Spring and Summer wrap up

I thought since we are into a new season now I would do a quick summary of what worked and didn’t work for us last season. As you all know we had a bumper chili season and we now have jars upon jars of preserved chilies and lots of curry paste both red and green. We are now in the process of drying some to make chili powder and the bushes are still producing.

Our mangoes turned out amazing I was able to give lots away and freeze some and also make mango sorbet. The harvest wasn’t as great as last years but we still managed to get a small bounty. The tree is going to have a prune in the next few weeks.

In the vegetable patch we had success with our corn and capsicums, basil, thyme and oregano. Our tomatoes did have a problem with grubs invading them so the supply wasn’t plentiful this year. The capsicums had the same problem. Having said that the grubs had a late start this season and are only now becoming a problem I believe that is why we had such a successful yield from our chillis.

In the aquaponics our turmeric went nuts as did our snow peas. We have managed to transplant a few strawberry plants. We got lots of garlic from the system. The spring onions were by far the most successful produce which we have put to good use.

Our two experiments with the snake beans and popcorn have been a resounding success the popcorn now has male flowers and the snake beans are climbing well and are starting to flower.

So I have popped up some of my favorite pics from this season to reminisce. Now back into the garden to prep it for winter.


Welcome to Autumn

Hi all,

Not much  has been happening in the aquaponics or vegetable patch, hence the lack of posts of late. However we are now ramping up our seedlings ready for winter. I have popped up some pics of our seedlings starting to sprout. We have decided so far to try broccoli, broccolini, brussel sprouts, coriander, cucumber, english spinach, broad beans and silver beet so far.

Male flowers are starting to appear on the popcorn which is exciting. I cant wait to see what the finished product looks like. I have also added some pics of our volunteer strawberry plants from the compost heap that have settled in  nicely to the aquaponics. We did have a few flowers but they didn’t set as we have had a few issues with PH levels in the system of late. Our Thai basil is starting to flower so it is almost time to start saving seeds for next season and prepping the garden beds for the new winter crop which will be happening in the next week. We will be over wintering our chilies and we will see what survives as this is their second season.

In the next few months we are starting two new projects. We are making an IBC wicking bed which will are not sure what is going in it once established. We are also making a pond out of another IBC and are hoping to put in some small native fish and grow some horseradish, wasabi and water chestnuts. So stay tuned for our new projects.


Mango sorbet and garden update

Hi all,

As usual a crazy few weeks I now have a beautiful new niece :). So in the garden we have been inundated in mangoes and this morning I decided to make some mango sorbet. It took all day but it was worth it. The texture was amazing creamy and sweet. I have popped some pics up of the result.

Our popcorn experiment has worked amazingly the plants have taken well and I am hoping we will get some corn soon to have a go at making our own home grown popcorn. We also harvested some perch from the tanks and used it for beer battered fish and chips. Wow it was amazing I was a bit sceptical about how it was going to turn out it totally exceeded my expectations.

We have spent today in the patch pulling up some plants that have had their day and planting out some seeds for our autumn/winter garden. I plan on getting a spread sheet happening to track what needs to be planted and what needs to be harvested so we have an idea of our seasonal varieties that are available.

So that’s an insight into our super busy time in the patch. I am looking at popping in some Asian greens for stir-fry’s this weekend and I will keep you updated as to the happenings in the patch and aquaponics.IMG_4622[1]IMG_4607[1]IMG_4602[1]IMG_4600[1]

Oh the heat

Hi all,

Hope everyone in WA has been staying out of the heat. I haven’t posted much in the last week as the kids went back to school hence the pictures I have included. We have also been bracing ourselves for the onslaught of this heatwave which might I add has not been pleasant at all. I have attached some pics of the shade sails going up. We have managed to save most of the chili and capsicum plants by draping blankets over them.

We did have a bonus over the last few weeks. We have harvested heaps of garlic (yummm) and have had a few rock melons pop up and set so we will have lots to harvest in the next few months. The mangos are coming along nicely I am hoping this hot weather will ripen them, snake beans are in the ground now and pop corn shoots are going in this week.

On a sour note the air compressor for the aquaponics is about to fail. We have tried compressors and blowers and cant seem to get more than 12 – 18 months out of a single machine .If anybody had success with other alternatives. Please leave feedback.

I have popped up a pic of the turmeric flowering at the moment I love the amazing colours within the flower.

I will try and post more regularly now the kids are back at school.


Crazy experiments

Hi all,

This week was another busy week but I managed to squeeze in another experiment in the garden. I grabbed some popcorn out of the cupboard and popped a few kernels into some seedling trays with some potting mix to see what happened. Again I went out to water this morning and there were some corn seedlings in the tray. I was amazed now to see what is going to happen next. The snake bean seedlings are coming along nicely should be ready to be planted out into the kids patch some time this weekend.

I have popped up another update of our rock melon in the aquaponics system we now have two huge rock melons on the vine and we now have to look at constructing a sling to hold them up.

Our mangos are almost ready to be picked I have two eager kids ready to tuck into them when they are ready. It doesn’t look to be a huge harvest this year with the mangos but there should be enough to go round for some meals and sorbet.

I also popped up a pic of our first flower forming on our pumpkin vine which is in the kids patch we are looking at growing it around the mango tree at this stage but we will see where it ends up.

So that is our weekly update. We are looking at doing lots of garden maintenance this weekend and I will pop up an update from our worm far which is cranking along next time. Happy Australia Day hope you have a good one !!!!


Busy, Busy, Busy

Hi all,

Well what can I say our house is chaos at the moment. School holidays almost over so the prep for school begins. We have also been busy preserving our Jalapenos from our monster haul. We use a recipe we found off YouTube last year and it is awesome the Jalapenos stay nice and crunchy we are still using what is left from last years batch on tacos and pizzas but there isn’t many left. I am glad we made more.

I have also popped up a few picks of our first rockmelon in the aquaponics bed. We are going to train it up over a trellis and so far so good it is nice and heathy.

I have also started a new experiment and have popped some photos up. I bought some snake beans from our local greengrocer and saved the seeds from it (it is really hard to get snake bean seeds in WA) I planted them last week and I was so surprised I went to water the garden on Monday and the seeds had germinated. So now we wait and see what happens to them. It might be a bit late though I am not sure of the growing season for Perth.

So that is the chaotic week that was. Now I am off to watch a storm that is starting.

Planning for the next season

Hi all,

This week we have been busy harvesting capsicums, chillies and sweet chillies. I have popped a pic up of todays harvest from the kids patch. The Jalapenos are going to be pickled for tacos and pizzas and cayenne’s will be made into a curry paste for Thai curry’s. We do expect double that by the end of the season. These plants were overwintered and have done really well in their second year.

I have popped a pic up of a mystery citrus that we have growing in the garden it looks like a finger lime but it doesn’t look like one when cut open I am thinking it may be a cross with something else. Any information would be helpful I have no idea what to use it for.

We are also planning for the autumn/winter crops to go in soon . I know it is still summer but we check what seeds we have , we then think about what went well last year in the patch and plan for that taking into consideration varying weather patterns.

So that was our busy week in the patch.