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Dave Riley's Blog (189)

Blue Corn Tortillas: better than yellow.

It became that time of the year when I was about to run out of corn flour for tortillas.

The thought of being without my beloved tacos or quesadilla was too much pain & denial to consider taking on.

Since we are within the Covid-19 epoch -- let's call the period,'Covid Pan' for short -- when I went online hunting supplies, stocks were almost non…

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Added by Dave Riley on May 29, 2020 at 19:00 — 6 Comments

Community Garden may not be the way to go...

I am negotiating a transition moment.

The primary school garden I had worked in & ran for a few years was running itself...that is before the pandemic. I had stepped back from it also to focus on my Vetiver activities.

But there is sure to be a local call for a 'community garden' to be established as we gain access to local building and…

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Added by Dave Riley on May 20, 2020 at 22:00 — 3 Comments

Chives and Spring Onions

As I've mentioned on occasion, I grow my own 'onions' -- my own Spring Onions./ Scallions/Green Onions.

You can imagine how many I can get through over any one year.

In the heat of Summer, harvest peters out and I need go out and buy bunches.While I have spring onions growing in my patch, I'm handicapped by the absence of accessible seedlings (due to there not being any in this Covid times )so I need to grow my own from seed.

Never that successful for my greenoid thumbs…

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Added by Dave Riley on April 4, 2020 at 23:00 — 5 Comments

Soup of the day, every day.

While I eat an evening meal, and may settle for coffee as breakfast, the great culinary love of my life is lunch.

Day in day out, I always eat soup for lunch.

And what a soup it is! A delicious stock to which is added whatever I harvest out back.

Each day I celebrate my kitchen garden by eating  it.

A bubbling broth…

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Added by Dave Riley on March 19, 2020 at 0:38 — 1 Comment

Methinks I have discovered a new way to garden (for me): meadow mowing

I just got myself a seriously active brushcutter so I went outback and...

What I may seem to have here is a tabula rasa --  a blank slate-- but you would be mistaken.

What I have here are 'x' number of beds mulched with Vetiver and edged by Vetiver hedges. Maybe you can't see them because they too were cut short.…

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Added by Dave Riley on March 8, 2020 at 21:00 — 7 Comments

Am I a Lazy or a smart gardener?

My wife was talking to one of the ladies that come here Wednesdays.

She said to her, "Your husband is over weight. Is that why your garden is so overgrown and messy?'

While a bit rude, this crude perspective  rules the neatness obsessed.

My garden is overgrown because I want it that way. What…

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Added by Dave Riley on February 12, 2020 at 5:00 — 7 Comments

WEEDS AS COVER CROPS --

I have long been a mulch junkie such that my garden has been built with lawn clippings. It is now a rich loam chock full of life. It is spongy and worm dense.

Hypothetically any weed 'problem' was simply blanketed with more mulch.

But with the recent drought conditions my working template fell apart. I was now overhead watering and my mulch supply -- via the 'Mower Men' of my acquaintance --dropped off to nothing.

Then the …

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Added by Dave Riley on February 2, 2020 at 1:00 — 6 Comments

What more could you ask for? We eat.

Despite  the dry, we eat.

What more could you ask for?

After weeding, using my sickle-- as explained here -- I'm ready to plant out even more stuff.

My orchard is consolidating. It is situated inside the chook pen.…

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Added by Dave Riley on December 18, 2019 at 21:30 — 3 Comments

The mélange of the backyard-scape

I've been focused on my Vetiver Ventures as my major outdoor activity. Consequently the vegetables and herbs have had to wait their turn before god attends to them.

I am god, you see...either that or a servant.

Whatever: the…

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Added by Dave Riley on November 2, 2019 at 20:30 — 3 Comments

A 'model' kitchen garden... in the subtropics.

After years of experimentation I now have a garden that has 'structure'. Less jungling and explosive but easier to manage than in days of yore.

Despite what may have been my past perspective, I have reduced the size of the garden that grows my veg.

Given my space quotient, compared to my BLF peers, this may seem an anathema.

But there…

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Added by Dave Riley on September 29, 2019 at 18:30 — 14 Comments

Radish Man

I may call on the animal kingdom to help me with my stock, but anything that floats in my soup du jour comes from outback.

Pride of place in the broth is always the radish.

I'm a daikon aficionado and that includes the Watermelon pinks (pictured).

I'm at that stage where I'm beginning to foster a supply line. They are never…

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Added by Dave Riley on September 5, 2019 at 12:30 — 7 Comments

It's that 'Neither/Nor' Time of year, isn't it?

No rain. Brutal drying westerly winds. Warmer days...This time of year is 'Spring' -- sort of-- but without all the elements converging as they should.

A little precipitation would help. Enough to suppress this waiting and dampen the earth.

But as my ma used to say: be careful what you wish for.

Mind you, 'tis pleasant enough except for the gusts.

If you saw…

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Added by Dave Riley on August 24, 2019 at 23:00 — 6 Comments

The next seashore challenge ...while we wait.

Waiting for Vetiver to flush is like watching a pot boil.
But here is the next job pending...…
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Added by Dave Riley on August 15, 2019 at 11:03 — No Comments

Ten Days to Sprinter...then comes Sprummer

Before you know it, the season changes...or, at least, begins to.

There is a yearning for warmth by bird and plant alike.

Since it has been cold, it must be the day length that heralds the change.

Forget all this European fascination with Spring.…

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Added by Dave Riley on July 21, 2019 at 16:00 — 1 Comment

My Favorite Backyard Comestibles -- the plants I love to grow to eat.

I used to do plant-of-the-year lists,  but nowadays I seem to have settled in to a routine consumption.

Aside from the key issue of what you can actually grow, what you seek to eat is the true raison d'être of the backyard business.

Of course I have my breakfast, lunch and din din habits -- my domestic menu -- which tends to be a tad eclectic and exotic.

Multicultural 7 nights per week.

THE HERBS

I can live without a lot of things, but my…

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Added by Dave Riley on July 1, 2019 at 5:30 — No Comments

The Opportunity of all this Rain. What happenstance! So plant out

It sure is raining. Buckets of the stuff.

Who woulda thought?

Opportunism knocks.

The Winter Solstice may have just visited but hey this is the sub tropics!

With so such moisturised goodness under foot, what can we plant?

If we are expecting to be frost free, well then: go for it I say. Get rid of all those old seed packets by planting  out their contents.Clear out the cupboard for a Spring buy up.

PLANT LISTS

Here's a list.…

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Added by Dave Riley on June 27, 2019 at 4:30 — 12 Comments

Conscious calendar-ruled seasonal plantings isn't my usual norm. But the June crazies are upon me like a chilling wind.

After some keen renovation work and extensive planting of Vetiver hedgerows I've planted more veges (& herbs)  than I've ever done before.

Both seeds and seedlings.

Conscious calendar-ruled seasonal plantings isn't my usual norm. But the June crazies are upon me like a chilling wind.

This discussion -- Direct Sowing of Seeds (Part the…

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Added by Dave Riley on June 3, 2019 at 19:00 — No Comments

It's challenge enough to keep up with the harvest.

I've been prevailed upon to cut back the garden and create more lawn. Not my perspective nor preferred lifestyle, but you have to forgo some laziness some times and spend more time (spit! bugger!) 'mowing'.

As it turns out , the new directive opened up quite a few renovating options that I now have embraced. That and the fact that my…

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Added by Dave Riley on May 11, 2019 at 0:00 — 3 Comments

I UPPED MY SCOVILLE HEAT UNITS

Since I run out of my regular supply of home made fermented chili paste more than my menu tolerates, I started planting chili bushes that were hotter than my usual  cultivation -- in the hope I'd use less.

With my ferment still in the crock I began picking from the chili bushes to go into my dishes neat.

And I'm feeling the change…

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Added by Dave Riley on May 1, 2019 at 12:00 — 8 Comments

2nd Term Begins in the School Garden.

A bit wet for the children to be gardening at the moment... but the perennials are coming on keenly.

The seats were constructed from timber logged from school trimmings.

We are beginning to drown in passion fruit and the gourds and squashes are seriously away.

Herbs a'plenty. Pumpkins. Dragon fruit....

Waiting on tomatoes.…

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Added by Dave Riley on April 24, 2019 at 11:30 — No Comments

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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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Talk to Andy on 0422 022 961.  You can  Pay on this link

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