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Plant Hospital

Preventing and Controlling Rats in the Garden

Got rats hanging out in your garden? here are some top tips to help you get rid of the problem

Walking around your lovingly tended garden you check your budding fruit trees and listen to the cluck, cluck, clucking of your chickens when you suddenly spot something that makes you stop dead in your tracks. The hair on the nape of your neck raises and your skin starts to crawl. On the path in front of you, you discover RAT …

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How to Use a Soil pH Test Kit

If you find your plants are not growing well, then it might be time to check your soil pH!   The easiest why to test your soil pH is to use an off the shelf kit, such as Searles Soil pH Test Kit. These kits have everything you require and can be used several times.   Optimum pH range Soil …

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Searles® Garden News: Ecofend™ Organic Pest Control Range

Great News! Ecofend™ is now an Australian Organic Registered Garden Product range which will enable you to have organic solutions for garden pests.   Ecofend™ Vegetable & Garden Insect & Mite Spray is a safe and effective soap based spray to use on vegetables, fruit trees, pot plants and ornamentals in the garden. This product works in the same ways as an insecticide …

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5 Common Spring Plant Health Problems

Spring is a time for gardens to sing with life and colour, but it’s also a time for some common plant health problems to arise. Problem 1: Psyllids Lilly-pilly trees are a very popular hedging plant, but can be vulnerable to psyllids which cause unsightly, but harmless lesions on new growth. To avoid this problem ask your local garden expert …

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Natural Rose Care Treatments for Powdery Mildew & Black Spot

Sub-tropical and tropical climates provide the perfect humid conditions for fungal diseases such as powdery mildew and black spot to thrive. These fungal diseases can severely stress the plant and diminish its performance, resulting in fewer blooms and a sickly looking plant. However, there are natural treatments available to assist gardeners in fending off these fungal infestations.   What is powdery …

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Spring Rose Care Tips

Tips for Spring Rose Care

If your desiring a rose display that will rival Flemington Racecourse on Melbourne Cup, then follow these sound spring rose care tips. Pruning Roses Generally, roses should be pruned back by two-thirds in winter but if you haven’t done this by early spring, a gentle pruning to remove dead branches and excess straggly growth should suffice. Feeding Roses When new …

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Iron Deficiency in the Garden

Iron deficiency (iron chlorosis) is a common problem in Australian gardens and can cause serious problems to plant health and vigour. The symptoms however are easy to both recognise and treat.   Iron deficiency first appears as a ‘veiny’ look on new growth, with a darker green pigmentation retained on the leaf veins and the rest of the leaf developing …

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Tomato & Capsicum Blossom-end rot

disease for tomato & capsicum blossom-end rot

A common ailment with tomato and capsicum is blossom-end rot. This condition just effects the fruit and not the plant blossom or flower. The condition gets its name because the symptoms appear at the ‘blossom end’ of the fruit. The first sign of blossom-end rot is that the end of the fruit becomes off-whitish to brown in colour and takes …

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Fruit Fly

If you’ve ever grown fruit of any kind, especially during spring and summer, you will know that fruit fly can be a real nuisance. However there is an easy solution to help control these pesky insects.   Fruit Fly damage  Here in our hot climate, fruit flies cause a lot of fruit loss from stinging the fruit. It is actually …

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Citrus Gall Wasp – insects on plants

The gall wasp causes swollen lumps in the young stems and branches. The female wasp lays her eggs in the young, soft twigs and as the wasp larvae develop, the plant grows extra cells around the wound. The result is a distorted lump in the branch. The wasps lay their eggs from spring to summer, but the galls are generally …

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