A touch of green…

Screen shot 2014-05-27 at 6.13.28 PM

Bed 1: tomatoes, capsicums, strawberries

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Bed 2: lettuce, rocket, bok choi, Chinese cabbage

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Bed 3: sugar snap peas, two kinds of beans, beetroot, zucchini and sweet potato (the latter two not visible)

Screen shot 2014-05-27 at 6.14.29 PM

Worm Hilton: in the penthouse, the wormies and their latest meal, first floor: the worm tea department, and at basement level, extra guest accommodation for when the penthouse gets too full!

My vegetable garden is in at last.

The seedlings are still recovering from the shock of being transplanted, of going from dry, hot, cramped conditions to damp, coolness and space to spread.

In Bed 1, we have the fruiting heavy feeders: three kinds of tomato, two kinds of capsicums, a rhubarb crown and 6 strawberries.

In Bed 2, we have the light feeders: mixed lettuce, chinese cabbage, bok choi, rocket and spinach

In Bed 3, we have the nitrogen fixers and a couple of wild cards: sugar snap peas, butter beans and green beans, a sweet potato, some beetroot and 2 zucchini.

I concede that I may have gone a little mad with the tomatoes, but why else do I have a pressure canner, if not to bottle vast quantities of tomato sauce? And speaking of the pressure canner, with it I could also bottle the beetroot, beans, strawberries and capsicums, if I wasn’t already sure they’ll get eaten pretty quickly! Only 2 zucchini plants means that we won’t get inundated with giant marrow sized zucchini, and I can pick the flowers and the baby veg as I go. The sweet potato is a just because.  I won’t get much of a crop in terms of tubers, but you can eat the young leaves like spinach too. And I can’t do without a decent rhubarb crown. It’s one of my favourites, and the combination of rhubarb with strawberry in a nice shortcrust pastry pie is divine. And of course rhubarb and custard, rhubarb fool, rhubarb jam, rhubarb crumble…

The worm farm is going to see a lot more action than before. They’ll get wilted leaves, spent plants, the trimmings from our vegies, etc. In return, we’ll be getting quantities of black gold, aka worm tea, full of yummy stuff that the little vegies will enjoy, and in due course, fine crumbly worm castings to add to the soil. Worm Hilton will be humming!

And now, I will sit back and apart from a little watering, a little sprinkling of diluted worm tea and some encouraging words, it’s up to them.


12 thoughts on “A touch of green…

  1. tialys says:

    Worm tea? It’ll never catch on.

    • katechiconi says:

      It wouldn’t be first choice for me either, but then I’m not that partial to blood & bone either! Smells like what it is, works like magic, and the worm farm is a great way to get rid of vegie scraps that would otherwise go down the waste disposal or into landfill.

  2. anne54 says:

    That will be a fabulous crop. What are the beds that you have planted them in? I love worms. They are so hard working and all that they need are scraps!

    • katechiconi says:

      The beds are IBCs with the tops cut off, those white plastic cubes with a metal cage around them used for transporting liquids. Inside is a layer of stone, then two bales of lucerne hay, then soil and compost. The stones ensure good drainage, the lucerne will rot down over time to add nitrogen to the soil, and as the level sinks, you just add more compost.

      • anne54 says:

        This is a fabulous idea. There will be so much there will be so much lusciousness for the plants. 🙂

      • katechiconi says:

        If you want yummy vegies, you need happy plants, and I’m trying to give them what they like! I like the IBC beds because I don’t have to bend at all to tend the plants, and given the absolutely torrential rain we get in the Wet, the tap in the bottom is invaluable for maintaining good drainage.

  3. Fingers cross for abundance… rhubarb bottled in orange juice and ginger wine is nice…

    • katechiconi says:

      Not that it’s relevant here, but rhubarb is also the first fresh fruit to appear each year in the northern hemisphere. If you were eating seasonally and had run out of stored fruit, it’s a welcome injection of fresh Vitamin C.

  4. EllaDee says:

    You’ve made a great start… I’ve made a mental note of your combinations.

    • katechiconi says:

      I would have planted a lot more if I’d had more beds, but we could squeeze one more in at most, and I want to take the set up through one season so I can see what not to plant next time! I think we may get some potato towers or bags in, but I’m going to give the pumpkins and melons a miss because they’re so greedy of both space and feeding because of all the biomass they produce.

  5. Kirsten says:

    What a bounty you are going to have when it all grows! We have worms in the compost bins. Sometimes they escape when you take the lids off, as they like to dangle from them!

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