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Down The Garden Path

23rd October 2022

Hello there my fellow green thumbs! I hope you are all doing well and have had time to play in the garden.

I have been feeling pretty ordinary lately with bouts of illness, but I have managed to get out in the garden and greenhouse and at least feel somewhat productive.

Everything seems to be thriving, however we have had heavy rains, overcast skies with breakthroughs of sun, so some plants are bolting as they just don’t know what season it is! I think Mother Natures has forgotten it’s meant to be Spring!!

This week I planted out some more seeds and filled the greenhouse once again.

Here’s what I potted up:
* Cauliflower- Mini (good for a later crop and quicker growing)
* Maca- Peruvian Ginseng
* Bush Bean- Bungalow (new variety to me)
* Mugwort
* Kangaroo Paw- Red and Green
* Mexican Sour Gherkin (I wanted to try something different!)
* Rosella
* Luffa Gourd (New one to me)
* Swan River Daisy- White
* Corn- Golden Bantam (great for smaller gardens as it doesn’t get too tall and has several cobs to a plant)
* Nasturtium- Empress of India
* Egg Plant- Black Beauty (my go to for eggplants!)
* Cucamelon (again, something a little different)
* Cucumber- Lebanese
* Tomato- Black Russian
* Heal All Herb
* Cat Nip
* Saltwort
* Valerian
* Angelica

Geez, I did more than I thought!

As you can see, it was a bit of a mixed bag, but I like to grow just as many flowers (for the bees) and medicinal herbs, as I do veggies.

We had our first little harvest from our Cauliflower too!!

Isn’t she pretty!!

This one made a beautiful pot of curry and although not overly big, it tasted amazing! This is our first successful Cauli season on the homestead, last year they all bolted. This year, as you would of seen on previous posts, I left the weeds to do their thing, and I truly believe that’s what protected and saved the cauli’s this year!

I pulled out, all bar 1 of, the Broccoli as they had done their thing, we thoroughly enjoyed it and the chooks devoured the remaining plants. The one I left in the ground I’m allowing to go to seed, ready for collection. This was a great crop and I want to keep this seed ready for next year. Remember, only ever keep the seed from thriving and good producing plants! Unproductive seeds create unproductive crops!

I also planted out the pumpkin (QLD Blue) and Zucchini (Lebanese and Black Beauty), and mulched with straw.

I was a bit hesitant to put these out as we are still getting heavy rains and well, we usually get another frost sometime in October/ early November. But I think they will be fine. Time will tell. They certainly seem happy as they had well outgrown their pots in the greenhouse!

The Garlic is a little disappointing. It seems to be going to seed already. I have snipped the flowers off in the hope they may still keep growing, but if not, we may end up with much smaller cloves than we had hoped for.

The plants themselves seem happy, but the bulbs I checked are really quite small.

The broccoli plant I left in to go to seed was teeming with bees, so they are very thankful that I have left it in.
Not only are the honey bees loving it, but the little native bees were everywhere! It’s just so wonderful to see.
I could sit and watch these little guys for hours!

The Greenhouse, as I said earlier, is very productive, with seedlings popping up everywhere! I love going in each day and seeing what else has popped up, it never gets old!

I repotted the White Sage and Echinacea into larger pots, I’m not ready to put them out just yet, they still have a little more growing to do, and I removed the smaller, weaker seedlings, only keeping the stronger plants.
How cute are the multi-coloured pots! I can’t remember where they came from, but I must get some more!

Everything in the medicinal garden is thriving, and I’ve begun to harvest some of the Sage and Feverfew, gathering into bunches and hanging them up to dry.

The easiest way of doing this, is to snip pieces with longer stems and plenty of foilage, gather into a bundle of no more than 6 pieces, wrap and tie very firmly, with string and hang them upside down until dry and crumbly.
I will then use them in teas and tinctures later on.

Feverfew is a ripper plant, not only is it super cute and brings in the bees, but nibble on a couple of leaves straight off the plant to relieve headaches! It tastes bitter and isn’t really pleasant, but it’s dynamite on headaches! You can also take some leaves and make a cup of tea out of it (add a little honey to taste) with the same result!

I fear the the red cabbages may be going to seed too. Unfortunately they haven’t formed heads as yet, so I’m debating whether to give them to the chickens! However, we can still get a couple of meals out of them using the outer leaves. They’re not as sweet, but still make a wicked braised cabbage dish!

We’ve had massive success with our Raddishes, and as such, now have a bumper crop to make pickles and use in salads!
I grew the Cherry Belle this time and I think, after harvesting this lot, I will be planting some more!
I plan on pickling most of them (thanks to ideas from some great friends) with chillis and garlic for one batch and another in more of a chinese style, with carrots and seeing how they go! Can’t say I’ve pickled raddishes before, but I do like to try new things!

Did you know that the tops of raddishes are edible too?
OK, they are a little “fluffy” but that is basically gone after you cook them.
You can steam them like any other leafy vegetable, or add to a quiche or alike! Why waste them! They are high in vitamins and minerals!

Now, for fellow Temperate areas, if you haven’t done so already, get your tomatoes on the go!
Do not put them outside just yet, wait another month at least, we usually say after the Melbourne cup weekend, but at least get your seeds going and into your greenhouse or you may just leave your run too late!
You can always grab seedlings from your local Nursery, however, I still say, do not put them outside just yet!
When you pot up your seeds, water them in with a good organic liquid feed to give them a really good kick start, and then follow up with a weaker liquid feed every week! Tomatoes need regular feeding!!

I had my gorgeous friend Cass come to visit me during the week and she brought me a big bunch of silverbeet, which is destined to be dinner tonight in a quiche, along with a few seedlings! A couple of tomatoes, basil and lemon balm!! Ahhhh she brings me the best presents! It was so great catching up with her, we are very similar, with similar goals and there’s nothing quite like sitting down with a cuppa and having a good gas bag with like-minded people.
Love ya Cass!

OH! And more exciting news!!

My Ginger plant has spring to life! I’m beyond thrilled!!!

Isn’t he just beautiful!!

Unfortunately, my turmeric hasn’t done the same, but I will persist and try again!

Well my lovelies, I hope you’ve enjoyed the run down and get to go and play outside!

Please remember to give this post a like if you found it useful, and sign up to get notified straight away when a new post goes up!

For those effected by the floods, my heart goes out to you.
Stay strong XXX

Until next time fellow gardeners….

Live Life to the Fullest, Love Beyond Words and Laugh Like No one Can Hear You!!

– Amy and Mark XX

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