What is wet tropics? Is it your zone?
High humidity, but not too much over 35 degrees C perhaps?
So what are the plants that would love that?
Let’s find out
I'm talking with Peter Nixon, garden designer and project manager of Paradisus garden design
Mussaenda philippica or M. erythrophylla-showy bracts-large shrub with pink or white bracts.
Warszewiczia coccinea-Pride of Trinidad-bract type red flower.2m sprawly shrub.
Plumeria spp-P obtusa, P.rubra, P. caracasana, P. pudica- but not hybrids like P acuminata who get rust in this zone.
|Plumeria rubra photo M Cannon|
Perennials, and sub-shrubs:
Heliconia rostrata-red and yellow
Dichorisandra thyrsiflora-Blue ginger.
ForShade: try these
Crossandra infundibuliformis- Firecracker flower, (another form)
Strobilanthes dyerianus-Persian shield
Xanthostemon youngii-red penda, brushlike
- Did you know that onions were was used to heal gun shot wounds and during World War 1, sphagnum moss was soaked in the juice as a wound dressing?
- Onions are sensitive to the day length for formation of flowers, so it’s important to select the right variety (early – mid-season – late).
- These varieties have different requirements in the length of daylight hours.
- Early varieties are short day length onions, mid-season varieties are medium day length onions, and late varieties are long day length onions.
- If planted out of season, onions may bolt to seed prematurely.
- For example in temperate climates mid-season onions are sown in winter, growing through spring and harvested in summer.
- These include Sweet Red and Brown Spanish Onions.
- They love sunny well drained beds, especially when the bulbs mature in summer.
- Onion seeds can be sown into seed raising mix into punnets.
- Or if you want to sow them directly into the garden, make it easy for yourself, mix the seed with some river sand-say one packet of seed to one cup of sand and sow it that way. Bit like sowing carrots!
- They can be transplanted to garden beds when the seedlings are around 8 cms tall.
- According to the “Vegetable Patch” website, there is a secret to planting onion seedlings.
- Instead of planting them sticking straight up, lay them down in a trench and move the soil back over their roots.
- In about 10 days they're standing up and growing along strongly.
- Harvest onions (except spring onions) when the tops yellow and start drying.
- This usually takes 6 months, so if you plant seedlings today, yours will be ready in December.
- Add a couple of weeks if your using seeds.
- Pull the whole plant from the ground and leave it to dry in the sun.
- Turn it every few days and avoid getting them wet (eg dew or rain).
- Hang them in a cool dry place for around 3 weeks to cure.
- If you store them in a cool dry place they should keep for a year.
- This explains why you can buy onions all year round.
- Eat the bulbs without a good dry skin first .
PLANT OF THE WEEK
- Best known for it’s hardiness and loved by local councils who seem to plant it willy-nilly, this next plant has morphed into somewhat finer forms.
- Which is a good thing because it’s one
- of those old fashioned plants that gardeners would screw up their noses at.
- Perhaps we can change your mind?
Let’s find out.
I'm talking with Jeremy Critchley owner of www.thegreengallery.com.aufind out.
Jeremy mentioned Nandina filamentosa with superfine leaves. Use it as a filler plant.
N. citylights-dwarf-60cm also.
N Lemlim-new foliage is green instead of red.
Do they open easily, are the blades sharp? You know they’re sharp if they make a clean cut through a plant’s stem without leaving a little tear behind.
Almost as if you only cut through part of the stem and then pulled off the remaining part.
|Secateurs and garden snips photo M Cannon|
Let’s find out some tips about sharpening those precious garden tools.
- Clean your tools at the end of the day, even if it's just a wipe over with a rag or cloth.
- What you should be doing is give them a wash with warm water and two teaspoons of dish soap to scrub away sap and dirt from the blades with a stiff brush.
- This is to prevent that gunk build up on the blades which can harbour disease.
- Rub some vegetable oil onto the blades before putting them away to prevent the blades from rusting.
To quote a long time gardening presenter on Gippsland FM Community radio,