News & tips -


While I love the clear demarcation of the seasons that daylight saving brings, it always takes me at least 2 weeks to recover from turning the clocks forward an hour - so now I am late with this newsletter too!

It’s probably the busiest time in the garden right now - lots of fertilising and seed sowing work to get done. Although if you are a bit behind, there is still plenty of time especially for those veges that need to be started inside in seed raising trays like tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant and pumpkin. Seed raising mix is the best medium. And yes, you still have time to get the potatoes in before Christmas although you would need to use an early variety like Rocket or Swift.

Be sure to give your growing veges a decent feed. Seaweed fertiliser and compost and maybe some sheep pellets all help in growing stronger more productive plants. Given the skyrocketing prices of mostly everything, growing your own veges can be a real saving, even if its just salad leaves and herbs, which don’t require a big investment of time.

Speaking of prices, unfortunately we too will have to make an adjustment of our prices upward, so you may notice some changes over the next few weeks. It’s not a decision we take lightly but all our costs are rising and we cannot continue to absorb them all. We hope you understand and will be able to continue to support us.

Your stone fruit trees should be blossoming now - many fruit trees have the most beautiful blossoms - it’s not just the cherry tree that has a magnificent show but while you are admiring all that beauty, keep an eye out for disease. Both my nectarine and peach have perennially recurring leaf curl. I missed the winter spray of copper (well it did rain most days), so I will wait until the flowers have dropped and then spray. Please be aware though, that copper spray is very toxic to bees and should only be used in a tree with a perpetually recurring problem or with a very large affected area. So don’t spray until the blossoms on the affected tree or any other nearby tree have dropped. Spray in the evening and on a still day. Prevention is better than cure and making sure your tree has sufficient air flow and free draining soil is really important.

Lastly, our Kikuyu is almost in stock again. I know many of you hate it but for many people it's their only option! It has passed MPI clearance and should be back on the website for ordering next week.

PS. An update on Lupin, the newest addition to the Newton Seed family. Unfortunately, lockdown has meant we have gone backwards on her socialisation and personal grooming (true for most of us!). So we are working hard to get her out and about meeting lots of new people (in a socially distanced manner), so when she comes to work she knows how to behave when she finally gets to meet you all!