20 September 2012

We'll never starve

For those of you who grow your own food, perhaps you feel like me.  When I go to the garden with my big basket and walk around the veggie patch seeing what's ready.  Then after five minutes or an hour, I walk back up to the house loaded with food.  At these moments I feel extraordinary rich and say to myself (often out loud, which I know is a sign of madness) that "we'll never starve".

I had just one of those moments when I went to the patch after having been away in New Zealand for work.  Here is a pick of my basket

17 September 2012

Garlic anyone?

Its our first attempt at growing garlic (not sure why I never tried it before) and we decided to go wild.  We planted 8 rows of the gorgeous stuff and its been growing beautifully all year.  We planted two types, the smaller purple garlic and the larger elephant garlic.  The elephant has been looking the best with the purple garlic looking a bit wimpy in comparison.  A few weeks ago, the purple started to die back and I didn't know if it was the drought we are currently in or whether it was time (seemed a wee bit early).  But yesterday, I decided to dig one up and see....

16 September 2012

Back from my travels

I had a week in New Zealand for work, with back to back meetings and a blackberry.  So no chance to blog.  But now I'm back and have shaken off the coats and scarves and put on my shorts and T-shirt and am back into it.  I'll take some photos today of what's been going on in my absence, but here is what I was busy with last weekend.

07 September 2012


There are so many young trees that we've planted around the property and each one needs a little tender loving care.  If I've been away for a few days or get home from work well after dark, I like to take a walk around and check on each one, looking for small changes and signs of health.  On the weekend, they get some water and a bit more mulch if they need it.  As we are trying to create a food forest on our swales, I'm constantly planting new trees, either ones I've grown from seeds or I buy trees that I don't yet have to make sure there's lots of diversity.  So here's how they are all going at the moment.  This is a malabar chestnut where I'm trying to join the planting in the space between the second and third swale.

05 September 2012

What's going on in the patch

We currently have one veggie patch in full production, one trying to get established but under attack by slugs and possibly mice, one going to seed and another in the first stages of being planted out.  Its a wonderful part of growing your own food to watch all the cycles and seasons.  Its so exciting to plant an area out and then watch it get some legs.  Then so exciting when you start to eat out of it, but it does reach some point (at least it does for me), when you're over what's in that patch and you can't wait to let the chickens in and start afresh.  So here is the one I'm looking forward to opening the gate on soon, with rocket and coriander going to seed, but the garlic not quite ready to harvest

04 September 2012

An invitation to bees

You might remember that I put an archway as the gate into each of our veggie patches, as a means of securing a gate, as well as to grow some bee attracting flowers over (and hopefully people attracting too).  Well, we are finally seeing the rewards of our patience as the first blooms have arrived, along with the first days of spring.

02 September 2012

A trip to Australia Zoo

I had a week's leave and my Mum came for a visit.  She was more than happy to enjoy the property, read and wander down to see what I was doing in the veggie patch.  But this trip, the thing that she did want to do was to visit Australia Zoo.  We took a drive up to Maleny last time she was here and we drove past the sign on the way, so Mum was keen to check it out.  Despite offering our teenage son the rare opportunity to join his mother and grandmother at the zoo, he strangely turned us down and with Shaun at work, we decided it was mother daughter day.  Here are some of the highlights....

01 September 2012

My first foray into cleaning products

I've read on Rhonda's blog all the good advice about making your own cleaning products, so I decided to give it a go.  And since its citrus season (well it was until a week ago for us when we ate the last of it), the citrus cleaner seemed a good place to start.
I had soaked the skins for two weeks in vinegar and was just about to decant into the bottle.  And whilst it smells very vinegary when I'm cleaning, it seems to work well.  Yesterday I was reading Linda's lastest post on her Witches Kitchen blog and read that she uses metho and just adds a splosh of vinegar for her citrus cleaner.  What have you tried and what's worked best?