New Zealand FarmCategoriesLifestyle Soil Health

Not All Emissions Are Evil And Smelly.

Now that COP26 is mostly out of the news headlines – does anyone actually know what the world agreed on without googling it?

Well, in an organically-grown nutshell, countries need to do more to reduce greenhouse emissions, urgently (no surprises there). And while coal seemed to be the Big Bad Wolf in the news headlines – there was very little said about the world’s use of synthetic nitrogen fertilisers – one New Zealand’s biggest polluters.

 

Agriculture in clean, green ‘Enzee’ makes up for 49 per cent of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions – well it did in 2018 – and shows no signs of slowing down. For the last few decades we’ve been ramping-up livestock production to meet world-demand for our excellent meat, dairy and wool. And our lovely paddocks just haven’t been able to keep up with amount of feed for those big, hungry beasties.

 

And that’s where synthetic nitrogen comes in. Synthetic nitrogen supercharges the growth of grass (as well as other crops) so more livestock can feed per hectare. But that comes at a serious cost. Synthetic nitrogen upsets the natural balance of the land, creates more emissions from livestocks’ burps and farts, and actually creates another greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide, when it’s applied. Plus, around half of it is imported, made overseas using fossil fuels and the run-off into our waterways can leave our rivers fighting for their lives.

 

It’s bad news, all round. So what’s the alternative for commercial farmers?

 

Well, when it comes to agriculture – doing less is best. By putting less pressure on the environment and helping it to look after us naturally. To change, we need different thinking, like how Joseph Ayoub started Swift Grow, our all-natural organic fertiliser.

 

Joseph didn’t intend to create fertiliser, he started out farming organic barramundi. To ensure he had a 100% organic product, free of any traces of mercury, he had to move away from commercially-sourced feed, so began making his own. To his surprise, the organic fish manure that was discarded caused the neighbouring trees and plants to…well, grow like crazy.

 

This accidental discovery put Joseph on a course to enhance the manure and remove the smell of the fishy emissions. Joseph upgraded the farm to use Recirculation Aquaculture Systems which allows precise control of what goes in and what comes out. This includes the harvesting of the fish excrement as a by-product which is purified and sold as a concentrated liquid fertiliser.

 

It is available in commercial quantities, and for the home gardener. It’s an all-natural fertiliser than can replace synthetic fertilisers, help return damaged soil to its natural balance, and make crops of all kinds flourish.

 

It didn’t take the world’s leaders to achieve this – just some clever thinking and odour-free fish emissions.

 

To find out more about the impact of synthetic fertilisers and intensive agriculture check out these links:

 

https://www.stuff.co.nz/opinion/300424150/saving-biodiversity-starts-here-at-home-with-changing-agriculture

 

https://www.tyrantfarms.com/5-organic-farming-facts-you-should-know/

 

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/politics/climate-change-conference-emissions-to-be-cut-by-50-per-cent-below-2005-levels-by-2030/WRDDTBYBIRDSOTQSDP7UH6KWLI/

Woman and her young child planting vegetables in home garden.CategoriesLifestyle Soil Health

The Good Soil.

Whether you’re a casual urban green finger or a seasoned lifestyle gardener, you’ll know the only thing better than growing your own herbs, fruit and veggies is creating an incredible, full-flavoured dish with them.

Those of us in urban areas lucky enough to have found a dedicated patch to grow fresh produce in our backyards, might find soil conditions aren’t as great as they should be. This could be due to the heavy earthmoving and landscaping carried out while our neighbourhoods were being developed. Soils low in nutrients and organic matter will result in produce lacking in colour and size, and tasting a bit bland on the plate.

 

But don’t rush off to the garden centre to nuke your veggie patch with man-made chemical fertilisers. These can upset the natural balance of your soil, and be harmful to kids, pets and the multitude of tiny creatures that keep our little piece of paradise in balance.

 

Naturally occurring organic fertilisers such as Swift Grow make sure your little, edible garden gets everything it needs to produce delicious, plump and colourful fruit and veggies – while looking after the soil and its diverse microcosm of flora and fauna.

 

Swift Grow is created from the manure collected at a 100% organic fish farm. It’s founder and creator, Genetics Engineer Joseph Ayoub, has been on a personal mission to produce the full flavoured organic foods he remembers from his childhood but seem to be lacking in today’s mass-produced varieties.

 

Joseph set up a small barramundi fish farm in New South Wales in 2007 and quickly realised that to achieve a truly organic status he’d need to create the fish’s food supply too. That’s when he noticed the fish manure discarded as fertiliser on the farm nearby caused the trees and plants to grow prolifically. Their fruit yield, size, colour and aroma was so amazing that he was reminded of the produce from his childhood.

 

Joseph has since upgraded his farm to purify this ‘fish-water’ make it ‘zero-smell’ and named it Swift Grow, which has been impressing both commercial and artisan growers alike.

 

If you’re looking for the satisfaction of garden-to-table fruit and veggies then look for an organic fertiliser option like Swift Grow to keep your soil in optimum conditions, and impress your guests with outstanding looking and tasting produce.

 

For more tips on soil health and growing great plants check out these great links:

https://www.aucklandbotanicgardens.co.nz/garden-advice/garden-tips/healthy-soils/

https://www.ediblebackyard.co.nz

CategoriesLifestyle

We are celebrating Bee Awareness Month.

We’re celebrating Bee Awareness Month with Free Shipping in September. Use Coupon CELEBEES at Checkout.

This month is Bee Awareness Month and over the past 12 years Kiwis have celebrated our hard-working bees.  

Not only do our bees produce a vital food source, as commercial pollinators they also play critical roles in our food chain, biodiversity and $5 billion Apiculture economy. 

New Zealand has a healthy bee population with over 900,000 registered hives, however, we can’t get complacent about bee health.  Bees all over the world face a range of threats including: biosecurity, climate change, disease, bugs and pesticides.  If you want to play your part in supporting healthy bee populations, here are some simple and easy things you can do to help our bees.

How you can help

  • Feed the bees – Bees need food and water.  Planting bee-friendly plants and vegetables like :pumpkin, squash, rosemary, sunflowers, lavender, and providing a saucer of pesticide-free water for bees to drink, are effective ways you can help improve bee health.  Well-nourished bees are more capable of fending off disease and parasites.
  • Mow your lawns fortnightly rather than weekly. Our bees thrive in longer grass where  they can pollinate more freely, being attracted to some weeds and non-grassy plants. Pesticides, herbicides and non-organic fertilizers should not be used on pollinator friendly lawns. 
  • Spray safely – Choose bee-safe pesticides if you are spraying your garden or consider whether spraying is necessary at all.  Remember to spray when bees are away: early in the morning or at sunset.

We want to support Kiwi’s gardners to protect our bee colonies as they are a vital part of our ecosystem.  For September, we are offering FREE NATIONWIDE DELIVERY for all Swift Grow purchases use coupon code CELEBEES at checkout. By switching to organic gardening methods, our bee’s notice the difference and will be attracted to these flowers that hold beneficial bacteria – and in turn will protect the colony.

Buy Swift Grow online and see how your plants thrive and get the bees buzzing in your garden.

bee on flowersCategoriesLifestyle

The feel-good factor of bringing the bees back.

How welcoming bee numbers back to our gardens with organic fertilisers can also benefit our health and wellbeing.

 

It’s spring. And isn’t it nice to see flowers in the garden again. But there’s so much more to enjoy than just the visual delights a splash of colour delivers in gardens and the surrounding parks.

With the sweet-smelling and brightly-coloured blossoms come the bees. And right now, our bee populations need more help than ever to maintain their numbers and support the natural balance of our eco-system. Our bee populations are in danger of the ‘Three P’s’ – pesticides, parasites and poor nutrition.

But us clever humans can make all make a big difference to bee-health by switching to organic gardening methods and returning our soil’s natural micro-nutrient balance with organic fertilisers such as Swift Grow.

Joseph Ayoub, a Genetic and Molecular Biologist who developed Swift Grow explains;

“Synthetic fertilisers don’t contain the beneficial bacteria bees use to protect themselves and their colony from pathogens. In fact, when you use synthetic fertilisers on your plants, you’re actually killing the beneficial bacteria in the soil, and the bees are suffering for it. When you apply an organic fertiliser like Swift Grow, bees can tell the difference and will be attracted to these flowers, which in turn will protect the colony.”

Improved soil health will not only benefit the introduced species of bees which include honeybees and bumble bees, it will also benefit the 25 or so species of native bees we have here in New Zealand. These bees don’t live in colonies like honeybees do, however they are active pollinators, ensuring the healthy lifecycle of New Zealand plant life that supports all manner of other species.

 

Using organic fertilisers such as Swift Grow to return stressed soil to natural levels is not a one-way street. The increased activity of bees collecting pollen is incredibly beneficial to us, as the pollen they collect is an incredible dietary powerhouse of micronutrients.

 

Every microscopic grain of pollen contains an amazing array of micronutrients our bodies use to function at their best. Pollen has been used around the world for thousands of years to support wellbeing, energy levels and our body’s immune systems. Nature Bee Power Pollen takes this all-natural product to the next level, by cracking open the tough outer shell of pollen grains to make it easier for our bodies to absorb. And with more energy we can get more out of our busy lives, including time the garden to make it a welcoming place for bees to visit.

 

Bringing the bees back to our garden has a proven feel-good factor.

 


 

Swift Grow is an all-natural organic fertiliser made from the waste products of  organic barramundi farming. To learn more about Swift Grow click here.

 

Power Pollen is just one of the many bee-related products available from Nature Bee. To learn more about Nature Bee Power Pollen and its benefits click here.

Bee on flowerCategoriesLifestyle

Why we should be worried that our bees are dying.

Bees are dying off at an alarming rate.

According to the EPA, bee populations have declined by 40% in the last 50 years and that’s just one of many startling facts about bees. Bees are responsible for pollinating 75% of all crops worldwide which means if they die off, we will be left with a food shortage.

 

A study from Harvard University found that neonicotinoids – a common pesticide used on large scale farms – is the likely cause of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). The neurotoxin makes it hard for bees to navigate back to their hives after collecting nectar and pollen which eventually leads to death.

The best way you can help save our bees is by supporting organic agriculture and reducing your chemical usage.

The bee population is in danger. Bees are dying at alarming rates and scientists trying to understand. It’s not just a few bees that are dying, it’s whole colonies some with as many as 100,000 or more bees.

Scientists have been researching the issue for years now but there still isn’t a definite answer to what causes this phenomenon. Some of the things they suspect are pesticides and climate change but these two factors may not be linked together after all.

Our organic fertilisers is not only chemical-free it is replacing all of the lost nutrients in our soil. Read more about Swift Grow.