Is there a gardening thread? I haven't seen one but I've seen lots of posts about people's veggie growing tips. How about we help each other out?
Planted first garden in about ten years today.
Lettuce, broccoli, swedes, kale, thyme, parsley. Raised bed under straw. Peas and carrots go in tonorrow.
Looking forward to growing spuds, probably in buckets or bags because I heard it's an easier way to prevent disease incursion.
I didn't grow anything in summer due to the drought but buried copious fish frames in the beds.
mixed in compost and mulched heavily once soil moisture was replenished from the Feb rains.
planted early March.
Just harvested first crop of Kale.
been pretty ideal growing conditions.
spraying with chilli/garlic to control grasshoppers and cabbage moth.
Where are you Patrick?
A good tip is to grow all the things that like an alkaline soil together and all the things that like an acidic soil together and adjust soil accordingly if you need to. Cheap ph testing kits from Bunnings work fine.
And water with a seaweed solution every couple of weeks or even better make your own manure tea.
Gardening Australia magazines and website is great for info about veggies.
And look into companion planting. Eg basil with tomatoes, you can grow climbing beans/ peas up sweet corn stalks.
Love my veggie garden, just rejuvenated it for autumn planting
And try your best to use organic methods instead of pesticides or synthetic fertilisers etc
Ours is charging along too, but I reckon we’re 3-4 weeks from first crops. Ripped out summer crop from 2 beds a few weeks ago, still got a single bed with a tomato plant that won’t give up and is giving us 5 or so egg sized Roma per day.
For the other beds took a long weekend, heavily composted, grabbed a heap of soil from neighbours chook pen and threw down a bunch of mulch once the seedlings were in. Got kale, cabbage, Asian greens, snow peas, broccoli in now. Going to harvest the last lot of tomatoes this weekend, clean up the bed and recompost / chook poo it before slinging in some Brussels sprouts, carrots, kale and broad beans into that and a couple of smaller beds.
Recommend making a couple of drop over greenhouses if you live in an area that gets cold. (easy to do from PVC or you can pick them up from bunnings / ALDI pretty cheap)
Keen for anyone’s advice on getting worms, on crop rotation season to season, and natural pest control (thanks FR for the chilli tip). And any other tips or ideas.
Beer traps for snails, just pour a bit into a shallow plastic container and leave out overnight.
Worms should come in naturally as you enrich the soil. And when you’re turning the soil over use a fork, not a spade so you don’t chop them in half
We're getting lots of little tomatoes each day, lettuce when we need it, and have planted new fruit trees. I'll boil the chillies in water, add tomato leaves, for a similar spray. Got a little cabbage that's heading already, not bad. The apples this season were outrageous. The Ms wants to set up hydroponics so will probably do that which should be fun. Her design of planter box a few years ago (made from a broccoli box) has been excellent and you can grow pretty good yields with the most minimum maintenance.
Great to hear about everyone's gardens and methods.
White clay and rock here. I bought a coupla metres of veggie mix soil and heaped it to form a bed. Had straw & hay on the property. Yep, organic methods in use. Growing particular ph loving crops togther makes sense, hadn't thought of that. Cheers.
Thanks GF - great tips.
Beer soaked snails will be a hit with the chooks!
if you've got nematodes affecting your brassicas (broc, kale, asian greens) then grow marigolds beside them.
I can't grow tomatoes here (except cherry toms that spring up in compost) because of viruses in soil.
Love this thread!
Try buying a packet of seeds at the moment, everywhere is sold out.
Fortunately I got most of what I needed about a month ago.
The only thing I could not get was celery seeds
Fresh and organic is the best thing for your immune system.
One lesson this virus has taught me is the need to save seeds, in the past it was too easy just to go into town and buy half a dozen punnets of vege seedlings once a month.
One positive from this virus is that more people are growing their own food.
You've really changed Craig from what I remember.
Opinions on Bokashi composting bins? Good, bad or better options? Only got a small garden bed in the burbs.
composting is a bit of an art. hard to get the mix right, and not end up with a smelly mess.
you need plenty of dry material on hand, to mix with wet veggie scraps.
I've got chooks and ducks, so use their digestive systems and microbiome to break down the organic material.
I've been steadily ramping up my food growing but I've been doing herbs for years- rosemary, thyme, sage, parsley, dill, basil, chamomile, coriander, oregano, chives, mint, lavender and shisa (Japanese basil). Also, tomatoes, strawberries and uzu which is another type of Japanese citrus. I have two maple trees that drop tons of leaves in autumn and they all get swept into my garden beds, helps protect against the snow and frost. About now is when I remove the top layer of leaves and the rotting ones I till into the soil, makes a great mulch.
I'm relatively new to gardening but love it. I seem to have a bit of a green thumb because mostly anything I plant seems to thrive. I find it very therapeutic. I love getting out and digging, trimming and micro-weeding. Love cooking with my own fresh produce. It's very satisfying.
Agreed, great thread.
Neem Oil and Dipel have been a good natural way of controlling pests for me, along with companion planting such as Marigolds as mentioned (although they can grow pretty big, had to rip a few out!).
Funnily enough purple kale has been a fantastic bait to keep pests off my green kale. A happy little accident. Purple grows a lot taller than curly too, so 1 purple in the middle of 4 green and the pests (caterpillars, mites, etc.) don't even touch the green kale.
sounds vaguely illegal Zen.
is that the same as pulling weeds out?
Ha Free, it's my term for just zoning out and trying to get every single little weed out. I'm really pedantic that way. I can weed for hours.
come and have a crack at the onion weed in my garden. can spend hours in there and next day come back and it's all there again.
instead of a compost bin you could try a worm farm (i think that's what they are called0. get a plastic plumbing or cardboard pipe about 20+ wide and 40cm length. drill a lot of holes about finger size in the bottom half of it. bury 2/3 into garden and put your organic waste in there. no onions. put a few around the garden. if you have a big family and lots of waste. it might get overwhelmed but works well with modest amounts of waste. oh yeah, put a lid on it.
I'll give it a go. Thanks!
If you cant find seedlings or seeds due to being sold out, you can pretty much grow most vegetables from seed you get from bought ones (as long as not sterile) and can grow lots of vegetables from other vegetables like potatoes, garlic, sweet potato etc and also some vegetables from disregarded tops or roots, like spring onion, celery, i think even lettuce.
like FR, I got the beds all prepped in summer, then seeded with the good Feb rains. It's all thriving - cucumbers, carrots, cabbage, broccoli, Ethiopian Kale, lettuce, endive, .....
amazing self-sown lettuce crop came up amongst the carrots. Pays to leave some good ones to go to seed and get the next year bonus crop.
having major issues with aphid infestations right now - mainly on the womboks and starting to get onto the brocolli - anyone got any tips on controlling them?
a cool crop also going on is lufa - the fruit dries out to create the big sponge-type thing. Great for the shower scrub, but also the kitchen sink scrubber for a week or two then just put in the compost or worm farm, and another one ready to go.
and sweet potato weevil - bastard has destroyed any hope of growing that crop here - anyone have any experience with that one?
I've tried and tried leaving aphids for the lady bugs larvae to take care off, with no success.
Thankfully I usually don't get gnarly aphids until spring, when the autumn/winter crops is pretty much done.
I've used something called eco-oil and that seemed to work. pretty sure it's organic and won't harm other insects.
Freeride, do you have any specific recipe to make your chilli/garlic spray?
I buy the ready made one in a bulk container and dilute it in a spray bottle.
I've made my own before, but this is better value.
I use diluted dish washing liquid in a spray bottle for aphids, fine for plants. Anyone with carrot fly could try growing carrots in deep pots/containers raised 3ft off the ground. If growing brassicas remember to rotate crops to avoid club root. Leave a couple of years before planting other brassicas, hard to get rid of once its in the ground.
Tried mooli/daikon in pots and it worked well. Fast growing and versatile veg, leaves and root tasty raw or cooked.
Would like to hear any alternative ways to control slugs/snails. Beer traps are good but don't trap enough of the slippery buggers.
go outside with a torch at night and get them.
eggshells crushed up around the seedlings stop them to a degree.
bake the eggshells first to make them hard and crisp, then crush in a mortar and pestle.
I got ducks now, no more slugs and snails. they fucking decimate those things.
Neighbours got a couple of ducks might have to tap him up. Night patrol and eggshells sound good.
Saw hugh fearnly make slug kebabs on tv but not convinced.
Also heard something about coffee grinds deterring snails but haven't tried it myself.
I've used eco-oil on aphids and it seems to work ok, you may need to do a couple of sprays.
Freeride you can grow tomatoes in large pots if your soil isn't able to, I grew them in half wine barrels at my old place.
What ever you do don't use snail bait, I'm even suss on the "pet safe" one. Blue-tongue lizards, birds and other animals eat it and its fucking ruthless. Not to mention dogs if they are greedy like mine
Worms love the coffee grids goofy
fcuk just went outside and picked off a half dozen full sized snails set to wreak havoc.
Ducks slacking off!
Midnight snack for the ducks.
Coffee is a good one ill give that a whirl. Mate uses the blue slug pellets on his allotment, absolute carnage and they just lie rotting and attracting flies. Eye opener how many there are on the hunt for veg.
Nearly lost my beagle when I was a boy from snail bait. Lost a few dogs on the farm after they ate bones of animals who died from 10-80
Gardening Threads Swellnet you never cease to amaze me.
Aiming too high we went Sprouts ticked off 4 tasks for school, growing alfalfa.
If i want gardening advice i'm going to costa
Get your snow peas in if you haven't already and also something for them to climb on..Love those things.
Gotta have a good veggie garden, nothing like being able to just wander out and rustle up a feed. Awesome to get the kids involved, my kids eat everything, and most of it raw. Upped stumps and moved from the sunny coast to MNC almost 2 years ago now. Hardest part was leaving behind the mega veg garden, and all the mature fruit trees we had. Our whole deal has always been about eating self sufficiently, and healthy. New place has been a lot of work, mainly thus far on the buildings and stuff. We've been growing fruit and veg, but it's been a ramshackle affair. The covid thing has put a bit more emphasis on getting it all set up better, a bit more motivation and less distraction to get shit happening! Just set up a big 2 bay composting area that I can access with the tractor. We have ducks, chickens, and 2 horses for manure. So that turned through the compost heat and cooked is gold. Just put down a 6mx1.8m concrete slab to put my bandsaw mill on. Will be making a bunch of big planter boxes out of hardwood sleepers all cut and milled on the property. Long game wise we've planted a variety of fruit trees in a dedicated orchard paddock, and I've fenced it all off to keep the wallabies out. Been a busy week!
Sounds like an awesome setup.
Be good to see some photos of everyone’s setups, from balcony planting boxes to mini Farms.
Here’s a few photos of one of our veggie gardens . Got another one not in the shots. Also got fruit trees. Possibly hundreds of varieties .
thanks for the feedback re aphids - think i'll try some neem oil first, and just read about a diluted pure castille soap spray, will try alternating these two.
someone mentioned diakon - they're a winner too, got a good patch of them going, very fast, and a good filler for the mixed veggie boxes.
cassava has been a good crop too, given I couldnt grow the sweet potatos anymore, highly productive and not bad added to a stew/casserole. My Brazilian vege box customers love em, along with the plantains
I'll try to upload a pic of the patch - if i can learn how
Awesome set up Blowin. I'm hoping to have something similar eventually, but it'll be far smaller, and I'm on a south facing slope surrounding by trees... In the mean time I'm collecting pretty much every bit of plant matter that falls on our property and shifting it into the yard to be broken down into soil. There's heaps of fungal activity going on which is awesome. Lots of different mushrooms fruiting. I'm currently battling rats (not using bait or snap traps for fear of collateral kills) which I would gladly trade for snails any day. The buggers are digging up and eating the seeds I'm planting by burrowing under the cages I'm putting over them. Haven't had any tomatoes yet (rat), but I've had heaps of greens, a few beans, a pomegranate, and a handful of autumn raspberries. I've got a vegepod and it's been an absolute literal (plant) life saver over this brutal summer we've had. It's excellent at germinating seeds and growing leafy things.
Deleted post. Photos turned out average
I've been caught out big time. Didn't shift gears between seasons. In fact, didn't prepare for winter veges at all - clean dropped the ball.
Few weekends back I planted seeds for broccoli, silverbeet, spinach, and kale, and all of them have begun to shoot. While this weekend I planted peas and carrots. Gonna take a while before I see much of anything.
Still, the beds are ready.
...and here's the last of the Reaper's. Incredible little plant, totally disproportionate in every way: each fruit has enough capsaicin to burn the lips off a blue whale, and the bush itself, while only two foot high, has pumped out over 100 chillis so far.
How’s the shape and texture of the fruit !
It’s like it’s gurning and puckered from its own acidity.
Looks healthy as fuck.
Burn the lips off a blue whale....classic.
And the 'reaper' comes not from the diabolical heat but because each one has a small pointed tail.
Crazy li'l fruit.
With the amount of chilli talk around here of late, i wouldn't be surprised if my missus starts posting, i like hot and spicy food, but im constantly telling her to please leave out the chilli, it's like everything has to have chilli in it and if it doesn't it has to have chilli sauce on it.