Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

Let's cut to the chase!  What a lot of us were interested in was - can you seriously convert an inground pool into a huge underground tank?  Here is the before and after - 2016 at the top (with James doing the Timewarp) to today at the bottom.

It is now a very useable space that doubles as an amazing water storage.  Here's the secured access point and a quick look inside. 

On arrival, we saw the very neighbour-friendly footpath garden. 

The larger productive side of the patch: 

The smaller more ornamental side; 

The rear of the yard and giveaway table: 

Gayle has an amazing ability to reuse all sorts of things in the garden from ceramic water filter jugs to old pool fence panels: 

It's been really amazing to watch the yard evolve from December 2014 until now - incredible changes aimed at reducing their environmental footprint.  Thanks very muchly to the Dallistons for their welcoming, kindness and preparedness to share the journey.  

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One of our work clients grows the really deep violet coloured violets Gayle - brought up from Sydney years ago. A piece could be obtained if wanted.

There was a lot of development at ANBG (their bookshop is to die for!) but I don't know if they sell plants. They had a number of variegated flowers, so beautiful!

Yes please, Lissa.

Gayle, Do you know what your pH is where the native violets grow? They are the purple and white ones, I presume. There is also a non native which is a rich purple with a larger flower and leaf.  The native violets I have growing don't seem to thrive.  They are in shade under some coleus plants. Something I am doing is not right and I would love to have them creeping around the garden.  Any help would be appreciated.

They are the standard little purple and white ones. I have a ph testing kit and never get around to using it. They do like chook poo and a bit of straw mulch and frequent water just while they establish.
Maybe it's the coleus. I had a coleus in one of my bamboo pots and it nearly killed the bamboo.   

Thanks Gayle I will move them from under the coleus and give them a bit of open ground and some manure.

There is also another native violet - a clumper which produces viable seeds without the flowers opening so it self-seeds everywhere. Viola betonicafolia combined with I think it's the mat rush, Lomandra sp to be the food and shelter plants for one of the more rare local butterflies. I had them all growing at Fairfield but never saw the butterfly.

PS: this violet does display flowers too. There's also a local native member of the geranium family which makes viable seeds without benefit of flowers (which also flowers normally). Grows around Mt Glorious. It's a teeny tiny plant similar to herb robert.

This sounds like the Arrowhead violet, Elaine, it attracts the Australian Fritillary butterfly, and it just disappeared one day after I had it growing for a couple of years. Maybe the possums ate the flowers. 

Hi, I have copious amounts of Herb Robert here at the moment if anyone wants any. I also have quite a lot of Viola hederacea.

Thanks for the offer Dianne, I will try and rescue the little Native violet here first and if that doesn't work I would love any excess viola that your have to spare but later on when we have a driver. Are you  munching on one herb robert leaf every day, to keep you healthy as the late Isabel Shippard used to say.

You know me Christa, of course I am, when I remember.

Thank you Gayle and Ken... It was so good to visit again and see all you've done. Lots of lovely veg growing in and around the natives. I was really aware of the bird life and bees enjoying the garden along with us. You've created a lovely natural environment for all.

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GrowVetiver

Vetiver grass helps to stabilise soil and protects it against erosion.  It can protect against pests and weeds. Vetiver is also used as animal feed. (Wiki.)

GrowVetiver is a plant nursery run by Dave & Keir Riley that harvests and grows Vetiver grass for local community applications and use. It is based in Beachmere, just north of Brisbane, Australia.


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