After over night rain the weather gods decided to hold off on more rain and this allowed an almost record crowd to have a great time in Mandy's completely-netted food and ornamental garden.
Mandy pointed out that the area might be no bigger than the average suburban garden, but the fact that it is completely dedicated to and designed for growing fruit, vegetables, ornamentals and chooks, makes this garden very efficient, productive and attractive.
|Mandy's fully netted food and ornamental garden|
|Here Mandy welcomes us and explains how the netted area was constructed|
|Mandy has 2 x 4 raised beds for vegetables|
I asked Mandy how she had managed to have two small espaliered apple trees with 20 - 30 big apples without thinning and without coddling moth holes, and her answer was good stock (from Woodbridge Nursery) and beginners luck, because I did not do anything special to achieve this. The trees are of course protected by the netting and Mandy's 'improved clay' must also be a reason.
And look at these grapes. Mandy must be doing something right.
These Aubergines in one of her raised beds were also very happy.
In the photo below you can just see the border of espaliered stone fruit trees on the right. There is a corridor within the netted area, on three sides of the garden, that Mandy uses for her chooks.
Mandy very kindly offered to show her award-winning passive solar home to those that were interested. It is one thing to be aware of energy-efficient building, but to see in real life how successful this can be was appreciated by many of us.
Morning tea was a veritable smorgasbord!
And the produce table was also thriving!
Everyone had a wonderful time.
On Sunday 19 March the Food Garden Group visited Karen's garden at New Town:
As you walk past the house the first impression is that you are entering a large, level, classically styled, ornamental garden. But when you look past the pleasingly trimmed hedges, nicely ball-shaped bushes and arches, you begin to see a very interesting array of food plants, some of which are not common.
|Karen (2nd from left) welcomes us and discusses her projects|
|Karen's main veggie garden|
|Karen making nets in her gazebo|
|Zucchini plants happily growing skyways|
|Sam's Tomatoes are enormous|
|A nice crop of capsicums|
|Sweet corn going strong|
|Two banana plants and two aubergines in the hothouse|
|Separating a shoot and putting it in its own pot|
|Sweet potato growing vigorously|
Many thanks, Karen, for sharing with us your enthusiasm, expertise and creativity. It is great to see someone experimenting with unusual food plants.
Also, a big thank-you to everyone who came and contributed to the produce table and morning tea. It made for a very enjoyable morning that was appreciated by all.
On Sunday 19 February the Food Garden Group visited Chris and Corinne's garden at Kingston Beach:
People were interested in recipes of delicious things Loes (Zucchini Muffins) and Denby (Apple Spice Cookies) made. Both recipes can now be found on the [Hall of Fame] Recipes page on this blog. Click here and you will find them at the bottom of that page.
Many thanks to Chris and Corinne for hosting this visit to their delightful garden. You showed us how a blank canvas can be turned into a very interesting productive garden.
On Sunday 15 January the Food Garden Group visited Wendy's garden at Sandy Bay:
Wendy is in the rare situation of living on the property where she grew up, and she remembers her father planting some of the trees that are now tall, lush and productive. Yes, today's garden is the result of the work and dedication of more than one generation of a very talented gardening family.
The internal block that was added to the garden later is mainly devoted to vegetables and berries.
This additional block also has on it a very happy cool-climate Avocado tree (variety Bacon). These are a rarity and it tells us that the climate in this garden must be quite moderate. Wendy also has a smaller weeping Avocado variety called Wurtz.
Lots of people checked out Wendy's watering system and her composting methods. These are also described on our Food Garden Group blog.
Wendy has grapes all along the back fence that are obviously very happy and productive.
Wendy shows us how dedication over more than one generation, knowledge, experimentation and a love of gardening can produce a wonderfully productive food oasis.
Thanks everyone for the produce, plants and seeds you brought.
Morning tea was delicious and a reason, all of its own, to come to our garden visits.