Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Food forest.

One of my favorite fruits is figs - I can remember having a huge fig tree outside my bedroom window growing up in South Africa.  Now -  that dry temperate climate is very, very different to where I live now, about as far away as possible in fact.   When I saw fig trees for sale I knew I just had to have one - that little child in me kept saying - how delicious those figs were - don't you remember?  I bought the tiny thing and put it into a little blue pot that I also just had to have.... Isn't it just as cute as a button?
 A real little fig tree.  I hope it survives the heat and humidity and grows up to be a nice big fruit bearing fig tree.  In a pot of course - I think I would probably have to find someplace for it to live during our wet season where it is not quite so wet.  It is little - just look at it next to my little lime tree. :)  But I now have a fig tree. A veritable food forest...of course it would be nice to harvest some fruit, but I am practicing patience.
 I did harvest the black beans, shared some with the neighbours, but kept some to plant again.  Not now, the wet season is about to begin and the beans would just never dry out I don't think.  I find it very difficult to get information of what to grow in what season.  Then again the seasons differ from year to year, so sometimes I will just give something a try. Like these black beans which in fact have been quite successful.  A couple of months from planting to harvesting :)
 This must be the season for capsicums - they are starting to produce lovely little peppers - small but tasty.  I planted these a long time ago, but they have only now started to flourish.  Along with the eggplant.  I must make a note of when they need to be planted in future.
I have planted wet season produce, but not sure when the rains will start.  This has been a strange year - quite cool and dry - I even put in some more lettuce seeds, but if it gets hot too quickly now they will just bolt.  I have never had much luck with beetroot, but sowed some seeds as well - maybe they will do better in the rainy season.   I have sweet potato, loofah, yakon, jicama, ginger and chinese long beans planted - those are my wet season staples.  I am already harvesting chinese long beans, capsicums, eggplant and asparagus.   The red cherry tomatoes have been fabulous this year and still going strong.  Pawpaws are falling off the tree green - not sure what is going on there.
Does anyone else know exactly what and when to plant in their garden?
Do you often buy something just because you like the taste?  Even though you are  pretty sure they will not do well in your climate?  I do like to grow things I will eat :)  Are you likely to be more succesful learning to love what you can grow easily in your climate?

9 comments:

  1. You've got a lot on the go at the moment. It looks great. Sounds like we have a similar outlook. I grow what I enjoy eating and that sometimes means I have experiments - some of which work and others are disasters.
    I read books about what to plant when, but don't have much faith in anything written by someone who doesn't live in my part of Australia.

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  2. Ohhhhh you and those darned black beans make me so jealous. If I found something I could sow and harvest in 2 months I'd rip up my whole garden and plant it!!!!

    I use this site http://www.gardenate.com/ which allows you to put in your climate zone (yes, there's an Aussie tropical zone) and then you can see what you should be planting this month or look at a specific vegetable and it tells you when to plant. So far it seems to work pretty well for me.

    I love your cute little fig. I bought one this year which isn't a lot bigger than yours. It's in the ground and I have no idea when/if it will bear fruit (maybe I should ask the possums - they know my garden better than I do). The race is on to see who gets their first fig!

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  3. Niech Twoja figa rośnie i rośnie i da Ci owoce. Pozdrawiam

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  4. I think it's hard to find information about which vegies to plant and when to plant them because we have so much variation in the weather conditions here in this part of the world.

    We're not all that far apart really and the differences are huge! I think it's all just trial and error to find out what suits your own little corner of the tropics. It sounds to me like you're enjoying the challenge!

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  5. I don't know how useful these sites might be for your conditions but I'll add these URLs and you can have a look.
    Notes from a permaculture site:
    http://www.tropicalpermaculture.com/tropical-vegetables.html

    Here's a sowing guide for Darwin ... may be useful!
    http://www.nt.gov.au/d/Content/File/p/Vegetable/IS4_vegetable_calendar_darwin_katherine_08.pdf

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  6. Missy,
    that is so true - the climate in Australia differs so much from one end to the other.
    Laura,
    Funny! Don't worry I was surprised by the whole process myself. OK the race is on :)
    Giga,
    Oh yes I hope so.
    Bernie,
    Thanks for those links, we often also create little micro-climates of our own as well just to add to the problem! I am enjoying planting small amounts to get lots of diversity and then when something fails it is not that bad!

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  7. I am sure that baby fig tree is going to grow into a healthy, happy, prolific fig producer under your loving care and attention!

    You are what I regard as a STAR gardener. If you don't know what grows best, then no one else would know, either! You're incredible with all that you try and you seem to have many more successes than failures. I wish I were even half as accomplished a gardener as you are. Just look at all you achieve in your relatively small garden!

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  8. Well Desiree,
    I don't often publish my failures :) There are plenty don't worry. You keep posting about your wonderful travels I really enjoy following along :)

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  9. Im super unsuccessful in growing edibles. Which is sad because I really want to do that.. But nothing edible seems to grow well in my balcony... Apart from lemon myrtle...

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