Home' The Chronicle : Canberra Chronicle 09-09-2014 Contents 11 - Tuesday, September 9, 2014
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Humble spud has many and varied uses
A small pile of potatoes freshly dug from the ground.
In the garden
So many of us shop at the markets and
ask for specifics from a whole range of
lettuce or apples when we want them,
but how often do we really specify the
type of potato we need?
Potatoes are such staples that when
you see bags of chats , washed and
brushed and perhaps just a couple of
named varieties, its easy to assume
that they are all-purpose from boiling
to frying and baking.
Some potatoes make wonderful
chips, but are best forgotten when they
are mashed and vice versa.
Others that might be fluffy and
floury when baked in their skins are
not smooth and waxy when sliced for
the ideal salad.
There s nothing like growing your
own whether to bandicoot the first of
a cool climate crop for Christmas
lunch or to fork out a few as and when
required . . . friable autumn soil is often
a good larder.
Selections of seed potatoes are in
nurseries now and while you may plant
them into prepared trenches, there is
an easier, no-dig method of growing.
Select a patch of virgin ground and
simply chop down any unwanted weed
growth. Set the tubers 30 centimetres
apart on the top then cover with at least
30 centimetres of loose straw or hay,
which is then watered to settle.
Scatter a handful of blood and bone
over each square metre, then top with
a couple of spadesful of cow manure
before adding a layer of compost. Add
further layers of straw and compost as
and when required, leaving a little
space for the tops to keep on growing.
Potatoes growing along the stems need
to be protected from the light, which
will otherwise turn them green.
Within three or four months you can
lift the corners of the straw to find a
clean growing crop, and when finally
harvested, an earthworm-enriched
friable plot of ground.
Cut away any over- long,
unusually thorny branches on
established citrus, often the
result of a reasonably severe
late summer prune. Spray any
scale insects and over-
wintering larvae of citrus bugs
with Eco-Oil. Apply the first of
the annual feeds, water in well
then place a thin layer of
organic mulch over the
shallow root system.
Early flower drop on crops
of broad beans sown in
autumn is a common problem
that will right itself as spring
progresses. It is not too late to
sow again for an early summer
harvest if you wish.
From now set out shallots,
spring onions and leeks; peas --
bush and climbing, radishes,
silver beet, beetroot, spinach,
lettuce , raddichio, summer
cabbage like Sugar Loaf,
broccoli, celeriac and chinese
greens. Sow seeds of
tomatoes, egg plant and
watermelon under cover.
Make a free visit to the
Horticultural Society of
Canberra's Spring Bulb and
Camellia Show held at the
Wesley Centre in National
Circuit from noon-5pm on
Saturday, September 13, and
1.30-4pm on Sunday, 14th.
Afterwards, buy bargain
priced, oft hard-to-find plants
from a well-stocked table.
New tree for
Plans for the festive season have
begun with Queanbeyan City
councillors agreeing to buy a
$15,000 6-metre high decorated
Christmas tree to adorn the CBD
during the holiday season.
Councillors were presented with
the option to either purchase a tree
outright for $15,000 for use for the
next five years, or hire a tree for the
2014 season at a cost of $16,400.
Councillor Trudy Taylor moved
the motion for purchase, but included
an amendment for the council to
investigate lighting up the Christmas
"I think it s a great idea," Cr Taylor
said. "It would be good to investigate
lighting so people can enjoy it at
In 2013 the council allocated an
extra $20,000 to buy new large
wreaths, Christmas banners as well
as smaller wreaths for the Crawford
Street light poles after calls from the
community to spruce up the city.
RIVERINA RIDE RAISES
$160,000 FOR SICK KIDS
Queanbeyan residents have helped
raise close to $160,000 in support of
the Riverina Ride For Sick Kids. The
team of 20 cyclists finished their
800-kilometre ride in five days,
celebrating the final leg of the ride at
Ronald McDonald House Westmead.
Funds raised will go towards Ronald
McDonald House Charities
programs in the region, including
providing a home away from home
for the families of seriously ill
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