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Diggers Rest – Smell the rain; Eco gardening tips; Muffin Tin Devilled Eggs
February 26, 2018

February 2018 Issue #150


What fun that we both love gardening. Thanks for joining me.

1) Smell the rain
2) Eco gardening tips
3) Muffin Tin Devilled Eggs

raining on plants

Can you smell the rain?

Some of you gardeners would give your eye teeth for rain right now, and others wish the heavens would turn off the taps.

But we can all smell the good earthy smell of rain. Called petrichor, this term is used to describe the scent of chemical reactions. There's a lot more fascinating information about this but it starts with a dry spell.

Some plants secrete oils, which are released into the air as the rains fall. Also bacteria in the soil produce aromatic chemicals called actinomycetes when rain hits the ground.

And let's not forget ozone, which has a mildly tingly smell and is also given off during thunderstorms.

Eco gardening tips

  • Ain't an ant here
    Lauwra has left a tip on our forums: Convincing ants to move house to elsewhere Ants hate peppermint. Take boiling water, add some form of peppermint (tea bags, plant cuttings, etc.). Let steep till lukewarm. Pour into ant holes. Guaranteed they will move because their home is contaminated with peppermint stench.

    I have a lovely peppermint plant (easy to grow), but no ant problem. Let us know on forum if you try this and it works.

  • 2 days = abundance?
    A well-known NZ garden writer, Lynda Hallinan has just written an article on feeding a family of 8 from the garden doing 2 days' work a year. You heard me, but there are some hidden bits! It's not no-dig, but worth reading, go to No-dig's Facebook page

  • Companion planting
    Here's one of the useful tips from the above: "Some crops make nice, compact neighbours (lettuces, strawberries, bok choy, capsicums, chillies, leeks, onions), while others are overbearing (courgettes, pumpkins, sun-hogging stands of sweetcorn).

    Imagine you're organising a clothes rack by size: group small, medium and large together, and remember that a happy, healthy brassica, for example, can unfurl leaves up to 50 cm wide, swamping smaller neighbours."

pebble pillows

Pebble Pillows!

So soft, such fun. You can buy these eye-catching garden gifts HERE.

Muffin Tin Devilled Eggs

Healthy and easy, especially if you dislike having to peel eggs. Here's a quick video for you to follow.


  • 12 small eggs
  • 3 Tblns yoghurt
  • 2 Tblns relish of your choice, or substitute chopped dill or parsley
  • 1 Tbln mustard
  • 1 Tbln hot sauce, or tomato sauce
  • Generous salt and pepper to taste.

1. Separate yolks from whites and put yolks into 12 small individual patty tin rounds and pour the whites evenly into another 12 patty tin rounds.

2. Put patty tin into large baking tray and pour in some boiling water. Keep patty tin above water by standing on some crumpled foil. Seal top with foil and bake 300°F (150°C) for 13 minutes.

3. Remove cooked whites to plate and put yolks into bowl. 4. Using fork, mix yolks until creamy with yogurt, relish or substitute, mustard, hot sauce, salt and pepper.

5. Using plastic bag, piping bag or just dollop this mixture onto cooked white rounds, sprinkle with paprika if liked, and chopped herbs, such as chives or parsley.

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking: 13
Serves: 6-12 people for finger food

Live, love and garden.

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