Saturday, August 20, 2016

Catching up with an old friend.

Catching up with an old friend.
I think Dianne was the first friend I ever made outside of my family.
Here she is on the right of this photo, at my birthday in 1977, when I turned 17.

From left is Ross, Harold, David, me in the shadows, Julie on Mister the horse, Bernie holding him and Dianne on the right.
 And so I caught up with Dianne recently through facebook.
We exchanged emails and then spoke for a couple of hours on the phone, she is in WA and me in VIC.
It was so great to talk and reminisce about our childhoods together, so many wonderful memories.
Me aged about3 maybe 4. This was the age I was when I met Dianne, actually I think the photo was taken by her parents and given to me. I love and an thankful they took it as I have none others of myself till I was in my teens.

Me and my dog Susie C1973

Mrs Lardi, our next door neighbour, she was special and a gardening inspiration for me.

My brother Neil on the left, my now husband Martin in the middle and Gubba on the right.
This was the first time I met Martin.

Me around the time I met Martin, no wonder he fell in love with me at that time.

Me and my horse Mister.
So Dianne, here is a collection of photos from around the time I knew you best.
Such good times.
Thankyou for coming back into my life again after about 40 years.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

 Simon just asked me about the polypipe we used to make our frames for net over veg gardens and fruit trees.
Here are pictures of another structure we made using the polypipes and star pickets.

It is a fenced area to display plants for my roadside plant stall. Keeps thieves and deer off the plants.
I saw the idea in an old grassroots mag. It has many uses, such as a vine covered cool place to sit in summer. Put the bbq in it.
Put chooks in it or an aquaponics system.
You could cover the top with net or with a more solid stuff.

The only down side or error we made was cutting the pipes too long, we cut some at 8m long but they bowed down in the warm weather and were unsightly and useless.
So we experimented and found that 4m lengths over star pickets spread at 2.1 to 2.3m apart was perfect.
The taller the star picket the higher the structure, still need dwarf fruit trees if using them in a line. Also bolting them to the picket keeps them from slipping down and being shorter but you can work that out for your self. Am happy to answer any questions.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Hello to anyone reading this.
We had a fabulous sweet potato harvest recently. 24.7kg of orange sweet potatoes or Kumaras I think they are called.
 This year was very good for them here in the mountains of Victoria. Last year we got none, the year before, our first we got a big basin full.

I am asked how do I grow these, well here is my secret.
I have a plant growing all year in my polytunnel, yes it dies down over Winter but it doesn't rot off like they do outside in the ground.
And in Spring when it warms up quicker than outside I take cuttings and get them rooting early and plant them out when the ground has warmed a bit, around November.
Some mushroom compost dug into a spot and plant away. They do like a fair bit of water but that's ok, more water more tubers, its an investment.
Don't worry if you don't have a polyhouse or glasshouse, just take some cuttings in early autumn, grow them in a big pot and keep it in the house over winter. Very little water, none really but keep it protected from the elements and the roots should keep over Winter, put it in a sunny window as the weather warms, give it a bit of water and wait for the shoots to appear. You can always up end it as Spring approaches and check to see if there are roots in the soil first.
Have a go!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

We lost our lovely Plumpet today.
I cried and cried, she was such a fantastic little chook, the foster mother to nearly our entire flock of 15.
The fox jumped the 1.8m fence at about 10am and killed her and Rosie wheaten marans and possibly Arya Isa brown, she is hanging on.
Very sad.
Her 5 chicks are old enough to survive but will find it harder without her guidance, they will sleep with the big chooks tonight and will get pecked a bit, but its safer that way.
We spent all day adding another 40cm of wire to the top of the fence, leaning out like a prison, or as Martin puts it, a fortress.
We will have to be vigilant because he will try again.

These are her final chicks, 5 Australorps born October this year.

Panda bum and Melissa puddleduck, Plumpet raised them and their brother Henry, December last year. The fox got the girls and couple of months ago. That was very sad too.

Arya and Rosie on the right.

just about weaning time for her ducklings in march this year.
Add caption
Plumpet and her french wheaten marans chicks born September 2013. The roosters are dark coloured but the hens are the ginger ones in the centre, the darker if these was Rosie who also died today.
Lavender Aracaua chick peeking out from under Plumpets wing. Oct 2012
along with the Aracauna were 3 silver Campine chicks. We gave the aracauna away as he was a rooster and a facebook friend needed him for a breeding program, lucky him. We sold the campine rooster known as Chanty pronounced shonty for $50. He was a lovely bird.
The two girls have been wonderfully fecundant laying the lovely white eggs that some of you may know. Both of the girls had their feathers ruffled by the fox, I do hope he did not get his teeth into them or they could sicken and die.

The lavender aracauna rooster nearly grown up.
Chanty and his sisters Clara and Cora (gormangast fame)
And in March 2012 she gave us her first hatching. Fertile eggs from a neighbour, we got 5 chicks 2 roosters which were delicious and 3 hens. We still have 2 of the hens, one died earlier this year of some thing.
So these are all of Plumpets broods, she was an amazing mum and sweet little chook, we were just talking about getting some eggs of her breed for her next hatching as more like her would be very welcome.
I shall miss her.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Polyhouse shadecloth on and off.

Hi again,
making a habit of it aren't I?
Its that time of the year when the temperature won't go up to 30 C till next Summer. So time to take the shadecloth off my polyhouse and let the Sun in.



All the afters are before the befores.
Easy to take off and easy to put on. We just tie some rope on and throw it over the top and pull it over and tie down. Makes such a difference. Plants would cook without it over summer.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Back for a visit

Hello anyone who is still connected, I took some lovely photos of my garden and just have to share them.

We were trialling a vine screen out the front of the house to keep the sun out in the afternoon. It works really well so we will extend it for next summer. 

Dead Sheep!? No we were given a bag of fleece, no good for spinning but good for mulch and I threw the skull on top. A great conversation starter!


Friday, August 23, 2013

Au revoir

Dear Blog,
It has been a while since I visited. I have thought about you and have wondered why I haven't been as attentive as in the past.
And  think I have been seduced by facebook.
Sorry about that but I have found some fabulous group pages and met some great people.

So heres the thing, the reason I began here is because I had found a wonderful place where I could talk to my self about my life. I could post relavant photos of what I was up to and any friends far and wide could share in those photos and stories. And I had a ball.

But I can't force myself to come back so I think the time has come to say goodbye. I won't close you down, I might come back from time to time and have a look. Or I might get the bug again and get blogging, but my new love has me for now.
Au revoir!

This is Kevin and Crumpet, crumpet has gone back to Doris place to be a friend to another lonely bantam.