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Aussie Green Thumb – Top Gardening Tips For Everyday People

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All this and more;

  • 6 week ‘Build A Better Garden’ series;
  • Practical advice for beginners;
  • Product reviews;
  • Featured plants, mostly Australian native plants;
  • Specific monthly gardening tasks;
  • Simple explanation of common gardening terms.

Do you need a tree risk assessment?

Do you need a tree risk assessment

If you are a property owner, you know what it’s like to maintain a home and all its fixtures and fittings. It’s easy to know when an appliance needs repairing or carpets need replacing, but what about the garden – how often do you check how well your plants and trees are growing, how healthy they are and whether they are potentially going to cause damage either to your property, a neighbour’s property or a nearby boundary fence?

Many homeowners are fairly adept at basic garden maintenance – mowing lawns, weeding, planting flowers or even growing our own fruit and vegetables. But keeping tabs on how tall trees are growing, or by how much they overhang the roof of your home or the neighbour’s garden usually doesn’t become apparent until a problem arises.

Did you know you could avoid potential dangers when it comes to large, overhanging or diseased trees by carrying out a regular tree risk assessment? This check can be done annually (or less frequently as recommended by your arborist) and will help you to keep on top of, or rectify any possible issues before they even become problems. This is known as having an active tree management plan and can help you avoid costly damage or unpleasant neighbour disputes.

While all may look in good order on the surface to the untrained eye, a professional arborist will quickly be able to tell if there are any potential dangers on your property due to large or overhanging trees. Diseased trees may also not be something the average homeowner would be able to pick up on perhaps until it was too late, leaving the only option tree removal, which could end up being tricky or costly.

Having an active tree management plan can also help maintain your garden’s sustainability by not only keeping your trees active and healthy but also in a manageable state to ensure your trees are making a positive contribution to your garden and the environment. By keeping your trees in great health you will be able to enjoy the benefits such as having cool shade in the hot summer months and providing a mini-ecosystem for small birds and animals in your garden.

If you require a tree risk assessment or tree removal services in Perth, get in touch with Dickie’s Tree Service today – they are specialists in tree surgery and care and employ full qualified and experienced arborists to handle any size job. You can see their full range of services on their website at www.dickiestrees.com.au or call their team of experienced arborists on 08 9240 6304.

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Free Plants for Sydney!

For those living in Sydney, here is a note from one of the Aussie Green Thumb writers, Clint, with a great offer for anyone attending the Living Colour festival this weekend!

The City of Sydney seasonal Living Colour Displays are wrapping up again, so it’s time to get yourself some free plants!

For a gold coin donation, members of the public are invited to take as many plants as they can carry (within reason), with all donations being given away to a lucky charity group.

Fancy some flashy flowers like petunia or salvia? Maybe some Spanish Lavender or silverdust Senecio will grab your attention? Or maybe you’ll be lucky enough to snag a few of the left over chillis, impatiens or hypoestes!

Get yourself down to St Marys Cathedral Forecourt (on college street) at 8am on the morning of Sunday the 8th March. Get in early and quickly, as it’s first in best dressed, and no plants can be held or set aside for anyone.

All remaining plants will be given to school and community gardens, or recycled and used as organic matter in City parks and gardens.

Check the City of Sydney’s website for more details.

Kangaroo Paw

Australia has some of the most amazing and unique native plants of anywhere in the world. Our natural assests set us apart from the pack, and the plants available to us are some of the toughest and easiest to grow. Need a stunning looking plant that won’t mind if you forget to water it, or one that doesn’t need any TLC like fertilising and prunning? Well then keep on reading, because there is most definitely an Australian native that will tick all your boxes! Here is a super simple guide to using Australian natives in your home garden. [click to continue…]

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As you look out onto your garden, you probably see a lot of green. However, the garden you grow might not actually be green. Earth-conscious gardeners employ many tactics to ensure that their flowers, shrubbery, fruits, and vegetables are grown in an environmentally-friendly way. Adopt one, two, or all ten and reap the benefits of a garden that’s both beautiful and sustainable.

Ditch the Chemicals

It probably goes without saying, but a green garden grows without the aid of chemicals and pesticides. Your plants can be well-fed without the use of unnatural fertilizers (more on that later), and you can steer clear of pests without the use of pesticides (more on that later, too). This is especially vital if you’re growing produce in your garden. [click to continue…]


Infographic: 6 interesting gardening gadgets for 2015

Having a bit of difficulty growing plants? Is your outdoor water bill becoming unsustainable? If questions like these apply to you then consider these six gardening gadgets showcased at CES 2015 (a major worldwide electronics expo).

In recent years, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which is better known for large product announcements from brands like Samsung, has been showcasing more and more gadgets that are directly applicable to gardeners. In this year’s show, we came across six gardening gadgets that are likely to have a big future in the gardening community. Check out the infographic below, or read on to find out more about what each gadget does. [click to continue…]


Creating a Beautiful Alfresco Barbecue Area

alfresco barbeque dining

When the weather’s fine there’s no better place to spend the afternoon or evening than in the garden with friends, family and some freshly-barbecued food. The weather might look bleak right now but spring will come around in no time.

Get ready to enjoy the pleasures of alfresco cooking by filling up that empty patio space with some furniture and an inexpensive barbecue.

Choose your dining furniture

There’s a wide range of outdoor furniture available covering a variety of styles to suit both your taste and budget. Some comfortable but waterproofed seating is best and wicker armchairs with padded seats are a traditional option. Metal chairs, including cast aluminium, are robust and lightweight enough to be moved around, plus virtually no maintenance is needed. Most garden furniture sets will come with a matching table and it’s a good idea to include a large parasol with a tilt function to ensure enough shade is provide when sitting outdoors .

Charcoal and gas barbecues

The choice of fuel required to cook with is largely a matter of personal taste although many experts claim that grilling on charcoal yields the best results. Charcoal bbqs provide high temperatures, as much as 300°C, and will therefore cook meat fairly quickly; some practice will be needed for first timers. If you’re also looking for that smoked flavour when cooking meat or pork then charcoal is the right option. Gas versions are easy to clean, have better temperature control and can also heat far quicker than charcoal.

Additional points to remember

Always check out how much free space you have on the patio or garden before heading out to buy furniture and barbecue equipment. There are plenty of differently-sized bbqs including the space-saving kettle designs and the larger portable wagons, permanent brick or half-barrel versions. Also think of investing in some additional items such as lighting; this can include dual heater/lamps for attaching to a parasol interior or brass table top lanterns. Some hanging plants for the patio area make a nice touch or even a free standing water feature if you really want to splash out.

There’s no need spend a huge amount of money to create an outdoors seating area and most of the equipment is generally inexpensive. High quality products are usually the cost-effective option as minimal maintenance will be required throughout the year and the items will provide long-term use.

Image by LorE Denizen, used under the Creative Commons license. 

Garden design trends 2015

Summer in Australia is in full swing, and it is the perfect time of the year to redesign the garden. Just as eco-friendly home design, buying and eating local foods and green cleaning are hot right now, so is smart and simple, eco-friendly garden design. Having the perfect yard doesn’t have to be a chore: Design a garden that works with your environment and requires minimal care, and you will have it all.

Remember that no matter how you choose to design your garden, the best gardens are always well maintained, from mowing the lawn to trimming the trees and bushes to watering the plants. [click to continue…]