Monday, January 30

It's all a bit French.

 ...Lots of wonderful French provincial finds around the nursery this week.
Our talented Jen created this display. I would love an outdoor room that had this feel.

Images by Serenity Nursery

Bright Stuff

We have a very pretty range of Indian home wares in at the moment. Beautiful embroidered cushions, bell wind chimes and silver carved plates will adorn your house or patio area.

Images by Serenity Nursery

Today in the nursery

As I look around the nursery today I am delighted by the intense tropical colours I see. Hibiscus, Mandevillas and fragrant frangapanis present them selves in all their beauty. Pop in today ans see for yourself.

Images by Serenity Nursery

Thursday, January 26

Old school is cool

 A veggie patch on wheels. This image is just adorable.

I love this. I don't know why but I have always loved old teacups, and the idea of incorporating them into a garden appeals to me.


 Show off your old doily collection by making them into a table runner. It looks great on a rustic timber table.


Gypsophila commonly known as Baby's Breath was used extensively throughout the 80's and 90's in bridal floral decoration. The dainty white flowers fell out of fashion,but now it's back. In fact we have it growing in pots for sale right now. It will grow in the garden and creates a lovely soft border.

 Sunflowers, gerberas, lavender and daisies are old school plants that are becoming more popular in the modern garden. An old bath tub planted  up in all your favourite flowering plants could be a cool way to garden.

Thursday, January 19

Just add Water

It's the perfect time to jazz up your pond or create a water garden with our extensive range of water plants.

Our two bath tubs in the nursery are chockers with water plants at the moment. Water lillies in pink, white, yellow and red. There are lots of oxygenating plants like the parrots feather to choose from. Floating Water lettuce adorn our water bowls.
Ask us about Manutec water plant fertiliser tablets (pictured above)

Friday, January 13

The Bridge Gets fresh

Get your hands on some of the regions freshest produce  at the Murray Bridge Farmers Market. It's a fabulous new market , located
 alongside the Murray River at the wharf precinct.
There is a great mix of organic grown fruit, vegetables and produce all locally grown and made.

The Murray Bridge Farmers Market is open every Saturday 8:30am-12:30pm 

A colourful array of fruit and vegetables tempt you in to each stall. Find a mix of stone fruit, citrus fruit, Jams, pickles and locally made olive oil.

 Visit the skilled team at Obsession Coffee  and enjoy a coffee or tea while you browse the market.
Obsession Coffee is a newly formed artisan coffee roaster based at Mypolonga.

Deb O'Connor brings her cooking skills to the market with an exotic mix of gourmet pies.
Try a crocodile, myrtle and champagne pie, Syrian Chicken or Spicy curry snapper pie.

Take home some Flavorino sweet tomatoes and try Oriana's Pasta sauce, made right here in Murray Bridge.

The best thing about this market is that you know that the produce is in season, so you know it will taste good. You can visit the market and be inspired to cook, just talk to the stall holders for ideas on how to use their produce.

Take home some hand made Italian bread and try Giuseppe's olive oil..

Mingle with the locals and enjoy the atmosphere on the river.

Tuesday, January 10

Green scene


When I designed my front garden  three years ago I was determined to have
an all green garden. Green foliage with a hint of white flowers was the plan. This theme would go with my mist green roof and cream timber posts on my little cottage.

Green plants that I used in my garden pictured above:

Frangapani- Cream flowers, large broad green leaves.
Buxus Faulkner- Green foliage, excellent evergreen border.
Cycad- Palm ideal planted in urns or pots.
Escallonia Iveyi- White flowers, dark green foliage.
Viburnum- Excellent screen, White flowers
Hellebore " Ivory Prince"- Cream to green flowers

Viburnum Laurustinis- One of the hardiest hedging plants around. Will grow 3m + and can be pruned to suit your location. Here I have used the viburnum to screen the fence line. I planted them 1m apart and prune the tops regularly to promote bushy plants. Doing so has paid off as they formed a hedge quickly. I like to use Neutrog SeaMungus throughout the year to keep the hedge healthy. Neutrog sudden impact for lawns is also great for leafy plants.

Hellebore "Ivory Prince"- A gem in the garden. I have planted my "Ivory Prince" under my advanced frangapani trees, they provide part shade for this amazing plant. The flower starts off cream and changes to green ( pictured above).

I have blogged this picture before, Its a favourite of mine. I think it must remind me of our garden centre, with all of the life size elephants roaming around.

Green Ivy walls. I would never get sick of this sight.

Grow Green. Grow your own edibles not only for eating but for visual effect. Try a border of green kale, creeping thyme as a ground cover or feijoa as a hedge.

It's a green life. I found this image on Martha and thought I might share it with you.

I absolutely love this. Try it yourself, by placing a few pavers in the garden and envelope them with a sea of green.

Green Ideas for planting in between pavers:
Dichondra- A small kidney shaped leaf that grows close to the ground ( available in seed or seedlings). Dwarf Mondo Grass, low growing dark green foliage. Creeping thyme, will take light foot traffic and will be fragrant too.

Thursday, January 5

Duck Curry with Lime and coconut rice

New years eve we made roast duck red curry. We borrowed Gordon Ramsey's red curry recipe from the book "Gordon Ramsay: Cooking for friends". Page 81 ( It is a recipe for fish curry we just made it with roast duck instead. ) It is really easy to make and has bold Thai flavours. Enjoy


Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees. Pat the duck dry with a tea towel or paper towel. Rub sea salt into the duck skin, turning it over to season all areas.

Cut an orange in half and place both halves inside the cavity.

Sprinkle the skin with Chinese five spice (available from the spice section at most supermarkets). Rub it into the skin. Roast the duck on a roasting rack in the pre-heated over for 2 hours. Turn the duck over after one hour. Roast the duck breast side up for the last two minutes.

Making the Curry Paste:

It is easy to grow your own lemon grass. Here we have grown ours in a half a wine barrel. Pull the lemon grass stalks up like picking a spring onion. You will need 1 lemon grass stalk, finely chopped.

Chop up 3 garlic cloves.

De seed and chop 6-7 large mild chillies.

Put the above ingredients in a food processor. Add a 5cm piece or ginger peeled and chopped, a small hand full of coriander stems, 2 finely chopped kaffir lime leaves, 1/2 tsp ground coriander, 1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp ground turmeric and 3-4 tbsp water.

Whiz it up to make a smooth paste.

Grow basil quick and easy from seedlings. We have grown ours in a cement planter box under a sunny veranda. Basil makes the perfect garnish to this dish adding pungent flavour.


...Time to turn the duck!

Lime and coconut rice:
300g Thai fragrant rice, washed and drained
200ml coconut milk, mixed with 200ml water
Juice of one lime
2 kaffir lime leaves
Pinch sea salt

How to: Put all of the ingredients into medium saucepan. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and cover the pan. Simmer for 8-10 minutes until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid. Without removing the lid, turn off the heat and leave the rice to steam for 5-10 minutes.


Palm sugar, Fish sauce and coconut milk are great to have on hand when making Thai food.

We decided to add some cherry tomatoes from our garden and seedless grapes, because they are in season.

Perfectly cooked duck.

Heat a little oil in a pan or wok. Add the curry paste and stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes over low heat, just until the paste smells fragrant.

Pour in the coconut milk and water, then stir in the palm sugar and fish sauce. bring the liquid to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the suger.

The best part is chopping the duck.

Add the duck to the curry. Stir in a half a cup of cherry tomatoes and a half a cup of red seedliess grapes. Add the basil leaves on top of each bowl of curry.

This is magnificent. Do try!