Sunday, June 28, 2009

Seed Raising Experiment

Potting on some corriander and rocket- I think if they were planted now now the slugs would have a field day

I always grow plants that have big seeds such as pumpkin, peas, corn etc direct in the ground as well as some plants that have smaller seeds such as carrots, beetroot and radish. Plants that require to be planted out as seedlings usually end up being bought as seedlings. Over the past 5 years or so I have started many small seeded varieties including various brassicas and tomatoes in seedling punnets with only limited success- until now! I have been using jiffy pots that come as little pellets and swell when put in water- they are amazing.

Tuscan kale, curly kale and silverbeet potted on- this was taken a couple of weeks ago, they are ready for the garden now

Earlier in the year I did a little experiment as I was unsure if the extra cost of jiffy pots were really worth it. I started some kale and silverbeet in both jiffy pots and seedling punnets with a good seed raising mix. The jiffy pots germinated in half the time, developed their true leaves rapidly and were planted out into the garden weeks before the others were ready. They may be a little more expensive, but the results have spoken for themselves. I can't wait to try them out on some fun varieties of tomatoes and eggplants later in the year.

Part of my little experiment- jiffy pots definately work better for me!

Friday, June 26, 2009


My fist attempt at home made pasta- very pleased with it! Just have to work on having somewhere to dry it out of the children's way. I turned some plain sheets into cannelloni which the kids loved as well. Nice to find a simple dish that everyone will eat!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A Bush Picnic

Sometimes you forget how much fun the simple things really are. When seeding finally came to an end we took the kids out to a patch of bush on our new block and had a little picnic (just piklets and coffee). They had a good wander in the bush and then helped pick some rocks that were pulled up when the paddock was seeded.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Garden Pictures- Finally!

Finally got outside with the camera while Emme had a nap this morning. We have had some lovely rains over the last week or two, so things are really looking nice now in the vegie patch and also around the farm. Here are a few snaps to show how the new seasons crops are coming along.

Aqualudulce broad beans at the back with garlic and a few leeks in front.
Sugar snap peas along a chicken wire frame with Asian greens, lettuces and rocket in front. Have been enjoying lots of salads and stir-fried dishes.

The artichokes I split up a couple of months ago all taken and are looking great. I have a new bed planned for outside the patch for next year- think they will need some extra space. Glad I live on a farm, don't think I would like to have my space limited!

English spinach, corriander and cabbages with Tuscan kale behind. I can see an eggplant on the left- must get round to removing them to put in the onions.

This is the outside fence that had the tomatoes were on, they have been replaced with a podding pea that grows to about 80cm high. It is called Lincoln and I got it from Vilmorin. It says the pods grow to 11 cm!! It is covered in some bird wire to keep them from stealing my seeds, some have already been replanted.

There is still oodles to do the keep the produce coming in, but I am happy with how much we are producing ourselves. Best I go and get something done while the kids are quiet.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Produce Update

I started making lists a couple of days ago of what is growing and what is currently producing in the garden at present. It was a bit all over the place on paper, so hopefully this will be more succinct and help me get my head around where I am up to and what to do next.

Things we are currently eating from the garden
  • pumpkins- a huge mound on the veranda to get through and give away
  • potatoes- a few weeks left, haven't bought any for months
  • 2 tomatoes left!
  • leeks
  • lettuce and rocket- enough for a couple of salads a week
  • stir-fry greens
  • silverbeet and Tuscan kale
  • beetroot
  • rhubarb
  • sugar-snap peas
  • carrots
  • parsnips
  • zucchini- the romanesco zucchini I planted late are holding on well and still producing nice, crisp little courgettes
  • English spinach
  • the usual perennial herbs eg. rosemary, sage, lemongrass,chives, mint etc
  • annual herbs- parsley, corriander
Things growing in the garden that are not yet producing
  • spring onions
  • curly leaf kale
  • broccoli and green sprouting broccoli
  • cabbage
  • broad beans (aquadulce and crimson)- have seen one flower
  • podding peas
  • garlic
  • celery
  • plus perrenials like strawberries, artichoke, asparagus etc
Things that need to be done this week (hopefully)
  • reseed some of the podding peas as the birds have somehow got through the mesh and eaten them in the ground!!!
  • remove capsicums and eggplants and replace with onions
  • measure up beds outside veg patch so I can let Ian know how big I want the posts to go around them (don't think that will happen for a while)
  • work out way of eliminating weeds from the path- maybe boiling water (sorry worms) and bags of sawdust?
  • take photos of garden to at least make the blog look interesting!!
If I get those done I can start working on some of the outside beds. Here is Lyssie and the 'Boys', not long after shearing. They are right next to the house, so as I hang out washing the kids wander over and talk to them. You have to be careful not to get too close as one gave Emme a nip on the fingers a few weeks ago!