch are sweet, crisp and juicy with brightly coloured skins. They are a quarter of the size of regular apples. And the trees are grafted onto dwarfing rootstocks, so the fruit is easily reached. The fruit is sweet and ready for eating when the tree has dropped its leaves in late autumn, leaving the fruit on the tree like bright decorations. In spring these highly decorative little trees put on a pretty display of pink and white blossom.

FLATTO PEACHES Kids can’t resist novelty, colour and cuteness. The Flatto™ range is loved by kids and adults alike, being easy to eat and virtually unsquashable in the lunch box. What’s more, the stone is easily removed by pushing the center of the fruit. Flatto™ includes both peaches and nectarines, which ripen in mid to late February. All put on a spectacular display of spring blossom. These varieties and many others grown by Waimea Nurseries are available from garden retailers nationwide. Waimea Nurseries is one of New Zealand’s leading fruit tree nurseries, with a large repertoire of new varieties sourced from around the world. For more information about these and many more fruit tree varieties go to

Below: Thumbelina® Golden Crunch, Thumbelina® Ruby Crunch, Flatto™ Peach

PROUDLY GROWN BY WAIMEA NURSERIES, NELSON Look for these plants at a Go Gardening Garden Centre near you. To locate stockists go to 47


A ROSE OF OUR TIME Two decades after the original Flower Carpet ‘Pink’ started a rose revolution, the world is still in love with Flower Carpet roses. Global sales now exceed 75 million plants.

Flower Carpet ‘Amber’ 48 go gardening spring

Flower Carpet ‘White’

NEW Flower Carpet ‘Pink Splash’


his spring sees the New Zealand release of the ninth Flower Carpet Rose variety. Also this spring, the two millionth Flower Carpet Rose will be sold in New Zealand - a good time to reflect on the history of a phenomenally successful line of roses. The Flower Carpet story starts back in the eighties when Australian nurseryman, Anthony Tesselaar was introduced to German rose breeder Werner Noak. Many years earlier, the insightful rose breeder had sensed that easy care, disease resistant plants were the way of the future. His work produced that first hot pink rose and laid the foundation for all the other Flower Carpet varieties that followed. It was Anthony Tesselaar who took the Flower Carpet Rose to the world. “When we saw it, we knew enough to understand it would be a great rose. What we never anticipated was the tens of millions of roses that would be sold,” says Anthony. Looking back, he attributes that huge success to a great rose coinciding with perfect timing. “I remember the era before Flower Carpet Roses, when gardeners were focused on the bloom but not so concerned if the plant itself was a beast to grow. They were used to this and they had the time and knowledge to deal with the necessary pruning and spraying of traditional roses. But the next generation had little time for romantic, high-maintenance plants, so when the first Flower Carpet Rose arrived on the scene – a rose that declared itself to be easy care – people absolutely embraced it.” Flower Carpet Roses more than lived up to their claims: They grew like rockets, covered themselves in gorgeous flowers and they didn’t need to be sprayed. They could be crudely hacked back with the hedge trimmers to fill out again beautifully in spring and thrived surprisingly harsh conditions. And as a result, gardeners have kept coming back for more.

New release


Find out more at


Eagerly awaited Flower Carpet® ‘Pink Splash’ arrives in garden centres this October. Like all Flower Carpet Roses, this spectacular bi-colour is a low maintenance, disease resistant and very long flowering shrub with dense glossy foliage. Versatile Flower Carpet Roses are ideal for mass planting, or as colour accents in garden borders or pots.

Available this SPRING at all leading Garden Centres

NOTICE BOARD Food, fashion and fun at the Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular Flowers aren’t the only colourful things planned for this year’s Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular. Visitors can also enjoy comedians, spring fashion, and celebrity chefs. For serious gardeners, there’ll be guest speakers on numerous topics from alternative gardening systems to floral design, and guided walks through some of the 46 premier gardens. For the not so serious gardeners, TV gardening comedian Te Radar will speak on the humorous side of New Zealand Masterchef 2010 winner, giving up city comforts for the country Brett McGregor will be sharing his passion life. Art is also on the agenda with for food at the Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular. Govett Brewster Art Gallery’s artist-inresidence, Reuben Paterson, hosting “High Tea” at Boxwood Garden. “We’re aiming to appeal to a broader cross-section of the community,” says festival manager, Lisa Ekdahl. “Gardens are places we like to play, enjoy food and good company – as well as superb garden environments.” November 1-10, 2013. Find out more at

A world of roses comes to Palmerston North This year Palmerston North will host The World Federation Rose Convention, at Arena 2 in Pascal Street. The show will open to the public from 1 to 5pm on Saturday 23rd and 9.30am – 4pm on Sunday 24th November. Visitors will be treated to displays by New Zealand and international exhibitors, including a display of old fashioned roses by Heritage Roses New Zealand (Inc). There will also be displays of floral art, quilting and rose stamps. November 23-24, 2013. Find out more at

WEEDBUSTERS GOOD BULBS, BAD BULBS! Spring is here! Daffodils and freesias are welcomed for their end of winter cheer. But you might also find some undesirable bulbs poking their heads above the ground: Montbretia (Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora) sends up stalks of pretty bright orange flowers in summer and reproduces itself both by corm division and (less frequently) by seed. Other baddies include stinking iris (Iris foetidissima), yellow flag iris (Iris pseudacorus) and Aristea ecklonii. Common Agapanthus praecox is one of the most concerning bulbous weeds in northern regions. The best way to stop weedy bulbs spreading is to ensure that the plants don’t set seed. Also, take care when disposing of bulbs, corms, and rhizomes that can grow into new plants. Find more about these weeds and others at

50 go gardening spring


Spring Diary Sept, Oct, Nov Dunedin Botanic Garden’s 150th anniversary. Sept 14-15

North Island National Daffodil Show, Gisborne Showgrounds. Find out more on page 54.

Sept 15 Bee beginnings, Tupare gardens, New Plymouth. Sept 28-29 South Island National Daffodil Show,

Nelson. Find out more on page 54.

29 Sept - 6 Oct Spring Festival at Wellington Botanic Gardens. Oct 25-26 NZ Edible Garden Show Hastings Show Grounds.

Nov 1-10

Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular.

Nov 7-10

Nelmac Garden Marlborough.

Nov 8-11

NZ Iris Society Convention Timaru.

Nov 9-10

The Gisborne Garden & Arts Festival.

Nov 9-10

Jassy Dean Garden Safari, Waiheke Island.

Nov 9-10

Palmers Planet Mangawhai Garden Ramble.

Nov 11-17

Nelson Growables Garden Week.

Nov 16-17 Auckland Garden DesignFest.

Nov 16-17 Coromandel gardens, arts and crafts. Ph 078668563 email:

Nov 23-24

The World Federation Rose Convention Palmerston North.

Nov 28-Dec 1 Timaru Festival of Roses.

Nov 30 Great Barrier Island Spectacular by Nature Garden Tour.

1-10 November 2013 For a free programme call 0800 746 363 or visit

Gardens to visit: , EVENT PARTNER

Is your school garden New Zealand’s best? The Tui School Garden Challenge is an annual competition to find the best school garden in New Zealand. We want to see schools growing and learning then sharing the results with their communities. The last date for entry is October 29. Find out more on page 33 or go to







This season’s spectacular new petunias from Zealandia are early and continuous flowering in breakthrough colours. Petunia ‘Twilight’ and ‘Blue a Fuse’ will add instant brilliance to outdoor containers, and are covered in bloom all summer long. Read more on page 6. We have three boxes of Zealandia petunias to give away, valued at $100 per box. Each box contains ten plants. See entry details on following page.


This 100% organic, non-toxic, Bio-gro certified product range is a breakthrough in the fight against diseases such as damping-off and root rot. It protects seeds and plants the natural way, by strengthening the plant’s immune system. Daltons Organic Bio-Fungicide Powder comes in two formulas; a wettable powder for initial planting, and a granular form for ongoing protection. Find out more at We have five prize packs, valued at $50 each to give away. Each pack contains one Daltons Organic Bio-Fungicide Powder and one Daltons Organic Bio-Fungicide Granules. See entry details on following page.

WIN PHOSTROGEN PLANT FOOD Phostrogen All Purpose Plant Food in the

800g box with 50% extra makes 120 watering cans of plant food for the price of 80! This time proven multi-purpose plant food is ideal for flowers and veges in the garden or in containers. We have six 800g packs valued at $22.95 each to give away. See entry details on following page.

Share the love of gardening on


Faceboo Competi k tions coming


Simply go to and click on 52 go gardening spring



Made from high quality polished stainless steel with solid oak handles, Joseph Bentley tools have the look and feel of the good old days. The range includes trowels, spades, secateurs, forks, snips and more. All carry a lifetime guarantee.

Yates celebrates 130 years in New Zealand with the latest edition of

We have one Joseph Bentley Grow and Gather pack valued at $55 to give away. The pack contains a hand fork and trowel plus a Joseph Bentley trug as featured on page 5. See entry details below.

Yates Garden Guide, New Zealand’s most comprehensive, reliable and practical gardening book, with over one million copies sold.


This special anniversary edition features a pictorial history of Yates and a new chapter about changes in garden design over the last century, to inspire heritage traditions in the modern garden, as well as a completely revised chapter on New Zealand native plants. Fully illustrated, this book contains everything you need to know about growing trees, shrubs, vines, flowers, vegetables, herbs and fruit. We have four copies of the 78th Yates Garden Guide, valued at $50 to give away. See right for entry details.

Spring is a great time to sow a new lawn or revamp tired turf. Tui Superstrike Lawn Seed is specially treated for speedy germination within seven days. We have five lawn care packs valued at $41 each to give away. Each pack contains one 750g pack of Tui Superstrike Lawnseed, plus one 3kg pack of Tui Lawn Fertiliser. See below for entry details.


Choose one of three ways to be in to win any of the prizes on these pages: 1. ENTER ONLINE at OR 2. EMAIL with the name of the product you wish to win in the subject line. Please include your name, city, phone number and email address, OR 3. ENTRY BOX: write which prize you wish to win, followed by your name, physical address, telephone number and email address on the back of an envelope and drop it in a Go Gardening Entry Box at your nearest Go Gardening retailer. ENTRIES CLOSE on Sunday October 20, 2013 and must be received by NGINZ not later than Thursday October 24, 2013.

Be in to WIN $500


Simply fill in the entry form below and drop it into the entry box next time you shop at a Go Gardening retailer. The lucky winner receives a Go Gardening Gift Card to the value of $250, and five runners up receive cards worth $50 each. Visit to find your nearest retailer.

Enter now! The last day for entry is Sunday 20th October 2013. For terms and conditions go to Title:

First Name:

Family Name:

Address: Phone: Mobile: Email address: Name the Garden Centre where you received your copy of Go Gardening: Please tick here if you do not wish to receive any further correspondence. 53

CLIPPINGS 

Read it


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Now you can read Go Gardening online on your iPad, tablet or computer. All you need to do is subscribe to the magazine and specify your favourite member garden centre.

We will email you a link to the online version for you to read and enjoy.


 

   


Greenhouses & Accessories 3 Two superior glazing options available: • 6mm Twin wall polycarbonate - insulating • 4mm Toughened safety glass - strong & safe 3 Strong and durable powder coated aluminium joinery construction 3 Sturdy Aluminium base included with foundation mounting options available 3 Large range of sizes to suit your needs 3 Full range of accessories & shelving 3 Built to last! Don’t be fooled by cheap & nasty imported copies which don’t last! BUilt For NeW ZealaNd’s HarsH CoNditioNs

Freephone 0800 946 837 to subscribe NOW

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Glass & Polycarbonate

Quality NZ made Greenhouses

Unique features of a Winter Gardenz Greenhouse...

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FREE Spring Catalogue Full Colour Bulbs, Perennials, Shrubs & New Releases Primula Cobalt Blue

NZ’s leading mail-order plant Catalogue

Stockists of Living Fashion Plants

PARVA plants Pricing from $995


Ph: 03 349 4918


1st -10th November 2013

The world’s only black petunia Available at all leading garden retailers

54 go gardening spring

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KIds WINTER 2013


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Go Gardening Spring 2013  

The New Zealand Gardening Magazine packed with inspiring ideas and 'how to' guidance for those keen to give gardening a go

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