Garden Clinic Blog

Keep in touch with what we're doing, there's always something going on. Our team has been busy gathering interesting, helpful and exciting stories for you to enjoy. Seasonal inspiration from our garden to yours.

Plums

Plums

As if the beautiful spring blossom of the plum were not enough to make it a lovely small tree choice for the home garden, it also deliver splump juicy fruit for eating, stewing, bottling, drying and cooking. The only question is which plum to plump for. Here we consider the options.

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Know your: indoor trophy plants

Know your: indoor trophy plants

The houseplant community has christened its collectible rarities ‘unicorn plants’.Linda is a unicorn hunter and grows her burgeoning collection in her indoor tropical jungle, occasionally giving them a summer holiday outdoors under the banksia.

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Meet Justin Buckley, Gardens manager, National Trust Victoria

Meet Justin Buckley, Gardens manager, National Trust Victoria

Rippon Lea’s fernery is a rare gem of 19th century Australian gardening, and a favourite spot for the Gardens Manager of the National Trust Victoria.

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Barewood

Barewood

Best known for sauvignon blanc, the Marlborough region in the north of New Zealand's South Island is also a centre of great garden making. Barewood is one of the gems.

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Plum clafoutis

Plum clafoutis

This easy batter pudding, fragrant with late-summer fruit, is delicious warm from the oven, and any leftovers are just as good served cold for a breakfast treat with a dollop of thick yoghurt.

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How to: stop snails invading precious pot plants

How to: stop snails invading precious pot plants

Keep both pets and snail-sensitive plants safe with these solutions.

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Star of the season: Empress of Brazil

Star of the season: Empress of Brazil

Empress of Brazil seems to have captured everyone’s imagination as they start to flower late summer. Learn more about this beauty.

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How to: make sweet chilli jam

How to: make sweet chilli jam

This recipe is easy to increase to meet your chilli surplus. Every year I team up with my father-in-law for our Chilli Jam Day - We turn six kilograms of chilli into 25 jars of delicious ruby-red sticky jam.

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How to: Make Potting Mix

How to: Make Potting Mix

Plants in pots need the right nutrients, water, air and a quality potting mix to live happily ever after.

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How to: cope with a deluge

How to: cope with a deluge

While subsoil drainage, such as drainage grates, gravel pits and sumps, are effective in light rain, heavy downpours overwhelm pipes and the water sheets across the landscape. Arno King has some tips top help cope when the heavens open up.

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How to: bake a honey and rosemary cake

How to: bake a honey and rosemary cake

Rosemary is a reliable stalwart in the herb garden. We love it finely chopped and pressed with fresh pepper on to steaks before barbecuing or sprinkled over roasting potatoes. This cake shows off rosemary’s sweet side.

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Visit: Collectors' Plant Fair

Visit: Collectors' Plant Fair

Take a treasure home! Talk to the experts. Grow a garden. Be inspired by Australia’s largest plant fair coming to the Hawkesbury in late March.

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Angel's Trumpet, Brugmansia

Angel's Trumpet, Brugmansia

It’s easy to see why the common name for the dramatic Brugmansia is angel’s trumpet. These sub-tropical beauties offer months of flowers and fragrance, all in an easy-care package.

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Berries

Berries

Growing berries is not a cinch - they have fierce thorns, troublesome pruning rules and require commitment (and hardware) to keep wildlife away from ripening fruit. But if berry-stained lips sound to you like a rich reward, take notes from Linda’s masterclass, and plant in winter.

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Caramel pineapple upside-down cake

Caramel pineapple upside-down cake

Sweet pineapple and toasty coconut are always a happy combination and they make this cake mouth-wateringly delicious.

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Know Your Hibiscus

Know Your Hibiscus

The flamboyantly tropical members of the family are best known, but these chorus girls of summer are not the family’s only gems.

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How to grow: Apples

How to grow: Apples

Pick delicious crisp apples from your own Garden of Eden! Apples are commonly grown in Victoria, Tasmania and cooler areas of western Australia, South Australia and New South Wales, and are becoming easier to grow due to improved disease resistance.

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Apples 3 ways

Apples 3 ways

More recipes for your apple harvest.

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Summer Trumpets

Summer Trumpets

Trumpet flowers create impact with their size, profusion and hot colour tones. Not for gardeners who prefer soft romantic pastels, these subtropical stunners are for those who love bold brassy colour and want to create a ‘holiday-at-home’ feel.

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Visit: Wildwood

Visit: Wildwood

A cool-climate garden of five acres gives Sue and Wayne Tapping room to grow the beauties they love. Here they share what’s keeping them busy this spring


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Gazpacho

Gazpacho

The freshness of fennel and lemon add a modern zing to our favourite cold soup for hot days.

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We're loving white

We're loving white

We're all white for summer

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Secrets of Bougainvillea

Secrets of Bougainvillea

Jeanne Baret disguised herself as a boy to join her naturalist lover on Louis de Bougainville’s great expedition. A fine botanist in her own right, Jeanne is now thought to have collected the first specimens of bougainvillea in the jungles of Brazil.

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Our list of summer jobs

Our list of summer jobs

In January, clip, snip, mow and trim. It's time for the post festive clean-up in the garden

In February, humidity is at its summer peak. The garden will need a helping-hand to get through the next few weeks and into the cooler weather.

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Meet: Jeremy Critchley, nurseryman

Meet: Jeremy Critchley, nurseryman

Jeremy Critchley’s Green Gallery Nursery developed a focus on indoor plants once he moved into an apartment and wanted something different.

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Great Dixter

Great Dixter

Is this old place England’s most exciting contemporary garden?

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2020 Diamond Membership

2020 Diamond Membership

2020 Diamond Membership – a brand new level of membership and let me tell you, it’s the best one yet.

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Delicous: brownie

Delicous: brownie

Not as heavy as a traditional brownie, but with a satisfying double-choc hit and bonus health food scores from its secret (almost indetectable) vegetable content, this is a great, year-round treat. In summer serve chilled, straight from the fridge.

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How to: create the perfect pergola

How to: create the perfect pergola

Shade, privacy and a place to show off fabulous plants - who doesn’t want a pergola!

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Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Cool as a cucumber is the taste of summer.

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Old Wesley Dale

Old Wesley Dale

Deb and Scott Wilson make garden magic in Tasmania's stunning Meander Valley.

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Beating the French at their own game

Beating the French at their own game

Is Tasmania the new Provence when it comes to producing the world's best lavender? Sacrebleu!

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Philip Johnson's Garden, Olinda

Philip Johnson's Garden, Olinda

Landscape designer Philip Johnson’s passion is to connect people with nature. In this extract from his new book Connected: the sustainable landscapes of Philip Johnson, he explains how that connection is deepened and refined at his home in Olinda, and creates a billabong to die for!

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Secret Garden

Secret Garden

Secret Gardens is one of Sydney’s most successful garden businesses – designing, constructing and maintaining beautiful gardens across the city. In this extract from a new book featuring 19 of the company’s finest gardens, founder Matt Cantwell explains how a garden can balance privacy with views out - and into - the garden.

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How to: grow an Australian lawn

How to: grow an Australian lawn

A patch of native grass, or a whole lawn of it, will help preserve our beautiful Christmas beetles. Linda Ross tells how it’s done.

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How to: cook with wattleseed

How to: cook with wattleseed

It’s said that there is a wattle in flower somewhere in Australia every day of the year. Not all of the seed of these 1000-odd species are edible, indeed some a slightly toxic, but there is evidence that aborigines ate the seeds from at least 120 of them. Wattleseed has a unique fragrance and flavour – mocha-chocolateyy, smoky and nutty all at once.

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Plants I love: Jerilderie Red

Plants I love: Jerilderie Red

The chance cross between an Illawarra flame tree and a kurrajong is a tree that should be better known and more widely grown.

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Meet: Philip Johnson, landscape designer

Meet: Philip Johnson, landscape designer

Sustainable landscape designer Philip Johnson generated rare garden-related headlines when his ‘Trailfinders Australian Garden’ took out the Best in Show award at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2013. What happened next?

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How to: create a water wonderland

How to: create a water wonderland

You don’t need a big space to have your own water feature: a sunny spot on a balcony or in a courtyard will do. You can use any container, as long as it hasn’t had chemicals in it that would kill the fish. Isla made her water feature in a half wine barrel. Here’s how.

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How to: make fruit ice-blocks

How to: make fruit ice-blocks

When it’s sweltering outside and the kids need some cool relief, homemade fruity ice-blocks are the answer. When they’ve been demolished, ask the children to help make a new batch, ready for the next hot afternoon.

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How to: have garden fun with kids

How to: have garden fun with kids

‘Be back by dark’ tends not to be a phrase we associate with childhood these days, but given the chance, children still relish an opportunity to play outside. Kate Neale and her co-author, daughter Leelu, have plenty of ideas to help parents, grandparents and carers have summer fun in the garden with kids.

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Meet: Brigitte Eckardt, Rose Grower, Green E Roses

Meet: Brigitte Eckardt, Rose Grower, Green E Roses

Need some advice on roses? Meet a walking rose encyclopedia!

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How to: decorate with water lilies

How to: decorate with water lilies

Waterlilies are shy until the mercury hits 30, and then they unfold into beautiful blooms. We grow them in large bowls and pots, and pick them to decorate the table through summer.

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Kitchen Garden Summer

Kitchen Garden Summer

Summer brings the vegetable patch’s peak of production. The heat of the sun powers growth, but threatens disaster too. Rise with the birds for early deep watering, and let your mantra be mulch, mulch, mulch.

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How to: save your garden when off on holidays

How to: save your garden when off on holidays

We’re all going on a summer holiday - and the garden is staying behind! But with a little forward planning your garden can be just as lovely when you return as it was before you left.

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Dry Spell Garden: Bondi

Dry Spell Garden: Bondi

Bondi is known for its beach, babes and bikinis, and not for its gardens. But this is where I find one of Australia’s most imaginative pocket-sized spaces. Generously spirited and full of dry-spell ideas to bring your garden to life.

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In the Subtropical Garden: December

In the Subtropical Garden: December

Hot and steamy with the odd torrential downpour is the order of business for the subtropical garden. Our resident tropical garden expert Arno King has the lowdown on what’s happening this December in the subtropical garden.

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Meet Justine Smith, Rhipsalis grower

Meet Justine Smith, Rhipsalis grower

Justine Smith’s beautifully grown rhipsalis flew off the tables at Collectors’ Plant Fair this year. Don’t worry if you missed out - she’s now supplying Flower Power with these hairy hanging delights under the Jungle Cactus label.

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The New Upside of Gardening

The New Upside of Gardening

The show gardens at Singapore's first-ever Horticulture Show earlier this year blurred the boundary between the natural and built environment and introduced us to a whole new place to garden - the ceiling!

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Garden Trip: Singapore

Garden Trip: Singapore

The Singapore stopover might once have been about shopping, but now it’s about gardens. Add these destinations to your itinerary.

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