Monday, December 29, 2014

Inside the hive

Andrew checked on his bes on the weekend to see how things were progressing, all looks good, and some honey is being made as well as lots of baby bees.  Our sunflowers have started to open over the last few days, it's great to see bees on them.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Livinia is 6

 Liv turned 6 yesterday, and we forgot to take some birthday photos.  To our defence, she was at school, then had a couple of friends over for a "party", then we went out for dinner, then it was bed time.  And it started raining pretty much as soon as we walked home from school.  Today was a much quieter day with lovely weather.
 Poor kid, who'd have a birthday in December? 
 The garden is still growing well, probably the best time of year, before summer really heats up.
 Violet in front of our newest garden beds
 Flowering dwarf apple gum, I'm enjoying watching the bees buzz around it
 Yarrow 'Coronation Gold' is always a winner
 Avocados getting bigger- this is the biggest we've grown them so far, they normally drop off when they are the size of a pea.  Will this be our year for avocados?
 Golden delicious apples getting bigger
 Another favourite, the curry plant
 The grapes are growing very quickly
Dinner tonight- cold boiled eggs, lettuce, carrots, snowpeas, yellow cherry tomatoes.  Doesn't get much better than this.

Monday, December 15, 2014

We have bees

 Andrew has been doing a beekeeping course over the last couple of months, and yesterday some bees came to live on our roof. 
 Andrew in his beesuit. 
 This is a nucleus hive.  They will stay in that box for about a week, then will be moved into a proper hive.  They can get in and out of the box, they just need some time to orientate themselves before being moved.
We hope they are happy, and help to pollinate our plants, and give us some honey.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Into summer

 We are now harvesting yellow cherry tomatoes.  This photo was taken a week ago, and that is why the sun is shining, unlike today which is very soggy.  We've had over 25mm of rain since early yesterday morning, which is great to soak the garden and keep our tanks full in the lead up to a hot summer.
 Grapes developing nicely
 Our new beds filling up- we constructed gravel paths about 5 weeks ago.
 Little artichokes
 Boysenberries growing on our old gate that we removed from the front yard- we've started to pick these
 Golden delicious apples
 Sweet potato
 Rockmelon, watermelon, peas climbing the trellis, netted strawberries
 This year's garlic harvest waiting to be cleaned up
Evie's mint patch has taken off.  She has peppermint, apple mint, and chocolate mint.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

And we have raspberries

We picked our first raspberries yesterday, it would have been earlier if those pesky birds hadn't gotten them first.  Liv and I had one each yesterday, then I netted the row.  Today, a small handful were ready.  I think most were from the Willamette variety, and one or two from the Sandford variety.  The Diggers Gold will fruit a bit later.  I'm liking the Willamette's, they don't have spikes on the stems, which makes it much easier to pull them out when they stray from their designated garden bed.  Very tasty too.  I think my old canes were from the heritage variety, but I had a series of mishaps with boggy soil and lost them all.  So I started with these new ones last year, this year we have fruit.  I hope to put some of these Summer treats on the Christmas table.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Myer Christmas windows Melbourne 2014

 Today we made our annual pilgrimage to the Myer Christmas windows.  This year, the theme was Santa Claus and the three bears, a mish mash of Santa and Goldilocks.  It was report writing day at school for the girls, so a day off.
 The crowds weren't too thick yet, but the windows are difficult to photograph because of the reflection of the windows.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Rocketing along

 The garden has that spring explosion going on at the moment, some warm days, mixed with a bit of rain here and there makes it all lush and green, with some bright flowers thrown in to make it look cheery.  My first tomatoes of the season don't look too far away, little yellow cherry tomatoes when they are ripe.
 The first of the raspberries will certainly be ready before Christmas

 Potatoes have taken off after a soak of rain early last week
 Garlic will be ready soon as well
 Nice little crop of carrots
 Apricots looking happy.  Our fruit trees have been establishing themselves for the last few years, we should start to see some harvests from now on.
 Ripe strawberries!
 And a new member of the family, Violet the mini lop rabbit, an early birthday present for Liv

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Spring garden

 The garden is coming to life at this time of year, some plants have already blossomed, some are yet to.  The poppies have started to pop, and the never fail bright orange calendula are making a pretty show.
 My chioggia beetroots are ready for picking, we've been enjoying them roasted.  Much nicer than pickled in vinegar beetroots!
 Garlic is looking good
 The more seeds these calendula drop, the more we'll have in the garden
 Flowering cherry blossoms are very pretty at this time of year
 Crimson flowering broad beans
 Sage starting to flower
 Our new beds are filling up, next job is to make gravel paths between them, and out to the wood oven
 Dwarf pear tree blossoming
 Avocado tree full of blossom and new growth, can't wait until it produces!
Our laundry windowsill is where we raise seeds, we need to some better shelving to fit it all in there.  It's been great to be able to potter in the garden these school holidays, with no time constraints, the kids have been planting seeds in the garden too, and playing outside a lot.  I've made soap, and baked a lot, and sewed a bit too.  We need to be home a fair bit to achieve all this, but that's ok with me.