Thursday, April 19, 2007

acacias are hardy and molasses kills cabbage moth

so my newest garden lessons are that acacias are hardy - one of the chooks had severely damaged one of my new acacias (acacia myrtifolia), but CERES nursery staff assure me they are hardy and will recover. which is just as well cos they were out of stock and i wanted to grow one!

the other lesson i learnt on-site at the CERES market garden. Meg took me there this week, which at first seemed like a rather boring stuff-around kind of way to spend time, but once we got there was really awesome! Meg was giving a group of Muslim schoolgirls a lesson in organic market gardening - it was great to see these girls in hijab and long skirts shovel and rake compost and then scatter seeds. the most amusing point was when one of the girls said to her teacher "miss, can we take off our skirts" - of course, they were all wearing pants underneath, but i was ignorant of this fact and wondered about the extreme contrast of total covering one minute, stripping the next. under their school outer clothes, many of them were wearing fashionable clothes and they were comparing labels, prices and the availability of "cool" clothes in their local shopping centres. i enjoyed the experience.

anyway, back to the gardening lesson. i wondered how they controlled cabbage moth (which is wreaking havoc with my brassicas at the moment). they spray the leaves with a teaspoon of molasses and a teaspoon of detergent mixed in a litre of water. the molasses kills the caterpillars (which eat the leaves) and the detergent keeps the molasses on. So i came home and sprayed my brassicas. fingers crossed :>

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