My Kitchen Garden In Progress (Australia)

Discussion in 'Members Gallery' started by Cassie, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. Cassie

    Cassie Gardener

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    Thanks to Armandii and KFF for the encouragement to post a bit more about my garden. Perhaps some of you will enjoy seeing sunshine and ripe tomatoes during the northern hemisphere winter :)

    I am gardening on a 1/4 acre block in a small country town near Melbourne, Australia. Our house is built right on the front boundary and there are two big areas - the side garden and the back garden - that are visually separate from each other. We are 500m above sea level in a sort of valley so compared with most of Australia our winters are quite cold with regular and late frosts. We don't get snow and the ground doesn't freeze, so still much milder than many parts of the US and Europe. Once summer arrives it's quite hot, with regular 30c+ days and occasional days in the 40s.

    I've been here for around five years now, but between full time work and renovating our 1915 weatherboard cottage, the garden has come along in fits and starts as time and money allows. There is still A LOT to do but I am enjoying the process.

    This is the 'Orchard' area at the back of the back garden:
    IMG_2290.JPG

    The building is my potting shed but also has a couch for enjoying a cold beer after a hard days work while gazing at the trees. We call it the 'Summer House' but it's actually unpleasantly hot on summer afternoons and much more pleasant now in spring. Behind it are two big gum trees.

    Eventually there will be an arch on the right side of the entry for climbing roses and the fence on the left will be extended/improved and the wisteria out of frame to the left trained along it. The blueberries in pots will be planted with others to make an informal hedge along the fence.

    IMG_2291.JPG

    The fruit trees we have planted in this area:
    Peach 'Golden Queen'
    Nectarine 'Early Rivers'
    Cherry 'Stella'
    Cherry 'Merchant' - espaliered along the back fence
    Apricot 'Moorpark'
    Plum 'Satsuma'
    Plum 'Santa Rosa'
    Grapefruit 'Sweetie'

    In pots there are:
    Pomegranate 'Wonderful'
    Almond - dwarf self polinating
    Fig - Un-named, sucker from our last house
    Lemon - 'Lotsa Lemons'
    Bay tree
    Finger lime

    Other edibles:
    Blueberries - Blue Rose, Brigitta and Northland
    Rosemary
    Boysenberries
    Rhubarb 'Red Dragon'
    Asparagus 'Argenteuil'

    There is an existing almond and fig as well but neither seem to be very fruitful (seed trees?) and may be culled.

    The citrus and apricot are marginal for our winters and late frosts but I am hopeful and looking at planting one of the Canadian apricot varieties that might be slightly later flowering.

    IMG_2295.JPG

    The view from the couch. Right now there is a huge pile of wood and general renovation junk stacked against the garage but eventually that will be moved and I will trellis something against that wall - possibly blackberries, possible apples in a 'belgian fence' espalier, possibly underplanted with asparagus. I need to have a good look this summer how much sun that area will get.

    All of the trees will be kept quite small as we need to net everything when it starts to ripen or the cockatoos eat the lot.

    IMG_2297.JPG

    The rhubarb and boysenberries seem happy here. There is a pile of dirt and junk in the back corner, just out of the right of this frame, that will eventually be cleared for more planting space but I'm not sure yet what will go there.

    I'm thinking about planting out the trees in those big pots next winter. The pots were free and useful while we were getting everything set up but I find them hard to keep moist and I think the trees will do better in the ground.

    I'd also like to get a table and chairs for the middle area so we can enjoy the shade on summer afternoons.

    Next time I will post some photos of the veggie garden....
     
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    • NigelJ

      NigelJ Total Gardener

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      @Cassie
      Coming along nicely. I agree the fruit trees would be better in the ground than the large pots, as well as reducing watering, they will benefit from the roots not getting too hot in the summer.
       
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      • Victoria

        Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

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        Hi Cassie. You certainly have a lot on your plate what with working full time and renovating your home. I know what it is like and appreciate the hard work that goes into such projects in a hot country but I chose to 'do' tropical/sub tropical flora rather than fruit and veg.

        Are they red gum trees? I have only seen one here ... stunning.

        I remember when you joined and look forward to your continued progress.
         
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        • Upsydaisy

          Upsydaisy Total Gardener

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          What a great challenge, great times ahead. Yes definitely loving the blue skies and sunshine, although we also have them here today, just not having the same heat factor!!:roflol:
           
        • glengarry23

          glengarry23 Keen Gardener

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          @Cassie ,..you certainly have a huge amount of work done and some interesting Fruit Trees and other edibles to keep an eye on,..here's hoping you get the time to post how everything progresses as this side of the world everything is becoming dormant so it will be uplifting to see new growth in your garden.

          Philip
           
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          • Cassie

            Cassie Gardener

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            @NigelJ that's a good point about the roots staying cooler. Yes, I definitely think I will plant them out next winter (before they get any bigger!).

            @Victoria thank you :) We've turned a bit of a corner with the renovations now thankfully, not to say the house is finished (hahahaha) but it is now comfortable and we can do smaller projects bit by bit.

            To be honest I am not sure of the correct names for the gum trees! The smaller one behind the shed is what I would call a flowering gum, the taller one I don't know.

            I found a few photos of the orchard area from when we moved in, not quite the same angles but you get the idea:
            PB250306.JPG

            PB250308.JPG
             
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            • Sandy Ground

              Sandy Ground Total Gardener

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              Only just seen this thread, and I've enjoyed reading it. @Cassie I'm looking forward to reading more about your progress. Keep posting.:)
               
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              • Cassie

                Cassie Gardener

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                Thank you Sandy :)

                I haven't kept up with this thread over summer (oops) but now that autumn is in the air I can't stop thinking about the garden. Like much of the world, I'm at home for the foreseeable future so should have plenty of time to post about it.

                Here are a few pictures of our summer harvests:

                IMG_2505.jpg

                IMG_2562.JPGIMG_2878.jpgIMG_2754.jpgIMG_2987.jpgIMG_2692.jpgIMG_2558.jpgIMG_2839.jpgIMG_2944.jpg
                IMG_2998.jpg

                Next time I'll post some more shots of the garden itself.

                Enjoy your beautiful spring time weather over there.
                 
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                • Victoria

                  Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

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                  Hi Cassie, nice to see you. Fantastic crops and a good store cupboard.

                  Stay safe down there.
                   
                • Cassie

                  Cassie Gardener

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                  Here in Victoria (south eastern Australia) we are back in a second lockdown and I have been working from home since March.

                  A silver lining of all this extra time at home is that I have been able to tackle a few unfinished projects in the garden, including putting up the glasshouse that had been sitting around in the yard in parts for more than two years.

                  This is a photo of my veggie garden and the new (to us) glasshouse last weekend with a beautifully angry sky in the background.

                  IMG_3749.jpg

                  There are four raised beds that we built ourselves a few years ago from old roofing sheets: garlic and shallots in the first bed, a few last greens in the second, brassicas in the third, and some broadbeans, herbs and snow peas at the end. In early spring sparrows will devour any pea plants or young greens so the beds are netted on and off depending on what's growing.

                  On the wall to the left I've planted three grapes, Sultana, Black Muscat and Beauty Seedless. The Black Muscat has just gone in but the other two grew well last summer and will hopefully give a decent crop this year. I think they're beautiful in autumn:
                  IMG_3234.jpg

                  At the back of the glasshouse I have a blank slate to play with. I'm considering espaliering a lemon tree on the back wall - it's north facing but sheltered so would suit our somewhat frosty winters. The clay soil needs to be improved first though. The bed is just temporary and may be replaced with a higher metal one like the others once I have a better idea of how I want to lay it out.

                  IMG_3648.jpg


                  During some recent digging near the compost pile I also came across an old friend I hadn't seen in while. Don't his colors blend in so well to the leaves and woodchips?

                  IMG_3573.jpg
                   
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                  • glengarry23

                    glengarry23 Keen Gardener

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                    @Cassie ,..nice to see you posting again,..your raised beds look great and some healthy looking Veg,..i envy you the Grapes and can almost taste them just thinking about them.

                    Your Frog certainly blends in,..cute well fed creature :)
                     
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