Friday, 30 August 2013

Garden development (part1)

I wasn't as involved in the gardening last year as I should have been.  As a result the weeds had infested the areas we didn't really cultivate last year.  In turn this presented a challenge for getting the vegetable garden ready for the coming year.  Digging by hand was going to be a major issue so we decided to invest in a bit of temporary technology.

Fortunately the Stoney Creek Gazette came to our assistance with an advert for Rural Hire.  They were able to provide a rotary hoe.
Here it is in work.
For reasons that escape me now (and that phrase probably contains the explanation) I didn't do a "before" photograph but the areas under the plum tree and between the photographer and me give an idea of what we were dealing with. (Bear in mind that I had also given these areas a good going over with my brush cutter first!)
The rest of the area is 'after'.  I covered that area in about 30 minutes, as opposed to several hours of back-breaking digging.

We had sown a bot of green manure.
That got dug in in somewhat less than 10 minutes!

Having achieved this we decided to also try the machine out on a few other areas where Frances wanted to plant things of a more decorative nature.  Wonderful!  Then it was the Great Trudge back to the loading area.
This was necessary because the loading ramps (kindly provided by Rural Hire) got a bit slippery when on a down hill slope, so I unloaded on a bank which I knew worked well from experience with our ride-on mower.  Here is the beast heading back into our trailer.
We were extremely happy with what we achieved.  Looked at from an economic rationalist point of view (and I love economic rationalists like brothers) for the alternative approach (hand digging) to work out cheaper I would have to value my time at about $3.00 an hour.  When I worked it was actually closer to $100.00 an hour so the decision is a no-brainer.

Some other life-forms were also happy with our endeavours.
The Magpie family and a couple of Pied Currawongs were greatly enjoying themselves in the freshly-turned soil.  I suppose the beetle grubs which they were hunting were less happy about the situation but you can't please everyone.

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