Skip to main content

What I wrote about my garden in 2013

Its been other big year in the garden, I've learnt through trial and error and I think I'm starting to get better and growing our veges.

geramium
The main thing I have had to work on is understanding our climate and figuring out what to grow when. I wrote about our climate here, but if you don't want to read all the details, here's a summary:
  • November-March is hot and humid, with storms and the occasional trough or low if we're lucky 
  • March-May starts to cool down, still a chance of rain 
  • May-August is cold, frost overnight and chance of rain, and plenty of woodstove 
  • August-November warms up and dries out 
So you can see why it can be a challenge to grow things! Its not that veges don't grow, its just that they don't grow when you expect them too. Permaculture has been a great help though. I have let many things go to seed and when they sprout again at a time that suits them, I can see when its a good time to grow. This year I found out that tomatoes sprouting out of the compost can grow all through the winter frost, but then died off when the weather was dry for a few weeks!

This year I organised a few series of guests posts on "getting started" and the first one was about growing veges. It was lots of fun reading about the difference gardening styles from lots of different bloggers.

Linda of Witch's Kitchen

Gavin of the Greening of Gavin

Ohio Farmgirl from Adventures in the Goodland

Emma from Craving Fresh

Tanya of Lovely Greens

and myself

I've been really happy with my worm farm, so if you're still not convinced, here's a few posts to get you interested....

Composting can be simple!

I'm a worm farmer!

Compost and weed tea

Worm farm compost

Worm farm maintenance

worm farm goodies!
The other thing I really enjoy is saving seeds, although I do sprinkly them aroung the garden as well! Here's a few of my tips:

Saving seeds

Growing from seeds

Planting seeds or seedlings?

Tips for starting vegetables from seeds

I have grown some odd veges, here's a few things I learnt:

Growing root vegetables

Tromboncino!

Jerusalem artichoke

Green onions, spring onions or shallots or…? 


self-seeded marigold
And since July I've been joining in with the Garden Share Collective each month to share my garden progress and I've enjoyed checking out all the gardens of all the other bloggers who participate.

How did your garden grow in 2013? What did you learn? And what are you hoping to do better in 2014?

The Self Sufficient HomeAcreFrom The Farm Blog Hop

Comments

  1. I always enjoy your posts, and my year could read the same, except for a little bit longer rainy season and no heating required in the winter! I am going away over Christmas so I am afraid the garden is having to fend for itself. I notice already the weeds and bugs are having a field day!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've just put in a big order of seeds so hoping our veggie patch flourishes into the new year! I just want to learn more! And spend more time in the garden with my little girls because they absolutely love it! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Have loved all your veggie posts this year. I really like the way you tell people how to start from the beginning, it has helped me to explain things better to farmstayers wanting to start a garden because once you get established you forget all the stuff you didn't know that you have to teach them first.
    I am so excited about next year as I have just purchased a shade house and hot house . I plan to sell seedlings to our farm stay guests and at markets to supplement the farm income.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for your comments, glad I can help inspire some more vege gardening!

    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 …

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&#…

Native bee hotel

Like I wrote back here, native pollinators are as important (if not more important) than honey bees for pollinating crops and native plants.  There are a few things you can do to attract native pollinators to your garden:

Grow flowers and let your veges flower to feed the pollinators all yearHave a source of insect-friendly water in the garden (shallow dishes are best)Provide somewhere for them to live/nest/lay eggs - a bee hotel! In Australia, our native pollinators consist of both stingless native bees, which live in a colony like honey bees, and lots of solitary bees and wasps.  These solitary insects are just looking for a suitable hole to lay their eggs.  You may be familiar with these in sub-tropical and tropical areas, in summer you will find any and all holes, pipes and tubes around the house plugged with mud by what we call "mud daubers".  These area a real nuisance, so I'd rather provide some custom holes near the garden where they can live instead, so I don'…