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Issue Number #34
Issue Date Autumn 2006
Number of Articles Online 1 Articles
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Title Understories - A Very Experienced Grower

Desiree Meyer, pictured here with son Ryan is one of our most experienced and productive growers. Des began growing plants for her small acreage block in Kettering about 4 years ago. She has been growing approximately 1,000 plants in every growing season since then, and supplied many of her neighbours with local provenance plants for their 5 acre blocks.

As a consequence Kettering has become a stronghold of Understorey Network members! Des has her plant boxes set up above the ground at waist height, and covered with bird netting to discourage the possums from pruning the seedlings. She finds the long deep white boxes are best (ex broccoli or salmon boxes) as they fit 50 tubes in neatly, and the high sides seem to provide extra warmth.

Some of the most difficult plants Des has grown are the slow germinators, such as Billardiera, which took 9 months to appear, Banksia (1 year!) and Bursaria (6 months). Her advice is don't give up on no-shows, hang on to those lifeless tubes and you may be surprised!

Walking around Des's land with her is a pleasure, as she knows the personal history of every plant, from the source of the seed, to planting. With her helping hand, the bush is slowly returning to her patch.


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