Two and a quarter!

Over the last week, I’ve put in new edging along the main garden paths. Folks kept tripping over the old pavers that we were using for the job – it was a bit of a health hazard! I wanted to do it in one hit and, after a couple of days searching recycling and scrap options, we found long rolls of plastic edging in Mitre 10 around the corner. They were a bit pricey but did the job, although the pic on the packaging looked a lot less wobbly than my effort! The new edging is thinner than the pavers and with a little effort, I made the main path about 15 cms wider than it was. That means that a wheelbarrow or two people can walk along it at a time. The extra little bit of height all around was enough incentive for us to refurbish the main beds. The trip to the landscaping centre is always fun. I

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Azolla (Azolla filiculoides and others)

Azolla is a genus of aquatic ferns that can have an important role in a garden. Azolla filiculoides or ‘Red Azolla’ is the most common species around here, but the rest are pretty similar. What makes it good for gardens? Azolla is simple to grow – just water and sunlight is enough, though it does like a few nutrients too. Azolla can double its mass in 3 days! Wow! that’s really important because it can easily supply us with a lot of organic material. Of course, conditions apply…in non-perfect conditions, it can take longer, maybe up to two weeks. This means you have to buy less mulch or compost for your garden. Azolla ferns also plays symbiotic host to a species of bacteria that fixes nitrogen from the atmosphere (and I suppose the water too). Fixing nitrogen into the biomass means a more nutritious addition to your garden mulch. Prolific and fast growing Azolla is rich in protein (25 –

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Worm tower maintenance

Worm towers are an excellent way to keep up the nutrient levels in our wicking beds. They require little maintenance beyond a regular top up. I was wondering if they needed a periodic clean out, so pulled up one and had a look.   I was interested in what was happening at the bottom of the tower, below the surface of the wicking bed – the part I don’t see regularly. What I found was that the soil had been broken down into pretty much just sand and a little silt. There seemed to be little of the organic material that was present in the mix when I filled the beds. It was quite compacted too, not the worm tunnel ridden rich organic material that I expected. Maybe it was because it was Winter. The contents were a little different to what I’d found in he warmer weather (in this post). This material accounted for, roughly, the bottom 10cms of

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