30 October 2014

This and That

Ominous looking hail storm clouds that thankfully passed over.

Flower head of the artichoke thistle that grows wild in uncultivated paddocks.

Baby Noisy Miners waiting to be feed.

We are lucky enough to have a family of Blue Tongue lizards make our yard their home, this one paid a visit while I was watering the garden one afternoon. 

A caterpillar of Phalaenoides glycinae or Grapevine moth feasting on my grapevine.

Another caterpillar, this one is the caterpillar of Spilosoma glatignyi or Black and White Tiger Moth. We were inundated with them this year, they even came into the house.

And lastly, a glorious sunset on the night of the red moon.

28 October 2014

Harvest Monday

The unseasonably hot weather brought the garlic harvest time forward a couple of weeks and I am happy to say that it is a very good harvest this year.
I planted 72 cloves and harvested 69 bulbs.
Some were a bit strange looking.
There were a couple of triple headers as well as a few small ones.
 But the majority looked like this, lovely big bulbs of garlicky goodness.
I also dug out the last of the carrots which have been in the ground for months and still weren't mature.
As well as some late season sugar snap peas.
Well, that's it for this weeks Harvest Monday, you can see what others have harvested from their gardens over at Daphne's Dandelions.

16 October 2014

Making Jam

It is something I had wanted to do for a while now but have always felt intimidated by the whole process. That all changed when I bought 4 1/2 kilos of strawberries for five dollars at the markets. I have no idea what I was thinking, but they were too good of a bargain to pass up.
I found an easy jam recipe on-line and set to work and it turns out it wasn't as hard or as scary as I thought it would be.
Hulling the strawberries was time consuming and the hardest part of the whole process.
When I tasted the jam at this point it was way too sweet, so I added more lemon juice to the mix and I am glad I did as it turned out to have just the right amount of sweetness and tartness that I like.
I didn't use any pectin so the jam is not as thick as commercial jams, but it taste so much better.
Now I know how easy it is I can definitely see more jam making in my future.