Diacks of Invercargill
February 20th
2008 Newsletter


Still good growing conditions in the south, not much rain but still good temperatures. Potato crops are ripening off now, time to harvest, same with the tomatoes get them picked to allow what's left to mature. Cucumbers and Corgettes are the same, the more you pick the more they produce. Clean up time in garden, time to put in some green crop or mulch with compost or peastraw - we have new seasons peastraw arriving this weekend. Roses are looking abit tired, time for some water and fertilizer and even a light prune to encourage new growth and buds. Lawns need some fertilizer and weed control, they dry off at this time of year and need a higher cut and maybe not so often to let them green up again. Perennials looking like they need a cut back now, old flower and seed heads need trimmed such as Lupins, Fox gloves, Dephiniums. Annuals are in between seasons, Petunias are nearly finished and the next batch of annuals will be stock, wallflower, sweet willam, and polyanthus.

Watering and weeding, the usual summertime jobs. Weed seed at an early age, at this time of year. As the days become shorter they mature quicker. Still a few peats and diseases around. Sometimes its easier to cut the plants back and remove the problem as trying to spray especially black spot, once its established, it's difficult to remove. Good Autumn Gardening!!.

Large bulk bags of Daffidols containing 50 bulbs only $19.98

Just arrived.... Hyacinths, Daffidols, Ranunculus, Anenomes, Freesias, Irises and much more.

New selection of fish.
Just arrived, from $7.99 upwards.
Also new selection of bird cadges.

Take a look at the plant attached below and if you recognise it e-mail us with your answer. If you are the first to guess correctly you will win!
Last weeks answer: Gentian Verna
Last weeks winner: J and L Renton

Diacks mystery chillyt plant. Could it be  a Plasticus moneyus


Chilled Pear Soup with Port

1 1/2 cups water
1 cup tawny port wine
1/3 cup granulated sugar
Zest from 1/2 navel orange
4 black peppercorns
3 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds
6 medium, firm but ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, halved, cored and quartered*
12 gingersnap cookies or thin shortbread biscuits
Fresh raspberries (garnish)
Mint sprigs (garnish)

* If Bartlett pears are not available, substitute with any other sweet juicy pear, such as Bosc or Red Sensation. Make sure you use pears that are not going to become to mushy while cooking.

In a large heavy saucepan, combine water, port wine, sugar, orange zest, peppercorns, eggs, and anise seeds. Bring just to a boil; reduced heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Add pear quarters and gently simmer until tender but not mushy (about 20 to 25 minutes). Remove from heat.

With a slotted spoon, remove pears from liquid and set aside. Strain poaching liquid and throw spices away. Place the poaching liquid in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Continue boiling over medium heat until reduced by about 1/3. Pour liquid into a medium container and add pears; set aside and let cool. When at room temperature, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or up to one day.

About 1 hour before serving, remove from refrigerator. Remove pears with a slotted spoon and place in a food processor or blender (with a blender, you may have to work in batches). Pour approximately 1/2 cup of the poaching liquid into the pears. Puree until the pears are smooth, with no visible chunks. Add more poaching liquid until desired consistency is reached. Return to the refrigerator until chilled.

When ready to serve, pour chilled pear soup into goblets, pretty dessert bowls, or attractive dessert cups. Serve gingersnap cookies (or shortbread biscuits) alongside soup or roughly crumble and sprinkle on top. Garnish with fresh raspberries and mint sprig.

Makes 6 servings.
Q: Why is Cinderella such a bad ice - skater?
A: Beacause hur coach is a pumpkin