Gardening Australia episode 2 2022: Costa Georgiadis looks at reducing urban heat with trees, Sophie Thomson explores a glorious fig farm, Jerry Coleby-Williams has a compost method for every type of organic waste and Tino Carnevale visits seed saving experts.
Inspiring, entertaining and full of practical advice, join Costa Georgiadis and the team as they unearth gardening ideas, meet avid gardeners and look at some of the most inspiring gardens from across the country.
Gardening Australia episode 2 2022
Hot in the City
Costa meets a researcher looking at reducing urban heat and the role trees can play in keeping our suburbs cool. Costa’s visiting a public park in Merrylands, Western Sydney. It’s a classic park you might find in cities and suburbs around the country. But this park is playing a wider role in research looking at the impact of heat in our public places.
Dr Sebastian Pfautsch is an Associate Professor for Urban Studies at Western Sydney University, and he specialises in heat in urban areas. Australia’s climate is getting hotter. Not only does this represent a risk to the environment, it’s also a risk to our health, and the suitability of the cities we live in.
FAQs – Liquid and solid fertilisers | Repotting plants | Plant heights
Josh advises on the difference between liquid and solid fertilisers, Jane explains how often you need to repot plants and Clarence explains how to know how big your plants will grow.
Knowledge for Newbies – Gardening Australia episode 2 2022
Millie shares a few lessons she’s picked up on her gardening journey that would have been helpful to know from the start! While some gardeners have been at it for decades, everyday people pick up the spade for the first time. Millie shares a few little things she wished she knew at the start.
There is no beginning or end to the garden path, you can jump onto it, at any time and develop your knowledge and skills as little or as much as you like. Even after decades in the garden, there are new things to learn and new plants to perfect, it is one of the great joys of doing it.
A great way to get your basic skills underway is in the productive garden. Growing a little food can help you understand the foundational skills required for growing almost anything. Even to grow something as simple as lettuce, you will need to master some fundamentals.
You will need to investigate and understand your soil – the key to every garden. You will learn the nuance of the seasons and start to understand the microclimates in your garden. In the heat of summer, you might seek a spot with afternoon shade but in winter you will need in full sun.
The Need for Seed
Tino meets a family of self-confessed ‘seed freaks’ whose commitment to sustainability and food security has grown into a seed saving enterprise. Tino heads to Tasmania’s Huon Valley to meet a family of self-confessed Seed Freaks, whose commitment to sustainability, food security and seed saving has grown into their full-time gig.
Linda Cockburn and partner Trev Wittmer are passionate about seed. On their 1.5-hectare block in the picturesque Huon Valley, they grow, save and sell varieties of heirloom seeds. Linda says, “we produce around 400 different varieties of edible plant seeds, all of which we grow, harvest, process and package here. Our plants are all organically grown, locally climatised and either open-pollinated or heirloom varieties because, over the last 100 years, 93% of these older varieties have been lost. Gardeners have an opportunity to save and secure these varieties”.
Fig Farming – Gardening Australia episode 2 2022
Sophie visits a large and lush fig farm, tasting the delights of different varieties and learning the key to keeping them thriving at home. Sophie visits a lush fig farm, tasting the delights of different varieties and learning the key to keeping them thriving at home. There’s nothing like eating a perfectly ripe fig straight off the tree! In the Adelaide Hills of South Australia, the Willabrand fig orchard provides this opportunity during the autumn harvest season.
The fig farm was started by Willa Wauchope and his family after transforming and old, run-down jam factory orchard in the 1990s. Willa came across a few large remaining figs and realised the fruit was worth holding on to. Now it’s home to over 12,000 fig trees that each produce 10 kilograms of fruit that goes to locals, restaurants and preserved into a range of products.
The steeply terraced site led Willa to prune the trees in a less common way. They are kept to a safe picking height and encouraged to grow horizontally into self-supporting espalier forms.
Key to Compost
Jerry takes us through multiple methods of composting in his garden, to ensure nothing is wasted and there’s plenty of food for his hungry plants. Compost is certainly something you hear about a lot on Gardening Australia. And it’s easy to see why. It improves the fertility, drainage and water-holding capacity of soil, sequesters carbon, and making it means you’re not constantly sending kitchen scraps and garden waste to the tip. Best of all it’s free and easy to do.
A serious food production effort like Jerry’s garden can’t exist without compost, and so Jerry has a multitude of different ways of creating it. He’s going to show us through his systems for composting as much as possible in his garden, and how he makes sure as much organic waste as possible is turned into this garden gold. Jerry has 3 working compost bins on the go all year round. One is for kitchen waste, one for leaf mould, and one for garden waste.
Planting for Love – Gardening Australia episode 2 2022
Jane visits the garden created by landscape painter Arthur Streeton for his wife, that has remained a beautiful illustration of their love and of horticultural history.
Sir Arthur Streeton (1867-1943) is best known for the landscapes he painted as part of the Heidelberg school of artists. In 1920 (i.e. aged 53), when he finally had some money, he bought 5 acres on a ridge in the Dandenong Ranges – an area he was introduced to by his good friend Dame Nellie Melba. He then he set about trying to make it as welcoming as he could for his homesick wife, Canadian-born and European-trained violinist, Nora. “The garden is a kind of a love letter from Arthur to Nora,” says current owner Julie Dodds Streeton. “They were a very romantic pair and it’s their love story.”
My Garden Path – Catriona Pollard
We meet fibre artist Catriona Pollard who transforms salvaged natural materials into woven works of art. Catriona Pollard is a Sydney based fibre artist currently working from a tranquil artist’s sanctuary in a beautiful piece of bushland. Catriona says, “I use organic, foraged plants and recycled materials to create sculptures. What inspires me is nature. That is my biggest teacher, that is my biggest mentor.” She spends a lot of time simply observing the bush and says that nature teaches us that “it’s the smallest of things that can bring joy.”