In the Garden: July 2008


The wattles are in splendid bloom at present. (above planted in 2005).  The orchard is all quiet except for many awaiting pruning jobs.

The veggie patch is over wintering nicely, with carrots, beetroot, silverbeet, celery, bok choi and lettuce all for the picking at present.  Still waiting on the broad beans to pod.  And the pumpkins in the shed are keeping well, although I did toss a couple out as they got soft spots.

While I was weeding in amongst the self sown broad beans, I noticed some potatoes had also grown wild.  I think they are old Kenebecs I grew many many years ago. They are a nice addition in winter :



This year I decided not to plant the lemon grass in the garden as it has completely died and rotted over winter the last two times.  So I’ve kept it in a pot in the glasshouse, and so far so good.  All going well, I’ll divide it in spring and plant some in the garden next year, and keep one growing in the pot:



It’s also that time of year one thinks about planting more trees.  I bought 100 tube stock of wattles and banksias and the like:


I’ll be planting them out maybe next month or so.  I was looking back at the history (blogs are better than keeping a diary <g>) and of the ones I planted in 2005, not that many survived. The later planting in 2004 was much more successful.  But the planting in 2004 I did bucket water regularly over that summer, whereas the 2005 planting I didn’t water as much, and they were planted in hard to grow spots, plus the wallabies and kangaroos ate a lot of them.  Maybe because of the on going years of low rainfall, they’ve attacked the plants more, or maybe because they now identify the tree guards with food <g>

To show you what I mean, I had bought this really nice advanced banksia which I was going to use to replace some of the old proteas that had died.  I watered it and left the pot out over night, and this is what the kangaroos left me:



They stripped it back to the stalk. 

Today as I was taking these photos, the local family of roos was on the western lawn. In this picture, six of the seven have joeys in the pouch. I’ve seen a few peek out and have a look around.  I think I’ll need to get more inventive over the tree guards I use this time around.



Of the earlier plantings, some of the plants are doing really well. These eucalypts were planted in late winter, early spring 2004, and now are bout 15 foot tall:


And some of the wattles, also planted in 2004 really brighten up a winters day:




The weather:  June was very mild and relatively dry.  I think it was about half the usual rainfall and a couple of degree Celsius above average.  But July has ben cold (back to normal), and we’re starting to get some decent rains.  A lot of the country is in dire need of water, with towns not that far North of here being down to less than 10% of storage in the middle of winter which is the wet season here.  You know it is dry when people welcome the rain in winter.  Fingers crossed this year the drought breaks, there’s a lot of kangaroos and plants at stake.