Each year we visit the Iberflora gardening trade show at the Valencia Feria and report back to readers on some of the most helpful products for amateur gardeners which should be in at least some garden centres and horticultural shops in 2011. Below are some of this years choices. A number would make excellent Christmas presents.
David Austin Roses were back in the show after a few years absence and they now offer an even more amazing collection of their own bred English roses and others that are suitable for growing in Spain bearing in mind that roses do best in a clay soil enriched with well rotted horse manure and given a deep mulch of the same at the time of the winter pruning. Have a look at their catalogue on www.davidaustinroses.com and contact email@example.com re queries and orders. One important thing to note is that due to the demand they ration the number of plants to each overseas market and some of the most popular varieties may have a two year waiting list. But be patient it is important to get what you really want for your garden with roses.
2. GARDEN TOOLS
Fiskars established in 1649 – yes 360 years of satisfied customers! - have been a favourite company with us for some years as their garden Secateurs, spades, forks etc are all designed to be ergonomic and minimise the chance of back, neck, shoulder, elbow and wrist sprains and aches and pains. We note that they now have a special recommendation from the US for use by persons with arthritis. New this year are a multi tool head set with a quick fit handle which will be an alternative to the Wolf one around for many years and a redesigned traditional grass mower. Tools stocked by good garden centres and Leroy Merlin etc.. See the Fiskars website for more information.
One of our favourite tools is the 50 cm long reach pruner. Great for pruning prickly shrubs and climbers and getting into the centre of citrus trees.
3. CHILDREN’S GARDENING AIDS
The young team of Storimport should have luck with their range of Disney World children’s mini green houses, gloves, clothes and tools which are bright and cheerful and useful for children’s mini gardens and a few containers and a growing table on apartment terraces. A good way to start off the next generation of gardeners.
4. GROWING KITS
Seed growing kits are excellent for children , beginners and those not wanting the bother of having to make up a range of composts for different types of seeds, or not having a green house. The new extensive range of flower, herb and vegetable kits being introduced by Sunturb – www.sunturb.com – should expand the number of people growing things from seed.
5. MORE SUPPLIERS OF NEEM
We are always on the look out for companies selling Neem which is probably the best ecological general insecticide available. At the show we were pleased to note that Flower whose products one finds in most garden centres are to start to distribute a few ecological garden products starting with neem and by the way a handy fly bait. Neem will be available as a handy spray and bottle of concentrated neem .
Bayer is also testing the eco market and launching a handy bottle of neem .
By the way the Seipasa product which we currently use is generally only available from agricultural cooperatives and suppliers.
6. NOVEL POOL SURROUNDS
Knowing that many expats have installed wooden decking on terraces we include Eureka wooden tiles for pool surrounds and terraces in this years selection. See www.lineaeureka.com
7. ECOLOGICAL NATURAL SWIMMING POOLS
More and more people around the world are installing ecological natural pools , or adapting existing pools. The advantages being the natural appearance, water keeps clean even in the winter, and without having to use chemicals or salt. Now Eco Aqua based in Totana, Murcia are designing and constructing such pools in Spain. See www.eco-aqua.net for pictures and more information.
8. NEUDORFF ECOLOGICAL PRODUCTS
Neudorff who have been making eco garden products for since 1854 are again expanding their range in Spain next year. Unfortunately all can’t come in one go as having been approved for Germany, and the EU they then have to be again approved for Spain! If the products are not yet in your local garden centre telephone Juan Luis on 646-725-434 to find out the nearest supplier.
9. REGIONAL GRASS FERTILIZERS
Vitaterra now offer three mixes of lawn fertilizers each suitable for one of the three geo-climate zones experienced in Spain. Namely Mediterranean, Continental and Atlantic. As shown in the photograph the fertilizers come in handy storage containers.
For more info search www.vitaterra.es.
10. TREATING PALM TREES
Several companies were promoting chemical preventative and curative treatments to
save Spain’s palm trees from the plague of palm weevils – named Rhynchophorus ferrugineus.
Treatments seem to cost several hundred euros a tree with no guarantee of success..
Although an International conference is being held in Valencia in 2011 it appears that at present, as with geranium moth, there is really no practical way to stop the plaque from spreading.