Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

Yesterday, I looked at the one big ripe pawpaw on my rather overgrown tree, and thought - I'd better pick that tomorrow, and take the top out of the tree....... Aaaargh. At least the critters (bats?possums?rats?) made a good job of it, and didn't just take a few bites and drop it on the ground!

Anyway, the pepino I got from Daley's three months ago is powering along - even some tiny fruits. The stump in the foreground is a lemon tree that the root stock took over a while back.  Its spot in the garden has now been taken by a china flat peach. The new lemon tree is round in the back yard.

The precocious persimmon had its fruit load reduced from 60+ to 8. That's right, 60. It was covered in flowers. Even now, I think 8 might be being a bit greedy, and more will probably come off. The persimmon is older than it looks - I nearly killed it a few years ago before I found out (thanks Annette on the radio) that it needs lime and doesn't want too much Organic Xtra at a time (I can be a bit heavy-handed with the fertiliser). Now it's trying to make up for lost time.

A tomato came up in the vege patch, and it looked nice and healthy, and not a cherry, so I encouraged it. It turned out to be a supermarket tomato - tastes like it, anyway - and it was very prolific. We have already had about half a kilo before I took the picture of all the fruit, and the critters got half a kilo. The bush is a bit sad looking now, but is still carrying a few more bunches as you can see. The critters have worked out that white bags mean goodies inside, and have even managed to open a couple when I didn't tie them up securely enough. They have been known to chew through the bag when it's something really yummy like loquats, but so far haven't bothered for the tomatoes. (Well, supermarket tomatoes, who can blame them?)

The blue barrow at the back in the tomato plant picture is for sweet potatoes. There is a red barrow as well. The sweet potatoes usually do well in them, but this season the critters ate the tubers I'd put to sprout in the bush-house just before I went away, (should've kept them in the house) and I haven't got around to organising another batch.

Pineapple alley is planted in a retaining wall, on pure clay/schist subsoil. I had 5 pineapples last year, and 6 are on this year. The pineapples get the liquid from the worm farm poured over them, as well as some Organic Xtra when I remember. The grape is about 4 years old, and never performs all that well. I bought it from Bunnings, I think, labelled as a Black Muscat, but I think it's a seedling. Of course, the poor performance could well have something to do with the lousy soil, but if the pineapples manage, why not the grape?

A few little mangoes on the mango tree in the foreground. I bought it as a Glenn from a local nursery, but when it fruited last year, the fruits (2) were green with a dark red blush when ripe. I waited so long for them to turn golden yellow, like Glenns are supposed to, that they got over-ripe and fell off. I guess it ain't a Glenn. That was about when I decided to get all my fruit trees from Daleys, and I haven't regretted that decision.

The latest acquisitions are a china flat peach, the pepino, a panama red passionfruit, and a pomegranate - so pretty with its red flowers that I won't take them off till fruits start to form. So far the possums have left the Panama Red alone. They used to attack my other passionfruit last season, chewing the new growth so badly I had to cover it up. At times my back yard looks like a curtain showroom. Hopefully they will be content with the sacrificial fennel growing near the fence.

The bit of rain we've been having has been most encouraging. Tanks are full, so all will be well, at least for a month or so. Thanks to everyone for all the good info on the site, and the garden visits which have been so interesting and enjoyable.

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Comment by Andrew Cumberland on October 30, 2015 at 21:58

That makes me nervous too Susan.  I got 2 from Bunnings! 

Comment by Susan on October 30, 2015 at 16:38

Wow  This is amazing.  Now I'm seriously rethinking my pomegranite.  I bought it from bunnings and it has  been in the ground 2 years now and is MUCH larger than yours and still no flowers.  I see that yours is from Daleys and it looks quite young and you have flowers already. 

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on October 30, 2015 at 12:11

What the bats don't eat, the possums will :-\. Usually pick the pawpaws at just-turning-yellow stage. So far we've avoided involuntarily feeding the wildlife. When I grew Ladyfingers I waited until the bats had their first chomps then took down the bunch. In the days when I could shinny up a ladder to a 15 ft tree and heave down a full bunch! I figured the bats were the experts on mature fruit. But no more, WE get our fruit, the bats if they choose to live here must eat something else. Or preferably move somewhere else.

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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.)

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