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Selwyn Times: June 27, 2017

24 Tuesday

24 Tuesday June 27 2017 Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi Gardening SELWYN TIMES Decking Retaining Wall Timber Landscaping Timber Trellis Residential Fencing Poles and Piles H3 and H4 Timber Dressed Timber Urban Section HOURS Mon - Fri: 7am - 5pm Saturday: 8am- 12pm Weedons Ross Rd to Rolleston We are here Berketts Rd Jason Pester 1304 Main South Road, Christchurch jason@cthl.co.nz P 03 3477465 F 03 3477032 Trents Rd Main South Rd / SH1 Your Local Timber Merchant From paltry to poultry Wendy Megget says chickens can be helpful and fun in the garden, and easy to incorporate into your backyard with these handy hints Mention chickens to most gardeners and they’ll throw up their hands in horror, picturing decimation and ruin. While they are busy doing other things, their chooks could be working hard in the yard – weeding, turning soil, fertilising and keeping bugs at bay. My first venture into the realm of chickens was out of pure desperation. With a massive slug and snail infestation, my goal of growing organic vegetables was getting further out of reach. I tried all the ecofriendly techniques, but to no avail. But within days of getting chickens, my garden started to improve. Not only were those silly birds dealing to the slugs and snails, but also to a myriad of other unwanted pests around the section – aka big scary spiders. They were turning over the soil as they dug for more bugs. Their poop was bringing my compost to life. Best of all, they were digging up and eating weeds, then never giving them a chance to grow back. I learnt to protect certain crops as they ripened, like berries and capsicums. Seedlings also needed protection until they were strong enough to withstand a bit of scratching around the roots and were no longer sweet and tasty. Chickens are primarily driven by bugs and soft tasty food. Once I worked this out, my new pets became the garden helpers of which I had dreamed. COUNCIL RULES Check your council website for rules relating to keeping chickens. Generally roosters are not permitted in urban areas. There may be other restrictions such as the number of chickens allowed and requirements for coops. SPACE How many chickens can your garden support? This will depend on how much area you give them, how much supplemented feed you provide, and the nature of your garden. As a guide, I have a small urban section with a large vegetable patch, and I wouldn’t want to have any more than two freeranging chickens in my backyard. They receive some extra feed and provide us with a dozen eggs each week during good laying times. FENCING A standard 1.8m boundary fence should contain chickens with their wings clipped (an easy process where you trim a few of the long flight feathers). Lower internal fencing of about 1m can be utilised to temporarily restrict the chickens. PREDATORS When introduced to chickens for the first time, your household cat can vary from mild curiosity to fullon attack mode. Slow and supervised introductions are recommended – having a hose on hand can provide a clear message and deterrent for even the most determined cat. A fully grown chicken can defend itself against a cat, but I would rather not take the chance of injury to either party. Dogs can be a significant danger to chickens – even the most docile mutt can still possess the instinct to kill small animals. Predatory birds, like hawks, can attack and kill chickens. Providing plenty of shelter from the sky, such as trees, bushes or roofs, will keep the chickens safe. SHELTER Chickens require a coop with an elevated perch and nesting box. Once they know where their coop is, they will return by themselves at the end of the day. gardening without guesswork Question: Answer: As we head into July, even with the chilly starts the days often turn out to be sunny and a good temperature for getting stuck in to your garden. Here are a few tasks that can done in July: Planting Strawberries can still be planted now. Use our Patio Plus for planting in pots, tubs, barrels and other containers. There is still time to get garlic and shallots in. Fresh garlic is delicious, and it is pretty simple to grow. Check out our website for our garlic growing guide. Plant veggie seedlings like broccoli, cauliflower, radish, silverbeet, peas and spinach. Fertilising Potted spring bulbs will start to pop through this month. Give them a boost of nutrition in the form of Intelligro Topdressing Fertiliser. Is July a gardening-free month, or are there some things I can get out there and do? for more information, check out our website: www.intelligro.co.nz or visit our facebook page: www.facebook.com/igro.co.nz Thanks to sharon for her question. This will help them to continue develop, ready to burst into bloom in spring. If you are planning to plant seed potatoes, give the area you are planting in a boost by adding in Intelligro Potato Fertiliser before planting. General Tasks Prune your roses! Best done on a dry, sunny day. If you have any questions about pruning your roses, send them to us at info@igro.co.nz and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Protect your plants from frosts. Add Organic Compost to gardens and layer with one of our barks. This will help keep the plant’s roots protected from the cold. Cover veggie beds with a frost cloth, and where possible, move pots indoors if a big frost is forecast. WIN! a $50 INTEllIgrO gIfT VOuchEr! Just remember If the ground is too wet to work with, just leave it until it dries up a bit. Once the soil is a bit less boggy, then you can add the compost and lightly fork it through. Send us your question and BE IN TO WIN! Email to: info@igro.co.nz or post your question on our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/igro.co.nz New questions to be received by Tuesday 4th July. QualITy prOducTs frOm ThE WEB TO ThE shEd!

SELWYN TIMES Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi Tuesday June 27 2017 25 26th June - 2nd July 2017 Loose Hothouse Tomatoes $ 11 99 kg Fresh NZ Lamb Shoulder Chops $ 4 99 kg Mainland Mild/ Colby/Edam 1kg/ Tasty 700g Cheese $ 4 00 each $ 9 50 each Whittaker’s Chocolate Block 250g/Share Pack 12 Pack $ 6 00 each Birds Eye Fish Fillets 425g $ 1 99 bag Country Fresh Brown Onions 1.2kg $ 4 00 each Just Juice/Citrus Tree Fruit Juice/Drink 2.4-3L/Sanitarium Weet-Bix 750g $ 17 99 pack Speight’s Gold Medal Ale/Summit 12 x 330ml Bottles $ 11 99 each Stoneleigh 750ml (Excludes Rapaura/Wild Valley/Lattitude) 2 for $ 30 00 Huggies Nappy Pants/Nappies/Ultimate 26-54 Pack FreshChoice Leeston 78 High Street, Leeston. Open 7am – 8pm, 7 days. FreshChoice.co.nz FreshChoiceNZ 324 3788 FreshChoice Leeston While stocks last at FreshChoice Leeston only. We reserve the right to limit quantities. Trade not supplied. Owned and operated by locals fcselwyn2706