Sunday, July 24, 2011

On Skeletons and Cold Weather

Given that it's lunch-time and still only 4 degrees outside - I thought I'd make a pictorial record of the development of the garden over the past few years.  We had an extension to the house done a few years ago that caused total devastation to the garden.

We were lucky enough to have a bit left over after the extension, so we got the garden landscaped, and paving put in so that my son, who was in a wheelchair could get around the whole area. Sadly, my lovely boy died a couple of years ago, but I'll always remember him whizzing about the paths in his chair and laughing that we could play cricket on the lawn again now!
Since then, I've been planting and getting the chooks to help me improve the soil. I've got about 20 types of fruit:
  • Apples (x4)
  • Apricot
  • Avocadoes
  • Blueberries (x5)
  • Boysenberries (too many to count)
  • Feijoa (x2)
  • Gooseberries (x2)
  • Grapefruit
  • Kiwi-Fruit
  • Lemon
  • Mandarin (x6)
  • Nectarine (x2)
  • Orange
  • Olive (x2)
  • Peach
  • Pear
  • Quince
  • Raspberries (x4)
  • Rhubarb
  • Strawberries (x23)

With the help of the Sustainable Gardener (the world's best gardener!), who employs young disabled people to help tend a whole bunch of gardens around Canberra, the garden now looks like this:

As you can see, still plenty of work to do, but the skeleton is in place, and things are starting to come along.  In the veggie patch there is:
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Onions
  • Celeriac
  • Celery
  • Leeks
And two lots of silverbeet in two other garden beds. Shallots, garlic and asparagus in large numbers dotted along a number of the borders.  Loads of comfrey, as well as parsley, rosemary, thyme, sage and chives. Oh! and an almond tree with two types of almond on it.  The chooks' Day Facility is currently on the (alleged) lawn because it's so full of weeds that I figured this would be good green feed for them while the red peas from all the pea straw mulch take off in the other beds. I was going to construct a bit of a run for them so they could get at the weeds and frost-affected tomatoes (we were away when the frosts came), but its sooo cold out there!  Poor darlings are a bit fed up, but they'll eat more of the grass weeds in the lawn this way, and I'll get their run made for them over the next few days.  Something must be working though, because I got a perfect day yesterday - 3 eggs!
I'd love to hear your comments on how you think our little food forest is developing. What's happening in your garden? Post a comment and link back to your blog or drop your photos right in.
Talk soon - Greenie x


  1. Hi Greenie, I can't imagine what you've been through and I'm so sorry for your loss - your son's spirit is clearly in your garden, it is amazing how much it's transformed. It looks fantastic and will only get better! You have so much diversity in your food forest. Huge hugs xoxo

  2. Oh Mrs Bok - thanks so much for your very kind words and for the hugs :-)
    We are very blessed in so many ways and our lovely boy does live on in and through the garden - and now we're growing fresh food for our darling little grand-daughter. Hugs back Greenie x

  3. Hi Greenie, if you are interested, we are looking at reviving the Urban Homesteaders Club in Canberra:!/pages/The-Urban-Homesteaders-Club-ACT/234573086575078

  4. Hi Greenie :)
    I'm another Canberra girl popping by from the DTE Forum :)