A stroll through the garden – October 2017

Duchess and I have decided to take you on a stroll through our garden.

It has been a dry and cold winter and we are hoping to get some spring rain sometime soon. In fact I had a grin from ear to ear one morning earlier this week as we received just a few mls – it was nice to watch and listen to the rain falling.

The garden is coming along nicely and our citrus are now happy with their new home, luckily they survived the harsh frosts, unlike many in the area.

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Smoked Trout

Some months ago, we took our first drive from our new home, across the mountains, to beautiful Bright – what a treat. The drive is an easy five to six hours, and the scenery is simply sensational! As we climbed the winding roads, the scenery continued to change. There were eagles soaring, incredible panoramas and great anticipation for a fun few days ahead. It was autumn and Bright in autumn is always a stunning canvas of autumnal colour. Continue reading

Giant Broccoli

At the beginning of this year I planted broccoli, both the Purple Sprouting, and the pretty lime green Romanesco varieties. The plants grew… and they grew… and they grew… They were massive, but no flowers appeared, just more leaves and they got taller. I was getting ready to pull them out and send them over to Maggie’s chooks, when someone mentioned that dumping some ash from the fire around them may spur them into flowering mode. Continue reading

Curing Your Own Olives…

This year I was gifted an abundance of olives, so with a recipe given to me by my mother, I set to work. The first batch of olives came from our family home in a little town called Navarre. Picked by Gary, my two sisters and myself. To prepare the olives, they were sorted and washed, then each olive had to be cut with a knife (a tedious, but necessary part of the process to allow the brine to penetrate the olive, removing the bitterness and acting as a preservative). Next I prepared the brine and chilled it down, then with the blackest olives in one (food grade) bucket, and the greener ones in another, I poured in the brine, ensuring they were well covered, popped a plate on top to hold them down, and finally put them on our front porch where it is nice and cool. Continue reading

Rhubarb & Frosts…

As mentioned in my last post, we recently endured a spate of heavy frosts. While the visual effects were stunning, the aftermath in the gardens has been quite destructive! Citrus, lemons, limes, mandarins, etc literally froze on the tree, and because there was no reprieve from the frosts – they just kept coming, night after night after night, the fruit did not recover and turned to mush. Initially the fruit looked perfectly normal, but when you touched it, it was soft and squishy, and finally it just fell from the trees. That is not all, people in the district fear that their precious trees may not recover from the trauma, and it is the centre of many conversations within the community. That is just the citrus trees… There has been so much more destruction in the garden, and many have lost so, so many of their treasured plants and trees. Fortunately we were very lucky and my wonderful husband’s diligence saved so much. Continue reading

The Frozen Garden!

We have recently endured a spate of heavy frosts, and for us it was very cold – minus 7.6 celsius etc. The first morning I got up and wandered down to the vegie patch, before heading into the garden for the community in Stratford. As I worked in the garden there I was kicking myself for not having got up earlier and taken photos of the beauty that a frost creates. I know that it also causes devastation, but all I saw was beauty. Continue reading

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