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Garden Tips with Eugene - Plants We 'Love-To-Hate'

Thursday, 27 October 2005


Today Eugene will display 3 plants that we love to "hate" and will demonstrate propagation of one of these plants using a 'Gyrosak'.

Houttuynia- widely available - €6.95
This plant smells awful and takes over the garden but you can eat the roots. They are great for stir-frys.

Berberis- widely available - €6.25
These are not a big favourite as they are very thorny and can grow to be a very big plant.  But if planted in a big garden,  they are a very sturdy plant with great Autumn colours.

Eucalyptus- widely available - €9.95
The eucalyptus grows ridiculously fast but it forms a hedge quickly.
If you cut it down to a stump it will re-grow quickly.  The medicinal Eucalyptus Oil is probably the most powerful antiseptic of its class, especially when it is old, as ozone is formed in it on exposure to the air.  It has decided disinfectant action, destroying the lower forms of life.  Internally, it has the typical actions of a volatile oil in a marked degree. In croup and spasmodic throat troubles, the oil may be freely applied externally

Using a "Gyrosak Comet"

The comet is a gardening device that makes Air Layering and plant and tree propagation easy.  With the gyrosak you can quickly and easily induce roots on a plant/tree stem, while still getting nourishment from the Parent.  The Process results in good size 'true to type' replicas of plants.

. First, cut a wound on a branch stem about 12" from the growing tip.
. Fill the gyrosak with moistened compost or some rooting substance.
. Close the gyrosak around the plant.

In as little as three to four weeks you will see results (depending on the rate of root development on the particular plant or tree).  Roots from the wound will be formed inside the gyrosak.  You then cut the branch, on the side of the roots opposite the growing tip.  You now will be left with a cutting 12-15" with roots on it for transplanting to a pot or to a bare section of your garden.  Don't forget to remove the gyrosak before transplanting.

Eugene's Top Tips

. To prevent garden tools from rusting over winter, store them in a bucket of sand and oil mixed together.  Store in a shed.
. Before planting a new tree, loosen the roots, this encourages the roots to grow better.
. Dandelions and daisies can be got rid of by, carefully tipping a teaspoon of salt into the centre of the cluster of leaves.
. If daffodil bulbs feel soft, they could have "bulb fly lava".  Don't despair- 1 minute in the microwave will kill all bugs.

Where to Buy
Houttuynia- widely available
Berberis- widely available
Eucalyptus- widely available
Gyrosak- available from 'Root Grow Enterprises' 87 Allen Park Road, Stillorgan, Dublin, phone 01 2887651.
2 pack is €11.99 and 3 pack is €14.99