Showing posts from February, 2013

Companion planting, and moon planting - once again.

I have really enjoyed reading Linda Woodrow's book Permaculture-Home-Garden-   - she has a blog too which I follow   here .  She gardens on a large scale and has lots of chooks, and reckons that if you don't have chooks you should at least have worms.  I have not heard of any successful worm farming in our area - it just gets too hot and humid during the summer.  I am going to try a sort of in ground worm farm with my wicking tomato bins. She reckons that planting by the moon works, so once again I will give it a try.  After all, the force of the moon pulls the tides in and out, so lets use that force for our gardening if we can.  The waxing moon is when green leafy vegetables should be planted, and the waning moon is when underground crops should be planted. (very loose description.) I had planned to plant carrots and onions in my perennial bed, and she suggests that they are excellent companion plants :)  The onions take up excess soluble nitrogen, and have antibiotic char

Discovering hidden flowers in my jungle garden

In the tropics everything grows so well, that sometimes I have to think about a certain plants aggressive nature.  I like to be able to see that all the plants are surviving ok, but still have a full tropical look to the garden. I am often torn about removing certain plants that have become too aggressive for my small garden. A plant at the back has huge leaves, rounded, and very firm, and I love the way they scratch against each other in the wind.  I planted two of them - one against the fence and the other at the back, next to the sexy pink lady. Hubby loves the feeling that we live in the middle of a lush tropical rainforest.  I worry that the plants are crowding each other out. Is there too much now in that corner? The difficulty is that some of those plants will go dormant in the dry season.   I see more turmeric has come up, so have to be careful I do not create bare patches..  I have that in the veggie perennial bed now, so will remove it from the corner, leaving more room

I couldn't wait - building the soil for the vegetable bed

I know I said I was not going to do any gardening until  after the week down in Brisbane in early March.  Well physical work, that is - but there has been lots of planning going on....:) I wandered out over the weekend, put on my big hat and gloves and started to pull out a few weeds, just in the herb spiral, mind you!  I tied back the franzipani that was leaning over it, and the mandevilla that grows-like-crazy, but never stops flowering so it can stay.   A nice thick layer of compost was spread over the area, and then a layer of mulch.  Now that can sit and brew, and the worms can do their job, and when I come back I should have some good soil to plant my herbs into.  The mint and tropical coriander, garlic chives, mother of herbs and basil are perrenial, and I just re-plant dill and parsley every year. The next bed over is the perrenial bed, with four asparagus plants in the front, and lemongrass, galangal and turmeric in the back.  This is the turmeric flower - I will harvest

MrFothergills comes to the party again!

I received another package in the mail from MrFothergills , for which I am very grateful.  I felt bad last year as it really was not such a good year, and I thought they might banish me from their mailing list!  I think they must be gardeners though and realize that not every year is a year of bumper crops.  Even my neighbours garden flunked last year!  This year though, we are all geared up!  I had already purchased quite a few seeds, and now I realise that my little garden is going to be stretched to its limits.  Mmm I might have to expand... I have some ideas :) This is the list of the seeds that I received: Grasses: (I think these will be used in the public area near the pool.) Blue fescue Bunny tails Green fountain Snowy woodrush Vegetables: Early Californian red onion seed tape Pak choy seed tape Spinach tape Broccoli tape Flowers: Calendula Sweet peas Dichondra Pansy - mini Little Gardeners Windowsill pots Lemonade (lemon balm) - mine didn't make

Communal area around the pool has a re-vamp

Our local council occasionally will give out free plants, and about a year ago I got a bunch of assorted plants to plant around the pool.  I laid out wet newspaper, and put mulch on top of that, then let that sit for a couple of weeks.   Then I dug out a trench and filled it with my own homemade compost, and added chook poo, which does stink up the place a bit, but oh gosh, it does the soil good. :)  Then I let that sit for a couple of weeks before I planted them. This is the communal area for our set of 10 units, and I took it upon myself to make it look a bit more inviting and tropical. So the ground was prepared, here in the central traffic island,  And around the pool the plants I got were; Dianella - a flax lilly that has blue flowers on spikes Lomandra longifolia - a native grass that grows up to half a metre a couple of green cordelines  a couple of miniature weeping callistemon (bottlebrush) 2 purple tibouchina. 12 lilly pilly bushes for a hedge on the street s