As today was a day off, I got stuck into the garden. It’s Springtime where I live, and the trees are flowering. The garden was full of bees, ants, birds and promise.
First thing I did was chop back a few of the trees that had gone wild – man vs jungle style.
I blunted my saw on a golden palm which had turned into a monster, and killed off some kind of other tree, and chopped back the big tree in the back yard to clear space for an edible garden. I also trimmed the lilly pilly in the corner which is getting huge. I could really use a chainsaw, but today I used a handsaw. Better for the environment and my health no doubt, although I’ll feel it in the next couple of days.
Then – I got stuck into the compost bins. I have 3 compost bins, and the boys have been faithfully putting the kitchen scraps, lawn clippings, and guinea pig cage leavings in for about 8 months. I took the tops off these black bins, repositioned the bins somewhere else, and then put the topmost layers back in the bins to start again.
Underneath the partially decomposed clippings & eggshells was a treasure.
It was the most beautiful soil – dark, rich and loamy. Full of beetles, grubs and worms. Ants galore. I got four wheelbarrows of the stuff out – filled up a huge square clay pot for some green spinach, pak choy and silverbeet. It should grow well in such good soil.
I spread the rest on the garden I started a few years back. It had flowered, fruited, and then last year, died back and lain fallow for six months, so it’s ready again.
When the boys got home from school we planted spring onions, carrots. My neighbour (a keen gardener) brought home some ginger bulbs, I swapped for some hippiastrum bulbs. I planted the ginger and some pumpkins in the old compost pile – and we started a new compost.
On the weekend coming I’ll most likely use a mulcher and chop up all the branches I cut back, and give most of the green waste to my neighbour for his ‘no-dig’ garden. The rest I’ll spread on my own garden.
Whilst I was working I was eyeing off the now empty chicken coop. Time to get some new chickens I think. I’ll make the pen a bit bigger this time, and make the roost a bit nicer for the new chooks. I’ve also been checking out “auto-feeders” and some interesting designs for watering the chickens. I’ll give these a go in the next few months.
A very satisfying day, although I’ve got some blisters to show for my efforts.
I posted on Freecycle a few ‘wanted’ ads for some edible herbs & plant seedlings, and I have some swapping to do over the next weekend – That should get me some raspberry canes and tomato seedlings, which I’ll plant immediately.
Here’s hoping that in a few weeks we’ve got some shoots, and weeks after that we might be eating our own greens!