25 December 2013

4 December 2013

Tale of Woe 2 - She Only Wanted a Slice of Watermelon

This is my new refrigerator, a Westinghouse 510L bottom mount, I have had it for less than 2 weeks.
My youngest daughter Samantha went to get the watermelon out of the fridge and instead of using the handle to close the door she used one of the door shelves, this was the result.
The damage toll, one jar of French mustard,
one tiny cut on her foot,
and a shelf that is beyond repair.
I rang Westinghouse this morning and the good news is that because the refrigerator is still under warranty I won't have to pay for a new shelf, otherwise it would have cost $89.00 plus $14.95 delivery fee.
Just over an hour later the same daughter went to into the laundry to feed our dog Bella.
 She put her glass of water on top of the washing machine which as it turned out wasn't such a good idea.
  Hopefully nothing else will go wrong this month.

3 December 2013

Tale of Woe 1 - When Chickens Go Wild

I was in the kitchen cooking dinner on Sunday night when my daughter called me to come outside. "I'm cooking dinner", I told her. Her reply was "I know but you need to see this". So outside I went wondering what could be so important, "You're not going to like this", she said in a very ominous voice. Of course the first thing I thought of was that one of my chickens had died, it wasn't quite that bad but bad enough. The gate to my vegetable garden is a bit dodgy and if you don't latch it right it comes undone and the chickens had gotten into the garden and had themselves a fine old time.
Not a leaf was left on the Kohl Rabi
They ate the lettuce which they would normally turn their noses up at and the cucumber seedlings that I had planted that morning are no more.
Not a single corn seedling was left uneaten.
This bed had bok choy and choy sum in it, not anymore.
The strawberry bed which I had just started to plant up. It only had three plants in it, I can only find one.

The good news is that the tomato plants some of which are just starting to flower were left untouched.
 As where the pumpkin, zucchini, rockmelon and watermelon seedlings. I was already late in getting the garden planted out and this has put me even further behind, so it's off to the big green shed to buy replacemant plants and the gate is now securely tied up,  I don't think I could stand it if this happened again.

Harvest Monday

Pickings from the garden are slim at the moment and all I have to show this week are some chillies
Hot wax chillies
and some coriander seed, 73 grams in all, about half a jam jar full.
There are 4 more plants drying in the gardening shed which I will harvest in the next day or so. Linking up to Daphne's Dandelions. 
I will be back tomorrow with a tale of woe or two.

11 November 2013

Harvest Monday

It was a very disappointing garlic harvest this year, not so much in quantity but the quality was definitely lacking.
While some of the bulbs on top look a decent size, they are in fact quite small; the biggest one is only 4cms. There are some that didn't develop past the stage of the clove that I planted and others that split into seperate cloves.
I don't know what happened this year, could it be that I planted them at the wrong time, 2 days before the full moon in April. I think next year I will sow at the winter solstice as I did last year, the resulting harvest was much better.

The only other thing that has been harvested in the last week or so was carrots, 800gms of baby carrots to be exact. Grown in a polystyrene box and for the most part badly neglected.
 I wasn't sure whether they would be bitter because they had been neglected but no they tasted really good.

I have been very busy in the garden over the last few weeks rearranging things,  I'm not quite finished yet but hopefully by the weekend it will all be done.  I'll be back with photos when it is. Linking up to Daphne's Dandelions.

6 November 2013

Road Trip

Just a little over a month ago my daughters and I packed up the car and headed off to Victoria for the very first time to see my son who moved there two years ago and who we hadn't seen since Christmas.

Our first stop was in Renmark for morning tea, the roses were in full bloom and absolutely gorgeous.
I had the best apple pie and fresh cream I have ever tasted.
 Next stop Swan Hill, to refuel the car and ourselves. Not long after we arrived a wind storm blew up and as there were no shops opened we thought it would be better to continue on our way. Boy was that a mistake!
You can see some of the damage from the storm in the picture above.
Continuing on our way in the dark and battling against the elements, dust, tree branches bouncing off the windscreen, a giant eucalyptus tree that had fallen across our lane that we didn't see until it was almost too late, it was a relief to arrive in Mooroopna. It was a very long, scary drive (14 hours all up) and we were very happy when we finally got to my son's house 45 minutes later.
Light display on the old water tower in Mooroopna.
  We spent a day recovering from the drive and then headed off to Melbourne.
Art installations, the cow cracks me up!
The colours of Melbourne.
Scenes from our walk.
Swan nest on the banks of the Yarra River.
It turned out to be a very long day, 5 hours driving time and 5 hours going from store to store at the DFO's, not my idea of a fun time.
Benalla botanic gardens and the ceramic mural that took 27 years to complete.
Lunch on Saturday at the Red Stag restaurant, Eurobin and Mount Buffalo, just beautiful.

We thoroughly enjoyed our time in Victoria but one week wasn't enough time to do all the things we had planned. Next time we are planning to stay longer and take our time getting there and back home again. One thing I did learn from this trip, if you're visiting Victoria in October pack a coat and winter shoes otherwise you are going to be cold. At least I remembered to take an umbrella.


17 September 2013

Harvest Monday

This week's harvest consisted of the last of the broccoli, along with snow and sugar snap peas.
Excuse the less than stellar photo, the lighting in my kitchen is terrible.

Ginger, Grace and Rosie enjoying the remains of a broccoli plant.
 More peas, more than I can use really. I wonder if you can freeze them. The first asparagus spears were picked and enjoyed, as well as the smallest cauliflower I've ever seen.
 I forgot to weigh it but the basket it is sitting in is only 23 x 20 cm (9 x 8 inches) which should give you some idea of how small it was.

The only other thing harvested this week were potatoes. From the twelve plants that grew I only got 5.94kgs, I was more than a little disappointed.
I had planted four different varieties (Cream Delight, Red Pontiac, Purple Kestrel and Golden Delight)but I ended up with mostly Cream Delight, a few Red Pontiac, one Purple Kestrel, there was no sign of the Golden Delight at all. Next year I think I will grow them in wire cages, maybe that will improve my chances of a bigger harvest. Linking up to Daphne's Dandelions

12 September 2013


It is 3.41 as I sit typing this post and it is raining outside, which is a good thing because the garden really needed it.
Tiny flowers on my tiny Geraldton Wax plant.
I am feeling uninspired at the moment, uninspired and a bit blah. There is so much to do in the house and out in the garden but I just can't find the motivation to do any of it.
Gold Bunny, the first rose of the season.

I'm hoping that it is just the change of seasons that has me feeling so out of sorts and that I will get my mojo back soon. In the meantime here are some photos taken in the last week or so.
The last of the turnips, so good.

Papaver somniferum (Opium poppies), they take over the front garden every year at this time but I don't really mind as they're so pretty.
Plum blossoms.
Flowering Dill.
I'll be back soon, I hope.