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Hello & welcome to DECEMBER! In the Noongyar culture, it's the start of Birak - the first summer season of easterly winds and cooling sea breezes - the regularity of which made it suitable for cool fires to burn the land; which aids germination, cleared areas for access and hunting (while regrowth provides grazing for native animals), and to reduce fuel for wildfires. The rains are easing up and temperatures are rising. Many young animals are around - fledglings have left the nest, and reptiles are shedding skin as they grow.
Spring was certainly strange in recent weeks - with cooler days (and very cool nights!) and more recorded rainfall in November than ever before! (more rain than in July and almost as much as August!). Plants are definitely confused - cooler weather will delay germination of seeds, delay ripening of crops, and we're seeing a fair bit of blossom end rot in tomatoes due to the rainfall. And then there's the powdery mildew on cucurbits...ah - the joys of gardening! There's always SOMETHING to keep an eye on!! If you're like us and haven't got around to planting some of your summer crops - the extended cooler weather has given us something of a reprieve... it's not too late to get things growing - but we will need to watch out for sudden spikes in heat that may be just around the corner now that Summer's technically here. Luckily the last of the winter crops - turnips & carrots are still giving us something to harvest, and some repeat plantings of lettuce have given us picking greens too. I've been lovingly tending strawberries and they're starting to develop fruit - hopefully there'll be fresh strawberries for Christmas desserts! Tomatoes on the first vines planted are forming - but ours are some weeks away from ripening. Time to get in more for ongoing supplies. (And a friendly reminder of our tomato contest which will be held in the new year! - get 'em in now and start talking nicely to them!!)
We hope this newsletter will give you some tips & ideas as we head towards the end of 2020 - what a year it's been. From all of us @ The Green Life Soil Co, we'd like to THANK YOU for your support and wish you (and your gardens) all the very best for Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Stay safe & cheers!
Linda & all of the team. x
Christmas Trading at The Green Life Soil Co
Open: Wednesday 23rd December (closing early @ 12.00pm)
Last day to accept online orders of bags, etc. (except for bulk) will be Wednesday am, 16th December in order to have goods delivered before Christmas. (Bulk orders delivered in the tipper can be placed right up until we close - please book ahead if you're planning on getting some serious gardening projects done over the Christmas break, as we already have orders scheduled in pre-christmas...)
Jobs to do in the December garden
Eeek! Christmas is ON OUR DOORSTEP! So it's time to get busy...
Check out our FREE when to plant guides on our website - but here's a quick reminder list:
We recently received another Eden Seed order, and we've got fresh seedlings and herbs coming in all the time - so do pop in and grab what you need to fill gaps in your Summer crops.
Something new to try:
Yacon (Smallanthus sonchifolius)
We were lucky enough to get our hands on a few Yakon tubers recently, which Jacob has potted up for sale. (Only a few - best be quick!) If you've not grown these tuberous vegies before, here's a bit of info about them:
Sometimes called 'Peruvian Apple' - these members of the daisy family form an edible underground tuber that is slightly sweet and crunchy. It can be eaten raw (sliced in salads) or cooked, and has risen to popularity in the past few years for it's health benefits. Like Jerusalem Artichokes, the tubers are high in inulin - an indigestible form of sugar that is fine for those with diabetes. It is also a pre-biotic, so aids gut health. Yacon can be juiced, and will add a sweet flavour to other less palatable juices (cough... kale... cough...).
So for the person who has everything this Christmas - maybe you could surprise them with a ''Ground Pear" - as they're sometimes called.
Not sure what to buy a friend or relative who's into gardening? Here's some ideas that may work well for you:-
Summer is officially here - and while we've had a mild Spring, we all know those 38° days are coming. So be pro-active and get your garden ready! Here are some tips for summer garden survival:-
'Feed the soil' is the organic gardener's mantra... so to help you do this as your summer garden grows, this month's VIP special offer is a HALF PRICE 25L/14kg bag of Multigrow (composted chicken manure pellets). Multigrow is a general purpose slow release fertiliser useful for just about anything in the garden including lawns. (Just use around native plants very sparingly.) Because it's composted, it won't burn your plants, and being pelletised, it's easy to use.
Normally $18.50 a bag; pick one up for $9.25 with any purchase over $40 - valid until COB Monday 4 January 2021. Limit of one per customer. In store or online (log into the Member's section to access the discounted rate on this - and other products!). If shopping in store or over the phone - please remember to ask our team member for the discounted price.
Congratulations to Lynn Castairs who has been chosen as this month's winner of our $50 store credit! Lynn loves her wicking beds, and had this to say:
We agree - wicking beds make very efficient use of water; and help plants even out their intake, leading to more even growth, less susceptibility to pests and disease (as plants are less stressed) and yes - you don't have to worry about watering every day. Come and talk to us about how you can set up a wicking bed. You can make one yourself for very low cost, or choose a fully ready made option (like the Greensmart Pots and the Foodcube). Definitely a great solution to growing in Perth's summer.
The first photo was taken in September; the 2nd in October.
Please support your local independent retailer who supports us! The specialist retailers listed here will be happy to give you gardening advice and help you with our products - please call to check what lines they carry.
We were a little bit sad to see U-scape in Busselton close their doors recently. But - as they say - as one door closes, another one opens... a former U-scape team member now works at Soils Ain't Soils in Busselton, and at her suggestion, they've taken their very first order of Green Life products this week. So YAY Busselton - you're back on board!