Each year I have a go at growing brassica's and garlic. It's always a bit tricky as we don't always have enough cool weather and this winter was a very warm one, so they haven't amounted to much. I planted broccoli and several types of cabbage, and some of them have hearted up, but nothing bigger than my fist! The broccoli hasn't formed any heads at all. So my plan for this weekend is to pick most of them and make some sauerkraut and kimchi. The garlic I'll leave in and see how it goes. I could pick it now and use it as spring garlic, but am still undecided. The kale and silverbeet have done really well.
Kale and cabbages
Warrigal Greens - these self sow every year
more Kale, Cabbages and the uneventful broccoli
Garlic, with a row of newly planted beans.
The garden was all ready for me to plant some more seedlings into, so lucky I brought some with me. I've planted out two types of beans (dwarf and snake), rainbow chard because it's pretty and good for you, black Russian tomatoes because they did well last year and seemed to repel the bugs. And I also planted a punnet of lettuce seedlings, which will probably go to seed, but I will hopefully get some lunches out of them. The lettuce went really well over winter, which is a buggar, because we don't tend to eat much lettuce in winter!
The asparagus bed, which I cut and mulched this year (just in time) has been producing, but not as prolifically as I would like. Maybe I need to cut it back and mulch it earlier. I usually wait until it dies off, but there's not enough time between then and when it starts warming up again. Doesn't help when winter doesn't start until mid June and then is finished by July! Also, the asparagus bed is not protected by the chooks so it's been getting scratched up a bit. I did have most of my chooks under control until we went away and the pet pigs busted the death row chickens out! So now there's about 10 chooks and roosters getting their revenge for me locking them away!
My little rainbow chard seedlings
I've had a couple of eggplants for the last couple of years. They died off, but this one has started re-shooting, so I thought I'd see if it comes back.
The other thing I brought back from my holiday was seaweed and sea water. I only brought a small amount of seaweed. Half I put into my worm/compost bin and the other half went into a 200L drum for a batch of liquid manure. Added to this was: the sea water (10L), wheelbarrow load of cow manure, some human urine, and topped up with fresh water. If my comfrey hadn't also been decimated by the chooks, I would've added some of that, and as I write this I remembered aloe vera, so I'll chop up some of that to add to it. I'll stir this brew every day for about a month - it's ready when it smells better than it does right now! I'll then dilute it about 10 to 1 and water my plants.
I did have a full wheelbarrow of manure, but only thought to take a photo halfway through.
Seaweed - I did give it a quick hose off before adding it to the compost and 200L drum.
All you people in the southern states will be getting excited about Spring planting, but for us up here the growing just gets harder from now on. We have a very short spring. As it'll be hot as very soon, the challenge is to get plants in now and get them well established before it gets too hot. Once it's hot, planting seedlings is like burning money!
Now all we need is some rain.............