Momma duck knows it’s spring – here she is out yesterday with her eight new ducklings (one of whom was camera shy). She’s a beautiful Cayuga. Dad is, well, who knows?
We had a beautiful afternoon on Sunday for the fresh food garden course and a fabulous group of people sharing ideas in the sunshine. If you feel a bit overwhelmed or underinspired by your garden, the next course on 29th November might be just the kick-start you need. The kitchen garden will also be open as part of the Ohariu Valley Garden tour on Sunday 9th November 2008. There will be plenty of other vegetable gardens of all shapes and sizes open as part of the tour to give you some ideas and inspiration.
If you haven’t started already, Labour weekend is the traditional time to get into the garden. I’ve been planting out corn and sowing some more for a follow on crop. My first potatoes are coming on well and ready to be mulched. It’s a good time to plant some more potatoes. I’m picking broad beans, asparagus and lots of salad and other greens. I made coriander pesto this week as a springtime alternative until my basil is ready.
Most seeds can go in now. If you sow outside there’s less work transplanting but you do still need to keep them waterered and keep off birds, cats and anthing else that might dig them up. Lettuce, carrots, celery, beetroot, radishes, rocket, broccoli, cabbage, turnips, spinach, silverbeet, spring onions. I start zucchini, pumpkins and cucumbers seeds indoors. I have tomato and other plants for sale. Sow a few each week rather than trying to fill the garden in a weekend.
Don’t forget herbs too – coriander, chives, basil and parsley grow easily from seed. Keep them close to your kitchen door, in a pot if necessary.
If you like beans, you can sow them now in Wellington outside. Runner beans are prolific but there are lots of different shapes and colours of beans you can grow on bush (less than 30cm high) or pole (up to 2m) plants.
Henry has fathered numerous Rhode Island red chicks around Wellington, with good hatch rates from our fertile eggs ($3 each). If you have photos of your chicks, I’d love to see them. If you have a Rhode Island red rooster you don’t want, I have someone looking for one so please email me.
Chances are you haven’t taken photographs of your kids recently (whatever their age). Get them taken professionally now in time for Christmas gifts by Mandi Lynn, award winning photographer. Mandi is offering a special $50 portrait session (saving $140). Mandi also runs the Blueberry Farm and Bakehouse in Akatarawa. She’ll donate the fee to the Between the Blues charitable trust, doing important work helping children learn about the environment. Knowing Mandi, she’ll bring out the best in you and your family.