For my fellow gardeners in South East Queensland the weather has just been playing silly buggers with us, hasn’t it. We have gone from extreme heat to huge hailstones in a number of days. Here I am sitting in a jumper typing this up (Saturday) with the rain coming down gently which is nice for a change. For those of you who want to take a peek at the hail we had CLICK HERE.
Here we are again, the last Garden Share Collective for 2013. For most of us December is about getting ready for Christmas. I too have been getting ready for Christmas but in the garden. As some of you know I am 21 weeks pregnant and working in the blistering heat of 35 degree days is no longer an option for me. You will see me still in the garden at the crack of dawn or on dusk but that time is very limited each day.
Last time Roy was home he got back into the garden with me. Usually its a project I take on all by myself, but now I need a little help. With only a week off, each afternoon we would walk down the paddock about 4.30/5pm and spend the last of day light hours pulling weeds and mulching. If you notice my place looks pretty darn good for a change and you can’t see a weed insight.
Going back to the garden, the tomatoes above were hit by hail and a down pour of 33mm of rain last weekend. Needless to say for the first time ever my tomatoes have split even my robust sturdy cherries. A good practice that I usually have is to pick my tomatoes just on ripening, so if they have a bit of colour I pick them. They take about another three days up at the house to ripen and taste just as good. The most important thing about picking tomatoes a little early is to make sure to get the stem still attached as it aids the ripening process.
ABOVE: last month the row on the left which looks straggly and eaten by caterpillars is kale. I was going to pull it out and mulch the last of the bed. BELOW: evidence that rain makes a huge difference in a garden, the whole row has re-shot and looking healthier than ever. I might be able to have kale through all of summer – who knows. I am going to leave it as an experiment.
The chili’s on the left we planted last month looking healthy while my mung beans have started growing pods.
My three tiers of peppers and eggplants. When I stand next to my eggplants they are up to my hip in height so I reckon that they are just at a meter in height. Pretty proud of that. Last week I harvested over 5kg off them and it looks like I will have more thanks to this rain this weekend just gone.
With not too much left in the garden, we have picked all of our corn, I am happy to report that only a fw caterpillars were found hiding out. Plenty of capsicums, I have to pick them when they are green. This year we have attracted fruit fly to the garden so a few of them get stings, so the earlier the better. The zucchini’s are on their last legs, they will get pulled out the week before Christmas if they are not dead by then.
Also this week my Hungarian wax peppers finally started turning yellow, I have only been waiting weeks for this to happen. I sell them to my boss at Kookaburra Organics. I harvested 3 kg this past week. Mind you they are not a bigger seller at the farm gate so I doubt next year I will be growing them again. Well, unless I can find another use for them a preserve of some sort that may be popular.
THINGS TO DO:
I thought I would quickly share with you my mung bean experiment. One of the things Roy and I want to achieve by having such a large garden is to grow most of our food. This means trying to grow crops that are good for preserving. One of Roy’s favourite dishes is Dahl and lucky for me I make a good one using mung beans. This year I thought to give them a go. With the pods starting to dry on the bush I have picked them and put them aside to keep drying, I want those precious green jewels inside for eating and sowing again next year. I have never grown mung beans before so i am looking forward to see how much the one row will yield. From this I can gauge how much I will need to grow for next year.
Back to my to do list; Keep on top of those pesky weeds that just want to keep coming up, its not to bad now that the garden has mostly been put to sleep. Finish the last of the mulching. Harvest Everything before Christmas and cook it up so while we are away I don’t have rotting fruit and veg in patch due to neglect.
Organise a chook sitter for while we are away. The garden will survive but the chooks need water.
|AUSTRALIA||NEW ZEALAND||UNITED KINGDOM|
|Eight Acres – QLD||The Fig Tree||The Landrovers Owners Wife|
|The New Good Life – VIC||Our Wee Farm||The Garden Deli|
|African Aussie – QLD||Frog Pond Farm||Shabby Chick|
|Dig In Hobart – TAS|
|Gustoso – QLD|
|Claire K Creations – QLD|
|Chloes Garden – VIC|
|A Fresh Legacy – VIC|
|Jeanie In Paradise – QLD|
|Sunny Corner Farm – NSW|
|Think Big. Live Simply- VIC|
|The Life of Clare – VIC|
|The Shady Baker – NSW|
|My Yellow Heart – WA|
|Melissa Loh – QLD|
|Dusty Country Road – VIC|
|Donna Digs – VIC|
|Brown Paper Belle – QLD|
|Little Woolie – VIC|
|Helarious – NSW|
|The Gourmet Wog– NSW|
|Jellywares – NSW|
|Flame Tree Flowers – QLD|
Merryn’s Menu – NSW