Saturday, August 19, 2017

Spring garlic

Last years garlic crop hanging in the laundry. Could be just enough to take us through to January which would be a first.  We usually run out. 

I was disappointed in the size of the bulbs  but size isn't an issue if you also have quantity. I have learnt to cure them under  the verandah before snipping off the stems and storing the garlic in a mesh bag. I have lost the odd clove to rot, barely any, and all bulbs storing well; this is my most successful method of storing them . 

If you look closely here is this years garlic crop coming through after an excellent winter chill. (A self-sown broad bean to the left, they were the last crop.) It had been so wet I wondered whether the cloves had rotted as I planted them back in about May. 

Now this unpromising piece of garden still has buried treasure. Actually I have discovered this year that the garden doesn't care how it looks. It still produces for me.  Look in the bucket below. 

 I suppose the photo doesn't help,  but when they are scrubbed and trimmed 
here's the best vegetables you can get.  I'm so proud of you guys. You are awesome. 

Now this is what I have been aiming for below, volunteers, self-sown kale  growing up amongst the spring onions. I've been trying to let the things I want self-seed and if possible...reduce the weed seeds. 

Weeds have a very short seed cycle and vegetables have a long one, heres the 

Monday, August 7, 2017

Have we got any flowers?

 It may have made 17 degrees today but it has been more like 7 more oft than not; a very cold winter. However, the house now sports 2 functioning wood burners. Happily the  wood piles  both fall and rise again like the tide.

There was a vase of garden flowers at our favourite cafe in Port Chalmers last Friday. (The Ocean Cafe) "Have we got any flowers? said B. 
I was surprised. How could you not notice? 
The Kaka beak by the front door seems to flower 1/2 now and 1/2 later. I am so grateful for the colour in July and August. 

This is actually a beautiful orange, arctotis I think, or gazania. Flowers all year.

The carpet rose has a few blowsey blooms at the minute and buds coming on. It has delivered everything I hoped it would, lovely foliage, blooms, and always looks good. 

This is a St Stephens Island Kowhai. Home to a stripey caterpillar that strips the stalks bare of leaves every year. Somehow it has the strength to put out a few blooms. Keep going little shrub. You can overcome this. 

Calendula was here 23 years ago when we arrived. I have added in an orange one that also pops up unbidden and delightful. 

Lavender looks good. 

Here's the girls found a patch in the winter sun. They are underneath my lemon stick. One day it may become a lemon tree. 
One day it may set fruit.

I set the chooks into the tunnel house. More to give the hen-pecked shavers a break than to clear the ground. Its time to start planting again.