Sunday, August 23, 2009

Before & After.

Lot of photos to look at today, may need a cuppa for this one. lol

Today was my first real play in the vegie patch this year. In Late November last year my doctor told me to rest my ankle and tone the gardening right back. I have bad legs most of my life, but the ankle was a new problem. As I don't play sports, the garden was blamed for my swollen and very sore ankle.

I was devastated and for a while I wouldn't go on a gardening forum I live at and a couple of other garden forums I loved to stop by and chat with other gardeners. Even my depression flared up as I found it so hard.

That is when I took up quilting for a new interest and something to keep me sane.

Well the ankle is still not much better, I have changed doctors and bugger it.... I'm gardening.

My poor garden, over run with winter weeds but with lots of compost, chook waste and bunny bedding being put around the areas while I moped and sewed.

Lets take a look at the before photos I took this morning and the help I rounded up, to play along side of me. Then the end results.

This area was last years tomatoes, capsicums & leeks. Picked the last 3 capsicums for the kitchen the rest of the plants & weeds were either fed to the ducks, chooks or compost bay.

Pat tackled this area as I was busy elsewhere in the garden. Not only that, my ankle doesn't have the strength to use a garden fork to turn such a big area over.

The photos are partly in the shade as it was early in the morning when I took them.

This is the area I worked in. Look at last years asparagus spears. I have never had them in this condition before. I started at the front and as I worked towards the back.... weeds were removed and the old stalks cut off at ground level.

Next to be done was last years silverbeet and Italian parsley. I removed what stakes I could manage and Pat did the rest of them.

By this time the rabbits, ducks & chooks were having a very green weedy breakfast. Thank goodness also for the open compost bay for the dead asparagus spears.

It was a real working bee too. Everyone was pulling their weight, cats were sunning themselves in the windows while they watched and snoozed. Chooks were turning over all their boxes of weeds I had pulled. Plus the wheel barrow loads Pat had pulled out as he turned over the area at the back.

Ducks were on bug, slug and snail patrol. They had so much fun and were quacking non stop.

All seven ducks had a real talk fest going on in the broad beans that our "good gardening buddy" Pepe had sown for us. Found baby bean pods on them today. mrgreen

Once the asparagus was cleaned up the ducks were checking the area out. This became a problem as their webbed feet where starting to damage the tender spears. So I sacked them and popped them back in their run.

It was very hard having them under foot as Clancy wasn't there to be hand fed curl grubs and no Roz to pull on my pants asking for her share. cry

Girls were thinking it was Christmas I am sure. So many weeds and greens for them to scratch over. Lovely yummy yellow egg yokes will be made from all their work. I haven't bought eggs for 10 years now.

We had a few breaks as the morning wore on. Coffee, skinny coke and some apple/rhubarb and custard for morning tea. I think the apple & rhubarb tasted even better today.

So now your've seen the messy garden and my lovely helpers.

The unveling of my vegie patch with help from Pat and the feathery ones.

Last summer was the first year this part of the no-dig garden was used. This second season will have tomatoes growing there. Over the months I had added rabbit hutch bedding and chicken litter when the chook run and bedding area was cleaned out.

I raked it over and added 3 large bags of sheep manure that my sister supplies me with. Because I don't pay for it, I was able to add that extra bag.

Look at the asparagus area now, all weeded and cut back. Also spread over their area was sheep manure as well as around the silverbeet. Moved the little bird bath over to this area as I can fill it when I water the plants.

Those weeds at the front left will be removed tomorrow. By about this time both Pat was tired and breathless (wind had come up) and my ankle was hurting.

You can see where Pat weeded as he turned over the soil for me. I kept a close eye on him, that he didn't over do it. He's having a lay down now as he's tired and needs to rest.

The garden looks loved again doesn't it?? Tomorrow I'll cover all that sheep manure with compost. Then here is hoping next pay I'll have the first of our tomatoes in for the 09/10 season.

Still lots to do, but Rome wasn't build in a day...... about a fortnight wasn't it question

Until next time.... hoo roo.

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Quiltin' Sandy said...

Great work, lucky- it is tiring but when you get to pick the fruits of your labour, it is all worthwhile.:0)
We only have a small vegie garde, a lot of the backyard is concrete- Italin owners before we came here- they LOVE concrete. DH has chillies growing, the bushes are just starting to shoot again- pruned back hard. He has onions in, a couple of tomato plants- he likes "Grosse Lisse" and the beefsteak ones. Has just put in bean seed, had to fence it off as Honey keeps licking the blood and bone. Also have a yellow passion. vine which gave us heaps of fruit this year, rhubarb, and silverbeet. Will grow some apple cues later too, I hope. I have parsley, mint, sage, garlic chives, marjoram and thyme. Wish we had a bigger yard. We had to pull our roses out in the front yard, and have pansies and stocks planted. Big tubs in backyard of snapdragons- they are quite tall and pretty colours. Bye for now!

Lucky-1 said...

Thanks Sandy.

Just wondering what does the yellow passion fruit taste like? We are planting a couple of new ones and have wondered about these other coloured ones.

Karen's Korner said...

Well worth the effort. The before and after photos really show the difference.

Just out of interest I notice that your fence is colourbond - how do you find the reflected heat from it onto your plants in the summer?

Lucky-1 said...

Thanks Karen. I mulch the plants thickly and I don't plant so close to the fence in the summer months. We have old wardrobe wood between the lemon tree and fence as the leaves burnt the first summer.

Chris said...

I could feel your reinvigoration as I was reading that one! Good on you for living your life and enjoying what there is to be had.

I could almost hear all the ducks and chickens making a fuss, and by the way, I have that cherub statue in my yard too. :)

The garden looks great too! Congratulations on the rubarb success, and what a delicious feast that would have been. :)

Lucky-1 said...

Thanks Chris. Rhubarb was just such a reward after trying to grow the plant for such a long time.

Nallerang Creek Farm said...

Lucky, glad to hear you're getting back into the garden. It's pretty awful when you can't, isn't it? I had two separate injuries over two seasons which put me out for months on end and my garden, particularly the vegies, went rather feral, so I do understand.

All the very best... keep plugging at it a little each time. Step by step, as they say!