Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

All of our computers got infected with viruses and then we maxed out our download limit reinstalling everything. My computer has been too slow to use for about 2 weeks - I was starting to suffer withdrawal! So apologies for not replying to anything. Each page was taking about 30s to load, it was just too much.

We still have a giant bunch of bananas waiting to turn yellow, and two small bunches developing now - I must spread that rooster booster, they obviously need a feed. I'm late. I bought the bag a few weeks ago but still haven't spread it (we're painting the outside of the house, I'm not finding I have a lot of spare time or garden time at the moment).

Our freezer is completely full of bananas. I am banana cake woman. Any occasion, no problem, I will make banana cake. Although our chooks have gone off the lay at the moment so that might stop me. They did this last year and then had another spate after xmas.

The chooks need some loving. I think they have scaly leg mite and heckle has scratched her face (from bird mites I think). I will give them the full bird mite clean out treatment (eucalyptus, rotenone, neem, oil on the legs).

I looked up a recipe for our big zucchini and found Zucchini Provencale, which was absolutely delicious and amazing. The zuke was all nutty and sweet, I like it better like this than when it's little. I'll put the recipe up in the recipe section.

I've been using the painting plastic to kill pesky grass that's trying to germinate around my watering bucket. It works a treat - check this before and after shot. You just lay it out on the grass for about a week, weighing it down so the solarisation is unrelenting.

I notice our solar panels don't hit 100% generation capacity on the inverter gauge any more - I guess I need to get up there and clean the dust storm off them. Sigh.

I found parsnip in the garden. It did germinate. Very late! Plus I'm pretty sure I pulled some out thinking it was weeds :)

The peanuts germinated too. I'm going to pull out the remaining brassicas and plant peanuts densely in the bed to give it a bit of nitrogen over the summer.

I'm going to lay a few zones fallow as well, just mulched. Good for them to have a rest. I've been growing marigolds, I shall cut them off and let the roots rot into the soil too - get thee gone nematodes (maybe this is why my celery is stunted this year? It will be interesting to inspect the roots...)

The lychee appears to be making fruit this year. We have a nearby poinciana and a macadamia (both alternate hosts to the borer moth that also attacks lychee) so I've bagged all the fruit with white paper fruit fly bags. I checked some today and they seem ok - although many of the small fruit fell off into the bag. Maybe they were going to do this anyway? I gave the tree a deep drink today.

I haven't planted eggplant yet. My only surviving cucumber plant is miniscule. My melons didn't germinate, I will try again. Just like in a children's story book, Heckle followed me up the swales pecking out the swollen corn seeds that I had just planted. I caught her but didn't know how many she'd got. Well, it transpires she got all of the seeds except about four. So I have four pathetic corn plants. At least she left the pumpkins, they seem to be OK. I haven't put snake beans in yet either! I am slack, but all of the horrid old custard yellow paint on our house is almost gone, so at least there's that.

My daughter's grosse lisse plants are swarming with giant dark orange fruit, but the plants have just given up the ghost - not very long lived, although the fruit load is impressive (in a very hard skinned sort of way). I don't like them because I know they have pig genes inserted into them so that the fruit wall doesn't decay when transported for weeks...

My strawberries are flowering and fruiting!! Hello? Did they read the "sow what when" chart? Um, does this look like May to you? Perhaps they've just been sulking?

My rhubarb is coming on well now - although not as red as I'd hoped when I carefully picked out the reddest seedling I could find. It survived its spell in the fridge, I think it did it some good.

The pigeon pea is sprouting back madly and looking very vigorous and green and a little bit glamorous. Also it has dropped 48 million babies, who are germinating, which is useful because I can pick where I'd like a bit of fairly instant temporary shade.

My avocado tree is finally putting on a kick. Hooray. The new pears, persimmon, guava and mandarin seem to be travelling quite well. The lime still hasn't broken properly free of its root ball. Sigh.

My sweet potato are taking over the driveway, I will have to thin them out. The jerusalem artichokes have shot well, but the yacon is not looking fantastic - only OK. I think it likes more water than it gets. The cassava isn't doing much, the water chestnuts are really going for it, the pineapples are NOT HAPPY (they want more/ some water, and they're in a hot spot).

OK, now to go read all of your stuff


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Comment by Donna on December 5, 2009 at 10:07
Yuk, didn't know that about grosse lisse! Still heaps of summer left to plant things...

I read someone who uses pigeon pea as a trellis for tomatoes - plants them together then when tomato is finished rips up both for the compost or mulch...

Bet you will be glad when painting over, but find something else... renovating takes forever! 'house finished, man dies'

I missed you, I feel like a stalker sometimes lol (about the only thing I can do with one hand while feeding)! Will be away for two weeks and am sure will be suffering withdrawals myself!!
Comment by Elaine de Saxe on December 5, 2009 at 6:24
Your Strawberries are not the only ones fruiting just now! Speaking to an organic commercial grower and they've never had so many Strawberries this time of year, they are flat out picking and packing. Mine are fruiting again too and the sweetest of any part of the season. Climate change? Who knows - grower is at Wamuran we're at DBay and you are in Briz so it's not the micro-climate or probably the variety, either!

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