Sunday, November 30, 2008

The dream begins...

What we do to try and provide our own requirements is to a certain degree based on the permaculture principles, however when your block is as small as ours there are certain compromises to be made. Our front garden is made up mostly of ornamentals some of which I'm proud to say are native... Pretty much what we have is inherited from the previous owners, neither myself nor Sarah Belly are very knowledgeable regarding ornamentals. There is also a miniature peach tree, a miniature nectarine, two miniature apples, a kalamata olive (a must in a very European/Mediteranean Brunswick), several artichokes and as of recently a 2.5*1.2m raised bed (owned & operated by Sarah Belly).

In the back garden we have a laundry containing the hot water service which gives us a warm microclimate for homebrewing. Besides this we have a chook run and hen house, 4 raised beds, and one standard (non-raised) bed. Initially I had to construct raised beds along one boundary to lift vegs out of the reach of the roots of a neighbours peppercorn tree. Very shortly after I had lost blood sweat and tears constructing the raised beds (an accident prone with his first angle grinder experience), they removed the tree...

Here is the first raised bed, (along with the wicking experiment), the wick was never going to work in a high raised bed built with the "no dig" method as the drainage is too good and you can't create a shallow enough sink to wick from, kids learn from my mistakes...

Then the second smaller one...
Jemima and mascara were suitably impressed..

Then there were four...

O.K. so they weren't pretty in the classical sense, but, they are very practical and extremely productive. imagine them with healthy, tasty, fresh veg pouring out of them.

Cheers Aldrum

To Introduce Ourselves...

Hello and welcome to the first Hope Farm journal post. This journal is our attempt to maintain some order in our garden. Its number one purpose is to remind us what we did, when we did it, and whether or not this improved our yields.

First to introduce, there are two authors Aldrum and Sarah Belly, we live on a small property in a suburb ten minutes to Melbourne's north, on this property we try to grow or produce most of our own food. We do not claim to be self sufficient, however, at certain times of the year we do get pretty close.

Living with us is a small dog named Basil who was found by the council dog catcher at a train station with paws stained with paint, amongst empty spray paint cans, nearby a freshly done mural. We have adopted her and reformed her delinquent behaviour.

Also living with us are four chickens; Jemima, Mascara safety trial no. 32a, Steve mcqueen and Tigerella
queen of the jungle. They are productive, happy chooks who have no concerns about Basil.

I spend part of my time as a medical scientist, part as a musician and part as a keen horticulturalist. Sarah
Belly spends part of her time as a corporate high flyer, part as a dancer, and part as an amazing cook.

In this Blog I (Aldrum) will record my garden thoughts and activities and Sarah Belly will amaze us with recipes and ideas for best use of the harvest.

Over the next few posts I will try and establish where we are up to and what has been done so far.

heers Aldrum