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Selwyn Times: April 25, 2017

24 Tuesday

24 Tuesday April 25 2017 Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi SELWYN TIMES Gardening What to grow near fruit trees The fascinating world of companion plants is one to explore. Rebecca Lees writes about how they can give your fruit trees a boost PEACH COMRADE: Tansy planted with ‘blackboy’ peach tree. Tansy deters a raft of harmful flying insects and is an excellent companion for the fruit garden. COMPANION PLANTING is one of the most enjoyable things you can do in the fruit garden, especially if you begin with a blank canvas. Thanks to the interplanting of a host of companion plants under and around fruit trees, dull lifeless soil over time becomes full of organic matter, and alive with beneficial creatures crawling amongst it. The soil, now more fertile and robust, can aid the trees’ growth and access to nutrients, as well as increase the ability for the trees (and wider garden area) to keep pests and disease in check. Companions aren’t a magic wand, there are plenty of other tasks a gardener undertakes to ensure fruit trees are healthy and productive, but they’re a great tool and one I’ll never go without. How does it work? Companion plants can: •Lure pests to them and in turn help keep those pests away from other susceptible plants. •Confuse pests by disturbing the visual and chemical attributes that help pests find host plants. •Attract predatory insects, which then naturally lower the pest count in your garden. Keep an eye out If you’re particularly observant you may witness companions working their magic. You may notice ladybirds, a predatory insect; FRUIT FRIEND: Stinging nettle attracts ladybirds, which eat aphids. or spot a praying mantis leaping out, catching and devouring a white butterfly. As your companion plants become established, it’s really exciting to see these things unfold in your garden. Bees Planting to encourage bees and other pollinators into the garden helps with fruit-tree pollination. Try to plant those which flower around the same time your fruit trees blossom. Some plants bees enjoy (which also benefit the fruit garden) include borage, rosemary, lemon balm, basil, coriander, thyme and lavender. Comfrey An outstanding companion plant for fruit trees, comfrey brings up nutrients from deep down in the subsoil and releases them as the leaves die back. I plant it around all my fruit trees. It will grow from a tiny piece of root – making it easy to propagate, but difficult to get rid of once you have it. Phacelia I sprinkle phacelia seeds wherever there is a space in my garden. The flowers are rich in nectar, and the plant helps boost populations of predatory insects. Don’t plant grass Many orchard floors are covered in grass, with fruit trees, of all the same type, neatly planted in straight rows. This may seem pleasing to the eye, but it is a field day for pests, and can make it difficult for fruit trees to grow well. Couch grass, for instance, releases a growth inhibitor via its roots, and this can slow or even stunt the growth of many fruit trees. When you must plant grass Mix things up a bit to add diversity and other benefits. You could include nitrogen-fixing clovers, lucerne, dandelions, mustard, and allow nettles to grow also. Stinging nettle allowed to grow around fruit trees helps with fruit tree health in many ways, including being a host to predatory insects. To attract predators There are many plants which attracts predators to the garden, some to try include: Flowering parsnips, fennel, carraway, hyssop, lemon balm and dill. Let all of these plants flower. Get ready for garlic! Fresh home-grown garlic cannot be beaten! It is so juicy and packed with flavour, and it is so simple to grow yourself! When deciding where to plant, you will need to choose an area that doesn’t get too wet, as garlic will tend to rot if it is in too much water for long periods of time. Garlic grows best in soil that is well dug over and has good drainage, so make sure you are aware of this when choosing the spot. It is so important to make sure that you have a healthy growing environment to allow the plant to thrive. If you have an overly clay soil you will need to add gypsum clay breaker to help resolve this. Paired with organic compost, your soil will be in great shape in no time! If your garden beds are prone to flooding in winter, opt for a raised bed, planter box or pot. Wherever you decide to plant, the mix you use needs to be full of organic matter and nutrition. Organic compost, blood and bone, chicken manure pellets and sheep pellets are all excellent for this. These products will supply the soil with a good boost of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium – all essential nutrients for garlic. Prepare your gardens now, so the soil is ready to go when you plant the cloves. Come and grab some Intelligro Organic Compost! $49 per cubic metre Excellent for adding essential organic nutrients to the soil. LET’S GET GardEninG INTELLIGRO OFFERS: 3 Expert gardening advice 3 High quality products 3 South-Hort growing mixes 3 VIP rewards 3 Buy in-store and online 3 Handy delivery service For more information, check out our website: www.igro.co.nz or visit our facebook page: www.facebook.com/igro.co.nz 1394 Main South Road, RD7 Weedons www.igro.co.nz | Phone 03 347 9415

SELWYN TIMES Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi Tuesday April 25 2017 25 Companions for fruit trees Diversity is the key to increasing disease resistance and pest control in the fruit garden. By including these companion plants, you’ll add diversity above and below ground Apples Keep grass away from apples and don’t plant potatoes nearby. Plant chives as they can inhibit the formation of apple scab. Comfrey should always be planted around apples. Other companions: Garlic, mint family, ajuga, foxgloves, wallflowers, nasturtiums, marjoram. Apricot Keep tomato plants away from apricot trees. Companions: Tansy and southernwood. Avocados Lavender, thyme, stinging nettles, comfrey, scented geraniums. Cherries Lavender, tansy, majoram, rosemary, catnip, curry plant. Citrus Guava, lavender, catnip, wallflower, phacelia. Feijoa Applemint, feverfew, catmint, alyssum, marjoram, and thyme. Nashi Wallflower, stinging nettle, foxgloves. The magazine for gardeners who like To geT Their hands dirTy www.gardener.kiwi 100% Nectarine Lavender, garlic, tansy, strawberries, chamomile, tarragon, horseradish. Peach Lavender, garlic, tansy, strawberries, chamomile, tarragon, horseradish, basil, southernwood. Pears Keep grass well away from pear trees. Companions: Stinging nettle, tansy, catmint, sage, comfrey. Persimmons Garlic, marjoram, chives, mint, tansy, sage, comfrey, catmint. Plums Catmint, stinging nettle, tansy, wormwood, garlic and chives. Quinces Garlic, comfrey, tansy. •Keep the area directly around the trunks of fruit trees clear of plant debris, which can otherwise encourage fungal growth. MAINSCAPE Garden Supplies Making your great outdoors greater OPEN 6 DAYS Mon-Fri 8am - 5pm, Sat 8am - 3pm WE ARE NOW TAKING GREENWASTE Flax and Cabbage Tree Leaves @ extra cost FIREWOOD NOW AVAILABLE split cut pine and pine offcuts 1543 Springs Rd Phone 021 241 7908 EFTPOS Available www.mainscapegardensupplies.co.nz Mainscape Garden Supplies FLOWERING CHERRY TREES 20% TO 50% OFF MARJORAM is a good friend of cherries and feijoa; chives (left) can help prevent apple scab; garlic (below) can be planted to help nectarines. We design gardens DESIGN IT from a blank canvas and transform outdoor living areas into pleasing, relaxing spaces for the client to enjoy year after year. Our design skills extend also to large lifestyle properties, making the most of the extensive land to fit perfectly with the client's needs. At Evergreen Landscapes, BUILD IT our staff are specialists in their areas of expertise; we have experts in excavation, paving, building, irrigation, planting, maintenance. We offer a professional standard of service with friendly staff who understand the importance of starting and finishing jobs to a very high level. PLANT IT $7.90 incl. GST Give fine-leafed plants a trim visit pukeahu national war memorial park upcycle an old wheelbarrow growing with you following the fantail Learn more about this bright little bird for the love of wild flowers geoff & Liz Brunsden’s quest to spread colour all over the country Humble bumblebees How to encourage more of these hard-working pollinators into your garden Autumn crops the edibles that deserve your growing attention compAnion plAnts for fruit trees + planting advice for cherries & tamari los April 2017 | 100% Real-life gardeners Elaine Schreiber of Bushview Gardens, New Plymouth + Vicky Barrett of the Dig It! Royal Oak Organic Garden, Auckland off to mArket setting up your own plant or produce sta l For more gardening inspiration, pick up the latest issue of kiwigardener LANDSCAPING IN CANTERBURY FOR OVER 30 YEARS WE DO: Decking Paving Driveways Irrigation WE HAVE: Diggers Loaders Tip trucks Fencing Excavation Bunds Lawns Retaining walls Cartage Ponds WE SUPPLY: Design services Trees / shrubs Bark / soil Decorative stone 366 Halswell Junction Road, Halswell, Christchurch 8025 T: 03 349 9240 | E: info@allwood.co.nz www.allwood.co.nz APRIL ONLY OPEN TUESDAY to FRIDAY 9.00am to 4.30pm SATURDAY & SUNDAY 10.00am to 4.00pm We provide an advice and plant set out service for where your trees and shrubs should be placed in your garden areas. If you prefer, we can do the tasks of planting, composting and mulching with our skilled labour teams. We have planted out many reserves, parks, swales and street trees: we have years of experience in quality tree and shrub planting. EVERGREEN LANDSCAPES LTD 60 Ivey Road, Templeton, Christchurch Ph: 03 349 2929, Mob: 027 559 2929, E: design@egn.co.nz Open: Mon to Fri, 8:30am - 4:30pm w w w . e g n . c o . n z Landscaping from Residential, to Lifestyle, to Commercial Sites