NZ Kitchen Garden

Home grown goodness for the kitchen and pantry


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There are holes in my brassicas, dear Lila

Is there anything more frustrating than tenderly raising a seedling, only to have it munched to pieces by a predator? Well, the white cabbage butterfly and it’s iridescent green offspring have found their home among my young broccoli and the results have been devastating. However, I hope that my recent efforts have thwarted their attempt to crunch their way through the second wave of seedlings that I planted out last night. Continue reading

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The proof is in the produce

What a month or so it has been for harvesting, now that we are well into summer! I have really enjoyed watching other people’s successes as they reap the benefits from their gardening passion. The vibrant colours of ripe tomatoes, colourful beans and rainbow silver beet, shiny courgettes, leafy greens and more, mean that I have been more “green eyed” than “green thumbed” during this plentiful period. Continue reading


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Snails: Chemical warfare

My beer traps have been working wonderfully, trapping three or four slugs in each a night (many of them on the very large side) and a few tiny snails. However, after a while I noticed that my tender broccoli, cucumber and eggplant seedlings were disappearing, one bite at a time. When I arrived home after a long weekend away, smidgens of ravished stalks greeted me, making it blatantly obvious that either some slugs did not have the taste for beer or something else was making a mockery of my pest protection system. Continue reading


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Chicken Poo: a great place for fruit flies

There are masses and masses of little fruit flies flitting atop my three small vege beds. They are going crazy over the smelly, mucky, well-rotted chicken poo that I have mixed in with the soil. Apparently, it’s a great place for them to lay their eggs. Continue reading


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Unfortunately, ants like strawberries

For the last few weeks I have been patiently waiting for for the blush on my first strawberries to rise from their tips to their stalks. But, horror upon horrors, when I finally picked them, I found that the pesky ants had already beaten me there! Continue reading


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Slugging it out, eco-friendly style

En route to retrieve my iPhone from the glove box in our car the other night, I took a quick tour of my garden – torch in hand – to investigate whether it was indeed sneaky slugs that were munching their way through my young brassicas. It took a few seconds for me to see their shady selves, but sure enough, there were ten-to-fifteen of the slimy monsters caught in the spotlight. And not just slugs; a rather large snail was clinging on to the spindly remains of a tiny cauli leaf in a rather King Kong-Empire State Building fashion! Continue reading