Saturday, 1 December 2007

December Gardening

As suggested last month, this is becoming a mini series with the previous episode at Possibly with a total of three posts we are now at the "series" level.
Vegetable doings
The material covered here actually starts on November 30, when we decided that the time had come to start really picking the "eating" broad beans. (I add the qualifier to distinguish this crop from the "green manure" broad beans, which we started picking in October, because we didn't need to use them as green manure. ) The upshot of our decision was that we got 2.5kgs of beans from about 1/3rd of the plants. A couple of days later I picked the rest and estimate that i got another 4 kgs. About 5kg of these were frozen and the rest we (mainly me) have been eating with our evening meal.

It has also been interesting to see that we have fruit on two of our tomato plants. Since one of the traditional challenges of growing tomatoes in this area is to get fruit before Christmas, I think we are well in front of the game. Let's hope that the wire roofing keeps the possums out of the area.

Fruity matters
We inherited a number of fruit trees of unknown varieties, several grape vines and a few small olive trees (that had been browsed vigorously by the kangaroos). I've covered elsewhere the acquisition of some additional olives and the pruning of the vines. We now seem to have:

  • Pear trees, heavily fruited up by the washing line;

  • apple trees (in the main vegetable garden - vigorously pruned by the reclining yellow box, but really laden with fruit);

  • one almond tree (that seem to be resisting setting fruit);

  • a plum tree:

    an apricot tree; and (in front of the kitchen window)

  • a peach tree!

As well as the olives we purchased some currants (black and red) which are producing well. We purchased a passionfruit that seems to be going OK and 2 female and one male kiwifruit. One of the females got munched early on but the other two are doing very nicely. In addition to all of this we were given by various nice people:

  • Raspberries (doing very well, and are probably going to need some hefty bondage and other forms of discipline in the near future); and

  • Rhubarb (one of which - described by the donor as the best rhubarb in the world - is already producing and being eaten with ice cream).

The main business at the moment is roses of various varieties. We have had mauve ones (that got transplanted from in front of my study) many red ones including this wonderful specimen and some nice white ones. In addition we have a couple of floribunda climbers on two sides of our deck.

Frances has planed a lot of dahlias here and there around the garden and I had got some cuttings from a pink tree dahlia from the Eys. The latter all rotted for some reason, but a white one which I acquired at the Melbourne garden Expo seems to be developing rather nicely. Watch for some images as the season develops.
While we were staying at the Eys in January Frances took some cuttings of fuschias. The two images below show what they look like now.

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