Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

We've room for a couple of Banana plants so a Dwarf Ducasse is on its way here from Tully. Reviewing the inhabitants of the yard, I've decided to say 'good bye' to the Lab Lab plants.


Like the Jicama, the Lab Lab is an enthusiastic grower and it's taking over the Persimmon on one side and the Lilly Pilly on the other. The shoots are reaching across a couple of meters of open ground to my next-door neighbour's jungle. The crop so far has been disappointing although it's only a young plant so perhaps in the warmer weather it would have produced more pods. I have a huge pile of cuttings from these plants which are going to be great compost. Nothing is ever wasted!


We've been considering using Sugar Cane bales as garden edges. After some deliberations and trials with one bale, we're cutting down our ambitions to one Banana bed and one Pomegranate bed. The bales are quite heavy for a couple of old ducks, so we've found we can end-for-end them but not lift them to heave around. As well, we need to stake them and drive thinnish sharpened wood stakes through the tightly-packed bale and it's quite a challenge. We were a bit nonplussed at the cubic area which needs filling with mix so that helped us to decide to start small with 2 gardens (10 to 12 bales) and not our previously ambitious plans of using 50 bales and making gardens here, there and everywhere. Elaine R found a person selling and delivering a minimum of 10 rectangular Sugar Cane bales but she's yet to make contact. If this all works out as we hope, I will pass on his contact details, having those awkward and very messy bales delivered is a real boon.


Update 15th April 2011: We've moved on from the Sugar Cane bales for edges since we cannot get them very simply, so I am resurrecting an earlier idea of using 90 percent shade cloth attached to a rigid frame to make the above-ground bed for the Banana.


The little plant arrived this morning, a tad bent from its tumbling courtesy of Aus Post. They sure do know how to pack them!


And now it is in its new temporary home to grow on until I plant it out in September:


The space the Lab Lab had has now been cleared waiting construction of the Banana bed. Room for a Banana and Paw Paw circle would be nice but not possible given the amount of space available.


Further updates when something notable happens.

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Comment by Lissa on April 17, 2011 at 17:45

Your little narnie looks great Elaine. Looking forward to watching it's progress.

There's at least three of us received our Dwf Ducasse at the same time, so it will be very interesting to compare progress etc.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on April 13, 2011 at 17:11
Ah yes, they are the easy ones to get and the local produce has jumbo plastic-wrapped jobs for less than $13. For this job we need twined bales, similar to hay/straw bales with the two twine wrappings. If we used the plastic-wrapped ones for garden edges, when the plastic breaks down in the sun, we'd have our hay all over the place. After a bit of messing about and reeling at the price some semi-local shops sell the twined bales for (like double wholesale) we're probably going to go to our local produce (Redcliffe P at Rothwell) and at $8.50 we can live with it; bring them home two or three at a time in the back of our Hyundai Accent, several trips but it's only a couple of k's down the road.
Comment by Elaine de Saxe on April 13, 2011 at 13:41
Oh dang ... we only need 20 bales at most and for him to travel from his side of town to ours, he needs a minimum order of 50 bales. So we're back to square 1 but for those of you on the south side, he sounds very pleasant so he's worth a try if you want 10 or more bales at $5 each delivered: Andrew Currant phone 0414 458 175 or 07 5546 2303.
Comment by Donna on April 13, 2011 at 13:14
Sounds like you have both been very busy!  Look forward to hearing the results of the sugar cane bale experiment.

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