Eplants.co.nz............ New Zealands Plant Portal........ Over 6,500 Kiwi Plant People and Services
The only site in the World with Live Images from Chelsea, Melbourne and Ellerslie Flower Shows.
WebCams | The Search | Plantfinder | This Weeks Tips | Featured | Eplants Home |

New Herb News Here


Welcome to New Zealands Plant Portal. Wally Richards Weekly Garden Tips & Advice.

Gardening Articles for week ending 22nd DECEMBER 2007
Written by Wally Richards. Gardening

Firstly I would like to wish all of you a very Marry Christmas and a safe, healthy Gardening New Year.
It has been an interesting gardening year and this spring/summer has been one of the best for sometime.
The weather has settled earlier and garden plants are certainly growing well as long as adequate water is supplied.
I have had several readers that have commented on their potato plants growing very tall, taller than usual. In the past I would have suggested that they may have been a bit heavy handed with the use of nitrogen, making for tall foliage and often resulting in a poorer crop.
On asking this question most have said that they have done nothing different to usual.
Thus the increased growth must come from another factor which is associated with Global Warming.
Increased carbon dioxide levels in the air increases growth because that gas is what the plants take in and convert with sunlight to oxygen.
I remember years back when I owned a nursery glasshouse complex, if we wanted to give the plants a growth spurt we would throw dry ice (carbon dioxide) down the pathways with the house sealed.
The increased carbon dioxide in the air would give the plants a nice boost of growth.
Simple and effective but now days with increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere our plants and gardens are benefiting.
Many gardeners like to show off their gardens over the holidays to family and friends while visiting, which is a boost to ones moral but also a mill-stone to make sure all is looking at its best.
Roses are the highlight of many gardens and so here is a little secret to make your roses look their very best; Spray the rose’s foliage with Vaporgard which will make the leaves turn into a much richer dark green and shine them at the same time. The Vaporgard acts as a sunscreen against UV and the chlorophyll can work at maximum, creating more energy from the sun and greening up the foliage also.
Another aspect is the Vaporgard film, which will last up to 3 months on the foliage sprayed, makes it very difficult for diseases such as blackspot and rust to establish, especially if sprayed under and over the leaf surface. Any pest insects on the foliage at the time of spraying will be zapped in the film and any other pests attacking the rose will have a hard time while the film is present.
A further advantage is the rose’s daily water needs will reduce by about 30% as the film reduces transpiration loss. Within 2-3 days of spraying, the roses are looking great and protected from a number of summer problems.

>>>>>> CONTINUED >>>

Any Problems ring me at 0800 466464 (Palmerston North 3570606)
Email wallyjr@gardenews.co.nz
Web site www.gardenews.co.nz

Garden Pages and News at www.gardenews.co.nz
Shar Pei pages at  www.sharpei.co.nz


Vaporgard can be a boon for gardeners going away for a few days or more and not being around to water their gardens. Spraying all your preferred plants and gardens with the product will help reduce their water needs.
Mulching the bare soil around plants after giving the gardens a good soak will also help conserve water levels in the soil, extending the period between waterings.
To mulch use compost, lawn clippings, untreated sawdust, bark fines and newspaper.
If using newspaper place that down on the wet soil first and wet it further with the hose then cover with a mulch product. Not only will you reduce the watering needs of the gardens but you will also reduce weed seed development plus feed the soil life including the worms.
If using sawdust or bark fines sprinkle blood and bone over the newspaper before applying to offset any nitrogen loss caused by the breaking down of these two carbon products.
Container plants are another matter as they dry out much quicker and will need more water than the mulch protected gardens. Once again you can reduce their water needs by spraying the foliage under and over with Vaporgard, moving the containers to a spot were they are shaded all day such as under trees.
Water well by plunging the pots into a tub of water and place sphagnum moss or compost on top of the mix. You may need to obtain the service of a friend to come and water the containers every 2 to 3 days while away.
Hopefully by doing these things you can come back to your gardens and containers without a lot of problems. Indoor plants will suffer also and for them a spray of Vaporgard over the foliage and then into the bath or laundry tubs place soaking wet towels and sit the plants on the towels after having plunged each one into a tub of water. (don't leave the plug in the plug hole)
The best solution for those that are going away for a holiday is to have a friend house-sit for you.
This solves a number of problems, giving security against burglary, pets do not have to relocated, (which they hate) fruit and vegetables can be harvested and used without waste and gardens can be watered, lawns mowed, mail cleared just as if you were still at home.
To make this work you need to take notes of how you water the gardens, container and pot plants.
The amount of water given or the time sprinklers are left on. The best intentioned house-sitter can easily overwater and cause problems which they will feel bad about and you will have to suffer.
Some good clear instructions are all that is needed and then everyone including your plants will be happy.
All the best for Christmas and the New Year, Regards Wally Richards.

Problems ring me at 0800 466 464 (Palmerston North 3570606)
Web site www.gardenews.co.nz

Garden Pages and News at www.gardenews.co.nz
Shar Pei pages
at www.sharpei.co.nz

Please check out the Event Calendar. If you want your activity included, just let us know. Thank you.


Chelsea Flower Show

Taking us to show you
the Worlds Greatest Garden Shows. Live.

Thank you. Eplants Email