Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Meet the Glasshouse

We put the glasshouse in about September 2016. Lest that sound like a one-off event, it took about a month; fetching it from the original site was a job in itself. 

Mr B put a wood foundation down first to attach the aluminium structure to, and it gives it a little extra height as well. 

Available talent was seized for service holding up the skeletal roof spine. That look suits you boys. The look of industry.

We cleaned the glass panes. Fitting them was the hardest part because the structure had slightly skewed in transit, sigh, the perils of a second-hand glasshouse. 

It was about October before I got plants in, and my own plants went in even later so a late season. I grew small varieties of tomato to get them all ripened in time, and plenty of cucumbers. 
The best tomato was a little black heirloom from Kings Seeds, something like Blackjack. 

I mulched everything with pine needles and dug them in when I cleared the glasshouse out. The chickens have had a good scratch around since and now I have begun to bury the bokashi in there; looking good for this season. 
I think this year I will grow good old Money Maker, and Black Jack. The Lebanese cucumber is superb but the plants aren't as reliable as a telegraph in the glasshouse so will plant both again. 
How wonderful to be anticipating Spring in the middle of Winter. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Old friend

I planted crocus and freesia bulbs in pots by the back door in Autumn. Nothing to see above ground but the promise below has given me a lot of enjoyment.  They look beautiful already. 

A winter photo below, today, and the sun has already gone by 3pm. My bulbs are up and see the little woodpile at the side. There is an inexorable progression of combustibles towards the woodburner at this time of year. 

Now I think  I've said before that I focused on growing vegetables this year and everything else was neglected. Come the end of summer and the path up to the chicken house was mud. We got a trailer load of free wood chips  courtesy of the council's cleaning up around Port Chalmers. Thanks guys.

Here's the path now, below, working really well. The bags are full of pine needles. The little wood pile is my old friend, the Angelina Burdett plum tree that was growing in the middle of the chicken run. Sadly it had 'bladder plum' disease and we reluctantly took it out. 

I think we have done it justice, nothing wasted. All the twigs will make good kindling in a few months.

Final photo, chicken in the tunnel house. We got given some year-old brown shavers that are squabbling with our own Bardrocks. The Bardrocks have been throwing their weight around. I'm boarding a few of the chooks in the tunnel house for the minute to give everyone a break. Clear the ground while you are there girls. 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

New Tricks

I've just re-learnt how to post a blog again. There are a few projects I have managed to capture on the camera over the last year. Just as well because as we head into the coldest two weeks of winter, apparently, I shan't be doing much outdoors. 
Eventually the fence broke down here and I couldn't garden because the soil, and the water all ran away...

I hated the broken wall. There is a proverb about a sluggard, whose ground is covered in thistles and the stone wall is broken down. But what if the owner isn't lazy? The broken wall to me is the  look of illness. The inability to order your environment. 
 It was the best part of the garden, closest to the house, and got the most winter sun, plus an element of shelter from the wind, at times. 

Eventually I needed the space and  decided just to forge ahead, patch up with cardboard boxes, and use it.  You know, do what I can, not worry about what I can't. 

About that time, God said to B, "Why haven't you fixed Miri's wall?"
Thank you. 
Ever put in a post? Digging the post holes is a big job.

Now  here it is beginning to look like a useful garden space. I planted potatoes and yams, broad beans and peas, red onions, leeks, now garlic...and have spent a lot of time digging out the horseradish that was in there. It really does grow from every little piece. 

All beautiful to behold. It's really smart.

Had a brilliant idea for storing my gardening gloves. Now I can always grab a dry pair, and the right pair for the job, as I go out the back door.

My shed was commandeered for another project. Gardening tools rehoused in the tunnel house. Proving to be even more convenient. Liquid seaweed in the blue bin. Use the sieve and old tin bath above to make my own seed raising mix. 

I suppose I could draw the outlines underneath each tool so it can go back to the exact place...just kidding. I am the only one who uses them so they are always returned.