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Before coming to these strange and distant shores I had never even heard of Feijoas. So when I first came it was with some trepidation that I tasted some of those slightly odd looking fruit. It didn't help that the person who introduced them gave a slightly exasperating description of what they tasted like. So much so that while I understood the words, I had very little clue as to what they were on about.
We're now more than a week into the year of the monkey, and we thought that before the lantern festival starts and before festivities end, that we should find out what plants we have that can help us enjoy a lucky year.
Passionfruit season is here! This delicious tangy fruit is not only a special sweet treat but also full of nutrients; vitamin C, vitamin A, iron and magnesium to name just a few. Passionfruit are yummy on their own but can also be used in baking and desserts. Our manager from King's Takanini cafe "Friend of the Farmer", John Palino, has a great recipe for making a Passionfruit fool.
Unknown till relatively recently Finger Limes have become increasingly popular as a gourmet bush food. However a cursory description of this prickly Australian fruit tree, with their fruit full of globular juicy vesicles, doesn't really do them justice. But perhaps the fact that they're often called the caviar of citrus gives a hint of their delightful flavour.
Now in it's 20th year, the Heroic Gardens Festival is still going strong. Showcasing a stunning range of gardens across Auckland, the festival has helped provide bursts of inspiration and excitement to budding gardeners since they it first started. And it's all for a good cause.
Elegant and lightweight, the designers of the Esteras pot range have clearly found beauty in simplicity. Weighing almost nothing when empty these pots are incredibly strong, enduring, but with a refined air of sophistication.
It's not exactly rocket science, but NASA was still interested.
As part of a clean air study, NASA put together a list of air filtering houseplants in 1989, partly with an aim to send them out of this world and use them to help clean the air on space stations. Here are 11 of our favourites.
Why jet off to exotic locations when you can enjoy lounging around under palm trees in your own backyard, in your own home-grown tropical oasis.
Or you can of course do both. Enjoy the occasional trip to really tropical climes, while still enjoying the occasional lounge around in your backyard.
It seems strange to imagine Indian food, Thai Food, Sichuan Food without chillies. Until Christopher Columbus travelled to the Americas chillies were unheard of in the 'Old World'. However this lack didn't last long, after their discovery their use was quickly and enthusiastically spread by people all around the world, as they tried to spice things up a bit.
Although their common name in the US sounds like they're a 70's jazz-rock-fusion band with pretensions, Mandevillas are actually a genus of delightful sub-tropical and tropical vines. Vines that in New Zealand regularly erupt each summer with vibrant eye-catching flowers in a variety of colours, including whites, pinks, and reds.