Saturday, January 12, 2013

Sunset at the end of the Tunnel...House

To explain the rose below first of all, it is in 'a sheltered pocket of great value' and gardening on this site is most successful when I can match the plant to a benign environment. Given that we are on an exposed site, the tunnel house project will create an optimum environment that I've been looking forward to.

 There was a small hiatus in a week of wind and whitecaps on the harbour -  Thursday evening from 7.30 to 10.20. Three hours was all we needed to put the plastic on the tunnel house which has been a tunnel skeleton hitherto.

Here it is with all the framework, not quite waiting because I merrily planted it out and just as well as according to the well worn rule, the project took a lot longer than we thought.

When it came to  attaching the canopy, the tomatoes were easy enough to avoid but amongst a forest of weeds, and planted in between plants as it was anyway,  the basil was trampled. Never mind, the plastic has a guarentee for 10 years so let's say it will be another 15 years before we dance the plastic manouvres again.

The diagonal struts that reinforce the sides are the old tent poles from 'the big top', Bill's family's old canvas tent that eventually rotted out. Fortunately we kept the poles.Unfortunately we are want to keep many things that may or may not achieve a  phoenix reinvention.

The compost heaps were on the dirt patch above  until very recently when I moved them for construction purposes. It is solid clay beneath the dirt veneer,  full of worms courtesy of the compost.
I did say I wasn't going to extend the vegetable garden but that little plot has suddenly become 'a sheltered pocket of great value for special things'. I have put in a few beans already. It suggests corn to me for another year.

That's two chairs folded up at the end  of the concrete  path and ready for morning teas. A shelf is on the way to hold the cups, and before long, plants.

It's too dark to see but throught the door, on the lower third of the far curve,  there is wind cloth for ventilation down the length of the house, with a plastic roll-down blind to close it off at night. Next post I will detail those features with photos. 

The neighbours who intitially gave us the curved pipe that it is built on ( they had salvaged and  stored them for about 10 years) came around and we launched it today with champagne and blackcurrant shortcake.

The cinnamon roll dough below is just to show off my prize holiday purchase in Nelson, $4 at the hospice shop, a heavy enamel baking tray that is in perfect condition. Perfect. 
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  1. The tunnel house looks wonderful, and so do those cinnamon rolls. I haven't made them myself yet but the recipe is burning a hole in my recipe book. Perhaps a good thing to make while other members of the family are in Nelson...
    Can't wait to see the good things you grow in that tunnel house. It's a very smart replacement for that old glasshouse.

    1. Isn't it just. It has really exceeded my expectations. I can see the rest of the garden sprucing up to match it, kind of radiating out in concentric circles. have already tidied up the two flanking gardens just to set it off nicely. the neighbours must be thrilled.
      those cinni rolls looked so good I ran off and made a double batch, one lot for the other neighbours whose chickens we were caring for while they were away. Had to kill and bury one which was sick and poorly. Helped soften the blow.

  2. I hope there are enough chairs for Ken and me, too. I am imagining long afternoons in the sun, sheltered from the wind, drinking tea and yakking. Oh, that's right - that was a "before young children' scenario. I am now imagining cups of hot tea being spilled all over me and left over cake being squashed into my lap.

    Looks great. We have resigned ourselves to fact that we kill plants - for the last 10 years, we have blamed the soil but can no longer.

    Be good to see you all again soon. Louis still on a high from playing up at your place. Hope wedding job went well.

    Love Mary

    1. Sorry I missed you both that week-end. Bill took some good photos to bring me up to date. At this stage it is a 2-chair, 15-tomato plant, seedlings and cuttings unmumbered, tunnel house and we could either stand in the warmth, 4 of us in row, children unattended outside or have refreshments 2 by 2. The very time of your life when you need that cup of tea the most and it can be so hard to get!
      I was thinking ahead to April for Mum's 80th and if you were all coming, maybe we could all stay in the same place,like the Maitai Valley camp and the kids could hang out together. Just tossing the idea out there.
      We are still talking about a trip down sometime but don't run off and bake scones just yet...