Wednesday 22 January 2014

A seriously blonde moment...

I've been disappointed that a lot of the tomatoes that self seeded from my garden were an orange variety that wasn't very tasty. Well, I had an epiphany today. Of course, they're red cherry tomatoes that I was picking before they were ripe! What was I thinking?! Ugh, I'm such a blonde. Glad I at least realised at the start of the season and can now enjoy RIPE red tomatoes for the rest of the season. 

Red tomatoes! Who would have thought?!

Monday 20 January 2014

Perfect day for gardening!

I have today off and not surprisingly, I am spending most of it gardening. I planted some seeds for my Autumn/Winter veggies and I've been doing lots of weeding. I also planted out some amaranth seedlings, late I know, but we'll see how they go. It's a beautiful day here in Melbourne and there aren't many other things I'd rather be doing!

Sunday 19 January 2014

Harvest Monday

This week I have harvested lots of cherry tomatoes, a leek and some potatoes. Unfortunately the tomatoes that self seeded from my compost are not very tasty! They are yellow and orange cherry tomatoes and although they look more interesting than red ones, they certainly don't taste as good. Oh well, I'm just glad to be getting something from the garden. This is a good lesson to be careful about which varieties I plant! There are some different varieties in the pipeline though so I'm looking forward to them.

Traffic lights!

Check out Daphne's Dandelions to see more harvests from around the world.


Tuesday 14 January 2014

Harvest Monday and helping my garden survive the heatwave! 

Leek, carrot, herbs and rocket. I have also harvested a couple of yellow cherry tomatoes but they didn't make it in front of the camera!

Salad I made with homegrown potatoes, rocket and herbs, as well as some of the last of my beautiful chooks' eggs, olives, cheese, sundried tomatoes and mayo (this one).

Seeds are sprouting

 Broccoli seedlings. The egg carton idea seems to work quite well as long as I keep the soil hydrated.

Eggplant flower

Baby capsicum!

 And plenty more tomatoes on the way...

I bought some bird netting from Bunnings to cover some of my tomatoes and other plants, and it has worked well so far. I will probably buy some more to cover the rest of my garden.

Oh, and check out these funny shaped tomatoes! Anyone know what they might be? I don't remember planting anything like this so could they be roma tomatoes from the compost?

I've been watering my garden a lot to try and get it through the heatwave we are currently experiencing (4 days of 40C+ weather). Most things seem to be surviving OK, though I've lost a few cucumber seedlings.

Check out Daphne's Dandelions to see how other people are using their harvests.

Thanks for reading, and happy gardening!


Thursday 9 January 2014

Seedling shelves and egg cartons

I'm experimenting with using egg cartons as seed raising trays. I hope they don't disintegrate before the seedlings get big enough to plant out. The shelves in the pic are just clothing shelves I got from my local op shop. Having my seedlings here should keep my back porch a bit clearer!

Tuesday 7 January 2014

My mini forest on my back porch

This is where I plan to sit and drink my tea this Summer - on my comfy chair, next to my tomatoes, flowers and my housemate's herb garden. I just moved these here today, and have attached the tomatoes to the trellis. I will be very interested to see how they do, because they won't get quite as much sunlight, but will be less likely to dry out. The tomato plant on the right got away from me when I was on holidays and was sprawling across the ground, so it's probably got more of a chance here anyway where it doesn't have to compete with as many bugs!

Where the other half of my zucchini went...

It went into the oven, topped with basil, sun dried tomatoes and cheese, and it was delicious! I really like this variety of zucchini (I believe it's called Lebanese Zucchini). I think it stays firmer than regular zucchini, and it has a nice taste. 

Hope you're all having a lovely week! 

Monday 6 January 2014

Harvest Monday & Garden Update

So I finally have something slightly more interesting than lettuce to show for harvest Monday! It's certainly not impressive compared to what many bloggers are producing, but it's significant for me. I harvested my first zucchini! It probably got a bit too big (and thus less flavoursome) because I was away for a week and couldn't pick it sooner, but oh well. Here's what became of half of it:

Zucchini, rocket, basil and chives all from the garden (though admittedly the chives are from my housemate's herb garden she just got as a present, and I didn't grow them myself!)

Coconut oil and onion went into the pan...

along with garlic...

and the rocket, basil and chives...
followed by the zucchini, and salt and pepper.
Topped with sheep fetta, this was a really easy, tasty and healthy lunch!

I also decided to sacrifice some potato plants to clear more space for seedlings that need planting out (capsicum, amaranth, chickpea, lettuce, squash...the list goes on). I was pleasantly surprised to find that they had actually produced quite a few potatoes! I was having a carb craving so I ate some of these for dinner boiled and topped with butter, cheese, rocket, chives and basil. 

Unfortunately, it can't all be good news. I am very sad to report that my beloved chickens have been killed, presumably by a fox or a cat. The garden really doesn't feel the same without them following me around! They were such inquisitive and friendly chooks, and I will definitely miss having them around. I take comfort in the fact that they were ex-battery hens and we gave them a much happier life than they would have had confined to a tiny cage, and even though they were young, they lived for longer with us than they would have had they not been rescued. Here is one last photo of a couple of the girls enjoying themselves in my backyard.

You can check out more harvests (and hopefully less sad news!) at Daphne's Dandelions.