Thanks and Plans

Thank you for your lovely comments, today i just feel really angry and want to be sure this won’t happen again.

But no fox yet.  Unless it is a scuba fox, its pouring rain.  Lovely Lovely Stuff. 

Hubby was as shocked as I am about all of the girls being gone.  He is even more certain now it is a fox.   Meanwhile I have discovered that I didn’t realize how much of a routine I had with feeding the girls until I went to put them away yesterday.  *bummer*   The first time in 3 years I haven’t had a chook in the yard.  But there will be more – next time I will try to find heritage breeds and I will take my time finding them, instead of my usual, rather spur of the moment ‘I have to have new chooks’ and will take whatever I can get, idea.

The trapping cage is being left set up in the coop for a few days to see if I can catch ‘it’.  ‘Its’ tummy is probably very full after eating 4 chooks in a week, plus this weather.  (No one wants to go out in this….)  Yeah there is no chooks left but it knows where to look for more and I certainly don’t want it to happen again.

New Plans……
Once the weather has cleared up I will pull down the old night pen and rebuild a fully enclosed one.  Hubby’s not too keen on this, but the plans are already on the table, in a typical Emily-fashion I can always make it better.  This new night pen will have a roof on it so hopefully the sparrows won’t get in and constantly be messing up the water.  You know all those things that you think of or discover later on that really needed to be included with the original build.

Here are some brilliant looking coops:

Have I missed yours and you’d love to add it to the list?  Comment below…

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Keeping Track

 

 

This is my note book, full of ramblings that possibly only I can understand, however it is wonderful for referring back to what I planted, where I brought particular plants, the weather and if I see great ideas online or in books I can jot them down in here and then find them later when I am ready to try them. 

Also you would find lots of check lists for jobs to be done, details on how to prune particular plants, flowering dates of the fruit trees and harvesting details.  When I notice pest or disease in the garden and any treatments used. 

Lots of these things I referrer back to later, it is also essential for planning sowing times and planting times for the next year. 

Do you have a garden journal?

The garden site – update

We are almost ready to build the garden beds.  I have cleared all the pavers and taken out all the edging and am in the process of filling the hole in with a few barrowloads of soil. 

The shade house will be temporaily dismantled for easier storage and then we have to figure out how to move the heavy concrete tubs!  I want to grow the water chestnuts in them but the tubs are in the wrong spot….  I will let you know how it goes.

I am curently working out the thriftiest (is that even a word? lol) way to build the beds. 

We have 6 pieces of 6.1x 0.8 m corrugated iron (recycled from the old carport about 4years ago!).  I am thinking of 4 beds  3 x 1.5m or 3 x 1m.  I don’t want them too wide.  I will let you know what I decide. 

This is an image* of what they will look like.  When I first saw roundthebends photos I knew this is what I would build. 

*Image taken from

I will be using a worm wicking bed design on the inside though as we have many invasive trees whos roots love to get into pots and the vegetable gardens.  This is hard when you don’t have the water to waste on them. 

You can find details of wicking beds here or for containers here

Now to come up with a creative way to use all of these!  Any ideas?

I have altered the wicking bed link so it now takes you to the right post, sorry ~Emily

Aerial Photos

 

Here is an aerial view of the little farm taken almost 12 months ago.

  1. The huge Oak tree we share with our neighbours
  2. The shed in its current site
  3. Where the big hole was dug & paved
  4. The new site for the shed
  5. (the line with no number lol ) is a Jacaranda tree that the neighbours have since removed for earth works.

As you can see our blocks are all narrow and long.  There is not a lot of room for livestock, but certainly chooks (I am looking to increase our flock to at least 8 in summer) and heaps of room for vegies and fruit trees.

If you are wondering what all the coloured ‘things’ are all over the yard?  Toys, bikes, the bins,  building supplies, potted plants, chook tractor and goodness know what other stuff… 

The retaining wall is done… now to the pavers

Oh gosh, finally FINALLY the wall is done (Ok one little bolt needs to go in)  but no more crowbar!!! 

Despite the wall being finished, we seem to be moving in the tiniest of tiniest of baby steps at the moment and I am the worst person at waiting.  I had to wait to get the remaining sleepers to finish the wall.  And now I am waiting for the our digger guy to come back (we had him in last week to level the area properly with a laser level – amazing things, can I have one honey??)  and deliver the crusher dust and level it again for us…  (Listen to me complain sorry!)

All of this is so I can lay these beauties

We have picked a disgusting lovely red shade as we have notorious Toowoomba red clay.  And this clay stains like you wouldn’t believe.  So we decided the red would hopefully blend in with the dirt.  Here’s a preview

 

So hopefully soon we will have all 1050 of these buggers in place so I can fit the cement truck up the back. 

Thanks for listening to my complaining, like I said I am bad at waiting….

The big hole….

I guess by now you are wondering ‘what the heck’ we’re going to do with this huge hole, erm ENTERTAINMENT area in the back yard, apart from use it as a cool bike riding spot for the boys?

Basically a herb garden and a paved area, with real seats, no more milk crates (I am telling the truth for 5, yes 5 years our guests have had to sit on MILK CRATES when they visit!)

Here is my very rough plan of what I want to do in this area. There will be lemon grass and purple fountain grass planted around the tank (Big black thing).  Comfrey in the very shady spots behind the tank. (left-hand side)
The green mess on the right is our herb garden. There will be a blueberry or 3 and a lavender, against the wall. Parsley, chives assortment down the path (spiked looking things) Mints, violets and aloe in the shady area next to the house (bottom right) and the rest will be stevia, sage, thyme, basil, lemon balm, bergamot, dill, coriander & basically all my herby things. If I can fit it in I might put in a dwarf fruit tree. Maybe a citrus. This area is a total of 2 x 4.2m.
I am thinking of either drip irrigation or http://urbanhomestead.org/journal/2008/05/29/ollas-2/ for watering.
All this planting I hope to do in the next week if I can get out into the garden as it is ***RAINING**** YAY, thank goodness we connected the tank!

Grand Plans

 

Backyard plans 1

I guess the best place to begin is with the plans we have for the yard.  When we moved in 5 years ago the yard had very few trees and no gardens.  We have played around and tossed ideas around for so long now, and with the current price rise on everything (don’t get me started on the price of cheese!)  we decided it was crunch time to get the garden going properly!

I am having heaps of issues getting the plans to up load so if they are not showing check back later and I might have got them up.

I will go into more details later about what we are doing, Have a great weekend – Emily

The first one

Wow our first blog….  I have such high expectations about what I will be writing about and sharing with you all. 

I hope I can live up to it!

You are probably wondering who we are and what we are doing.  I am Emily, a wife, a mother of two and head chef, gardener, farmer and whatever else comes my way.  There is also my hubby and our two boys L and C who are almost 5 and just turned 3. 

We live in a semi-rural town on the Darling Downs (Qld, Australia), it roughly is just under 1/2 an acre.  We currently have 5 chooks, yes not really a farm yet but as you will see we are working towards that almighty pie in the sky of being self sufficent. 

Please drop in regulary to see our journey, as crazy as it maybe!

Emily