Well my little garden is doing alright. I've been taking extra stuff into work quite regularly at the moment, eggs, passionfruit (boy are we sick of those), paw paws and Lemons and one of my workmates, in all seriousness, asked if I lived on a farm. She was quite amazed when she found out that my block of land is only 580 square meters. I guess, if you had of told me what I could produce, 10 years ago when I started slowly getting into gardening, and how much my garden would transform over the years, I probably wouldn't have believed it either. I do a lot of little harvests throughout the week (bits and pieces that are needed for dinner) but tend to do one big one on the weekend. This was today's harvest.
What do I do with all this? Well obviously, the toms, lettuce, cucumber and beetroot get used in salads. The other night, I made puncit, a phillipine chicken, vegetable and noodle dish, with the entire vegetable component from the garden (Spring onions, cabbage, zucchini, snow peas, broccoli and cauliflower). Eggplant, which I'm not that much of a fan but grows like crazy, Zucchini, capsicums and spring onions (with store bought celery and pasta sauce) work really well in an easy Chicken Ratatouille like dish that I can cook in a microwave pressure cooker in 30 minutes. I'm making passionfruit butter and meringues (eggs and passionfruit) about once every 2 weeks which we all love far too much in this house. Quiches use up spinach, eggs, carrot, spring onions, zucchini. In terms of vegetables, I'm really not buying that much at the moment. Celery, potato's, pumpkin and avocado is pretty much it. (Fruit is another story - my kids are BLOODY FRUIT BATS)
This time of year is extremely busy for me at work so I'm trying to set myself small, achievable goals. I figure if I do one major thing every week, then I'll at least stay on top of the basics.
2 weeks ago, I prepped the new tom/cap/egglplant bed and planted in all my own seedlings plus a new storebought listada di gandia eggplant. Today, I tackled the first Brassica bed. I had been holding out ripping it out waiting for broccoli shoots but they never happened. At the back, there is still Couve Tronchuda cabbage and a broccoli that looks like it's sprouted multiple times from the base so I might get something out of it. I topped it up with aged horse poo, rock minerals, rooster booster, compost and covered with Lucerne mulch. I'll wait until next week and my first lot of corn is going in.
My Tomato's are still giving me drama's. It is SO annoying. They look super healthy, have heaps of fruit and then just as they start ripening their fruit, they seem to get HAMMERED by mites and then start to die off and look awful. I can still harvest but no edible new fruit sets because the mites stunt the growth. I'm currently spraying weekly with a soap spray to try and keep what foliage that is undamaged, relatively healthy, but I don't think it will last - hence the new plantings of tomato's when they should last me an entire season!!
The old capsicum/eggplants are still pumping but I have got my lettuces and beetroot in there as well as new cucumber and trombonccino seedlings.
Making use of all my available space. Bought a Caronlina Rose grape a few weeks back and have planted it down the the fence line in the back garden. even though it is in shade now, in two weeks, it'll have full sun and since grapes are deciduous over winter, the winter shade shouldn't matter at all. (Ignore the mess of old pots that I was rinsing out and notice the 2 more tomato seedlings - chucking them in everywhere.)
Working on thinning out the peaches and nectarines before I net the tree to get more, quality sized fruits this year. Reminder to everyone to make sure they get those nets on before Mid september to avoid fruit fly ruining your crop.
Lastly, I'll leave you with a picture of my lavenders. They've been in for about 2 months now and I'm keeping the labels to see which variety does well so I can replant any that die with good ones that will survive our summer humidity. They are so beautiful and hopefully I can keep them alive through summer. There is a LAVISH variety - apparently bred for Australian summers and is the first DOUBLE lavender breed. Flowers are just stunning
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