NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Snip & Clip -

Keep an eye on blos­soms. One of the most likely rea­sons for lack of fruit is poor pol­li­na­tion. This might be due to not hav­ing a cross-pol­li­nat­ing va­ri­ety for non self-fer­tile va­ri­eties, or va­ri­eties not flow­er­ing at the same time – or poor weather, which can dam­age blos­soms and de­ter in­sect ac­tiv­ity. Check black­cur­rants and goose­ber­ries for moths too. If stems are wilt­ing, the cul­prit might be the lar­vae of cur­rant clear­wing moths. The white cater­pil­lars bur­row in and hol­low out branches. Prune af­fected stems to healthy growth, and de­stroy the in­fected canes.

Made to mea­sure

Learn the mea­sure­ments of your own hands and feet as a guide for sow­ing seeds or thin­ning out seedlings in the gar­den, says Bar­bara Smith. ”My handspan is 18cm so I al­low a tad over a handspan be­tween seedlings that need to be 20cm apart. The width of my hand, in­clud­ing the thumb, is

10cm and that of my in­dex fin­ger is 1cm. From the tip of my in­dex fin­ger to the sec­ond joint is 5cm and my gum­boot is 27cm long. When di­lut­ing fer­tiliser, it’s handy to know that a stan­dard plas­tic bucket is 10 litres. For me, one hand­ful is 75g, so I can work out how many hand­fuls of fer­tiliser or gyp­sum to spread around.”

Sow car­rot seed. 11:58 PM Full moon Full moon, cul­ti­vate only. Gar­den­ing by the moon Re­lax, there’s noth­ing much to be done, save weed­ing.

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