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Gardening

A tractor sprays many rows of crops with a pesticide - a text overlay says ‘are pesticides dangerous?’

Are pesticides really dangerous?

There is a lot of conflicting information about whether or not pesticides are dangerous so it is no surprise that I get asked this question fairly frequently. I’d love to give a yes or no answer but the truth is, it varies depending on the pesticide in question and how you define ‘dangerous’. If you’ve ever wondered whether pesticides are dangerous, the following information should give you the information you need to answer the question for the specific pesticides you’re interested in.

 

A hose spraying water with a text overlay that says ‘when should you water your garden?’

When should you water your garden?

  • K. M. Wade 
  • 12 min read

 

All gardeners want to ensure their plants get the water they need but many of us worry about whether we have the optimal irrigation schedule. The best frequency at which you should water your garden is fairly uncontroversial, though it does depend on the plants you are growing and what stage they are at so it can be quite complicated to figure out. The time of day at which you should water your garden however, is a hotly contested topic and experienced gardeners often wonder this almost as frequently as beginner gardeners. I advocate for watering in the morning and I think you’ll agree that my reasoning and advice is sound.

The unexpected consequences of pruning

On 3 October 2017, scientists published an interesting article in the journal Ecology titled ‘molecular constraints on resistance-tolerance trade-offs’. This is a bit of a mouthful but basically, the study looks at the mechanisms some plants use to cope with the negative effects of being pruned or munched on by wildlife, namely resistance and tolerance, and they found something rather surprising that could, in the future, increase agricultural yields and reduce reliance on pesticides.

Five things to learn from Floriade 2017

  • K. M. Wade 
  • 8 min read

For those of you who don’t know, Floriade is a peak spring flower show in Australia. Unfortunately, because it’s focussed almost exclusively on bulbs, it tends to be pretty much the same every year. But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to be gleaned from a visit; or a review from someone who has checked it out. So, whether or not you’ve had the opportunity to visit Floriade, here are five things you can learn from the event: