Rocky Point https://rockypoint.com.au Keep On Growing! Fri, 07 Feb 2020 01:44:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.5 https://rockypoint.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/cropped-RP_DisplayPicture_720x720-e1528345073471-32x32.jpg Rocky Point https://rockypoint.com.au 32 32 AniStraw joins the Rocky Point range! https://rockypoint.com.au/anistraw-joins-the-rocky-point-range/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=anistraw-joins-the-rocky-point-range https://rockypoint.com.au/anistraw-joins-the-rocky-point-range/#respond Fri, 07 Feb 2020 01:38:54 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=8019 Say hello to the newest product in the Rocky Point Animal Bedding range…

AniStraw – Straw Animal Bedding

A sustainable by-product
(and that’s just one reason to buy this product!)

 

 

An affordable by-product of Rocky Point’s green sugar cane harvest, AniStraw Animal Bedding is good for the planet, and your hip pocket! Ideal for creatures great and small AniStraw can be added to your garden compost after your animals have added their soil improving contribution!

AniStraw has been screened and dust extracted making it a soft, comfortable material for your pets to bed on.

AniStraw is a fantastic moisture absorber, capable of absorbing four times its weight in water. It is a sustainable product that smells and looks great.

AniStraw makes a fantastic alternative to traditional Wood Shavings, and is readily available to order now. If you’re interested in stocking AniStraw, please contact us.

You can find all of the product information including how-to’s for AniStraw here.

AniStraw Animal Bedding by Rocky Point – a great product for your animals, your budget, your garden, and the environment – why wouldn’t you buy it? 

 

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February in the Garden https://rockypoint.com.au/february-in-the-garden/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=february-in-the-garden https://rockypoint.com.au/february-in-the-garden/#respond Fri, 31 Jan 2020 20:00:58 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=8056 We have now arrived at the final month of summer. We are still enjoying our balmy evenings of entertaining or just relaxing after the heat of the day. Gardens and landscapes are alive with wonderful sights, smells, sounds and shades of summer. Summer is a time to enjoy but there are still plenty of gardening activities to keep us fit, active and in touch with nature during this time of year.

Valentine’s Day

Good relationships are filled with life, with seasons of growth and of surviving, seasons of waiting and of abundance, seasons of developing and wonderful times of beauty.

Flowers and plants are fabulous gifts to celebrate the nature of great relationships. Garden centres, florists and garden retailers are filled with beautiful gift ideas that tell that someone special that they are loved and appreciated throughout the seasons of life.

Valentine’s Day is on February 14th and is the opportunity to celebrate the special people in our lives. A bunch of flowers is a traditional Valentine’s Day gift that looks wonderful for a few days. There is a fabulous resurgence in the popularity of indoor plants. Plants continue to grow and bring freshness, brightness and life and are the perfect gift to celebrate great relationships. There are many great plants for this special purpose. Here are just a few.

Anthurium plants flower in many different colours and shades. They are easy to grow, are long flowering and the beautiful heart shaped flowers are perfect for the occasion.

Spathiphyllums or Peace Lilies are stunning with their dark glossy green foliage and pure white flowers produced in abundance.

Phalaenopsis or Moth Orchids are a beautiful long flowering gift at any time of year. There is a massive selection of colours available to suit any decor.

Fiddle Leaf Figs continue to be one of the most popular indoor plants. The large, lush leaves bring the jungle vibe to any indoor space.

Monstera plants have been one of the great plants that have led the resurgence of growing plants indoors. The old time swiss cheese variety is lush and easy to grow but there are many new varieties available now that have become a must in the indoor plant collection.

Consider the Birds and Bees this Valentine’s Day

There is a massive selection of wonderful plants for pots, containers and gardens outdoors.

Recent bushfires have caused major devastation across the country. For many, homes and properties have been destroyed and lives have been impacted dramatically. There now comes the time of rebuilding and re-establishing. There are also many native birds, bees, insects and animals that have lost their homes. Birds, bees and insects are essential in helping to rebuild and re-establish our ecosystems and native bushlands. There are many beautiful native plants that not only look fantastic in gardens but will give our native fauna the opportunity to flourish and increase in numbers while their natural homes recover. Consider planting some wonderful Australian native plants such as grevilleas, callistemons, banksias, wattles, tea trees and melaleuca to help our native friends recover.

Diamonds for Valentines Day

Crepe Myrtles or Lagerstroemias are fabulous small growing summer flowering trees. These hardy and colourful trees are looking magnificent in gardens all across the country.

The ‘Diamonds in the Dark®’ range of Crepe Myrtles feature flawless near-black foliage from early spring, followed by masses of vivid blooms throughout summer. Their compact growth habit makes attractive flowering hedges or beautiful trees to line driveways or boundaries. The Diamonds in the Dark® range are perfect for planting in decorative pots and would be a great gift to give to someone special this Valentine’s Day.

Like great relationships, plants will continue to grow and blossom through the seasons of life if they are cherished and looked after. Remember that as plants in pots grow, they will need to be repotted at some stage. Always use the best quality premium potting mix when the time comes to repot. Rocky Point Coco Pro is the professional nursery grade potting mix suitable for most types of plants. Coco Pro not only contains all the quality slow release fertilisers to feed and nourish plants for up to 14 months, but also contains water retention granules. Water retention granules hold onto the water and the plants draw the moisture from the granules as required. This means less watering is required, and plants remain healthy and happy with less attention.

The Edible Garden

Summer is a vibrant time in the kitchen garden with an abundant harvest of all the warm season fruits, vegetables and herbs. We are enjoying incredibly fresh, healthy, flavour filled goodness of homegrown produce as delightful rewards for our efforts. Summer salads are so much tastier when created from the home garden, Tomatoes, lettuces, capsicums, chillies, celery, sweet corn and an array of herbs are ready to harvest for our summer feasting. Fruiting trees such as apples, apricots, peaches, pears, plums and citrus are producing an abundant harvest of fresh and tasty goodness. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, gooseberries and boysenberries are just some of the small fruits to delight us at this time of year. It is a wonderful time of discovery to wander into the garden with a bowl or basket.

These plants are working hard for us and regular watering is important to maintain the quality and quantities of our summer harvest. Maintaining a nice thick layer of mulch helps to keep plant root systems cool, minimises water usage and helps to control weed growth. Rocky Point Sugar Cane Mulch is an ideal natural organic mulch that is perfect in the edible garden.

Spring Flowering Bulbs

There is great excitement in southern regions as spring flowering bulbs become available to plant from this month.

Flowering bulbs are a highlight in the garden and home. Spring flowering bulbs begin to flower in late winter and bring with them the colourful promise of the spring ahead.

Spring flowering bulbs are planted from February to May. Some begin to flower as the days begin to lengthen in late winter and others create spectacular spring displays and will flower throughout the spring months. Spring flowering bulbs include Anemones, Daffodils, Dutch Iris, Freesias, Grape Hyacinth, Hyacinth, Jonquils, Ranunculi, Scillas, Spring Stars and Tulips.

Planting Bulbs

Select a position with good well- draining soil. Prepare the bed by digging in generous amounts of organic compost. This is particularly important in soggy or very sandy soils. Rocky Point ActivGrow is supercharged with over sixteen active ingredients including a blend of organic compost, composted chicken and cow manure, blood and bone, gypsum, fish meal, seaweed extract, iron, zeolite and trace elements. Rocky Point ActivGrow is suitable for all garden types and will ensure a brilliant flowering bulb display as winter comes to an end. Roots grow from the bottom of the bulb so ensure that your compost is dug in nice and deep. It is best to select a location that best suits the type of bulb being grown. Ask your local garden retailer for the best expert advice.

The general rule is to plant the bulb two to three times the depth of the height of the bulb. Bury a little deeper in sandy soils and a little shallower in clay soils. Plant with the growing point facing up and the basal plate (where the roots grow from) facing down. This basal plate is often easier to identify than the growing point. If you cannot work this out, plant on it’s side and the plant will sort it out for you.

Plant bulbs in clusters or in rows, depending on the effect required. In the garden, plant the bulbs two to three widths apart. Bulbs multiply and this will give several years before there is a need to thin them out.

Once bulbs are in position, backfill, firm the soil to prevent air pockets and water in well. Add a little more soil if required.

Planting Bulbs in Pots, Bowls and Containers

Potted flowering bulbs are a wonderful feature for spring. These can be brought indoors as living flower arrangements for special events and then returned to their outdoor location for longer flowering. Potted bulb gardens can be one type of bulb or mixed for a long lasting spring display. Many garden retailers will have packs of bulbs that can be grown together or ask for the best advice for creating your own unique mix.

When growing bulbs in containers, always use a premium quality potting mix such as Rocky Point’s Coco Pro. This will have the perfect drainage and include all the fertiliser required for stunning results.

Summer Garden Maintenance

Plants grow quickly in the summer heat. Remove summer flowering annuals as they finish their stunning displays and prepare beds for the planting of cooler month flowering plants as the change of the season begins to happen. Prune back summer flowering shrubs and perennials as flowering finishes to encourage bushy healthy new growth when the time is right.  A light pruning of rose bushes now will encourage a wonderful autumn rose display.

Rocky Point has a huge selection of mulches to maintain a nice thick cover to have garden beds looking great and help plants through the hot summer days.

 

Enjoy the final month of summer in the garden as we look forward to the season ahead.

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OMG – Organic Matter Goodness https://rockypoint.com.au/omg-organic-matter-goodness/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=omg-organic-matter-goodness https://rockypoint.com.au/omg-organic-matter-goodness/#respond Fri, 31 Jan 2020 03:19:14 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=8000 What exactly is organic matter?

Sometimes you can hear all these gardening terms bandied around, but not really be sure what they mean. And quite often people don’t like to ask, in fear of looking silly.
All gardening questions are good gardening questions I say.

  • Organic matter is basically anything that was once living. And anything that was once living can be turned into compost, this is the most readily achieved organic matter to the home gardener.
  • Organic matter is easily added to the garden in the form of compost, manures, mushroom compost, worm castings, lucerne, sugarcane, leaf litter and the list goes on.

The Benefits of Organic Matter in the Soil.

  • Increased soil microbial activity and numbers – symbiotic relationships
  • Soil health
  • Nutrient uptake in plants
  • Better soil profile water retention
  • Plant ability to cope better with temperature flucuations
  • Insect and disease resistance in plant life
  • Beneficial fungi levels are increased

Compost is not mulch

Compost and animal manures are not the same as mulches such as lucerne or sugarcane.

Compost and animal manures should be dug into and through the soil profile to weave their organic goodness where the plant roots are situated.

Whereas mulch is what you should place on top of the soil after planting. Mulch acts like a protective blanket.


This article originally appears in our Summer Edition of Better Earth Secrets for members of our Better Earth Program.

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January in the Garden https://rockypoint.com.au/january-in-the-garden/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=january-in-the-garden https://rockypoint.com.au/january-in-the-garden/#respond Wed, 01 Jan 2020 03:56:12 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7974 Welcome to a new year and a new decade.

January is a great month for relaxing and enjoying the good things of life. The garden is filled with splashes of bright summer colours and cool shady spots to enjoy a cool drink and soak up the beauty of nature.

January is also a time for planning and setting some goals for the year ahead. New Year’s resolutions are set at this time of year. We have ambitious plans of more exercise, eating healthier, spending more time outdoors and to achieve goals that make the world a better place. These grand plans describe life in the garden beautifully. Why not make 2020 a fabulous year in the garden?

Enjoying our living Spaces and Places

Our homes are sanctuaries. A place to feel safe, to relax, to share special times with others and make great memories. The warmer weather of summer brings with it the season of entertaining with warm balmy evenings enjoying the company of friends and family. Entertainment areas have become an important part of our homes. There are many wonderful plants to brighten and bring life and freshness to these areas where we spend so much of our Summer.

Summer Colours

Summer is a very colourful time of year with lots of yellows, reds, blues and whites featuring in garden displays.

There are fantastic climbing plants such as Mandevillas, Dipladenias, Allamandas, Climbing Roses and Pandoreas that love the summer warmth. These are so good for transforming unattractive fences and structures into colourful landscape features.

Bougainvilleas love the warmth and fill the summer landscape with brilliant colour. Many Bougainvillea are strong climbing plants that require larger areas but there are wonderful ranges of small growing Bougainvilleas that are perfect for pots and hanging baskets. Bougainvillea Bambino are one of these ranges that are tough, easy to grow and available in a huge selection of colours.

Alyssum, celosia, cosmos, gerbera, impatiens, lobelia, nasturtium, marigold, petunia, phlox, portulaca, vinca and zinnia are just some of the flowering annuals that are available to add brilliant splashes of colour to pots, baskets and garden beds for the warmer months.

Growing in Pots.

Creating potted gardens are great summer gardening projects that can be achieved without needing to be out in the harsh summer sun. There is a huge selection of pots available for outdoor and indoor use with styles and colours to suit every décor.

The veggie patch is in full production with an abundant harvest of fresh and healthy food for our summer feasting. This is a great time to plant up food bowls as part of your summer décor. There are excellent herbs such as basil, thyme, oregano, mint, lemon balm and parsley that not only look fantastic but are fresh and tasty additions to summer meals. This is also Chilli season. They love the heat, grow quickly to produce a spicy summer harvest. There are lots of varieties from mild through to mega hot and these are also excellent to grow in pots.

Plants grown in containers will only grow as well as the potting mix that they are planted in enables them to. Always use a premium quality potting mix for the best results. Rocky Point Coco Pro is the professional nursery grade potting mix suitable for most types of plants. Coco Pro not only contains all the quality slow release fertilisers to feed and nourish plants for up to 14 months, but also contains water retention granules. These water retention granules hold onto the water and the plants draw the moisture from the granules as they need to. This means less watering is required, and plants remain healthy and happy with less attention.

The Sweet Scent of Summer.

A stroll in the cool of the evening is a pleasant end of the day activity as the air is filled with the sweet fragrances of summer flowers. Frangipanis, Gardenias, Star Jasmine, Murrayas and Roses are just some of the plants to delight our senses.

Growing Shade

Spending a lazy afternoon in the soothing shelter of a shady tree is one of life’s pleasures. While those in southern states can enjoy the luxury of the shade of beautiful elms, plane trees, ashes and maples, there are some wonderful shade trees that can be grown in most parts of the country. Lagerstroemias or Crepe Myrtles are beautiful summer flowering small trees that will create a favourite summer spot in the garden. These are incredibly hardy once established and available in different heights and flower colours. The Diamonds in the Dark range are particularly stunning with ‘almost black’ foliage that contrasts beautifully with the abundance of bright flowers that are produced.

Sitting in the shade of a gum tree is a very Australian thing to do. Gum trees are magnificent in the Australian Bush but are too large for most gardens. There is now the wonderful solution of grafted Eucalyptus. These are grafted to create a smaller growing gum tree that are suitable for smaller gardens or even in pots. The stunning flowers are produced in abundance and flowers happen without waiting for the trees to mature. The flower colour of seed grown Eucalyptus trees can vary greatly, Grafted Eucalyptus will reliably produce flowers true to the colour that is on the label. This is a great way to have a home among the gum trees, without the size issues.

Bug Watch

Plants are working so hard producing bright summer flowers and sweet summer scents because of the abundance of insects to attract for pollination to happen. This is the time to watch out for aphids, thrips and caterpillars that can cause problems in the garden. Treat the problem pests and bugs and leave the good guys to do their work. Ask your local garden centre experts for the best advice for the health of your garden.

Summer Gardening Tasks

Summer is a great time to enjoy life but can be a hard season for your plants and gardens. There are a few summer gardening tasks that will keep your garden looking lush and healthy during these warmer months.

Watering
Water deep and water regularly – Early morning and evening watering of the garden can be a relaxing pleasure. A chance to enjoy the everchanging beauty of new blooms, new growth and new life. Applying water retention granules to your garden beds can reduce water use by up to 50% and will make the most of every drop of any summer rains.

Mulching

Mulching garden beds does not only have these looking great for your summer entertaining events but is crucial for the health of your garden plants over these hot months. A nice thick layer of mulch helps to keep plant root systems cool, is vital in reducing water usage and helps to control weed growth.

Rocky Point are the leading producer of quality garden mulches. We have a range to suit every garden style and these are available at leading garden retailers.

Trimming

Summer is a time of abundant growth. Be ready to get out the pruners and clippers. De-head summer flowering plants as blooms begin to finish. This will help to keep everything looking tidy, assist in controlling bugs and encourage lots more flowers to appear. As summer shrubs finish flowering a light tidy up will keep garden beds looking neat. To prune back hard at this time of year will encourage new growth to happen which will put the plant under further stress. Wait until autumn arrives for major pruning projects.

Have a relaxing summer and enjoy the fruits of your labour as you recharge for the seasons ahead.

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What to look for in a quality compost https://rockypoint.com.au/quality-compost/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=quality-compost https://rockypoint.com.au/quality-compost/#respond Sun, 15 Dec 2019 23:48:05 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7938 In an article recently published for the Australian Macadamia Society, Keiran King, Sales & Business Manager for Rocky Point Production explains what growers should look for in a quality compost product for their orchard health.

The hum of machinery is a familiar early morning sound as the sun rises over the compost production site of Rocky Point between Brisbane and the Gold Coast. These sounds signal another busy day blending and manufacturing products, but beyond the normal morning work activity there is an army of silent workers; billions of tiny microbes, fungi and beneficial bacteria going about their business in complete silence. They are busy breaking down organic material and turning it into rich dark compost.

To produce a high standard compost takes time, some know-how, a constant supply of raw ingredients and some patience. Further to these essential elements, composting on a commercial scale requires significant investment in plant and equipment, is labour intensive, occupies a large area and requires stringent environmental controls and approvals.

Australian standards should be used as the starting point of quality, and this is the minimum requirement used by reputable suppliers.

During the year as I am talking to growers, before harvest even finishes, they are already looking ahead to managing their orchard floor and improving soil health. One of the vital steps in many orchards is the application of compost. Growers are essentially working on the long-term health of their soil and their orchard by applying compost each season. Growers see many benefits from applying compost, including:

  • Improving soil organic matter
  • Increasing soil carbon
  • Increasing soil microbial activity
  • Suppressing disease
  • Protecting against erosion
  • Improving tree health
  • Increasing yield.

To get the maximum results year on year it is important to source a good quality compost. But how do you know you are getting a quality product? What should you look for and what should you be asking of the supplier? Here are some of the basics:

Identifying a good quality compost

Good compost will be easily recognisable and will have the following characteristics:

  • Smell | an earthy smell, with no bad (sour, rotten or ammonia-like) smells
  • Texture | moist and earthy, not wet and sloppy or dry and powdery. Easy to mechanically spread.
  • Appearance | dark soil-like particles, in which original organic materials are not distinguishable.

As well as what the product should look, feel and smell like it is important to do some homework prior to purchase. Make sure you know your compost.

Raw Ingredients

If you want to finish with a quality product it is important that the supply of material is consistent in its makeup.

  • You should know what feedstock is used to produce the compost
  • You should know if manures are used in the blend you are buying

The Composting Process

Make sure you are receiving a fully composted and pasteurised product. Properly composted material will exclude weeds, pathogens, potential disease-carrying organisms and physical contaminants. It is important to do some homework prior to purchase, and you can start by asking your supplier the following questions:

  • How long has the product been composted for?
  • What temperatures were reached during the composting process? Has the product being pasteurised?
  • Were any liquid wastes used in the compost manufacture? If so, what were they?
  • If manures were used, at what point in the composting process were they added?

The correct manufacture of compost is particularly important to those growers and suppliers who have Freshcare Standards or HACCP requirements.

Supporting Documentation

In addition to knowing the composting process and the makeup of the compost, the supplier should also be able to provide you with documentation to back up their claims. Some examples of this can include:

  • An independent analysis for the product from a reputable laboratory. The product should as a minimum be tested to Australian Standard AS4454 Composts, soil conditioners and mulches.
  • An organic product certification. This is vital if anyone is considering growing organically and will also give any grower the assurance that only quality ingredients are being used.

Finally, by taking some of the guess work out when using compost it becomes much easier to manage other inputs and simply becomes another tool you can use to manage your crop and tree health.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss compost for your trees, or to get in touch with Keiran, please contact us.

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Celebrate December in the Garden https://rockypoint.com.au/december-in-the-garden/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=december-in-the-garden https://rockypoint.com.au/december-in-the-garden/#respond Sat, 30 Nov 2019 22:00:21 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7926 As the seasons change and Summer arrives, our gardens also change, and we begin to enjoy the results of our spring projects. December is a month of celebrations and can be a busy time. The school year finishes. There are lots of functions and Christmas events and of course, our own Christmas preparations to complete.

Little Gifts of Thanks

Plants are great gifts for the ‘End of Year’ and Christmas breakups and a wonderful way to show appreciation to teachers, friends and colleagues. Garden retailers are filled with beautiful plants that are perfect and affordable gift ideas for these occasions. Gardens are also filled with flowers and foliage. It takes no time to put together a stunning bunch or arrangement that will delight the receiver.

 

Christmas Celebrations

Christmas is a great time of coming together with friends and family to celebrate the good things of life. There is still time to plant out flowering annuals or potted colour to have the garden looking a picture for Christmas events. Alyssum, celosia, cosmos, gerbera, impatiens, lobelia, nasturtium, marigold, petunia, phlox, portulaca, vinca and zinnia plants will have garden beds looking great.

Pots, Containers and Baskets

Entertainment areas come to life when decorated with splashes of colour. There are many plants available to achieve this.

Geraniums were once seen as old fashioned ‘granny plants’ but are no longer ‘old fashioned’ but are very much ‘in fashion.’ Geraniums have been bred to be compact plants to produce continuous displays of big, bright blooms. Geraniums are perfect for pots and baskets and are stunning highlights of outdoor living spaces.

Spreading Petunias and Calibrachoas are fantastic in hanging baskets and will not only look great for Christmas celebrations, but will be a showcase of colour throughout the days of summer.  When planting plants in pots, containers and hanging baskets, always use a premium quality growing media. Rocky Point Coco Pro is the professional nursery grade potting mix suitable for most types of plants. Coco Pro not only contains all the quality slow release fertilisers to feed and nourish plants for up to 14 months, but also contains water retention granules. These water retention granules hold onto the water and the plants draw the moisture from the granules as they need to. This means less watering is required, and plants remain healthy and happy with less attention.

From Patch to Plate

Christmas is the time of year to embrace new beginnings and celebrate life and goodness. What better way to celebrate life and goodness than with fresh, healthy goodness filled fruits and vegetables from your own garden. There are many rewards from those spring projects that can be enjoyed now. New potatoes, tomatoes, capsicums, salad greens, strawberries, blueberries are just some of the harvests from the vegetable patch that are treats of Christmas feasting. Herbs harvested from your own herb bowls, pots and patches will add freshness, flavour and goodness to summer feasts and drinks. There is still a great range available to plant now.

Gifts that Grow

Indoor Jungle Vibe

Plants are excellent Christmas gifts and will continue to delight for long after the giving has occurred. Garden retailers are filled with fabulous gift ideas in every direction that you look. Indoor plants have seen a resurgence of popularity, and younger people have discovered the joys of sharing their lives with plants. Monsteras, ferns, pileas, figs, palms and zz plants are just some of the hundreds of green gifts that will thrill this Christmas. Indoor Jungles do not need to be only green. Spathiphyllum ‘Peace Lily’ is a great air purifying house plant. Always a wonderful gift and the bright white flowers and dark green foliage are perfect for Christmas. Brilliant Poinsettias are a seasonal decorating favourite and also a great gift idea. Poinsettias will bring brightness and life to any Christmas celebrations. Gloxinias, African Violets, Anthuriums and orchids are also great for adding splashes of colour to Christmas events.

Outdoor Spaces

There are endless living gift ideas for outdoors with trees, shrubs and ground covering plants available for every situation.

Citrus trees are Australia’s most popular fruiting tree grown in home gardens. Lemons, limes, oranges and mandarins are among some of the citrus varieties available now. There is a wonderful range of dwarf fruiting trees now available including many varieties of citrus trees. They produce abundant crops of full-sized tasty fruit and are ideal for smaller gardens and for growing in pots on patios and balconies.

Diamonds for Christmas

Crepe Myrtles or Lagerstroemias are fabulous small growing summer flowering trees. There are new ranges of this stunning flowering plant that have been bred to be very hardy, resistant to pests and diseases with a very colourful long flowering season.

The ‘Diamonds in the Dark®’ range of Crepe Myrtles feature flawless near-black foliage from early spring, followed by masses of vivid blooms throughout summer. Their compact growth habit makes attractive flowering hedges or beautiful trees to line driveways or boundaries. The Diamonds in the Dark® range are perfect for planting in decorative pots and would be a great gift to give this Christmas.

Summer Gardening Tasks

December is the beginning of Summer and the time to prepare the garden for the hot days ahead.

Mulching

Adding a nice thick layer of mulch to garden beds now will help keep plant roots cool, retain moisture and make the most of any summer rains. Rocky Point have a great selection of mulches that can be used for this purpose.

Sugar Cane, Lucerne and Pea Straw mulches are particularly good in vegetable, herb and flower beds. With higher nutrient value and filled with organic matter, these mulches encourage earthworms to be working with us as they aerate and purify the soil.

Tea Tree, Cypress, Red Cypress, Outback, Blackwood, Pine Bark and Water Saving mulches are some of the mulches available. There is a Rocky Point mulch to suit every garden style.

Watering

Early morning and evening watering is a great way to enjoy the Summer garden. A chance to enjoy the splashes of colour, new growth and new life. Nice deep soakings two or three times a week is better than shallow watering each day. This encourages deep, strong root systems rather than the plants forming shallow surface roots that are more likely to dry out in the baking sun.

Test and make any repairs required to your garden irrigation now before the summer extremes are upon us.  Applying water retention granules to your garden beds can reduce water use by up to 50% and help to utilise any summer rains.

Shady and full of Charm

Shady spots are where much of summer days are enjoyed. There are wonderful plants that love the shade and will have these areas full of life and colour through the warmer months. Fuschias, begonias, impatiens, clivias and hydrangeas are some of the plants that will help you to create your own oasis to escape the summer heat.

The Veggie Garden

There is an abundance of fresh and tasty food being harvested from the vegetable garden. The warm weather sees lots of growth and harvested plants can be replaced with crops that thrive in the summer conditions. Leafy salad greens such as Lettuce and Asian Greens can be replanted to ensure there is plenty for the summer events ahead. Cucurbits is the plant group that includes cucumbers, pumpkins, eggplants, zucchinis, squash, watermelons and rockmelons. These are all very productive in the vegetable garden over the warmer months. This is also a great time of year to plant Capsicum and Chili plants and these will produce lots of fruit during the summer months.

 

Christmas is a great opportunity to take some time to stop and appreciate the wonderful things that surround us. A time to enjoy friends and family. A time to enjoy and share our homes and gardens as places of beauty, belonging and peace that make a difference in our world. Happy Christmas and Happy Gardening.

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NGIQ Gold Coast & South Brisbane visit Rocky Point https://rockypoint.com.au/ngiq-gold-coast-south-brisbane-visit-rocky-point/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=ngiq-gold-coast-south-brisbane-visit-rocky-point https://rockypoint.com.au/ngiq-gold-coast-south-brisbane-visit-rocky-point/#respond Wed, 13 Nov 2019 00:35:43 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7918 As the sun was setting on yet another October working day, NGIQ members and guests were arriving at Rocky Point for the combined NGIQ South Brisbane and Gold Coast branch meeting.   

The afternoon commenced with a tour of our 70 acre production facility.  The tour led by Production Manager, Mark Rayner and Sales & Business Development Manager, Keiran King, gave members an insight into the production of retail and wholesale product including professional potting mixes, mulches and soil improvers.

Upon completion of the site tour was completed everyone was treated to BBQ dinner and a couple of quiet drinks surrounded by the cane fields prior to the formalities of the evening.

Both branches held their Annual General meetings with Dave Webber from Pallara Trees being re-elected as President and Christina being re-elected as secretary for the South Brisbane branch. NGIQ and the South Brisbane Branch would like to thank both Dave and Christina for their continued efforts and wish them all the best for the year ahead.

De`arne Wild (Wild Valley Propagation) decided to step down as President for the Gold Coast Branch after three years.  We thank De`arne sincerely for her efforts over these last three years and the input she has had in coordinating meetings and events during her time as President.

Jamie Eenjes from Plantmark is the incoming Branch secretary for the Gold Coast.  Knowing Jamie with his endless energy and drive he will an asset in this role.  Our very own Keiran King was elected as the new president for the Gold Coast branch and is looking forward to coordinating events, working with branch members and encouraging Gold Coast based nurseries to get involved in branch and industry events.

Steve Hart from Garden City Plastics (GCP) was the guest speaker for the evening, giving an informative talk on Freehand.  Freehand offers nursery operators some new chemistry by using a combination of two modes of action.  Freehand, a granular pre-emergent herbicide, will be released to the market and available from GCP sometime during November 2019.  If you would like some more information regarding this product please contact Steve or one of the GCP team to discuss your requirements.

The night was concluded with the drawing of the lucky door prize which was generously donated by Garden City Plastics.  Congratulations to Sarah Skelly from Shamrock Plants who took home the prize.

Rocky Point would like to thank both NGIQ and both the South Brisbane and Gold branches for giving us the opportunity to showcase our site and have everyone along for the night.  We look forward to seeing everyone during the New Year.

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November in the Garden https://rockypoint.com.au/november-in-the-garden/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=november-in-the-garden https://rockypoint.com.au/november-in-the-garden/#respond Thu, 31 Oct 2019 23:11:17 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7842 What an exciting month November is in the garden.  Summer is fast approaching and now is the time to prepare and plant for Christmas and the warmer months ahead.

As the days begin to warm, it is time to prepare the garden for the coming season. There is lots that can be achieved now to ensure that your plants and garden continue to reward you beautifully during the hot days ahead.

Water Wise Gardening

Mulching

Mulching is one of the best ways to keep gardens looking great while minimising the need for lots of watering. Rocky Point is proudly one of Australia’s leading producers of the finest mulches for the home garden. Rocky Point products are available at premium garden retailers across the country and there is a great range available to suit every garden style.

Watering

Early morning and evening watering of the garden can be a relaxing pleasure. A chance to enjoy the ever-changing beauty of new blooms, new growth and new life. Deep soaking waterings two or three times a week is better than shallow watering each day. This encourages deep, strong root systems rather than the plants forming shallow surface roots that are more likely to dry out in the baking sun. Applying water retention granules to your garden beds can reduce water use by up to 50% and help to make the most of summer rains.

Nature’s Air Conditioners

Trees, gardens and lawns are proven to reduce the temperatures of our homes and living spaces. Living plants provide shade and will actually cool those refreshing breezes. Lush healthy plants and gardens have us feeling cooler and much more relaxed compared to man-made products such as concrete, paving and bitumen which absorb and store heat.

 

Shady Characters

Shade Trees

To relax with a cool drink in a shady spot in the garden is a great way to pass those hot summer days. There are many great trees to plant that will give shade and shelter. There are many fabulous fast-growing native trees such as grevilleas, banksias and callistemons that not only provide wonderful shade for us, but become a haven for native birds, small animals and butterflies. Deciduous trees are excellent for providing shade during summer and letting the winter light through as the leaves are shed in the winter months.  In warmer regions, trees such as jacarandas, poinciana and frangipanis also supply wonderful summer shade while losing their leaves to let through the winter light.

Climbing Plants

Climbing plants are fabulous to grow over fences, pergolas, arches and structures to provide shady havens. Climbers such as Star Jasmine are covered in flowers now and filling the air with their wonderful fragrance. Passionfruit vines produce wonderful showy flowers followed by an abundance of delicious fruits. Pandorea plants are beautiful climbers with stunning flowers. There are a huge range of climbing plants that are ideal to transform unsightly areas into living, flowering highlights while providing shade and shelter

Water Wise Plants

There is a huge selection of plants that look great in the garden and are hardy with very low water requirements.

Agave, Aloe, Euphorbia, Adenium and Dracaena are very architectural plants and are wonderful garden features requiring very little water.

There are fabulous newer breeds of Lomandras and Dieties that are fantastic waterwise landscaping plants. These are Australian native grasses and look great mass planted.

Succulent plants have seen a huge resurgence of popularity in pots as low care indoor plants. There are many varieties of succulents that will thrive outdoors in the harshest of conditions. Mixing the sizes, colours and textures creates an interesting garden that is very low maintenance.

Your local garden retail experts will have all the advice on the best waterwise plants for your region.

Lawns

Lawns are great for cooling our homes and outdoor areas and are certainly worth the investment of time and effort. Now is the time to lift the mower blades. A longer lawn will help to shade the roots, cool the earth and retain water. This will also encourage a deep root system for longer lasting green lawn.
Apply water retention granules to lawns now to help to hold summer moisture.

 

The Flower Garden

Christmas and Summer is a great time of entertaining as we enjoy gatherings of family and friends. Plant pots, hanging baskets and flower beds with the plants that love the summer conditions. There are great plants available such as geraniums, cape daisies, impatiens, perennial petunias, and calibrachoas that will reward with bright, colourful summer displays.

For planting your pots and containers, Rocky Point Coco Pro is the professional nursery grade potting mix suitable for most types of plants. Coco Pro not only contains all the quality slow release fertilisers to feed and nourish plants for up to 14 months, but also contains water retention granules. These water retention granules hold onto the water and the plants draw the moisture from the granules as they need to. This means less watering is required, and plants remain healthy and happy with less attention.

Summer flowering annuals such as alyssum, celosia, cosmos, gerbera, impatiens, lobelia, nasturtium, marigold, petunia, phlox, portulaca, vinca and zinnia can all be planted in flower beds now for a terrific summer show.

Hydrangeas

These wonderful plants are available now. Hydrangeas love a shady area in the garden and are also fabulous in pots on patios and covered entertainment areas where many of our summer days are enjoyed. There are many different shades of colours from dark blue, shades of pinks through to white. The shade of the colour of the flowers, or even the colour itself, can change depending on the pH of the growing media they are planted in. There are Hydrangea tonics to make Hydrangea flowers darker or lighter as desired. Hydrangeas are a great plant to have some fun with.

Impatiens

Impatiens have long been a favorite summer flowering plant in shady positions. Over recent years these colourful plants have been bred to not only brighten shaded areas but to thrive in full sun positions. SunPatiens are varieties that are just as happy out in the sun as in the shade. They are excellent in pots and hanging baskets and are also wonderful as living flower arrangements indoors. Now is a great time to plant for months of enjoyment from these colourful plants.

Roses

Whether bush, old fashion, climbing, weeping or standard varieties, November is a peak flowering month for roses. They are looking and smelling magnificent in gardens and parks. Once winter was the time to select new roses while they were dormant, leafless thorny stems. Most garden retailers now have a great selection of potted roses with lots of buds and blooms. This is a wonderful time of year to touch, see and smell before selecting the perfect specimen for your garden. Before planting a potted rose, prepare the soil by adding some Rocky Point’s new improved ActivGrow. This is a well-balanced organic soil improver designed to reinvigorate garden beds and tired soils. ActiveGrow is suitable for all soil types and will ensure the very best start for your newly planted roses, shrubs, flowers and vegetables.

The Edible Garden

Food grown in your ‘Food Forest’ is filled with homegrown goodness, freshness and flavour. November is a month that food almost seems to jump out of the earth. There is much to achieve this month to supply tasty freshness to your summer entertainment events. There is still time to plant herbs and vegetables for summer salads, feasts and BBQ’s. As the cool month crops finish, add generous amounts of Rocky Point’s organic compost and animal manure to prepare garden beds.  Plant all the summer favorites such as lettuce, capsicum, chili, eggplant, pumpkin, tomato and zucchini. There is a great selection of herbs to plant now including basil, dill, rosemary, sage, thyme, marjoram, oregano, parsley, rocket and mint. Strawberries and Blueberries are very popular and easy to grow at home. November is a great month to plant these treats.

Once planting is complete, Rocky Point Sugar Cane Mulch is the perfect mulch for around your vegetable and herb plants. Sugar Cane Mulch looks great, it is weed free, and will help to retain moisture over the summer months ahead.

 

Living Gifts 

As Christmas fast approaches, plants are not only great to brighten your festive events but are excellent gift ideas. Garden Centres are places filled with life, colour and inspiration. Whether looking for something for indoors or outdoor living spaces, there are great living gift ideas in every direction. There is a huge selection of gardening accessories, home decorating items and features to find that special gift that will bring pleasure long after the time of giving has passed. Plan to give a living gift for Christmas this year.

 

Happy Gardening!

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Spring in Season – Beans https://rockypoint.com.au/spring-in-season-beans/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=spring-in-season-beans https://rockypoint.com.au/spring-in-season-beans/#respond Wed, 16 Oct 2019 00:22:07 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7832 It doesn’t get better than harvesting fresh beans from the garden and them being on your dinner plate in just a few minutes.

Beans are so versatile in the kitchen, here are some great things to do with your fresh green harvest;

  • Green Beans with Mixed Mushrooms
  • Green Beans with Chorizo and Almond Crumbs
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Lemon Parmesan Green Beans
  • Bacon Green Bean Bundles with Brown Sugar Glaze
  • Thai Sweet Chilli Green Beans
  • Crispy Oven-Baked Parmesan Green Bean Fries
  • Green Bean Salad

We thought we’d keep it simple to really show off the green beans with this sauteed garden fresh green bean recipe!

Sauteed Garden Fresh Green Beans

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 400g fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garden powder
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Method:

  1. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir green beans, onion salt, garlic salt, garlic powder, and black pepper together until desired tenderness is reached, 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Serve as a side dish to whatever you please!

 

This recipe featured as part of our #MakeItMonday series – follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more!

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October in the Garden https://rockypoint.com.au/october-in-the-garden/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=october-in-the-garden https://rockypoint.com.au/october-in-the-garden/#respond Mon, 30 Sep 2019 20:15:52 +0000 https://rockypoint.com.au/?p=7797 The changes of Spring are happening across the country. There are some that a waiting desperately for spring rains to arrive and others enjoying the warmth of the spring sunshine drying the earth for planting.

Spring is the time of regeneration, renewal and revival. Plants of all sizes, shapes and textures produce their wonderful displays of fresh new foliage and flowers.

Southern regions are being treated to an absolute treat as trees such as flowering cherries, flowering peaches, flowering plums and ornamental pears transform the landscape with stunning displays of colour. Although the fruiting trees are also in flower and looking great, these ornamental flowering trees are not grown for fruit, but for their beauty.

Magnolias are absolutely covered in tulip shaped flowers in shades of whites, pinks, mauves and purples. Lilacs are beginning to bloom and add their fragrance to the wonderful sweet scents of spring. Ornamental foliage trees such as maples, elms, ashes, gleditsias, liquidambars and plane trees are covered in the shades of spring growth and freshness.

Cooler areas are certainly enjoying the spring colour feast of beauty, but warmer areas have highlights as well.  Bauhinia trees are covered in spring flowers and looking bright and beautiful. Deciduous feature plants such as Frangipanis are beginning to burst into leaf and will soon be producing their tropical colours and fragrances. Poinciana and jacaranda trees will soon be transforming streets, parks and gardens with colour.

Spring Planting

With the wonderful spring weather comes the time to plant. This gives the opportunity for the new additions to the garden to establish before the heat of summer arrives. Local garden centres and garden retailers are very exciting to visit at any time of year but during the spring are overflowing with excitement, inspiration and colour. These are great places to enjoy and be part of the excitement of spring.

Tomato Time

The planting of tomato plants is a highlight of spring gardening. They are a favourite to grow and every region seems to have a local show day, race day or community event that is the green light to plant out your tomato plants.

Tomatoes love the warmth and grow best in southern areas of Australia from mid spring into the summer. In warmer areas, they can be grown all year. The plants are fast growing and fruits form and develop quickly once the conditions are favourable.

Varieties

There are many varieties of tomatoes. They produce different size fruit from cherry tomatoes to large fruits such as Beefsteak or Big Red. There are different colours, flavours, shapes and growing habits so check with the experts at your garden centre to select the best varieties that suit your needs.

Tomato plants are available in seedling punnets, cell packs or in single pots. These single pots are very popular as they allow a selection of different varieties to be made without ending up with too many plants.

Whichever variety you select, the fruits are all filled with nutrients, antioxidants and home-grown tomatoes are fresh, flavoursome and fun to grow.

Where to grow

Tomatoes love plenty of light and require at least 4 hours of direct sun each day. A nice sunny garden bed with lots of air circulation is ideal. Plant tomato seedlings once the soil temperature reaches 15 degrees and the risk of frost has passed. Growing tomatoes in pots is very popular and gives the opportunity for an early start in a sheltered position before moving the potted plant out once conditions are right. Although most tomatoes will grow in a suitable size pot, shorter growing varieties such as Patio Prize and First Prize are ideal without the need for tall stakes or trellis.

Prepare the soil

If planting in garden beds, prepare the soil by digging through quality garden compost and animal manure. Rocky Point’s range of quality composts and animal manures are perfect for the task. Rocky Point’s new improved ActivGrow (formally Active 8) is a well-balanced organic soil improver designed to reinvigorate garden beds and tired soils. ActivGrow is suitable for all soil types and will ensure a bumper harvest of healthy and tasty fruit.

To avoid problems, do not grow tomatoes in the same garden bed for two years running or in the same bed as potatoes.

If growing tomatoes in pots, always use a premium quality potting mix with slow release fertilise added as well as water retention granules. There are some specialised potting mixes that are formulated for growing tomatoes but Rocky Point Coco Pro is designed to replace the need for multiple specialty potting mixes and is ideal for growing tomatoes in pots and containers.

Pests and Diseases

There a few bugs to watch for such as aphids and caterpillars. Safe sprays are available so ask your garden retail expert for the best local advice.

Tomatoes grow quickly and generally a healthy well-fertilised and well-watered plant will not be prone to serious disease problems. If problems do occur, it is often best to discard the infected plant rather than risk the problem spreading to other plants.

Strawberries

Strawberries are one of the easiest fruiting plants to grow and it is certainly a treat to feast upon these sweet delights picked fresh from the garden.

Strawberries are ground-hugging, herbaceous plants, growing to about 15cm high and spreading into a clump 50–100cm wide. Their flowers are simple, five-petalled blooms that are pollinated by bees. These white or occasionally pink flowers are followed by succulent red fruits. Each clump sends out long thin runners (or stems) that take root to form a new plant. There are many different varieties of strawberries. Check with your garden centre for the best varieties for local conditions.

Getting started

Potted plants are available during spring and are a very popular way to begin your strawberry growing. Strawberries can be grown in pots, containers, hanging baskets as well as in garden beds.

In pots and containers

When planting strawberries in pots, containers and hanging baskets always ensure that a premium quality potting mix is used. Rocky Point Coco Pro is the professional nursery grade potting mix suitable for most types of plants. Sustainably produced with 40% Coir, Coco Pro features premium quality slow and controlled release fertilisers that feed and nourish plants for up to 14 months. A 30cm – 40cm size pot is suitable to grow up to 3 strawberry plants. Choose a sunny position. Because the strawberry fruit trails from the main part of the plant, the fruit do remain clean and are less likely to spoil when grown in containers.

In the garden

Prior to planting, dig over the soil to remove weeds and any large clods, and add plenty of compost, animal manure and blood and Bone. ActivGrow is suitable for all soil types and is ideal for preparing the soil to grow strawberry plants.

Position your plants about 30cm apart, in full sun. Strawberries do best in well-drained soil, so plant them into soil that has been mounded up slightly. The crown of the plant, which is the swollen stem base, must be left at the surface of the soil and not buried too deep.

Care and maintenance

Water well, especially when the young plants are establishing, and during dry summers. When planting in the garden, surround each plant with a layer of straw mulch so the fruit does not spoil by touching the soil. Rocky Point Sugar Cane Mulch is a fabulous mulch in the herb, vegetable garden and on the strawberry patch.

Strawberries in the garden, in pots or containers should be fertilised with a small handful of an organic fertiliser weekly. Terra Firma Organic Life is a high quality organic fertiliser to apply to all garden beds to ensure the very best results.

Lawns

Fertilise your lawn now to take full advantage of any spring rains and encourage strong roots and a lush green colour. As lawns come back to life there is the temptation to shear these off, but it is best to lift your mower blades to allow a longer lawn and a stronger, deeper root system. The ideal height will vary on the type of lawn and your local garden centre experts are happy to advice on lawn feeding and mowing for the best results.

A great time to mulch

Mulching existing garden beds will help to hold onto any precious moisture that has soaked the earth. To apply a good thick layer of mulch now will have the garden beds looking great and help to suppress weeds. Rocky Point is proudly one of Australia’s leading producers of the finest mulches for the home garden. There is a great range available to suit every garden style.

Make the most of every drop

Every gardener understands the importance of water and that there are times of plenty and times of shortages. Water retention granules applied now will help to retain the current moisture but will also reduce the watering requirements over the coming summer months. There are water retention products available for lawns and garden beds and others for pots, containers and hanging baskets. These are a great investment now to keep your gardens and plants happy and healthy throughout the warmer season ahead.

 

There are spring gardening shows and festivals, tulip and bulb farms, display gardens and gardening events happening everywhere as the very best of the season is on display. Local parks, gardens, roundabouts and street plantings are looking spectacular. There are plenty of reasons to venture outdoors and enjoy the fresh air, colour and excitement of the spring landscape.

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