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Here is a PDF of my first garden blog. I will go straight to the web blog for updates next time... whenever that is :)

First Garden Blog

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Comment by Rob Collings on August 26, 2016 at 19:56

Thanks guys!

James, I would be easier identified if I washed and shaved more often.... will do before next selfie :)

Susan, I just had a quick read on a few red spear broccoli comments. It's described as a longer term (cooler climate) variety. The cooler climate note does not install confidence here, especially with the above average temperature we've had this winter. The comments about longer growing time indicate that there might be a chance of something happening soon, although my largest plant is not even close to a metre as described in this article. Organic Gardener, Red Spears

Thanks George, I have a decent one about a week away, so it will be prepared as per your traditional suggestion, sounds delicious! Thank you for pointing me to the Earth Box information, another very informative site which has now been bookmarked.

I wont say wicking beds are great the ultimate growing system, however they are great, when including conservation of energy & water in to the equation. Adding to energy & water, you can include fertilisation/enrichements/additives being conserved, which solves my earlier conundrum regarding anaerobic activity taking nitrogen from the beds... (Susan made a very relevant point regarding fertilisation being no more at the very least than standard beds)

The loss of nitrogen from a standard garden bed would most likely be higher due to lack of containment the bed has relative to wicking beds.

The loss of nitrogen in a standard bed would probably exceed that lost to intermittent anaerobic activity in a wicking bed.

I re-visit Colin Austin's wicking bed site & Waterright every few months, as he makes regular updates and encourages wicking bed diversity. I must like wicking beds as I have two more to install in my short term garden plan (2 x 240L Hills type, out back of house, no more out the front).

Just over a week ago, I scattered organic extra pellets in all 4 beds. I can see how granular type has its advantage as a smaller dose, gradual feed, and will continue applying Organic Extra when it seems necessary.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on August 25, 2016 at 16:12

Over time the mix compresses or the organic matter is eaten by the microbes; or a handy mix of the two. Whatever fertilisers you use will eventually make their way into the water reservoir or that's my take on it. I mostly don't use a filling tube since most of my beds are mix from bottom to top. El cheepo mix for the water reservoir then a layered mix on top. Nevertheless, I still assume that the minerals and so on will eventually wash down even if only by the rain. And would wash through any geotextile, I surmise.

So what happens next? Well I don't really know. I've not ever dug one of mine up once I put it down. One or two do have a bit of a stale pong to them - I smell it when the water overflows. But mostly they don't. I have only questions and few answers ;-)

Comment by george s on August 25, 2016 at 13:57

Excellent Blog Rob, our traditional way for Kohlrabi is ; peel, slice 4mm, simmer until tender, serve with sauce béchamel. Bonne appetite!

There is a lot of information on wicking beds on the internet. One of the more interesting ones is the " Earth Box" . It is 36cm x 75cm in size, all plastic and has a (too) small reservoir of 11L of water.

earthboxaustralia.com is the site and have a look at the "instructions" about fertilizers. At the GV you indicated that your wicking bed are not performing consistently. Earth box recommendation is "don't use water-soluble fertilizer. I don't know what fertilizers you are using but I thought it may be worth considering.   

Comment by James Rosenlund on August 23, 2016 at 0:20

Rob :- You're gonna have to get yourself a "Selfie Stick " you've got the camera too close, but I can just make you out. lol

Comment by Andrew Cumberland on August 22, 2016 at 21:57

Class blog mate.  Jeez, things are going well at your place by the looks of it. 

Comment by Susan on August 22, 2016 at 20:26

Thanks Rob -> I'd appreciate knowing if it was just me with that broccoli or if I can blame the variety :)

Comment by Phil on August 21, 2016 at 9:54

Well done Rob it looks like you have a whole farm there with all the variety of edible plants you have featured. Anybody who visited your place a couple of months ago wouldn't recognise the neat and tidy photos of the front garden beds....amazing what motivation a garden visit can be! Looking forward to more garden blogs in the future.

Comment by Dianne Caswell on August 20, 2016 at 21:08

Fabulous Blog, I love the way you have set it out. What a wonderful garden full and looking so lush. It was so nice to see it all growing. I am a real Potato lover so the idea of fresh dug Spuds is one I think I can only dream about. Thank You for sharing your garden with us, food for thought. 

Comment by Lissa on August 20, 2016 at 5:03

I have been roasting my Kohl Rabi. I think they would go well grated into a salad also.

Comment by Rob Collings on August 19, 2016 at 20:51

I had to lower the quality (and remove some pictures) to get it under 5M.

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