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Yay! It's officially Autumn! Sure, some hot days still to come no doubt, but overall the nights are cooler and we are in for some FANTASTIC gardening weather over the next couple of months.
We have some very exciting news for you if you're wanting to get your garden beds ready for planting. Our VIP customers will know that in February (during that ridiculous heatwave we had) we offered for the first time ever FREE delivery on bulk loads. It was a popular promotion and sure helped the phones ring when we were so deathly quiet; so it got us thinking. We know delivery costs are a dis-incentive for some of you to order from us; so we asked ourselves - "How can we make deliveries cheaper?" Of course there is a very real cost to transport and logistics; so it is not something we can simply write off. However we have worked hard to crunch some numbers & we're going to trial a NEW pricing structure in March. (Click here for full details.)
Also - our workshop schedule is up & running - we have got some great sessions planned this year; keep an eye on our brand new Events page (click here) which will be updated regularly as details are locked in. (Below is a photo taken at one of our recent Propagation workshops, which participants really enjoyed!)
So it's time to get busy - learning, growing and gardening! Let's get to it!
Linda & The Team @ GLSC
In This Newsletter:
Globe artichokes, Beetroot, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Carrot, Cauliflower, Celery, Celeriac, Garlic, Kale, Kohl rabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Peas, Radish, Silverbeet, Spinach, Spring onion, Swede, Turnip.
New to gardening? Click here for our BRAND NEW, FREE Growing Guide - Top 12 Autumn/Winter Edible Plants in Perth
We are thrilled to announce a whole schedule of workshops @ GLSC, including:
5 March - Square Foot Gardening/Growing in Small Spaces - Nick Bell
Click here to see our new 'EVENTS' page for full details. More workshops will be added when details fall into place - we have LOTS more ideas for workshops going into Spring... Anything else? Please LET US KNOW what you'd like to see us cover.
We know that some of you find the price of our bulk deliveries an issue. It's been something we've struggled with for some time - obviously, we'd love your business, but delivery is a real cost, so we have battled to find a compromise between affordability (for you) and profitability (for us). Times are a little tough out there, but we still believe our products represent great quality & value, and that you'll continue to support us if we can cut our Green Lifers a great deal... So...
We have decided to take a leap of faith that you'll LOVE our new arrangement, and refer us to all your friends - and we are trialling the following NEW delivery structure:
If you are outside of our metro zone - please call us to discuss delivery charges.
This is a BRAND NEW INITIATIVE - here's a map which we've quickly put together to indicate our new bulk delivery areas; We will refine this and add full details to our website very soon for easy confirmation of pricing. In the meantime - please contact us if you have any questions.
People get excited about the prospect of having an 'easy' garden that doesn't require digging - and I can't say I blame them. However, there are some important things to consider before deciding if a No dig garden is the best for you. (Photocredit: Milkwood Permaculture)
What is a 'No-Dig Garden'?
Basically, a no-dig garden can be plonked ANYWHERE - on paving; on lawn - so it's an option if you decide that the best spot to grow vegies (based on sunlight) is somewhere you don't already have a garden. Ideally, build your garden on a level area - it is easier to retain moisture here than on a slope.
To start, you lay down a THICK layer of newspaper (about 1.5cms thick) or cardboard, overlapping well to ensure no gaps. If placing on grass, it's not a bad idea to sprinkle a handful of blood & bone underneath the newspaper and water in. Pre-soak the paper in a wheelbarrow of water first - that way you don't end up with a moisture barrier (of dry paper which soaks up the water rather than allowing it to remain in the soil); and the blood and bone below (when activated with moisture) will help rot down the grass.
On top of the paper, lay a good layer (about 20cms thick) of ideally pea or lucerne hay/straw - which is a little higher in nitrogen than plain mulching straw (although this can be used too), then sprinkle again with a good layer of pelletised poultry manure and/or blood & bone and/or good compost and water in well. You can choose to layer straw & manure in a lasagna effect if desired.
Seedlings or seeds should be planted into generous pockets (10cm deep x 30cms across) of quality potting mix or soil, so that plant roots get well established; and in time they will grow into the decomposing straw which will continue to break down and become friable soil. Esther Deans (the originator of No-Dig Gardening in the 1970's) suggested that large-leafed, spring crops like pumpkins were often the best to get a No-dig garden started with - as their large leaves would shade and protect the decomposing straw below, helping to keep in moisture.
No-Dig Gardens are a little different to Lasagne Gardens and Sheet Mulching - although the terms are quite often used interchangeably and many people make hybrid systems anyway.
Sheet mulching and lasagne gardening often involve slashing or laying material onto thick weeds - and thus saving yourself the onerous task of weeding before planting out a garden. Often, other layers of material/s eg; lawn clippings, vegetable waste, soft green waste, leaf litter, animal manures, etc. are used in the system, and then topped with a more cosmetic mulch layer (like woodchips). Planting holes are then dug down through all of this into the ground below, and if necessary, a handful of good fertile soil or compost is added where planting occurs, to raise the soil level. Thus, weeds are smothered and plants get a good start in life as they are fed by the decomposing material.
Both these methods need good moisture levels to ensure the bulk material continues to break down and feed your plants. It is also a good idea to use some kind of edging/barrier to prevent materials & nutrients washing away. This can be rocks, bricks, suitable timber - whatever suits your purpose.
So the advantages of no-dig or lasagne gardens are, they:
But there are some drawbacks/considerations to keep in mind:
So there you have it - things to consider if you want to give No Dig gardening a go! Remember there are no "rules"- a layer thicker or thinner than I have mentioned, or using one ingredient over another isn't really going to be an issue. Don't get hung up over minute details - the principle is to use a good range of organic waste products layered with a source of nutrients to build soil where previously there was none.
The main thing is to use what you can get your hands on - SUSTAINABLY - and get started. We can help you with the individual input materials you may need, or we can quote you on a soil product if you wish to make a comparison. Feel free to ask for advice, or attend one of our gardening workshops.
With Autumn finally here, it's the PERFECT time to get gardening... We'd like to give our VIP's something to help get their gardens ready for a bumper growing season; so with any purchase over $100, VIP's can pick up a FREE 5kg Rock Dust (value $19.50).
Please ask for the deal in store* & on-line customers - please add the request to the delivery instructions/comments box in your order.
* If you're coming in to see us, if you have a container at home feel free to bring it to reduce our packaging costs & future rubbish for landfill! Thanks!
Now that school's back, if you are involved with fund raising and looking for something different, contact us about organising our bagged products (potting mix, soil improvers, compost & manure etc) that can help raise $$$ for your school's projects in 2016.