June 2014

June is
a good time to...

Prune and tidy up fruit trees and roses. Cut all leaves off winter roses (heleborus).
Check your cauliflowers aren't getting hit by the frost, and fold over their leaves to protect them. Fertilise your soil. Plant garlic and shallots on the shortest day. Stake broadbeans. Split your strawberries and watch out for snails.

Read on for more details...

Burning question

Does Awapuni sell garlic seedlings and when do I plant it?

Yes we do sell garlic seedlings and the best time to plant is around the shortest day (21 June) of the year. For tips on how to plant visit here and to get some seedlings order from our online shop and have them delivered direct to your door. If you're not 100% satisfied with your order we'll replace it no questions asked.

Click here to email Tod your burning question today.

Whitefly and white butterfly - the saga continues

Thanks to everyone who sent us more emails
about whitefly and white butterfly this month. More tips include using an automatic robo can of insect spray in hot houses or simply hosing them off the plant. Netting works for some and not for others in keeping away white butterfly. As one correspondent noted, this probably depends on the size of the holes and they can get through surprisingly small ones without any problems!
Ruth learnt the hard way that children can catch a significant amount of flying pests without making much of a dent and the price per butterfly her kids caught one summer went quite quickly from 20 cents per catch to 10 cents. Thanks to Cath Cameron who sent us an excerpt from her book Te Rehunga 1905-2005. The destruction the white butterfly inflicted on local farmer crops in the 1930s led the Maharahara Women's Division of Federated Farmers to run a butterfly catching competition in February 1933. The contestants netted more than 3200 butterflies. With the winner catching 800!
As Cath notes it seems these little creatures are still outwitting mankind despite all our best efforts. And, as Ruth said, probably the only real way of controlling them is winter.

Combat club root

Club root is a fungal disease, which can stop the heads of your brassicas (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts etc) developing properly. But there are a couple of things you can do to prevent it. Firstly, always rotate your brassica crops by making sure you plant them in a different spot to last time. Dress the soil with lime to sweeten it before planting. Grow a cover crop, like mustard seeds, in the soil once you harvest your brassica plants. When the mustard gets to around 10cm and the leaves are soft, dig it into the soil. Lastly, make sure you use high quality seedlings. At Awapuni we only use high quality seeds to grow our seedlings. This means our plants are more disease resistant than your average seeds or seedlings - so less likely to succumb to club root.

Spot that car and win seedlings

To celebrate the arrival of our newly branded Wellington merchandiser's car, we're going to give you several chances to win seedlings next week. Between Monday and Friday next week (9-13 June) we'll announce a clue each day pointing you to a page on our website. Then all you have to do is email us with the link to the page and your name, phone number and physical address.

We'll select three randomly drawn winners from the correct entries received each day and announce the following day. That's 15 chances to win all week. For each day's clue check out our homepage and or facebook, twitter
and instagram accounts.

Good luck and happy gardening
Henri Ham

Apple and pear cider

Last month Tod suggested making cider with end of season apples and/or pears. Tod has been busy practising what he preaches and made his first batch of pear cider. Here's the recipe he used. As the expert maker of one batch of cider, Tod says it's all about taste testing.
Let it ferment longer or use less sugar and try limes (instead of lemons) if you like a dry/more bitter tasting cider. Add berries and more sugar or test it earlier if you prefer a sweeter taste. Tod let his cider ferment for around six weeks. We'd love to hear how you get on with making cider or if you have any other tips to share with our readers.

Quick and easy pots

Pots are the garden for everyone. Whether you've got the quarter acre dream or live in an inner-city apartment, pots make gardening accessible to almost all.

Pop a basil or parsley seedling in a small pot for sitting on the windowsill. Pretty up your front door eve with a potted geranium. Or create an explosion of colour with a mix of flower seedlings in a larger pot.

And the best thing about potting up plants is you don't even have to use pots. Got a vintage or recycled container you've always wondered what to do with it? Drill some holes in the bottom for drainage, put it on top of a saucer of some sort and grow viola or coriander in it.

Basically any container that allows water to drain from the bottom will do for potting plants. But the rule of thumb is, the bigger the pot or tub the less it will dry out.

If you're not sure what to plant, try growing one of Awapuni's pots and tubs mixed seedling bundles. You can grab one from your local supermarket or Bunnings. Alternatively, order your seedlings from our online store and have them delivered direct to your door.

The pots and tubs mix takes the hassle out of deciding what flowers to pot up and when to do it. It's jammed full of nine or more seasonal flower seedlings perfect for growing in containers. At this time of the year it has flowers like pansy, lobelia, wallflowers, polyanthus and violas in it.

Read more
Going potty

If Tod's Quick and easy pots article has inspired you to find some creative containers to plant in, then you need to check out this site. From old boats to tyres and even shoes, this list of 30 DIY pots and containers has got something for everyone. Greg Holdsworth

Hardy and healthy cabbage

Unlike spring when you can plant virtually anything your heart desires it can be tough to know what to grow during autumn and winter. The cooler temperatures and frosts stop many plants in their tracks before they even get going. Greg Holdsworth
But they don't stop our friend the cabbage. In fact, cabbages are renown for their ability to thrive in colder climates. Making now the perfect time to plant this common brassica.

If the word cabbage summons memories of pungent smelling over cooked shredded leaves, think again. With the right techniques - including sautéing, stir-frying or using fresh - cabbage will taste fantastic. Plus it's really good for you - high in fibre and vitamin C and low in kilojoules.

And there are many different types of cabbage available. At Awapuni we grow golden acre, savoy, hybrid, red, spring and let's not forget chinese cabbage, which comes from a slightly different branch of the brasscia family. Savoy is great for wrapping around different fillings. Golden acre, red and spring are perfect for making coleslaw.

You can pick up some cabbage seedlings next time you're at your local supermarket or Bunnings. Otherwise, check out our online store and get your seedlings delivered direct to your door.

Once you've got your seedlings the hardest part about growing them is finding somewhere to plant them. You need a bit of space - each seedling will need to be grown around 300mm apart from the others. And you need to make sure you haven't planted any other members of the brassica genus (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts etc) in the same spot recently. This will prevent your plants getting club root - a disease, which stops the heads on your brassicas developing fully.

Read more


Congratulations to the following Cultivated News subscribers, Lynne from Wanganui, Glennis from Palmerston North, Sharyn from Napier, Colleen from Waitara, Fay from Papakura and Yvonne from Hamilton, who have won Awapuni Nurseries seedlings simply for being subscribed during May.

Remember, we're giving away seedling bundles to Cultivated News subscribers every month during 2014, so stay subscribed for your chance to win.


Henri and Paul Ham, Awapuni Nurseries Ltd
Pioneer Highway PO Box 7075 Palmerston North 4443 NEW ZEALAND


P: 64 6 354-8828 F: 64 6 354-8857 W: www.awapuni.co.nz E: sales@awapuni.co.nz