Is there anything more frustrating than tenderly raising a seedling, only to have it munched to pieces by a predator? Well, the white cabbage butterfly and it’s iridescent green offspring have found their home among my young broccoli and the results have been devastating. However, I hope that my recent efforts have thwarted their attempt to crunch their way through the second wave of seedlings that I planted out last night. Continue reading
The taste of vegetable mash takes me back to childhood memories. Mashed potato with whatever was growing in the garden, a dollop of butter hidden in the middle and a splash of Lea & Perrins (when I was older) reminds me of dinners at my grandparents’ or the simple, but seemingly special, healthy treat that I was often given when unwell.
My vege garden has taken a backseat to raising our new baby over the last few months. However, a couple of hours clearing out the overgrowth and preparing my beds for autumn has renewed my interest and provided much needed motivation to make time again for my green thumb. Continue reading
If you are looking for a little nibble that will get you through that 3pm craving time, these little almost-raw food truffles may be just the ticket. I was inspired by these little raw food treats called Foosballs, which I found at Hardy’s health store in Kerikeri. Here’s my take on it, using what I had in the pantry. Continue reading
I love a good smoothie, whether it be fruit or vege based. The upside to smoothies is that they’re easy to make, can be packed full of goodness and are easy to consume whether you are relaxing or on the go. A downside is that it can be tricky to have the right ingredients on hand at the time when you want them – especially if the ingredients are out of season. Continue reading
I was very excited to open my Christmas presents and find a big, black, 400l plastic compost bin for my garden. Creating compost has been on my list of things to try once I had expanded and bedded-in the garden. Now is the hour, but where to start? Here’s what I’ve done to turn our house and garden waste into fertile fodder for next spring’s planting. Continue reading
What a month or so it has been for harvesting, now that we are well into summer! I have really enjoyed watching other people’s successes as they reap the benefits from their gardening passion. The vibrant colours of ripe tomatoes, colourful beans and rainbow silver beet, shiny courgettes, leafy greens and more, mean that I have been more “green eyed” than “green thumbed” during this plentiful period. Continue reading
It’s been two months since I provided my last garden tour and boy have things changed. Here’s the latest update on my garden – such growth, such change, such excitement for an enthusiastic vege grower like me! Continue reading
An abundance of leafy greens in my garden has prompted an hour of preserving in my kitchen. Now is a good time to bring in the last of my autumn spinach, silver beet and kale to make way for the next crop, which is branching out in all directions already. Continue reading
Oh what a glorious sight to behold! My do-it-yourself irrigation system, watering my veges twice daily. We’re on tank water, so it is the best noise hearing the pump turn on – previously, that sound would have me hunting around the house for a rogue dripping tap! We have two large tanks for just the two of us, so there is plenty of water to go around.
My go-to cuisine when I feel like detoxing or loading up on fresh vege is Mediterranean. Last night it was Greek style salad with lamb burgers – yum! Quick and easy to rustle up with most of the making in the preparation – or chopping, to be more precise. Continue reading
It’s time to plant these little seedlings out in the big garden. So, they are spending a couple of nights out of the hot house cabinet and on top of the work bench before they join the rest of the vegetable patch. Continue reading
It’s time for a confession: I would rather look on lovingly at my well-stocked, heaving vegetable garden and never harvest anything. There, I’ve said it. Yes, it is a curse and this line of thinking may possibly contravene some unwritten law for vege gardeners. However, the only thing that eventually motivates me to harvest is the thought of losing my fleshy beauties to time, where they can be taken out by some stealthy suspect like rot or going to seed.
My beer traps have been working wonderfully, trapping three or four slugs in each a night (many of them on the very large side) and a few tiny snails. However, after a while I noticed that my tender broccoli, cucumber and eggplant seedlings were disappearing, one bite at a time. When I arrived home after a long weekend away, smidgens of ravished stalks greeted me, making it blatantly obvious that either some slugs did not have the taste for beer or something else was making a mockery of my pest protection system. Continue reading
There are masses and masses of little fruit flies flitting atop my three small vege beds. They are going crazy over the smelly, mucky, well-rotted chicken poo that I have mixed in with the soil. Apparently, it’s a great place for them to lay their eggs. Continue reading
… a busy little worker bee! Continue reading
For the last few weeks I have been patiently waiting for for the blush on my first strawberries to rise from their tips to their stalks. But, horror upon horrors, when I finally picked them, I found that the pesky ants had already beaten me there! Continue reading
How many envelopes do you receive each week? I think that we must average between 10 to 20 at our house, even though we have moved to electronic statements where we can. It’s really easy to bin them or burn them, but in the spirit of reuse, recycle and re-purpose, I say “long live the envelope” and have down-sized mine to make excellent little seed packets! Continue reading
It’s such a lovely day here that my seedlings have found themselves out of their hot house cabinet and alongside a north-facing wall for a dose of warm sunshine. They were well watered early this morning and will be watered again tonight to make up for the drying sun. We have a high today of 16 degrees celsius and no wind to speak of. Perfect! Continue reading
It feels like spring has been with us for some time, in some form or another. It’s the milder winter weather, the more frequent sunny days; or the daffodils showing and the blossom exploding from fruit trees. However, this week is officially the start of spring and it is a wonderful prelude to the ever-warming weather that leads us into summer. Continue reading
Excitement! My first online order of seeds have arrived from POD Easy, Edible Gardening! Thanks go out to NZ Ecochick for making me aware of the special: buy $25 or more of seeds and receive 5 free packets of flowers and 5 free packets of vegetables. This is 5 free packets more than POD’s usual offer. Continue reading
As I ran out of the door on the way to the UK at the end of June, I snipped around 30 puffy swan-like seed pods off my large Swan Plant. I carefully placed them just inside the glass door in a sunny spot, so that they could dry out while we were away. As we drove away from the house, I had the warm sense of satisfaction that I would arrive home to perfectly dried pods, ready to be de-seeded. I would harvest enough seeds to keep me in Swan Plants – and beautiful Monarch butterflies – for many, many moons to come. Continue reading
En route to retrieve my iPhone from the glove box in our car the other night, I took a quick tour of my garden – torch in hand – to investigate whether it was indeed sneaky slugs that were munching their way through my young brassicas. It took a few seconds for me to see their shady selves, but sure enough, there were ten-to-fifteen of the slimy monsters caught in the spotlight. And not just slugs; a rather large snail was clinging on to the spindly remains of a tiny cauli leaf in a rather King Kong-Empire State Building fashion! Continue reading
One of my favourite things about blogging is being able to see everyone else’s vege patch and how they change structure, shape and colour throughout the seasons. The My Garden page and these Garden Tour posts are my karmic contribution for sharing with others. And, of course, a way for me to look back over the changes that have taken place in my own patch.
Not for the faint hearted, these posts will be chock-a-block full of images! Continue reading
With the exception of last night’s incredible storm, the past few weeks have consistently brought light showers and cooler temperatures, which are soon warmed by the midday sun. It’s what you would expect being one week away from spring. Continue reading