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Selwyn Times: June 20, 2018

34 Wednesday

34 Wednesday June 20 2018 Gardening Latest Christchurch news at SELWYN TIMES Plums are easy picking PLUMS ARE so easy to grow and, when planted with the correct pollinator, will fruit heavily after only a few years. Plums have become more popular in the past few years with home gardeners growing more of their own fruit. Plum trees grow between 3-4m high depending on the variety chosen and how they are pruned. The three main types flower and fruit differently. The European plum, Prunus domestica, flowers in late September on spurs. European plums generally have smaller, rounder oval fruit which need pollinating. The Japanese plum, Prunus salicinas, flowers in early September on last season’s new wood. It has large, often pointed fruit. The cherry plums, which are Prunus cerasifera, are a cross between the European and Japanese plums. They flower in late winter. Plums prefer a sunny spot with good drainage. Spring frosts can be a problem if the plant is flowering at the time. Water the plant well during dry periods, fertilise in early and late spring with Nitrophoska Blue. Plums are vigorous growers so should be pruned for shape and to keep control of the plant. Thin out large lateral growths, remove diseased dead branches; thin the tree out to allow light in to promote spur formation. Pruning should be done after harvest to prevent disease. Brown rot is the main disease that affects plums, along with the odd insect. Birds are also a pest. Spray with copper and oil three times in winter, then with mavrik or carbaryl and copper monthly while the tree is in leaf. Watch out for birds as they love plums too. Most plum trees need a pollinator to ensure fruit set. Even self-fertile plants will benefit from a companion plant. Some varieties pollinate lots of other varieties. You can even buy trees with pollinators on them. Two or three varieties are grafted on to a tree so you get two to three types of plum on the one tree, which saves room and the plums get pollinated properly. Plums taste best when they are picked ripe from the tree, some cherry plums and plum Santa Rosa are the only self-fertile varieties available. Here are some popular varieties: Cherry plums Black Doris – great all purpose, medium-sized, black-purple skinned, deep red sweet juicy fruit. Billington or Omega helps with pollination. Billington – Cross between Sultan and the Japanese plum. Ripens early December-January and has medium-sized, redskinned, red flesh, juicy fruit. Omega – Red flesh with greenred speckled skin. This plum is juicy, sweet and self-fertile. A good all-round plum. Japanese plums – These plums are heavier croppers and more vigorous growing. Burbank – Has heavy crops of red fruit with yellow flesh. It is self-fertile. Elephant Heart – Is a large plum with reddish-purple skin RIPE: Plums taste great and don’t require a lot of maintenance. and sweet red flesh. Its pollinator is Santa Rosa. Santa Rosa – Is a large, deep purple plum with pink-yellow flesh. It is self-fertile and has sweet fruit. Sultan – Is a popular variety with large red fruit covering the tree. Its pollinator is Omega. Satsuma – Has large, round, dark red fruit and is pollinated by Santa Rosa. European plums Greengage – Is a popular plum producing greenish-yellow fruit in February. It is pollinated by other European plums. Plums are easy to grow if you have the room. Get your garlic growing WE ALL know garlic wards off vampires, but did you know it also keeps away aphids, apple scab, leaf-curl and mosquitoes? Crush a few cloves, soak in a litre of water for a couple of days and use as a spray to keep at bay ants, spiders, caterpillars and cabbage and tomato worms too. And, did you also know, it’s said to provide many health benefits I’m not qualified to list? To put it simply, garlic is right up there with marigolds as the companion plant every garden should have. And this month, specifically the shortest day of the year – 21 June, is the time to plant it. Look for a well-drained spot – pots, hanging baskets or any available space in your raised garden will suit. If you’re growing it for its guardian capabilities, plant it next to your roses to ward off aphids, beneath apple and peach trees to prevent apple scab and leaf-curl, and next to your tomatoes to protect against red spider. Dig in some compost, and nitrophoska blue fertiliser or use a potting mix if you’re planting in baskets or pots. Plant single cloves twice the depth of the actual clove, compost over the top and don’t fill in with soil. Then harvest on the longest day of the year – December 21. 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SELWYN TIMES Latest Christchurch news at Wednesday June 20 2018 35 Selwyn Stitch ’n’ Bitch Wednesday, 6.30pm-8.15pm Meeting the first and third Wednesday of the month. It is open to all who wish to attend. Phone Lisa Dudley 021 060 6905 or Nicola Hay 021 175 0536 Rolleston Library,94 Rolleston Drive Malvern Material Girls Thursday, 9.30am-12.30pm Meeting room 1B, first and third Thursday each month. Phone Sharon Kellock 03 318 1676. Darfield Library, 1 South Tce, Darfield Life, Death and In-Between Wednesday-Thursday, 11.30am to 2.30pm. Friday-Sunday, 10am- 4pm Provoked by the unexpected, works by Don Mcara, Frances Tennent-Brown and Blanche Fryer, on life, death and other places to go. Until July 8, Down By The Liffey Gallery, 1 James St ,Lincoln Time for Fun – Saturday Activities Go to your local library this Saturday afternoon for free fun. Most events are suitable for all ages but children younger than eight-years-old will require active adult supervision. Check the website for what is on at each library. All Selwyn Libraries Patchwork Plus Monday, 10am-3pm Take along any craft you wish and have a chat. To inquire, phone Jill Percy on 324 2331. Leeston Library and Service Centre, 19 Messines St, Leeston Mahjong Beginners Group Tuesdays, 1-3pm Interested in playing Mahjong? Learn to play Mahjong at the Lincoln Library. Lincoln Library, 22 Gerald St, Lincoln Meditation and Buddhism Lincoln Weekly Classes Wednesday June 20, 7.30pm– 9pm This event is a weekly drop in class. Each class consists of a guided meditation and a talk based on Buddhist wisdom. Classes are suitable for everyone. Join in any week, booking is not required. With Buddhist Nun Kelsang Luma. This week’s class focuses on changing attitudes from negative to positive. All ages welcome and the suggested donation for the class is $12. Lincoln and Districts Community Care, 16 Lyttelton St, Lincoln Guys & Dolls – A Musical Fable of Broadway Wednesday, June 20 to Saturday, June 23, 7pm Email by 5pm each Wednesday Watch students act and sing in the school’s high-profile production. $20 adults, $15 students. Tickets available online at Lincoln High School, 25 Boundary Rd, Lincoln, Selwyn Gala 40th Anniversary, Malvern Community Arts Council Saturday, 23 June, 5–7pm The Malvern community, past and present volunteer committee members, artist members, and local dignitaries will enjoy a celebratory evening of music, short congratulatory speeches, finger food and refreshments. Darfield Recreation Centre, North Tce, Darfield Markets: West Melton Market: Saturday, 9am-noon. St Paul’s Church. Lincoln Farmers’ and Craft Market: Saturday, 10am-1pm. Gerald St, Lincoln. Darfield Market: Saturday, 9am-1pm, opposite Challenge Darfield, South Tce. Edendale Car Boot Sale: Sunday, noon-3pm, Edendale Cafe, 888 Sandy Knolls Rd, West Melton Sunday, 10am–3pm, Lincoln Event Centre, 15 Meijer Drive. Free admission. The best place to shop for everything handmade. An awesome array of New Zealand’s finest crafters and designers, there’s every excuse to treat yourself or find gifts for those you love. Offering a selection of products ranging from clothing and accessories, jewellery, housewares, stationery, kidswear and toys, art prints and more. Get your caffeine fix with delicious coffee and delectable sweet and savoury temptations while you peruse over 70 craft stalls. ATMs on site. Parking available in the north car park, on the green opposite the event centre, in the domain and on the street. Crowd control procedures will be in place for a more pleasant shopping experience inside the venue. Running groups: The running groups aim to get like-minded members of the community fit and engaged with each other. All running groups have a handicapped start to cater for different abilities. Lincoln Road Runners: Tuesday registration from 5.30pm starts at 6pm. 3km or 6km. Starts at Lincoln University. Gold coin donation. Malvern Road Runners: Tuesday registration begins at 5.45pm and the first of the 6km runners leave at 6pm. 3km or 6km. Starts from Malvern Netball Centre. Ellesmere Road Runners: Wednesday registration from 5.45pm starts at 6pm. 3km or 6km walk or run. Starts from Leeston physiotherapy. H ORNBY WORKINGMEN’S CLUB LIVE MUSIC SATURDAY (Downstairs) 4.30PM: IAN MAC 8PM: JOHN McCABE SATURDAY (Upstairs) STARS IN THEIR EYES Featuring TONY WELLINGTON as ROY ORBISON & BUDDY HOLLY and EDDIE SIMON as LEO SAYER & JOHN FOGERTY CCR 7.30PM. PRE-SALE TIX $20. DOOR SALES $25. SUNDAY (Downstairs) 1.30PM: ANNETTE’S HEART OF THE COUNTRY ($6 entry) COMING UP SATURDAY 30 JUNE AVONHEAD ROTARY FUNDRAISER ANOTHER GREAT VARIETY TRIBUTE SHOW TICKETS $15 The Hornby Club | ph 03 349 9026 17 Carmen Rd | Hornby Members, guests & affiliates welcome FAMILY FRIENDLY DINING OPEN EVERY DAY Club CAFÉ LUNCH & DINNER JOIN US FOR OUR EXCITING SERIES OF CLUB CAFÉ Chalmers Restaurant FRIDAY & SATURDAY CARVERY DINNER $22.50 OPEN FROM 5.30PM Early Bird Special 5.30pm - 6.30PM THIS SUNDAY! BOOK NOW! LUNCH & DINNER $17 FREE DESSERT