Monday, 30 May 2011

I Musk Lorikeet

Real World Gardener for 25th May 2011 2RRR 88.5fm
Wildlife in Focus: Kurtis Lindsay talks to Marianne about the Musk Lorikeet. Just when you though a Lorikeet was a Lorikeet. Hear the podcast.

Vegetable Hero: Broad Beans-Vicia faba. What to do with those Broad Bean seeds?
 Direct planting into roughly prepared soil is the best way to grow BB.     Sow the seeds 5-10cm deep, that’s about the width of my small hand if I include the thumb, with 15-20cm between plants and 70cm or 2 ruler lengths between rows.      Your beans should be poking their heads through the soil in about 10-14 days after sowing, but will be slower the later you sow towards winter. Here’s a good tip:Soaking seeds overnight in diluted liquid seaweed can speed this up….germination.        Water seeds well as soon as you’ve put them into the ground and , then, don’t water them…MOST IMPORTANT   until after germination, to prevent the seeds from rotting. Ok, YOU CAN’T DO MUCH ABOUT IT IF IT RAINS.          Broad beans will need to be staked or supported to stop the plant collapsing under the weight of the mature beans.For those few parts of Australia that get frost, flowers formed during frosty weather are probably not going to set pods. Once spring arrives, pinch out the tips of the plants to encourage pod set.  Try to limit water stress as this will also affect pod set. That means don’t let them dry out!     Your beans should be ready in about 90 - 160 days-that’s 3-5 months, depending on how cold the weather is.  Pick the pods when the seeds are looking about the right size but not   hard. If left too long on the plant, beans are likely to be dry and less tasty.    Dig in the roots and leaves after harvest to add nitrogen to the soil.      Remember I mentioned that spacing the beans further apart is important? Well here’s why Broad beans are prone to fungal attack - brown spots on stems and leaves - particularly if planted too closely together or if planted in soils too rich in nutrients such as straight compost and manure.      Don’t grow broad beans in the same spot two years running as it can cause a build up of diseases in the soil.

Design Elements: Steeply sloping garden. A repeat from last week.

Plant of the Week:Proteas an favourite cut flower is great for water wise gardens. For all cultivation on these plants see

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