Back to the world of the living!
My summer hibernation is now over, the weather is so much kinder, and I am able to get about outside without frying in the horrible hot sun. The jobs to do outside are many and varied but at least I have some enthusiasm back, which enables me to get stuck in.
My cousin's wife in the UK suffers from SAD, (Seasonal Affective Disorder) - which is caused by a lack of sun in the northern hemisphere. Here we get far too much sun, and while I have always enjoyed getting out really early, and then really late on hot days to escape the worst of the heat, the summers seem to be so long now that I find it difficult to cope well with this. I also don't grow very much at all in summer, only plants like Ginger, Turmeric, Eggplants, Sweetcorn which love the sun, but even these need a good amount of water to thrive, and we haven't been getting our fair share of that either.
Speaking of water. It has never ceased to amaze me of the difference that rain makes to the way that plants respond. I have two large rainwater tanks, the water from which I use on the garden. Now this water comes down as rain, into the tanks. So there is no chlorine in it (unlike tap water) and any nitrogen, and or other nutritional elements that may have come down in the rainwater possibly bacteria, fungi, etc should still be there when it is used on my garden, (but obviously not). The difference, in just watering from the tanks and getting a good rain period is quite astounding. You will have noticed this. My fruit trees have now burst into new growth, this is particularly noticeable in the citrus. These trees have been faithfully watered all summer. They have survived well, put on a bit of new growth and developed a few fruit but a few good rain sessions has transformed them! They are jumping out of their skins! Tons of new growth, new flowering.
One of my Mulberries is forming new fruit, a Dragon Fruit is flowering again, my Pomegranates are belatedly trying to flower again, it's all happening! Babaco tree in fruit.
All is well with the world again! OK, OK, I'll try not to get too carried away, as the weather people tell us that an El Nino is a 70% chance. Comforting to learn that this recent spell of hot weather and dryness, has been enjoyed? without the influence of El Nino isn't it? I guess that not everywhere has been as dry as SE Qld, but the heat has been extreme and records have tumbled all summer long.
So it is on with the gardening again. I have been picking up horse manure and replenishing the various garden sites. I picked my first ginger of the season. Anyone growing Ginger should know that if you pick it now it will not be at all stringy, the early crop is used commercially for Crystallized Ginger. It has that pinkish hue to it. Later Ginger will gradually get more fibrous, but I spread out the harvest and only pick the last after the tops have died .
Turmeric (shown above) should be left until the tops die down to allow the rhizomes to fully form. I have replanted all my PVC tubes with carrots, after topping up the tubes with fresh potting mix.
The BLF site has been reasonably quiet for a while. The weather means that we all spend a lot less time in the garden and therefore have little to report. So how has the rain affected you? Is your garden showing similar rejuvenation? Can you explain why rain makes such a huge difference over just water?
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