Archive for the ‘Garden’ Category

Topping up

The snow peas I planted a month or so back have not done well. A combination of starting late, old seeds and neglect, I suspect. This weekend I topped up the bed with some indoor-sprouted seeds:

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They took a few days to germinate on the kitchen windowsill.

For either inspiration or demoralization, my dad’s snow peas look like this:

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Wine glass for scale and sustenance.

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Winter garden 2014, part 1

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The beginnings of snow peas. Also on the left is Urtica dioica, the stinging nettle. Our soil was too dense, dry and low in nutrients to sustain then before, so I take their arrival as a good sign. If they grow well, I might try a nettle soup this year. To the right is a self seeded fennel plant. Getting a bank of edible plant seeds in the soil is a step towards a self-sustaining edible garden for us.

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These are broccoli and silver beet, chard, etc. The garden they’re in doesn’t get quite enough sun, so we’ll see how they do.

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Here’s the bodge greenhouse. It’s two discarded windows over a raised bed. The bed isn’t quite full of soil, so there’s a comfortable gap between glass and seedlings. It’s rocket and kale in here, which don’t really need coddling like this but I had the windows so why not?

Autumn 2014

It’s autumn again; almost winter. New baby is 6 months. We lost a cat to a snake bite but we have a new cat now. All of the summer veg is out and winter crops are in, hopefully not too late to germinate.

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The basil is under a makeshift cloche: Jerusalem artichoke stems tied together to make a frame, with a plastic bag over them.

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This is the kids genuinely helping to harvest said artichokes! Miss 5 even helped to scrub them.

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In another bed, we have silver beet and rainbow chard just starting again, self seeded from last year’s crop. Silver beet is our most reliable winter veg, but it’s hard to get the kids to eat it.

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Miss 5 gave me a sticker for my hard work.

Mulberry cuttings

Ever since friends had their engagement party at a park near some white mulberry trees, I have been keen to go back and get some cuttings. That was years ago: this week I managed to get the cuttings!

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The black mulberries are also great apart from their fruit making just about the worst stains!

I have them in some willow tea. Apparently willow steeped overnight in hot water will make a diy rooting hormone. The kids and I collected a few handfuls from a nearby creek and cooked it up the day before we took cuttings.

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I haven’t ever had much luck with cuttings, but we’ll see how this goes. I’ll post the progress.

Broad bean and broccoli progress

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The broad beans actually have beans on them! This is the prize bean, a whopper in miss 4’s lexicon.

The broccoli is coming along too:

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I don’t think we’re growing it at the right time of year, but we’ll see how it goes.

Spring update 1

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Alpine strawberries are fruiting already!

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Last year’s self seeded grape has bounced back

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Berries (Loganberry?) are flowering

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Last year’s bean teepee was a flop: take 2 in a new position

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Broad beans and purple beans in succession. We aim to use the purple beans as shade each year on the west side of the house. On the far left is mallow, a weed I’m cultivating to eat.

Stay warm, little veggies

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It’s going to be a very cold night after what had been the hottest winter on record in Canberra. To protect or baby tomatoes, it’s stakes, plastic and bricks to form a makeshift temporary cloche. It should be enough to keep the veggies safe. Hopefully it defrosts soon!

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