Friday, 28 December 2007

potatoes and canners

Hurrah! This year we were able to harvest some home grown potatoes for Xmas lunch



And to top it all off, my new toy arrived from the US today! It's a canning unit (basically a big pressure cooker that I can use to make my own canned / bottled veges, sauces etc. Saved about $250 buying it from the US even after taking postage into account, so was pretty happy with that!

Monday, 17 December 2007

mini-wildlife

This morning I saw this little cutie on the pole outside the bedroom window. It's a micro-bat of some type, but I'm not quite sure which variety. Picture 3 below will give you an idea of just how small it is.

Friday, 14 December 2007

December Garden Update

First, a few family photos!


So far the garden is coming along well - with just enough rain to keep it ticking along. I've been really impressed with how well the mulch keeps the water in the beds.

The berries are out of control! So far we have picked about 4 kg of brambleberries (L and centre), and it's promising to be a bumper year for the raspberries too



L to R - Violet Queen bean, Cherry Tree, Rhubarb (rhubarb, rhubarb!)




Some of this years garlic crop hanging up to dry (no vampires at our front door!), and the first of the corn has come up.


I'm hoping for a bumper year for tomatoes - here are just some of the plants we have growing under Jerry's Kew-garden-esque bird netted tomato house

Monday, 26 November 2007

Here chicky chicky chicky


We're chicken grandparents! So far 2 chicks have hatched, but number 2 is a bit camera shy

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

November garden update

The garden is flourishing, thanks to some recent rain. Today I planted out 8 tomato plants - it might be a bit early but we're off to Tassie next week so am hoping they will just plod along in our absence. If we do get a late frost I can just replace them with one of the 50 or so other seedlings in the greenhouse!!


L to R: food garden entrance, brambleberries, raspberries


L to R: Onions, snow peas (mange tout), and potatoes along the fenceline


L to R: our first cherries!, our new 22,500 L water tank on the hill - will be hooked up in the next few weeks.

If you want to see pics of my recent trip to HK wander over to our flikr site http://www.flickr.com/photos/nigeandgabs/

Friday, 5 October 2007

Floor Pt 3

Still not complete, so they are going to have to come back on Saturday to finish. It's really frustrating as although the job started on Monday they have only actually worked one full day on it. If they had been able to start on Monday and work to the plan they told us they had, it would be done by now (well except for the trim round the edges but we weren't expecting to need as much so can't help that delay)

However, most of the house is done now, and it's looking great. IT is so nice to finally have the one floor covering for all the open plan areas of the house



These are a couple of samples of undercutting, where they cut into the wall a bit and slide the floor in so it looks like it was there before the walls. The whole house was supposed to be like this but sadly, it was not to be.

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

New Floor pt 2

It's been an unexpectedly stressful process (why are tradespeople allergic to phoning you to tell you when they will be running late / not turning up at all???????), but progress is finally being made after a few days of not much happening. Luckily I'm really pleased with the way it's looking (Jerry hasn't seen it yet)!!

Our slab wasn't very level in places so they had to do some levelling first with some fast set cement type stuff




Lily is making the most of the pile of underlay!

Sunday, 30 September 2007

New floor pt 1

After many delays, it is finally time to say bye-bye to the threadbare carpet and get some new flooring in most of the house. Unfortunately that means:
  • packing up everything on shelves, in sideboards etc and moving it to one of the 3 bedrooms that are not being re-floored
  • dismantling and moving all the shelves / furniture etc
  • ripping up all the old carpet and underlay


So it's been a fun weekend of packing and moving!

It has also been a very dusty weekend. I was horrified to see the amount of dust coming from in the carpet, on the underlay, and even under the underlay! The haze in the photo on the left is the flash illuminating the dust in the air, and the brown on the floor in the right photo is dust - the slab is the gray streak you can see in the dust. Thank goodness the vacuum has an excellent dust filter!


I hope it's all worth it!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

More spring garden renovations

Jerry's work is never done. He spent last weekend redoing much of our fruit cage watering system - converting it all to either weeping hose or drippers that can all go under the mulch. He's also putting in a new tap to run the under-much weeping hose watering for our potato crop, and laid out weeping hose watering on a couple of our other beds. He also cut up some old cardboard sheets to put in between the beds to keep the weeds down. Oh, and for an encore he built an additional border of pavers around the main bed inside the fruit cage!

Well done Jerry!

Meanwhile the spring cabbages are coming along nicely, the broccoli still keeps on going, and my greenhouse tomato empire seems to be thriving (55 seedlings so far, all happily growing in recycled coffee cups from Jerry's work. Another 35 or so seeds are on the go on the germinating trays!)
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