A work in progress

So here it is, my tell all images of the gardens post winter. Oh the shame…

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Weedy and sadly neglected.

However I’m slowly working my way through the gardens. Pulling old and spent plants. Feeding the chooks handfuls of chick weed and enjoying (most of all) the rows upon rows of carrots.
This winter, carrots have been the one vegetable I haven’t brought.

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This weekends plan involves a lot of manure, compost and digging. Quite frankly I’m looking forward to this, this time to connect with the earth. Do you have any garden plans for this weekend?

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In My Garden

Slowly the season is changing and the soil warming.  With that comes such a flurry of garden work  – sowing, watering and weeding – oh the weeds.  Do you want a quick peek of what’s happening?

 

WELCOME to my garden.  Excuse the fence, it will be repaired once I repair the last garden bed and paint the posts – I am thinking purple or maybe red? 

Ok lets start with the garden on the left.  BED 1 

:: Garlic – saved cloves from last years harvest.  I kept the biggest for planting, fingers crossed for a bumper crop

:: Carrots – planted somewhere in the midst of winter, they have gone from tiny tiny things to (finally) a decent sized

:: Beetroot – taken an hour before being ripped out to make way for more (more!) carrots.  I am yet to work out the secret to growing bumper beets, these were again small

Next up BED 2

 

:: Purple Cabbage – a hanger-on from winter I am rather proud of my cabbages this year, they have good firm hearts! 

:: Garlic – more you ask?  Someone just had to plant out all the cloves that sprouted.  Hence there is 3 garlic crops this year

:: Lettuce – a quick filler until I transplant the bush beans and climbing beans.  Should I mention here the lack of success I have had with bean seeds this year?  No lets save it for another day

BED 3, a quiet garden

::  Basil- they maybe tiny now but I am hoping (with fingers crossed) that these 4 leaved seedings will soon become the source of a year of pesto.  And yes there is more seeds propagating, to date and 1 square m planted out.

:: Tomatoes – still sluggish seeds or tiny seedlings they’re slowly-slowly coming, until then this gardens waits

Bed 4

:: Pak Choi  – a bit sporadic with germinating, thanks to the ants.  Must remember to mix the seeds with tea leaves – Jackie French – ants will then leave the seeds alone

:: Zucchini – really what is summer without one?  Further along is a squash.  The cucumber’s yet to germinate

BED 5

Yes this is a vegetable garden full of Kikuya grass.  Have I been avoiding it?  Yes again.  I don’t even know where to start.  Spray the grass or dig it out?  or maybe just simply ignore it….

Thanks for having a look around with me, I hope you too are having a great spring flurry of activity!

A little farm shopping list

  • Dingo Digger
  • Post hole attachment
  • Kopper logs (8 length?)
  • 30m roll of chicken netting
  • ag pipe 15m
  • 10 pvc elbows
  • 5m pvc pipe
  • sand or gravel – ?
  • 15 bales of lucerne mulch
  • 10 bags of mushroom compost
  • 20m of 200 um plastic
  • 20kg bag of blood and bone
  • 20kg bag of dynamic lifter
  • 40m of 10mm black pipe (for garden edging)
  • large bag of cable ties
  • a gate
  • hinges – in shed

Many plans, phone calls, pricing, notes and more notes, changing of plans and again pricing… 

Yep it looks as though the raised beds are getting a make over!

Wire Covered Wicking Beds – or chook proofing part 2

Opponents?  Me vs. the Chickens. 

The Battleground?  The vegetable gardens

Winner of Round Two?  ME! 

It is hard to see it in these photos (dang cloudy days…)  but I have covered the beds in 5cm netting wire.  As the wire naturally wants to curl back up, it is easy to cut lengths and loop it over the width of a bed.  Since doing this a week ago, it appears the girls can no longer access the gardens for a digging frenzy.  Oh yeah!

Now what to do once the tomatoes grow higher than the wire cover?  Maybe more of these?

Neglected

With winter slowly slipping away, my mind wanders with thoughts of sun warm tomatoes, gluts of zuchinni and more basil than anyone could ever eat.

It must be time to begin preparing for spring. This is what I am faced with currently

Yuck. 

The left garden is currently being worked on by my free gardeners.  aka two chooks.  Once they have sufficiently turned the garden over, I can add compost and some extra manure.  Then mulch and leave it for a few weeks. 

The top bed still has a capsicum and an eggplant struggling to survive.  With no water and frosts they are doing well.  I think I will try to dig them out, to re-home in bed 4.  (the chooks are currently in it)

Meanwhile check out the other end of the garden….              Lush!

A summer garden

 

 

Image 1 – bed One.  Full of 4 zucchini plants (what was I thinking putting in 4 plants!)  we will be drowning in them soon!  2 button squashes and 1 cucumber.

Image 2 – bed Two.  This is a bitsa bed.  Self seeded spuds, shallots, sunflowers and lettuces

Image 3 – bed Three.  This is a bit empty at the moment.  A few beetroot, Bok choy and radishes.

Image 4 – bed Four.  The bean bed.  These are all dwarf beans.  

Image 5 – bed Five.  Tomatoes, capsicums, eggplants and obviously basil.

Still kickin’

Gosh it has been two weeks or so since I was here.  Honestly I think I have slept for most of it.  By 1pm I am buggered and out of it on the couch.  And back in bed at 8pm.  16weeks and counting. 

But I have been doing garden things in between naps and this sudden need to eat pineapples.  Heres quick run through the garden beds.

Bed 1  This season is the cucurbitaceae bed.  So far cucumbers and zuchini’s have been sown.  The zuchini’s have germinated but the cucumbers are being slow. 

Bed 2  Was the old broccoli bed which was wiped out by the heat wave in August.  So now I have peanuts and shallots in it.  The shallots were rotting in the cupboard (when exactly did I buy them?) so I decided at least if they are in the ground they might grow.  My baby brain can’t remember what season they should have been planted.

Bed 1 - sept 09

Bed 3  Is the root crops.  I have a bumper crop of onions, garlic and beetroot.  Best yet I think.  I have cheated a bit this season and brought, oh gee, a tub of fertilizer.  Glup.   I am so fed up with the garden starving so I decided for now to use a commercial product.  I think I plant to thickly so the plants need much more food than what is available.  So fingers crossed this will help.

Bed 3 - Sept 09

Bed 4 contains the legumes.  The peas and snow peas are still growing, we eat them steamed for dinner each night – Yum.  The big monster pea bush died in the August heat wave.  Despite being given buckets of water.  Eventually I let it go and dozens of pods dry out and I harvested 2 cups of dried peas.  Dwarf bean seeds were planted yesterday.  I think they were Gourmet Delights by Yates. 

Bed 4 - sept 09

Bed 5 is still waiting for the tomatoes.  They are in the propagator as I type.  So they should be ready in a few weeks.  Meanwhile I will buy one tomato seedling so I hopefully will get a harvest sooner.

Propagating

Now I just need some rain.  The 3mm yesterday was lovely, but can I be greedy and ask for more?  Please?

Vegetable garden update

I haven’t done a garden update for ages, I guess as not alot of planting is happening at this time of year.

Bed one is looking dismal.  But we are getting tomatoes!  Lots of tomatoes!  I had previously staked up all the tomatoes and in the recent storms they collapsed.  So I purchased some wire and made cages to put around the plants.  The ones at the front of the garden have burst into new growth being caged up but the older plants have died back and are not looking happy, but luckily fruit is still ripening! 

Several more Roma tomato plants have gone in so fingers crossed they will be fruiting soon.

Bed One

Eggplant<  First eggplant!  Hopefully out of 3 plants we will get abit more fruit soon.  The flowers don’t seem to be setting.

capsicums> Capsicums galore!

 

 

 

 

 

Bed two looks even worse with the potatoes dying off, they are so close to harvesting.  We have had a few baby spuds and oh yum they are so sweet and creamy.

Bed two

Bed three has been producing so much bounty.  Corn, beans and zucchinis have been in abundance.  The cucumbers haven’t.  Total harvest count 1 cucumber.  I had two cucumber plants growing over the trellis and the trellis blew over in a wind storm.  It ripped out one of the plants!  It was dead on arrival/ discovery.  The other plant is buried under the MONSTER zucchini plant!  Yep this is one massive plant with a smaller one on the left.

Bed three

The beans are just about finished so I will be leaving them to go to seed now, for next season.  I harvested the corn earlier in the week, it isn’t as sweet as I hoped, My Dad would call it cow corn as it is pasty.  Any ideas why, my first suggestion is lack of water?

zuchinni-monster

Bed 4 no longer looks like it is just mulch.  Carrots, pak choy, beetroots, lettuce, spring onions and celeriac are all being harvested.

Bed four

 

BBed 5ed 5 is almost finished now.  With the other beds I have quickly discovered the soil tends to crust over when it dries out.  This might be as it was dug out from under the topsoil, so there isn’t much organic matter in it.  I am finding the best way to stop this happening is to  add alot of compost and manures into the soil.  That is what this bed is waiting for.   I put the old corn stalks in this bed to and they too will eventually break down.  Once this bed is finished beans will be planted.  I have hardly any bean plants left now, despite my mass plantings earlier in the season.

 

~Happy Gardening~

Vegetable garden update

Ahh back to regular posting about my favourite subject.  The vegetable garden this was taken on the 2/12

Vegetable garden 2/12/08

My how things are growing, the boys have discovered you can hide behind the plants and eat beans or even a half ripe tomatoes  (how can I complain about that when they are eating vegtables?)

vegetable gardens 8/12

This was taken today on the 8/12.  Yikes!

The Potatoes are in full flower now so hopefully it won’t be long until we have some tasty ones to eat.

The corn appears to love being crowded in together, but it is very thirsty and needs a good bucket of water a day in this 32c heat.

corn

The tomato bed is driving me crazy we have had 5 whole cherry tomatoes so far.  There is so much fruit on the bushes so I wait with anticipation for the glut of summer.  Tomato sauce, jam, chutney and pasta sauce with some homegrown garlic oh yum!

Tomatoes

Bed 4 is finally looking like it has something growing in it.  The carrots are all bushy (hopefully something is happening down below)  and the beetroots most certainly survived the collaspe and replant earlier in the month.

Bed 4

beetroots

And finally we have a monster zuchinni plant growing, it is a Black beauty (seeds from Eden seeds)  and wow.  This is most certainly the best crop I have had in years!

giant zuchinni

How are your gardens growing?