Real World Gardener Gorgeous Luculia is Plant of the Week

June 16th, 2017

PLANT OF THE WEEK

Luculia

 

Luculia gratissima

Without realizing, the shrubs featured this week and last week are old fashioned shrubs but with outstanding features. 

Luculia.jpg

Luculia gratissima

And just like undersized potatoes or oversized apples, they who make decision in the big stores that sell plants, have decided that they won’t be available to the home gardener.

So if you’re looking for a winter flower shrub or small tree with masses of pink fragrant flowers, this one’s for you?

Let’s find out more… I'm talking with the plant panel :Karen Smith, editor of Hort Journal www.hortjournal.com.au and Jeremy Critchley, The Green Gallery wholesale nursery owner. www.thegreengallery.com.au

 

If you get a whiff of gardenias one morning in late autumn, it probably means that someone nearby is growing Luculia (Luculia spp.). 

Although Luculia and gardenia are in the same family of plants and share the same delicate fragrance, the timing of their magnificent scented flowers is different.

Luculia is evergreen and grows to around 3 metres eventually.

While the flowers make an impressive display, the leaves not so much.

The foliage shall we say get’s a little untidy, but gardeners grow it for the flowers not the leaves.Pruning: Luculia flowers on new wood, so pruning is best done after flowering. 

You can prune mature Luculias quite hard to tidy them up, should you be lucky enough to have one growing in your garden.

 
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Real World Gardener BETTER Garden Walkways in Design Elements

June 8th, 2017

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at www.2rrr.org.au  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.realworldgardener.com

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DESIGN ELEMENTS

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Up the Garden Path, Softly

 

Today’s garden challenge is for those gardeners that don’t want hard surface garden paths.

 

Concrete, brick or 

other types of paving for paths 

can be a bit harsh in areas 

where the garden is quite natural.

What do you opt for then?

 

Perhaps mulch?

 

Mulch decomposes rather quickly and you end up raking some up when you're trying to get rid of those leaves from branches that hang over the path.

 

Leaves that don't look attractive are usually from trees in the Proteaceae family, such as Madacdamia or Ivory Curl tree, 

because they're quite hard and take a long time to break down.

 

But there are other alternatives, although not necessarily ones that you can do yourself unless you're really handy with the compactor.

 

 

 

In this segment, garden designer Peter Nixon explores some softer alternatives.

Let’s find out…I'm talking with Peter Nixon, garden designer and Peter’s not a fan of pebbles on paths.

 

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Scampston Garden in England. photo M Cannon

 

Instead why not try a combo of bark chips and shell grit, or decomposed granite, perhaps lillydale topping and bark or woody mulch.

You would need to run the plate compactor over these surfaces to compact the path.

If you have any questions about what to do for your garden paths in your garden, or have some information to share, write in realworldgardener@gmail.com

 
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Real World Gardener Fabulous Nerines are Plant of the Week

June 1st, 2017

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at www.2rrr.org.au  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.realworldgardener.com

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The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on http://www.cpod.org.au/ , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition.

PLANT OF THE WEEK

Nerines; Guernsey Lily (Nerine bowdenii)

Some garden writers describe this next plant as one of the most exotic of bulbs for the Autumn garden.

Although it’s a bulb, it looks nothing like the flowers of regular common bulbs such as daffodils or tulips.

Instead in belongs in the Amaryllis family, which includes agapanthus and alstroemeria. Nerines.jpg

Let’s find out more… 

I'm talking with the plant panel :Karen Smith, editor of Hort Journal www.hortjournal.com.au and Jeremy Critchley, The Green Gallery wholesale nursery owner. www.thegreengallery.com.au 

 

Did you know that exposure to cold temperatures can cause the flower heads to turn slightly blue?
If you like planting bulbs that you can set and forget, then Nerines are your thing.
Plant them with Cyclamens and Colchicums which are lower, as the stems of Nerine flowers are very tall, between 30 – 50 cms.

 

What Nerines Like

Nerines like a position in sun or part-shade.

Plant them in light, gritty, well-drained soil, with the neck of the bulb exposed.

Hardy to moderate frosts, even down to -15 C.

In cold areas, growing in pots is another option.

Water well during the growth period but keep dry when dormant.

 

Nerine varieties & flowering time:

Bowdenii: A softer, clear pink. Excellent colour for the Autumn garden. (Flowers April) Most frost tolerant. Can withstand -150 C

Gold `Nerine` (Which is actually a very closely related Lycoris): Flowers of golden, sunshine yellow. This variety is excellent for growing in warmer climates. 

In cool/cold climates, this variety likes a nice warm & sunny spot. Flowers Feb-March.

Fothergill Major: Brilliant tangerine with a golden sheen to each petal as if dusted with gold. Flowers Autumn (Feb-March)

Fothergill Minor: Brilliant florescent orange-red blooms that appear in March-April.

Note: In very cold climates (eg: Tasmania) plant the bulbs in a warm spot.. This is a new dwarf variety to only approximately 20cm- 25cm tall.

Salmonia: Salmon pink blooms. The many frilly petals (up to 30) make beautifully shaped umbels. Flowers April.

White: (Alba) Their Winter blooms appear whiter-than-white against the dull colours of Autumn. Flowers Autumn. (May)

Winter Cheer: The strong pink of these flowers which appear in in Winter do indeed add `Winter cheer` to the garden. Flowers June

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Real World Gardener Pool Fence Aesthetics in Design Elements

May 25th, 2017

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at www.2rrr.org.au  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.realworldgardener.com

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DESIGN ELEMENTS

Pool Fence Aesethics

 

It may seem odd to talk about pools right now as we head into winter, but it’s probably a good time to think about the aesthetics of the pool.

If you don’t have a pool you may be wondering what this is all about?

 

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Surely the pool is just that, a pool that sticks out like a sore thumb in the garden.

If that’s the case though, then you’re missing something, and there are ways to make the backyard pool look aesthetically pleasing.

How do you achieve this?

 

Let’s find out? i'm talking with Matt Leacy Principal Director from Landart Landscapes.

 

 

Making the pool fence disappear seems to be the thing to do so that you focus more on the garden and the pool.

Brown-Fence-Color-closed-Plants-in-Backy

Rather than a piecemeal approach, consider hiring a designer to make your pool look like part of the landscape.

If you have any questions about pool aesthetics, contact Matt or email us here at realworldgardener@gmail.com

 
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Real World Gardener Create an Outdoor Room in Design Elements

May 19th, 2017

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at www.2rrr.org.au  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.realworldgardener.com

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The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on http://www.cpod.org.au/ , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition

DESIGN ELEMENTS

Outdoor Rooms-Including the Kitchen Sink

 

Whatever you think an outdoor room is, it’s probably not going to have all the bells and whistles of the kitchen you have in your house.

But, say your outdoor eating space is best at the back of the yard or down a flight of stairs, what do you do then?

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Australia is too sunny to always be eating indoors so you might think about doing a bit more than the good ole’ BBQ.

Let’s find out?

 

PLAY: Outdoor rooms_10th May 2017

 

That was Matt Leacy Principal Landscape Designer and Director of Landart Landscapes.

 

You may not want to go the whole hogg of fridge, dishwasher and fancy BBQ in your outdoor room, but I think the Pizza oven sounds like a great idea. 

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Soon you’ll be making your own pizza dough, and buying a pizza peel, that’s one of those wooden or metal spatula type implements that puts your pizza into the pizza oven.

Whatever you do in your outdoor room, don’t forget the garden.

 

An outdoor room without a garden is just to droll to contemplate.

If you have any questions about outdoor rooms write in to realworldgardener@gmail.com

 
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Real World Gardener Pool Trends in Design Elements

May 10th, 2017

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at www.2rrr.org.au  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network. www.realworldgardener.com

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The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on http://www.cpod.org.au/ , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition.

DESIGN ELEMENTS

Pool Trends

 

From pools that seem to abound around urban gardens, they all look pretty much the same.

These days, people are going for the glass fencing, concrete surround and blue tiles for the pool floor.

 

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Black tiles in KifsgateGarden, England photo M Cannon

So what else can pool lovers do?

 

Let’s find out? I'm talking wiht Matt Leacy Principal Director and Landscape Designer from Landart Landscapes.

 

PLAY: Pool Trends_3rd May 2017

 

Pool tiling trends really go from one extreme to the other – either dark, close to black tiles or completely white.

“With a complete white tiled pool you get a really natural water colour,” Matt Leacy says.

“A black pool will give you a certain amount of elegance and can sort of act as a reflector.

If you want a point of difference to your pool that’s a great option.” 

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Not enough space for a pool this big?

Patterned tiles running along the water’s edge have also seen a resurgence.

And if you don’t have a big backyard, don’t be like some urban households with small backyards who still put in large pools instead of opting for a small plunge pool or custom made spa.

 
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