We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
[Marianne Williamson]

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The veggie patch

It is almost exactly a month since I first wrote about the raised garden bed which Wombat and I revived as a veggie patch, and since I have lots more photos of it I thought I'd do an update.

Shortly after the last post, an unknown predator chomped the top off all our lovely bean plants! There are a number of likely culprits - wallaby, wombat (the four-legged ones) or one of the feral deer that roam our bush.

We replanted, and after a little searching around, I gathered enough pieces to build a rather functional fence. I was quite pleased with myself as it actually looks quite tidy. I slid the piece at the back (to the right of the photo) over the star stake, so it opens like a gate. Wombat loves it as it gives him more places to climb :P

The bean seeds seemed to approve as well - especially after Wombat and I raided the old chicken pen and scraped up all the loose straw to use as mulch (with a pram and/or shopping in the boot of the car whenever we go out, it has been quite a while since I last managed to get a bale of straw home lol)

Everything started to look a bit sick when we had weeks of extreme heat, but a little more searching under the house revealed some rolls of shadecloth. Problem solved (and more fun for Wombat).

When the rain started last week we were instantly faced with fungus problems (gotta love this place!!!) so I removed the shadecloth (storing it nearby so it would be quick to rehang when necessary). The sun and breeze made short work of the fungus. It was a good thing I hadn't wired the shadecloth on as I originally planned! It was so hot when I hung it that I just tied it with a bit of string and anchored it with clothespegs from the washing line! Turns out that was a very practical solution as it can be removed and replaced according to the weather.

We moved a nice egg tomato from a pot (where it wasn't getting enough water) into the garden, and at Wombat's insistence we planted corn (seedling emerging below). Corn technically should be planted at the start of summer, not the end, so we shall see what happens.
Here are the bean seedlings now - Wombat is waiting anxiously for them to get tall enough to be twined around the wire! A hint for gardening with toddlers - you can't keep them out of the garden, so add stepping stones! It took a few weeks practice, but Wombat is now very good at only walking on the tiles (and the bean pole and fences) and not treading on the soil.

This is the whole setup - beans at left back, tomato mid-right, two patches of corn (5 seeds in each patch) at front left and pumpkin/melon at front right. Not sure what it is as it popped up from the compost we spread as we were restarting the garden. The compost came from kitchen scraps, so it will be interesting to see what fruit develops. There seems to be two plants, as there are two different types of flower - a big orange flower which I think is a pumpkin and a small yellow flower which might be a melon.

If you are wondering how I plan to grow both a pumpkin and a melon (as well as everything else) in such a small patch (just over 1.5 metres square) the seedlings popped up right in the corner, and I just trained the vine out over the edge. I left a gap for it to creep under when I built the fence Now the 'pumpkin' is sprawling to the left and the smaller melon is trailing to the right, all providing nice shade for the soil and helping to trap moisture in the surroundings.

I will do another update in the future to show how things are developing.

1 comment:

Steff said...

hmm - can you grow baby corn?? my girls love little "me sized corn" and it might not take up as much room as fully fledged corn...but its looking great