Well what a month: torrential rain with 34 degree days -> aka "summer" vs 19 degree days and really cool -> Aka Autumn/Winter. I know this is pretty much par for the course in April but seriously!! Where did these last few days of heat come from?
I have had a very busy time up at the farm. We went up over easter and lucky we did as it was raining and we realised the van was leaking! So I came back home for two days and was up there again Tuesday night, all on my own, with a solid plan of attack. I stayed there until Saturday and boy did I work hard. I was up on that roof, chiseling out bitumen like stuff from around all the seams and joins and then taped it all back up again with butyrate flashing tape that a lot of the van renovating forums seem to recommend. That took me 3 days - not all day as I couldn't be up on a metal roof in that heat in the middle of the day but I was up there from about 6am to 10 -11 am every day. I also wanted to put in a "proper" shower cubicle - one that I don't have to be scared of snakes creeping up on me from the dense bushes under the tree where our current shower is set up. I had to dig 5 holes and then mix up bags of cement to fill them - you need to realise that this also entails me carting buckets of water around the farm cause that's all I got. I also did some gardening - I started with weeding my very long back garden bed. I then went and got a round massive sugar cane bale for $40!!!! (facebook market!) I also bought some compost in and I had my 4 free trees from BCC that I get every year with rates and I had some sun loving bromeilieds that I got from my mother ages ago that needed planting out as part of my fence/hedge. I had a coffee tree that Valerie had given me at Sid's garden visit, some sweet potato slips, cassava, choko and some avocado seeds that I thought "What the hell - give it a go" that all needed planting. I love looking at facebook market place and it just so happened that there was a guy selling excess sheppard and hass avocado trees for $10!! So I drove out west for 20 min and low and behold, there are avocado farms galore up that way that you would never have guessed were there. This guy grafts and sells to farmers but had too many excess this year for his orders so was selling them cheap. BARGAIN! As you can imagine, I was one very exhausted girl coming home on Saturday arvo.
I came home to my beautiful 7 year old papaya tree lying over the fence and all her beautiful fruit dumped on the ground!! As you can imagine, this was the last thing I needed on Saturday! Oh well, it is what it is.
So I now have a million green papaya's that need to be used up. I made Adobo chicken for dinner tonight and our "vegetable" was cubed green papaya that simmered down in the sauce until it was soft. I thought it was delicious and there was no complaints from the kids so at least that's one down out of the pile in my house.
Oh!! The other thing I did up at the farm was went guava foraging. I came home and made guava jelly but despite me boiling it twice with added pectin the second time, it still has not set. It does taste delicious though!
Remember me saying I might have broccoli in April? Just look at me!!! I am a gardening QUEEN!! It may be on the smallish side but it might get bigger as it has only just popped it's head up.
I don't think I'm going to be getting much more beans. The first shot is from about 1.5 weeks ago and I was starting to lose some beans to some sort of disease on them. Now, with all the rain, I'm barely getting any good ones. Oh well, it was good while it lasted. That was also the last cucumber as my plants got completely covered in aphids and caterpillars. But that's ok, as you can see in the second shot, my cucamelons are now entirely productive. That little harvest was after "one for me, one for the basket" kind of harvesting :)
Lastly, I'll show you this beautiful plant I grew from cuttings I got from one of our garden visits. It is so beautiful and if anyone knows the name of it, I'd greatly appreciate it.
Well that's it from me guys. Can't wait to see you all at my garden visit on Saturday . Don't forget, I'll have lots of strawberry plants so bring something to take them home with you.
Happy gardening folks.
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