Time­line for the best ku­maras

The Bay Chronicle - - MOTORING - BAR­BARA SMITH

soups and stews. with dry pot­ting mix or sphag­num moss to stop them rolling around. Store in a cool place. Begonias grown in the ground can be left in warm ar­eas. Oth­er­wise lift the tu­bers be­fore the first frost and store as above. In late Au­gust put the tu­bers (con­cave side up) in a bright spot out of di­rect sun­light to sprout. Barely cover the sprouted tu­bers with fresh pot­ting mix and be­gin the cy­cle all over again. prob­lems. Drosophila have a keen sense of smell for the rot­ting fruit where they breed and the fungi that the lar­vae feed on. If you see them swarm­ing around your toma­toes or fruit trees, take a closer look. Chances are there’ll be bird-pecked or over-ripe fruit, a fun­gal dis­ease or a drain blocked with rot­ting leaves.

Don’t worry about fruit flies in the com­post bin or the worm farm. They are just get­ting on with their re­cy­cling job. (Avoid a face­ful of tiny flies when you lift the lid by bury­ing fresh scraps un­der older ma­te­rial.)

In the kitchen, keep things un­der con­trol by clean­ing up the fruit bowl and vege bin. Also watch for spills around your bokashi bin or com­post bucket, un­rinsed bot­tles in the re­cy­cling bin and pet food bowls.

Make a trap for blowflies but bait it with fruit juice, wine or a piece of fruit or a spoon­ful of jam in a lit­tle wa­ter. Add a drop of de­ter­gent to lower the sur­face ten­sion. The flies are lured in but can’t get out and even­tu­ally drown. This col­umn is adapted from the weekly e-zine, get grow­ing, from New Zealand Gar­dener mag­a­zine. For gar­den­ing ad­vice de­liv­ered to your in­box ev­ery Fri­day, sign up for Get Grow­ing at: get­grow­ing.co.nz

Beet­root, car­rots, co­rian­der, leeks, spring onions, let­tuce, radishes, spinach and sil­ver­beet can be grown from seed but trans­plant broc­coli, cab­bages and cauli seedlings. It’s worth mak­ing an ex­tra ef­fort when plant­ing seedlings into dry soil. Stand the pun­net in a weak so­lu­tion of fer­tiliser or worm wee un­til no air bub­bles ap­pear. Fill the plant­ing hole with wa­ter and al­low to drain. Firm the soil around the roots of the seedlings and wa­ter again. Mulch well. Wa­ter deeply so that the roots grow down­wards from the start, safe from hot weather and dry­ing winds.

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