Skip to main content

Garden share - October 2014

We had a little bit more rain in September, about 10mm in a "microburst" that nearly blew over the neighbour's shed and destroyed one of the blinds on our veranda!  But I'm not complaining because everything is still green, only just, but its nice to start spring with some green because the forecast is not great for the next few months.  My vege garden is in transition from winter to spring.  Its still full of greens, but many of them are starting to go to seed.  I'm still harvesting silverbeet, mustard greens, kale, parsley (and various herbs), calendula flowers and celery.  I have leeks and carrots growing very slowly.  And maybe some garlic.

Last month I planted seeds and I had a bit of trouble with them. I wanted to put the seed tray in the mini greenhouse to stay warm, but a mouse dug up my seeds, so I put them inside the house, but then the seed tray dried out. Some seeds sprouted but didn't really grow much, and in the end it just didn’t work out and I had to start again. I also panicked a little bit about not having veges started as early as I would like (I need to get them established before it gets blisteringly hot and dry in my garden), and I bought some bush bean and button squash seedlings, which I split up into small pots and put in the mini greenhouse to get a bit bigger. I also dug up some tomato seedlings that sprouted from the compost and put them in pots. I was getting desperate at that stage!  But then some of my seeds did sprout, so I will have lots of beans and squash and at least one rosella. The problem with buying seedlings is the limited choice, there are so many unusual veges that I would like to grow, so I would prefer to grow from seed (I'm just having to accept that sometimes the timing won't work, and seedlings are a good back-up plan as well!).

This month I want to plant out all those seedlings and pick up lots of manure and waste hay from the paddocks to build up the soil in preparation for another hot dry summer.


the chickens trying to find a way into the garden

lots of overgrown greens and seeds appearing

calendula flowers
dill flowers
chervil flowers - first time I've grown it, looking forward to saving seeds
coriander flowers

seedlings in the greenhouse


How's your garden growing?  What have you got planned for October?


Comments

  1. I've had mice do that to me too (or rather my seeds). I was so upset ... mind you the cat had just used my seed tray as a kitty litter. Oh you wait, you won't need to save that chervil seed - it self seeds everywhere. Thanks for sharing ..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great, I love self-seeding (much easier than avoiding mice!)

      Delete
  2. I have finally given up on my brassicas and have fed them to the cow. But everything else is growing well and I have just planted another round of seeds and am preparing a shady area for when it gets really hot.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Those are some happy healthy looking chooks. You know I had to also go and buy some extra seedlings this month due to things not going as planned (mice) with my trays. I am not sure it was hot enough for some of them and then the others just grew to the size of micro greens and stopped. I guess i need to work on my seedling raising skills some more. You are lucky to have the Nanango Market to get seedlings from there is an organic group who grow from Eden seeds I think. They weren't too bad last time I was there. I too get mine from our local market at Yandina which is mostly a plant market. Lets hope for some rain this october too.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Look at all your kale! My kale is just starting to take off. Had to get fresh seedlings this year as my last plants, didn't go to seed because the aphids wrecked them. I still managed to get enough for green juices though :)

    Cheeky chooks! I have been surprised that ours haven't figured out how to get into my garden, and I am dreading the day that they do lol!

    ReplyDelete
  5. When we started with chooks we grew a couple of passionfruit vines just outside the fence of the pen and near where the water was emptied, cleaned and filled, so the plant got regular water, plenty of chook poo and grew like jack's beanstalk ! all over that end of the pen, shade and shelter and lots of fruit, just remember to put some shade cloth between the plant and the pen wire , high enough to prevent the girls digging it out or otherwise harming it until it gets established. It eventually grew over the top wire (fox proof run roof) so the girls were cool during the bad heat.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks, I appreciate all your comments, suggestions and questions, but I don't always get time to reply right away. If you need me to reply personally to a question, please leave your email address in the comment or in your profile, or email me directly on eight.acres.liz at gmail.com

Popular posts from this blog

What to do with eight acres

Behind the scenes of my blog I can see the search terms that led people to find my blog.  It can be quite interesting to look through them occasionally and see what people are looking for.  Most of them involve chicken tractors, but another question that comes up regularly is “what can you do with eight acres?” or “how much land is eight acres?”.  Today I will try to answer this question.

Of course it is a very broad question, there are lots and lots of things you can do with eight acres, but I’m going to assume that you want to live there, feed your family and maybe make a little extra money.  I make that assumption because that’s what I know about, if you want to do something else with your eight acres, you will need to look somewhere else.

If you haven’t chosen your land yet, here a few things to look for.  Focus on the things you can’t change and try to choose the best property you can find in your price range.  Look for clean water in dams, bores or wells, either on the property …

Making tallow soap

For some reason I've always thought that making soap seemed too hard.  For a start the number of ingredients required was confusing and all the safety warnings about using the alkali put me off.  The worst part for me was that most of the ingredients had to be purchased, and some even imported (palm oil and coconut oil), which never seemed very self-sufficient.  I can definitely see the benefits of using homemade soap instead of mass produced soap (that often contains synthetic fragrance, colour, preservatives, and has had the glycerine removed), but it seemed to me that if I was going to buy all the ingredients I may as well just buy the soap and save myself all the hassle.  For the past several years I have bought homemade soap from various market stalls and websites, and that has suited me just fine.
Then we had the steer butchered at home and I saw just how much excess fat we had to dispose, it was nearly a wheel-barrow full, and that made me think about how we could use that…

Growing and eating chokos (chayotes)

Cooking chokos (not be confused with another post about cooking chooks) has been the subject of a few questions on my blog lately, so here's some more information for you.
Chokos - also known as Chayote, christophene or christophine, cho-cho, mirliton or merleton, chuchu, Cidra, Guatila, Centinarja, Pipinola, pear squash, vegetable pear, chouchoute, güisquil, Labu Siam, Ishkus or Chowchow, Pataste, Tayota, Sayote - is a vine belonging to the Cucurbitaceae family, along with pumpkins, squash and melons, with the botanical name Sechium edule.


The choko contains a large seed, like a mango, but if you pick them small enough it is soft enough to eat.  If you leave the choko for long enough it will sprout from one end and start to grow a vine.  To grow the choko, just plant the sprouted choko and give the vine a structure to climb over.  In summer, the vine will produce tiny flowers that will eventually swell into choko fruit.  The vine doesn't like hot dry weather.  And it doesn&#…