Passionvine Hopper – Scolypopa australis

Pictured left – This is a native planthopper of eastern Australia. Adult hoppers are about 10mm long with mottled brown triangular wings. Nymphs (up to 5mm long) are wingless, mottled pinkish-brown, with a tuft of white waxy filaments on the end of their abdomens informally known as fluffy bums. They occur on passionfruit vines, jasmine, […]

Rutherglen Bug & Cluster Bug

Rutherglen bug (Nysius vinitor) and Grey Cluster bug (Nysius clevelandensis) are both native species that can migrate into crops and gardens in very large numbers in favourable conditions. The adult bugs swarm sporadically when native grasses and weeds dry off and descend on crops, orchards and gardens. They attack flower heads, and feed on seeds and new-growth sap of […]

Bean Fly

The adult Bean Fly is a shiny black fly about 3.5mm long, larvae are cream with dark mouthparts and grow to 3mm long and the pupae are brown and cylindrical with rounded ends.  It is found here on the Coffs Coast due to the moist humid conditions we have. The female lays eggs in punctures […]

Growing Wild Foods

The following article was written by Kate Wall for GardenDrum some years ago. She says ‘……… all of these plants – weeds, subtropical edibles and local natives, work so well in my style of food gardening – that being a forage through a somewhat wild but gloriously beautiful cottage garden laden with flowers, to find […]

Nutgrass – A Toughie to Crack

his weed will crack you if you don’t crack it….. Cyperus rotundas aka nutgrass is the bane of gardeners worldwide. It has various names – Java grass, purple nut sedge, Wintjiekweed or red grass, red nut sedge, Khmer kravanh chruk, Teki and Motha to name a few. This weed is actually referred to as being ‘the world’s […]

Assassin Bug

Assassin bugs get their name from their predatory habits. Gardeners consider them beneficial insects, because their voracious appetites for other bugs keeps pests under control.     They are also known as Bee-killers because one of their favourite prey is the honey bee – actually they will feed on any insects that they can catch! […]

How to Prune a Pawpaw

The best time to prune is late winter or early spring, when the tree is dormant.. Corrective pruning consists of removing broken, interfering, dead, or diseased branches. Since pawpaw fruit is produced on new growth, annual pruning will stimulate new growth on older trees. The following advice for this post has been sourced from Gardening Australia January 2019 issue.  Phil Dudman suggests the […]

Pea Moth

Ever opened a pea and found some dirty matter inside? This was most probably the work of the Pea Moth. Pea moth Cydia nigricana are hairy brown moths which seek out peas when they are in bloom and lay eggs on the young pods. The larvae burrow into the immature peas to feed.   On opening […]