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.

What’s new this spring

What’s new this spring

Here's what's new in the garden this spring.

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Sweet Dreams Armeria Pack

Sweet Dreams Armeria Pack

Receive a Dreameria – Armeria when you renew or join at Platinum level membership this week

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Recipe: Triple Ginger Loaf

Recipe: Triple Ginger Loaf

Jo Wright is a keen baker (she’s notched up several wins the Royal Easter Show for her cakes!) an avid gardener, a treasured member of Garden Clinic, and for the last three years, has been the trusted baker of goodies for our garden classes. She wowed attendees at our recent Bees and Butterflies workshop with this delicious ginger cake. As we said our goodbyes everyone begged for the recipe. So here it is. Thanks for sharing it Jo!

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Know your: Ferns

Know your: Ferns

Many ferns have a soft feathery quality that makes a great contrast with other plants - in the garden or indoors.

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Meet Tahnee Carroll, Stylist and plant-lover

Meet Tahnee Carroll, Stylist and plant-lover

Tahnee Carroll has never seen a room that can’t be made more appealing with a plant or two, as she explains in this extract from a new book on indoor plants, ‘Leaf Supply’.

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How to: brew compost tea

How to: brew compost tea

When I was a child all our neighbours and friends had a large tub - generally an old enamel washing machine tub - buried close to the vegetable garden. This was the ‘brew’ tub. Ingredients for the brew - compost, manures and seaweed - were widely discussed and benefits widely acclaimed. And it turns out these gardeners were onto something!

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In the garden: Retford Park

In the garden: Retford Park

Rick Shepherd, head gardener at Bowral’s grand Retford Park, dishes the dirt on what goes on in the garden in spring.


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Star of the Season: Jasmine

Star of the Season: Jasmine

The jasmine moment is a brief celebration. Grab hold, cut armfuls of it and drape it all over the house, because in a flash it’s all over til next year.


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Recipe: Curried Carrot and Coconut Soup

Recipe: Curried Carrot and Coconut Soup

Perfect for spring’s changeable weather, this soup is delicious eaten piping hot and comforting on cold days, or refreshingly chilled when the sun is shining and the garden is calling.

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Grow Carrots

Grow Carrots

The difference in flavour between supermarket and homegrown is most pronounced in the humblest of vegetables- potatoes, onions and carrots. Trust us, homegrown carrots are a revelation: sweet, spicy or earthy depending on the cultivar, but never bland.

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Meet: Anita Rayner

Meet: Anita Rayner

The gardens at Vaucluse House are one of Sydney’s historic horticultural treasures. Anita Rayner fell in love with them at first sight; now she runs them.

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Our Kitchen Garden

Our Kitchen Garden

There’s inspiration here to help expand your vegetable repertoire- in the garden and on the plate.

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Recipe: Pasta with asparagus and peas

Recipe: Pasta with asparagus and peas

Quite simply this is spring's freshest flavours on a plate!

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Meet Peter Hey, clivia breeder and grower of rare plants

Meet Peter Hey, clivia breeder and grower of rare plants

Peter is presently President of the Clivia Society of New South Wales, helping to organise the upcoming Spring Show Sept 14-15. You can also find him and his amazing clivias at The Plant Lovers Fair and Collectors’ Plant Fair each year with his specialist nursery Cliveas and Rare Things.

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How to: garden under trees

How to: garden under trees

Growing plants beneath established trees can be challenging. There’s no direct light, roots take up space and water, the soil becomes dry and compacted, and to compound the problem, the tree roots sucks up the available nutrition, leaving precious little behind.

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In the Garden: Cruden Farm

In the Garden: Cruden Farm

Dame Elisabeth Murdoch’s much-loved garden is on the brink of its big show as spring begins.Head gardener Mitch Burns takes us behind the scenes.

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Star of the season: Clivia

Star of the season: Clivia

The trumpet flowers of this indestructible plant put them top of the list for dry areas, dry pots and under trees. Let’s take a closer look.

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Garden Road Trip: Southern Highlands

Garden Road Trip: Southern Highlands

Some of the best Australian gardens lie in the rolling hills of the Southern Highlands. Rolling green fields, white picket fences, smoking chimneys and trees bursting into new leave as spring colours the landscape; many of the gardens here open regularly through the spring and autumn seasons. We spoke to horticulturist and local Carolyn Dwyer to share her favourites.

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How to: Grow summer annuals

How to: Grow summer annuals

For decorating fun in the garden nothing beats a few punnets of annuals. These plants only last a season, but they generously colour gardens, courtyards and balconies during their brief life. Whether it’s a patchwork of blossom you want, or a ribbon of colour along a border, something to fill a gap, a dramatic hanging basket, a fringe of trim in front of shrubs, or simply a pot brimming with flowers, annuals offer the answer.

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Meet Keith and Maureene Smith

Meet Keith and Maureene Smith

Cancer fundraisers and plant propagators

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How to: Attract butterflies

How to: Attract butterflies

When I think about things that spark joy I think butterflies. The singular most joyous event in my garden is the appearance of a butterfly:fluttering wings of the prettiest colours; a quick flit across the garden, up and down, looping the loops, surfing the air like a wave of light. Each sighting makes me feel so good I often ponder how I can attract more butterflies into my garden at Frog Hollow. This is what I’ve learnt so far.

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Delicious: Strawberry and rhubarb jam

Delicious: Strawberry and rhubarb jam

Rhubarb and strawberries are perfect partners – in pies, crumbles, and in this jam. Here Robin Powell shares her Strawberry and rhubarb jam recipe with us.

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Star of the season: Agastache

Star of the season: Agastache

These easy-care, minty-fresh flowery fillers offer reliable and long-lasting summer colour.

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Thinking Gardens

Thinking Gardens

Betty Maloney was a pioneer of bush gardening whose advice on finding serenity in the garden is as relevant now as it was half a century ago.

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Eat Your Greens

Eat Your Greens

We are in love with this simple mixed greens dish. A quick and tasty weekday meal to up our green intake - best when picked fresh from the veggie patch. It’s a taste sensation.

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Garden Road Trip: Rydal

Garden Road Trip: Rydal

Hosts of golden daffodils dance in the wind when the tiny village of Rydal, just east of Lithgow, celebrates the Daffodils at Rydal festival. Robin Powell takes you there.

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In our garden: Wildwood

In our garden: 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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Know your: Spring Blossom

Know your: Spring Blossom

Get to know your spring blossoms now before they disappear for another year.

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Garden Pea Risotto

Garden Pea Risotto

One of my favourite gardens in Victoria is Picardy, a romantic French provincial style garden in the picturesque hills of Neerim. Marian and Bryce Somes had always been Francophiles - mad for French food, in love with the language - but it was a trip to France to celebrate a significant birthday year in 1986 that confirmed a passion for French style.

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Visit Boongala Native Gardens

Visit Boongala Native Gardens

An inspiring native garden rings bells for Linda Ross and to the sound of birdsong she changes her tune about the best plants to create pretty gardens.

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Know your: Wildflowers

Know your: Wildflowers

Get to know our small native flowering plants, says native plant expert Nola Parry, and you’ll have a pretty new palette with which to paint romantic native gardens that are full of flower. Australia is blessed with an amazing range of small flowering plants. Yet some gardeners never get beyond a familiarity with gum trees, bottlebrush, paper barks, grevilleas and a few other large plants.

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Zap My Pests & Weeds OCP Pack

Zap My Pests & Weeds OCP Pack

Join or renew your membership this week and you will receive ECO Oil, Hydrate & Fungicide and OCP Slasher. And to celebrate upcoming Springtime, included is a gorgeous potted Garvinea courtesy of Majestic Young Plants.

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Make a broad bean custard

Make a broad bean custard

The broad bean’s short and sweet season is celebrated by Italian home cooks and chefs. In this recipe, Sydney restaurateur, Lucio Galletto turns the humble bean into something really special - a broad bean custard.

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Best crops for small pots

Best crops for small pots

Even the smallest balcony plots can produce crops from an interesting range of small-fruited, ‘patio’-sized vegetables. Linda Ross shares tips on making it work.

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Small space: big ideas

Small space: big ideas

Courtyard and balcony gardens are less forgiving than suburban gardens. A big garden can ramble a bit, drawing you past a bit of a dead patch with the lure of the something great glimpsed just around the corner. But in a small garden everything is on show, all the time.

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How to: declutter your balcony

How to: declutter your balcony

As obsessive plant collectors we can’t help bringing home interesting plants from friends and fellow plant-lovers. Our enthusiasm had resulted in an unlovely clutter of pots. Something had to be done. Here are our tips for turning Plant Lovers’ Clutter into a pleasing display.

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Know your:Balcony flowers

Know your:Balcony flowers

Add some summer dazzle to a sunny balcony with these pot-loving beauties.

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Brussels sprouts: 3 ways

Brussels sprouts: 3 ways

Need new delicious ways to serve Brussels sprouts? We’ve got 3 simple ways that will wow the crowd.

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Handy guide: Magnolias

Handy guide: Magnolias

Deciduous magnolias thrill us in winter with cup-shaped blooms on bare grey stems.

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How to: arrange flowers

How to: arrange flowers

If I could print Constance Spry's 1953 book How to Do the Flowers here in full, I would. It is not a big book, but it is a thoughtful one, and full of very good information. It is this book that first got me thinking about ‘arranging’ flowers, as opposed to simply plonking them in a vase.

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Meet Mark Jury, magnolia breeder

Meet Mark Jury, magnolia breeder

If there’s a stunning deciduous magnolia in your garden with enormous cup-shaped blooms and rich colour, chances are it was bred by New Zealand plantsman, Mark Jury.

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Magic Magnolia Mulch

Magic Magnolia Mulch

Magnolia not happy? Try a Magic Magnolia Mulch. Sandra's special recipe does magical things to sulking magnolias!

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I love a star magnolia

I love a star magnolia

Magnolias can languish in their formative years, but perseverance will be rewarded. Here Graham discusses his favourite magnolia's story.

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Roasted cauliflower salad

Roasted cauliflower salad

Match our cauliflower salad with roast chicken or barbecued lamb. My Nanna never served cauliflower that wasn’t boiled and drowned in a thick white sauce.

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Cauliflower soup

Cauliflower soup

Got an abundance of cauliflower?Give this delicious soup a go. Perfect for a cool winter's night

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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. The Ross Family celebrates any occasion with something freshly baked.

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Know your: Roses for warm areas

Know your: Roses for warm areas

Some of the best performing roses for warm climates are old favourites -and we mean old. Search out these hardy centurions for fragrance, generosity and trouble-free beauty.

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Relaxed style: Marcia Hosking

Relaxed style: Marcia Hosking

Sydney-based designer Marcia Hosking gave a holiday vibe to this compact garden.

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Meet: Pat and Bill Rhodin, Tulip Tops gardeners

Meet: Pat and Bill Rhodin, Tulip Tops gardeners

Meet Pat and Bill Rhodin, Tulip Tops gardeners. They work hard all year to make this garden's spring display something memorable

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Red Earth Bulb's Lilium 2019 Collection

Red Earth Bulb's Lilium 2019 Collection

Add a splash of summer colour to your garden with Garden and Oriental Lilies. Each bulb produces 30-40 flowers per stem and just keeps on giving every single year. Our friend Tim Drewitt from Red Earth Bulbs has Liliums going at unbelievable prices. Drum roll please.

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