Paddock+Garden = Today’s Late Lunch

Our plan, for a long time, has been to be as close to a self-sustainable lifestyle as possible while still having a practical mindset….you can’t do everything! We still have a long way to go, however, today marks a milestone at RaFG headquarters.

Today, when I looked at our roast lunch, there were only two things on the plate that had not come out of the garden or the paddock (condiments excluded), the potatoes and the broccoli. It’s too early for potatoes (here anyway) and I never have any luck growing anything in the Brassica family.

I started to write this post while lunch was cooking. I could smell the leg of lamb (from one of our lambs) roasting away in it’s marinade of garlic and rosemary¬†(both out of the garden) infused in olive oil.

In the saucepan, ready to cook, were the beans and squash picked fresh out of the garden.

And soon to go into the roasting pan, with the lamb, was the golden nugget pumpkin that I picked yesterday.

All we need now is a crop of hops and some grape vines…

What’s growing in your garden?

Mrs D x

 

 

Today In The Garden: 17th April Edition

I’m wondering where the time goes. It’s April, and more than half way through it. Scary!

It has been weeks since my last post. I have lots of posts that I have started however I just haven’t had the time to complete them. It takes hours to put these things together.

Mr D and I did Fire Arms Safety training this afternoon in preparation for getting our firearms licence. It is the only way we are going to deal with the fox problem. I have to tell you that I was feeling anxious about the whole thing and needed a distraction. Apart from the usual chores of the day, I find the garden always manages to transport me to a peaceful place.

So…..today in the garden. More of a photo journey.

It was a dismal day weather wise. Sun out, sun not out! I don’t mind…just rain. We need more rain.

The tree onions and the garlic are happy in this weather. It’s my first time growing them so we will see how we go.

The Zucchinis keep on keeping on although the dreaded leaf mould has begun with the onset of the cooler weather.

The Musquee De Provence continues to invade the garden. This one is huge. I placed a seed packet on it to give you an idea of the size.

Luckily, the weather has been warm enough to keep the tomatoes ripening on the vine. The vines have started to die back though.

Radishes. They just keep on growing. I pulled up a few today to add to the salad and just threw in some seeds to take their place.

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The citrus is the anomaly. Citrus does not grow well in this region which is why all of our trees are in large pots on the verandah. We have flowers and fruit on the lemon, lime and cumquat trees. I fertilise and mulch regularly remembering to keep a 5 cm space between the trunk of the plant and the mulch. Citrus likes it’s personal space.

The squash is coming to an end. I think these are the last two as the plant dies back.

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The sunflowers are starting to wither. I will grow these again because if nothing else, they put on a smile on my face.

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The sweet potato is something new. Similar to potatoes except vine like.

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I threw some corn seeds in and I’m hoping they will make it before the first serious frost. Fingers crossed!

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I have also thrown some beetroot seeds in as the last lot didn’t come up (might have something to do with the age of the seeds). They grow pretty quickly in the right conditions so with any luck, I will have something to pickle before the real Winter hits.

Well that’s it. Not really a day in the garden. More like a couple of hours.

Mr D and I passed the Firearms course. I made a couple of silly mistakes in the test. Anxiety can be the worst thing however I passed. Applications are now in the mail (because I am ultra organised and didn’t want to make a special trip into town tomorrow just to post them) and we will receive notification in about six weeks….because you can’t rush these things. Right?

What’s happening in your veggie garden?

Have a great week!

Mrs D x

Today In The Garden: 20th February Edition

It’s very satisfying to walk in and around the veggie garden and be able to pick things we can eat. And despite our weird growing season, I have managed to harvest quite a lot. We won’t need to buy tomatoes, potatoes or zucchinis for a while at least.

So, today in the garden…

A harvest of tomatoes, potatoes, bok choy, baby corn, zucchinis and squash.

The citrus: lemons, limes and cumquats are flowering and fruiting.

We are going to have a bumper crop of tomatoes and the Comfrey is certainly doing it’s job as a weed barrier.

The Musquee De Provence pumpkin is quite possibly going to take over the garden.

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The little Golden Nugget pumpkins are coming along. This is a much more compact plant if you are considering growing pumpkins in your veggie garden. It can also be grown in a large pot.

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The first lot of radishes I planted did nothing (maybe the seeds were out of date?), so I planted a new lot and these ones are showing more promise.

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What can I say about the Raspberries? They need a lot of water however, after that, they require little to no attention. Look at what we are rewarded with day after day.

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Not a lot happened on the Snow Pea front. I planted quite a lot however something was enjoying them as soon as they sprouted. This one made it through.

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The Strawberries have flowered again. Hands up if you grow strawberries. I learnt something new today. After the strawberries have fruited they tend to run. It’s their way of taking over the garden bed. I thought this was a good thing however I have often wondered why the harvest is so ordinary when I have such a large patch. Did you know that you should pinch off these runners and start a new patch with them? This will, apparently, improve the strawberry harvest of your first patch next season. I will do that this year and let you know how it goes.

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The Fig tree has been slow to get going. We have probably had it for about 3 years. This year it has more fruit than ever. I am just waiting for them to ripen and then I will try my hand at Fig and Walnut jam. Mmmm…..

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Again, this year, we have a lone pear. Sshhh, don’t tell the Rosellas.

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This is Clucker Tucker. We planted it in the first pig pen along with a couple of Zucchini plants as an experiment and it has gone crazy. Some of these plants, the buckwheat in particular, are about 60 cm tall. That’s pretty exciting growth over about 4 to 5 weeks. We will be setting up pig tractors for the next growing season. More about this when we get to them.

I have been asked what is Clucker Tucker. It is a combination of plants that can be grown and they provide a healthy green forage for your chooks. The mix includes barrel medic, bok choy, buckwheat, forage chicory, clover, cocksfoot, linseed, lucerne, millet, forage plantain, silverbeet, subclover and sunflower. You can get it from Green Harvest.

Speaking of Green Harvest. I ordered Monaro Garlic (a garlic that is supposed to be suited for growing in our Alpine conditions), Tree Onions and Sweet Potato last week. They are plants that are only available at certain times of the year and they go quickly. My order arrived on Friday and today I have been preparing the beds for planting.

These are the pretties around the place. The Red Hot Pokers pop up every year and put on a stunning display until about April. The yellow flowers are bulbs, at a guess, as they pop up in the lawn around this time of year. Flowers are not my area (unless of course they are edible or useful) so maybe someone can tell me what they are.

Well, I think that’s it. What’s growing in your veggie garden? Someone please tell me what the yellow flowers are.

Mrs D x

PS Counting down the days to our cruise…..

 

 

Things That Tickled My Fancy: 16th January 2016 Edition

Warning: A photo included in this post may be a little disturbing however please be assured, it is usual farm practice.

Where does the time go?

The last ‘Tickled My Fancy’ that I posted was mid November so I have a bit of a catch up to do.

Things that have tickled my fancy in recent times.

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B2 and I travelled to Canberra on the 3rd January to celebrate our friend’s very special 18th birthday. The day was spent on the Lake Tuggeranong foreshore eating, drinking and being merry.

Phil came out to help Mr D with drenching, vaccinating, docking (using a hot knife), castrating and shearing. The count on our lambs turned out to be 18 (it’s hard to count them all when they are spread out in a paddock). 11 boys and 7 girls. Shanks has been performing his duties as stud ram. Phil informed us that some of our girls are pregnant. Hooray!

A recent shopping day scored a few great bargains. New shoes for me. We also scooped the pool at the Salvation Army. 6 pairs of jeans, 1 pair of 3/4 pants, 3 shirts and a colouring book, all for $64. That’s not all! Spotlight had paper patterns, 3 for $10.

Another project is finally finished. The cushions on our lounge were dead and needed replacing. I bought the fabric and inserts in September however I just hadn’t had time to sew them. As of yesterday, we now have 6 new cushions.

The garden has been very confused due to our weird weather. It’s been a very different Summer with overnight temps dropping to as low as 4 degrees. Finally though, with some good rain and a few warm days, things are starting to grow. Raspberries, zucchinis, squash, figs, tomatoes, comfrey and the lone pear. The baby corn (no corn yet) is huge now.

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We are counting down the days to our cruise. Noumea here we come….soonish!

Our niece came and stayed for a few days. We shopped, went to the beach, had dinner out with friends and she spent a day with our friend’s daughter watching movies and playing games.

The cows are letting me get a little closer to take photos.

Mr D and I watched ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ last night. I loved it! I can’t wait to see the second one now.

Onlookers. One of the turkey girls is always close by and doesn’t mind a photo shoot.

This is the 100th post on my blog!

Well, it’s time to go and do something that doesn’t tickle my fancy….after sewing, the floor is in desperate need of vacuuming.

What has tickled your fancy of late?

Mrs D x