Pittwater Life February 2017 Issue


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Caring for ‘super Callas’

Calla lilies are flowering now. They are in

florist shops and garden centres. Their tall

trumpet-shaped flowers are in all colours

from white, through palest pink to pink,

bronze, yellow, lilac and darkest burgundy.

The stiff upright flowers stand high

surrounded by crisp, green spears of foliage.

Callas are not true lilies but they are the

dwarf hybrid forms of the Arum lilies that grow in the garden.

Both arums and callas are zantedeschias. They grow from

rhizomes that die down in winter. Callas can be grown in the

garden in a moist well-lit position although it can be hard to

keep them looking good. Snails and slugs love them. These

dwarf callas are better grown in pots, to be brought inside

when they flower.

bush cherries or riberries, lilli

pilli berries are great bush

tucker. Made into jams or jellies

they are delicious, or they can

be added to cakes or muffins.

However, they don’t taste very

good when eaten raw! Not all

berries should be eaten, some

are ornamental and some are

poisonous, so check before


If you are looking for foliage

colour in the garden, nothing

can compete with Snow Bush

(breynia nivosa rosea). It is a

very showy, ornamental shrub

with pink, white, green and

hot pink leaves. It loves the

heat and grows well in full sun

or semi-shade.

This very hardy tropical

shrub thrives in hot humid

weather; it loves plenty of

moisture and responds well if

fed in spring and late summer

with a complete fertiliser, and

watered regularly. It may lose

a few leaves if winter is too

cold but it will jump back to

life as soon as spring arrives.

It is an old-fashioned favourite

that has recently regained

popularity, as hedging or in a

mixed border.

Garden Life

Lipstick an attractive presence

If you are looking for a pot

plant for a really hot spot that

is salt-tolerant, easy to grow,

undemanding, attractive, that

will grow in full sun or part

shade, in the ground or in

a pot, then you should look

no further than Euphorbia


This attractive plant has huge blue/green leaves and hot

pink flowers. The flowers are coloured bracts that surround

the actual flower – a tiny yellow bloom. The bracts remain

on the plant for many weeks.

A hybrid version of the crown of thorns, Lipstick has

soft thorns that are hidden by the leaves. It is a succulent

plant that has few problems. Make sure not to overwater

or leave water in the saucer, as it will cause rot. If it is kept

undercover it can attract mealy bug in the roots. This is

easy to control – sprinkle Richgro’s Bug Killa on the potting

mix and water it in well.

FEBRUARY 2017 69

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