General chat

“Is there any way we could have a thread for the more lightweight stuff like music and general chat?”

Do it here. Please no personal attacks or bickering. Anything abusive, provocative or inflammatory may be deleted.

30 Comments

  1. phantom snowflake

     /  March 18, 2018

  2. phantom snowflake

     /  March 18, 2018

  3. phantom snowflake

     /  March 18, 2018

  4. Griff

     /  March 18, 2018

  5. Griff

     /  March 18, 2018

  6. phantom snowflake

     /  March 18, 2018

  7. Gezza

     /  March 18, 2018

    Bloody racket. Ok. What’s the alarm for Bluey?

    Oh … fluffy flatface.

    NO worries, gone away now. 😀
    I reckon he’s cute. Just wants to watch the ducks n pooks, I reckon, Blue. Still, better safe than sorry till Pickles is bigger I guess – eh?

    • Gezza

       /  March 18, 2018

      Why are we not seeing any photos of pink toitois?

      • phantom snowflake

         /  March 18, 2018

        Pink coloured flax loops with bait used for eel fishing??

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  March 18, 2018

          They really are pink, dyed by what has to be weed spray.

          Why aren’t the Greens going all out to eradicate bloody gorse ? I seem to remember that it was costing a local farmer about the same as a farm worker earns just to keep it under control. What an annoying way to have to spend money.

          • phantom snowflake

             /  March 18, 2018

            I was pointing out that Toitoi is a misspelling of Toetoe but I’ll be in big trouble for that now you’re here! It can be quite difficult to tell them apart from the various subspecies of pampas grass; invaders from South America. I’m hoping the council is spraying the imported pest in this case. Gorse is a lost cause, seeds can remain viable in the soil for possibly 50 years. It has its upside; adds lots of nitrogen to the soil. if you’ve ever dug around the base of a mature gorse plant you would find the most fantastic, rich, light soil.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  March 18, 2018

              You should see how it’s taking over in some places and smothering native plants. Yet the Greens never seem to have done anything as far as I know.

            • phantom snowflake

               /  March 18, 2018

              I’m not trying to be contrary, but gorse often acts as a ‘nursery plant’ to native seedlings, sheltering them from heat and wind while they get established, all the while enriching the soil around them. Here’s one of many articles which mention this phenomenon:

              https://www.nzgeo.com/stories/chris-orsman-the-unlikely-redemption-ofgorse/

            • Gezza

               /  March 18, 2018

              Yep it does. If you want native bush to regenerate you just leave the gorse there and it does. I was surprised to learn this when bush-hiking after I retired.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  March 18, 2018

              What a pleasant surprise.I am amazed and delighted to hear that. It’s still a curse on farms, of course.

              Here is toitoetoitoe pretty in pink.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  March 18, 2018

              I’m a bit sceptical about the regeneration claim. I see a lot of land that has been carrying gorse for decades without much sign of regeneration. The other issue is that we have millions of hectares of bush already with scant evidence that it does much more than increase the range of introduced predators.

            • Maggy Wassilieff

               /  March 18, 2018

              @ Alan Wilkinson
              Regeneration through Gorse has been one of most frequently studied type of secondary succession in NZ.

              Pete Williams summarises some of the research here:
              http://www.science.canterbury.ac.nz/nzns/issues/vol36-2011/williams.pdf
              p. 11.

              I’m not sure what part of NZ you have been looking at….
              Regen through Gorse is slower in the Southern South Is than it is in the northern NI…… assuming fire isn’t a recurring factor and herbivores (especially goats and stock) are kept in check.

          • Gezza

             /  March 18, 2018

            Looks great Kitty

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  March 18, 2018

              Can you imagine what it looks like en masse ? I had the dog with me, so didn’t take any photos, just cut some. If it’s still like it when I go past again, I’ll see if I can take photos of it growing. If I saw it in a shop, I’d think it had been dyed.

  8. Kitty Catkin

     /  March 18, 2018

    It seems to spelt both ways – or four if you count toe toe and toi toi as well as toitoi and toetoe.

    I hope that the heavy handed spraying doesn’t kill it all.

  9. Griff

     /  March 18, 2018

    It is easy to tell them apart
    Pampas has has curved dead leaves like wood shavings at the base.

    The difference between the two plants is quite easily distinguished once you know a few facts. Native Toe toe produces pure white flower heads through late spring, the surface of its leaf is dark shiny green and smooth, it has a distinctive secondary vein between the midrib and margin of the leaf and when the leaves die they hang down flat. Pampas or Cortaderia selloana begins flowering late January and has a purple flower head. Its leaves are dull rough to touch and only have a single midrib. One of the easiest ways to identify this weed from our native plant is when pampas leaves die they curl up like wood shavings at the base of the plant.
    http://www.tawapou.co.nz/about-native-plants/native-toe-toe-or-pampas

    Stupid council workers around here sprayed out large clumps of Astelia banksii thinking it was a weed .

    The worse weed is ginger .
    Nothing can compete with clumps once established and it is almost impossible to get rid off
    I have one clump I have sprayed with round up, woody weed killer and gorse killer for years
    It still re sprouts after a few months .

    • phantom snowflake

       /  March 18, 2018

      Ah ok. I’ve read that there are 4 different subspecies of pampas here, which is enough to overload my tiny mind. Even the most resolute of ginger eventually concedes to a sharp spade. It’s the seeds from neighbouring properties that I’ve found the most problematic.

      • Griff

         /  March 18, 2018

        Its the ginger seeds wood pigeons shit every were that annoy me.

        I tried many times to grow the native Clematis from cuttings .
        Some random bird pooped a few plants agsint the fence right were I wanted them to grow

        its great when you work with nature not against it.

        • Gezza

           /  March 18, 2018

          Blackberry’s covering the parenga both sides of my stream. Spreading like wildfire, overgrowing everything else. Birds spread it – they drop the berries everywhere. Horrible bloody stuff. Trendils grow out everwhere at phenomenal rates once it gets established as even a tiny plant. Bloody hard to get it out by the roots once its a 18″ high or more. Nigh impossible when it’s much bigger.

      • Maggy Wassilieff

         /  March 18, 2018

        There are at least 7 native species of toetoe and 2 species of introduced pampas grass in NZ
        This recent paper on the Pampas grasses in NZ identifies 2 genetic groupings within Cortaderia selloana . Purple pampas grass Cortaderia jubata appears to be more genetically variable in NZ than previously thought.
        http://newzealandecology.org/nzje/3299.pdf