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Kapiti News - 2021-07-21

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Q &A

Gardening

WITH GLENYS WOOLLARD

Is it okay to trim aerial roots off a fruit salad plant (Monstera deliciosa)? In moderation. But remove too many and your plant will suffer. Better to tie long roots to the main stem so they eventually grow into the soil/potting mix, carrying water and nutrients to the leaves. Water sparingly in winter, place in a welllit possie away from excessive heat, and avoid repotting until spring. In the wild, monstera’s deep leaf splits help the plant withstand strong winds — it’s also known as the hurricane plant in tropical places. When’s a good time to split a rhubarb plant? In early spring, while the clump is still dormant. Doing the job every five years helps the stalks keep coming. Dig up the crown (the fleshy roots below ground) and with a sharp spade divide into two or more fist-sized pieces. Make sure each piece has at least one healthy bud then replant 4cms deep in welldrained rich soil — full sun if possible, although rhubarb will tolerate semi-shade. Avoid pulling stalks for the first season, keep well fed and water in dry weather.

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