I have missed my garden, the feel of the soil in my hands, the watering in the afternoon sunsets and harvesting hidden treasures. It was only a short break till I got back on my feet and worked out our baby carrier. With Roy back in PNG it is up to me again to maintain the garden, lucky for me I love a challenge. I have managed to water the garden everyday this week with Isla in the front, harvested the garden for our weekly farm gate and of course for ourselves.
Now that I am back in charge of my garden its time to start making a to-do list and expansion is on the horizon. Yes, I want to expand my garden and make it bigger, again.
Broadbeans are something that Roy and I grew in wicking beds in the city and were very successful. Here I am trying to grow a mighty crop for drying and planting again next year in our garden. They have been flowering irregularly and are still growing upwards. I was hoping that a mild Queensland winter would be exactly what these guys want to produce a bumper crop. I guess I will just have to wait and see.
Another issue in the garden of late is aphids, we have a plague of them. They started off in our snake beans covering only the bean and then we found them in the broccoli and then all over our kale. This has meant that my leafy greens have been in short supply – I have over 30 kale plants so not being able to pick a bunch is a little scary. I started spraying EcoOil on the aphids this week, i am going to keep doing it each week to see if the results change. Usually we have plenty of lady beetles in the garden to eat the aphids and I haven’t seen one. Where did they all go?
Its the start of broccoli season for us on the farm. I do hope to grow it all year round though I am not sure broccoli will handle the summer sun. Only one way to find out though.
Also another thing we have in the garden is the tomatillo’s i am really not sure of when to pick them or what to do with them. They are for Roy to experiment with in cooking Mexican food for us. We have so many so hopefully they are also good preserved.
The cool lantern shape of the tomatillo
In one end of this raised bed I have beetroot thriving and in the other end I have planted out some strawberries. I want a whole raised bed of them. Homegrown strawberries are the best.
My Rhubarb bed coming along after we spread it with chicken manure from the hen house.
The far end of my veggies patch with rows of garlic, broccoli, silverbeet and rainbow chard, basil and kale.
PLANTING: We have planted out all of our seedlings from last month ; zucchini, cucumbers, broccoli, cabbage, onions, beans, silverbeet, beetroot, coriander, asian greens, lettuce and the last of the tomatoes. We have also planted out more seeds which are onions, asian greens, leeks and basil. This month I have also planted out strawberry runners and a couple of strawberries I got from Bunnings which are not the running variety and are only clumping – I did not do any research about strawberries until i got home from bunnings. I will aslo get some runners from a neighbour to add to the bed and see which ones work and take over the bed. i don’t mind as long as I have a whole bed of stawbs. I want to be able to sell them at my farm gate along with our rhubarb. Now to find asparagus crowns – I only want about 8.
HARVESTING: This past month we have started our farm gate up again so harvesting has been really quite fun and rewarding. We are picking; kale, silverbeet, asian greens, tatsoi, beans (snake and green), zucchini, the start of the heirloom tomatoes and the start of the broccoli, digging spuds (pontiac and dutch creams), plenty of sweet peppers, chili’s and loads of herbs.
TO DO LIST: Expand, expand, expand. Over the coming months I want to dig a new patch for growing the longer more slow growing veg like spuds, garlic, turmeric and ginger. We have them in the main garden however I want to move them further away as they don’t need as much attention as the rest of my garden does. Plus crop rotation would be a hell of a lot easier if they were else where. I also want to finish filling our raised beds so one can be an asparagus bed while the other will be our beetroot and carrot bed. Maybe some radishes too. Otherwise I am keeping on top of the aphids and cabbage moth at this time of year. Its seems we don’t have fruit fly but have vinegar fly instead in the garden on our tomatoes. Not too sure what to do about them yet.
I wanted to see how much my garden would grow in a month. So we have filled all of our garden, there is no more room for anything else. Above is half of our bottom bed which we planted out with snowpeas, tomatoes, broccoli and cabbages. On the otherside between the peppers and the eggplants we planted out more zucchini’s cucumbers, beetroot, beans and silverbeet.
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