Monday, December 6, 2010

Dirt Girl World?

I thought when we moved to Melbourne that growing a vegie garden would be quite a bit easier than in New Zealand. Heaps of sunshine, with loads of rain over this past season.
We are not the greatest at gardening but  our vegie garden in NZ was huge - massive and we grew organically! We mostly filled it with potatoes, pumpkin and zuchini/marrow (depending how quick we got out to pick them). Tomatoes were easy and peas were easy 'peasy'.

So this winter in our new house which came with ready set up vegetable patches, we dug up and dug in some seedlings. There are two patches. The first we filled with 3 rows of potatoes and peas were planted along the back by the fence. The other patch we planted beetroot, tomotoes, celery, cucumbers and aubergine. I had seen a neighbour in Northcote successfully grow Aubergine so I was quite excited that I would be able to have my own. I also have some pots around the garden with Rhubarb, strawberries, mesclun mix and herbs. And M came home from school with some dwarf beans he had started from seed in a cup with cotton wool, so we put them along side the shed.

The weekend finally gave us a break from the the storms and so I got out to weed.
D came out to help.
The insects and nettle came out to defend what they thought was theirs.
And I got rather annoyed at how little our plants seem to be growing.
The peas had died. I knew that ages ago. I really thought they were the simplest thing to grow. Obviously wrong.
The cucumbers were already a 2nd lot that had been re-planted because the first ones had died.
The aubergine plants I discovered once I weeded had survived better than I thought, and we have only lost one. But like the cucumbers, they are very very slow growing. And I'm pretty sure they should be starting to produce fruit now or soon.
The beetroots - I just cant tell. A couple are going to seed already and others look far smaller than they should be for the amount of time they have been in the ground.
Tomatoes  - huh? I guess they are doing ok in the parts where birds are not pecking them.
The most successful vegetables looks to be the celery.

I layed down some sugar cane mulch, which may be too late in the season now to help, but if it saves me from weeding and helps protect the plants then YEAH 4 US!

I dont know if it's the weather? Or the insects? The birds? The soil? The kids (who pick, pull up and stand on it all - even the stuff in pots), or is it just me and S are rubbish at keeping a vegie garden?

Good news is, the grape vine over the pergola which we were convinced was just an ornamental, looks like it might be starting to fruit. The next month or 2 will reveal all.

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