Sunday, 30 September 2007

Saturday, 29 September 2007

A Photo A Day - No. 270


Future Grapes
These buds are forming on the grapevines,
with promises of future grapes...
...I only hope the chooks aren't watching too
exclaimexclaimexclaim

Wicker-Watering Bed Up-date


See Here for how it was built!

We had only 5mm of rain during this week, one of the hottest days on record for Sept 30.9C and horrible strong winds gusting at nearly 60km/h. eekeekeek

I've only watered these pumpkins at planting, giving them a thorough soaking. They haven't drooped their leaves at all and are rapidly growing away!

I'm already planning more of these beds in other places where tree roots have invaded the Vegetable Garden.

idea Seems to be the way to go for conserving water idea

Friday, 28 September 2007

A Photo A Day - No. 269


Thirsty Bees
I cleaned the Main Veg Garden Pond the other day.
Before I could re-pot this waterlily the bees arrived.
I guess it's less dangerous to drink from wet soil,
than risk drowning in the pond.
biggrinexclaimbiggrin

Friday Photos 28 Sep 07

Sturt's Desert Pea (Link Here)

As a change this week I'm posting some photos from our son and his partner .
The whole area around where they live in the north of SA
is just red with lots of these beautiful flowers.



He was intrigued by this plain red flower at the rear of this cluster.

He has also tried to get a photo of a very rare albino flower (pure white) closer to his town but the locals have been out digging them up and taking them home with the highly unlikely view that they will transplant.
Being a desert plant it has a very long tap root and rarely transplants well at all exclaim
So these people are just killing these rare plants off.

Our son is not amused!! evil
All he wanted to do was take some photos to send his mum. rolleyes

Thanks for the photos!
lollollol

Thursday, 27 September 2007

A Photo A Day - No. 268

Moth
Not all the visitors are good guys in the garden
But this one is very pretty!

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

A Photo A Day - No. 267




Dog Bed Ninja
Lucky tried asking Ninja to get off her bed.
Then she tried licking her ears out.
But Ninja just stayed put!
rolleyes

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Tuesday Re-Use-Day - 4

On each Tuesday for the next few weeks I will be featuring photos of things that are re-used around Scarecrow's Garden.

Remember to click on any of the photos to enlarge them! smile

*The Re-used items are written in bold!

Water

The best way to re-use rainwater is to store it in a rainwater tank.

These 15 litre mild detergent containers have been well cleaned
and re-used by connecting the taps on the bottom
to the 13mm feeder hose of the dripper system.
They are then filled with water by watering cans.
See how here

Ice cream and cake containers
make handy 'saucers' for pots when going away.
The water in the containers should keep the pots moist.

A 2 litre milk bottle with a hole in the lid
becomes a handy waterer with a slow flow.

2 litre drink bottles fit onto special spikes
(or make small holes in their lids) upended
and used to slowly water plants.
This is especially good for pots and containers
which need to be slowly watered.
Cut off the bottle bottoms to make filling them easy.

This detergent tub has been re-used for a source of water,
for hand washing, near Doc's workshop.

These 5 litre containers are filled with water
and stored in the hothouses
to absorb heat during the day and give it off at night.

These drinking water containers are
re-used to store rainwater in the hot houses.
They not only supply warmth at night
but also provide an emergency water supply.

This ex-pickle barrel has been utilised in our grey water
(from washing machine) recycling system.
See Here


A Photo A Day - No. 266




Rock Rose Spider
Spring has brought out all the garden helpers
Including these spiders eek

Monday, 24 September 2007

Wick(er)ed Dreams

The latest news from the govt. on Water Restrictions indicates that they are set to change on the 1st Oct to allow us 1 day of using drippers per week.

As we live in an even numbered house that will be Saturday here from 6am to 9am OR 5pm to 8pm so we'll be having some early starts on Saturdays.

Although this will help in some of the less easily accessible areas, in the vegetable garden I will continue to use the containers I have attached to the various beds as this is working very well.

I am investigating more efficient watering systems including a technique known as 'Wicking-bed Watering".

This basically consists of building garden beds on top of a plastic membrane thus creating a 'pool' of moisture in the lower layer and the vegetable roots draw this moisture up via capillary action. I often water seedlings by standing them in a tray of water and this is a similar principle.

I have recently seen articles written on this style of gardening using various methods of getting the water 'sub-surface' - usually this involves the use of agricultural drainage pipe.
Here is a link for further information.

I wanted to trial this method but not spend any money to set it up so I chose to use a small section of ground in which I wish to grow pumpkins in this year.
The area is under a very large gum tree which will use any water that I try to give the pumpkins so this method might just solve this problem.


First I dug out the area
and found a piece of wood from Doc's stash pile (again)
to allow the area to be built up.

I levelled the area with soft sandy loam.
Note the site very gently slopes to one side to allow heavy rain
(although rare, it does happen remember this)
and excess water to drain away.


Then I found a sheet of plastic
(leftover from the hothouse project last month)
and lined the area with this.
The plastic only goes up about 10cm at the sides
meaning it will just be this level that will contain the water.
The plants should use this water up over about a week
before needing to be watered again.
(that's the theory anyway)


The area was then filled with a manure mix
that I had been allowing to 'cook' over winter
in preparation for the pumpkins.

Then topped up with some of the compost
I've also been 'cooking' over winter.


I then raided the worm farm for a few helpers

And tucked them up with some felt covering.

One week later after less than 3mm of rain during the week
and no extra watering, the whole site was still quite damp.
The worms could be easily found
and there was evidence of young worms in there!


2 weeks later I put some 4 litre juice bottles
(minus their lids)
in to enable the lower surface of soil to be watered.
Then plant 3 Rouge d'Etampes Pumpkin plants
that are bursting out of their pots in the hothouse.

At the very least the plastic should prevent
the gum tree roots invading the area
!


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