18 November 2011

A snake in the chicken run

I remember reading Linda Woodrow's post about the python in her chicken run and felt so happy that hadn't happened to us (yet).  As Shaun was opening the gate yesterday, the chickens were a bit more crazy than usual, squawking and carrying on.  What Shaun didn't realise is that they'd already worked out there was a python at his feet, just waiting to snake into the run.  Once Shaun had put two and two together, the snake had ducked through the gap that opening the gate had created.  He had a moment to decide whether he should grab its tail or try and deal with it on the other side.  The other side prevailed but it went straight into the bushes on the inside of the run, and though he could see it, it wasn't easy to reach.

12 November 2011

Looking back

When you get five acres in your hands that haven't had much done with them in a long while, you tend to look ahead at what still needs to be done as opposed to what you've already changed.  So I took a stroll through the photos that we took when we bought the place in Febary this year.  I was quite taken aback at how much it has already changed.  See what you think...

05 November 2011

As promised, more pics of the growing system

You can now see how the system will look.  The roof is on and the grow beds are in place. We have a 1,000 litres tank for fish which can support 1,000 litres of grow beds, depending on the stocking rates of the fish.  So we'll have 3 grow beds of 300 litres each in which to plant our veggies.  Shaun has decided on Jade Perch, which do well in tanks and are fast growing and good eating.  He has also been busy sourcing gravel for the grow beds, which you think would be a fairly straight forward task.  Shaun has been contacting local suppliers for blue steel, only to find that its a blend.  If there is any limestone in the blend, it will play havoc with the pH of the system, so we'll need to avoid that.  So he's has been bringing home a few pockets full of different gravel samples and putting them in some vinegar.  If they bubble, then the dreaded limestone is present and it fails the test.  We are still looking...

02 November 2011

Aquaponics system is taking shape

Shaun is working away diligently at his new system.  He's out there digging and cutting and hammering all day, then if he gets stuck, he'll come inside and read the aquaponics forum or post some for advice and then its back out to it.  We'll be having 3-4 grow beds and one fish tank in this first system and see how we go (I say we because I did help him level the pavers...)

He's now got the grow beds in and is doing the plumbing, so more photos to follow.  Soon it will be gravel and then time to add some water.  Can't wait!

01 November 2011

Speaking of Sydney plants

As I mentioned, I brought a number of plants with me when we moved up to Brisbane.  The new owners didn't want a veggie patch or orchard so they said we should feel free to take anything.  So my friend Selena helped me pot up what we thought might do OK and then she and another friend, Chris, both who live in the next street from our old place, came by to rehouse the rest.  Selena tells me the peach, apricot and apples are all setting fruit now (and I'm trying not to be jealous).  Of those I did bring up, here are a few pics of how they are faring.
This avo tree didn't take the move at all well and looked like a stick in the ground for many months.  We loved it up regardless and now look

Berry season

Our tiny little strawberry patch yielded the largest, juiciest strawberries we've ever had.  There's nothing like freshly picked fruit on your cereal.