I decided not to bake anything for the boys’ lunches this morning; instead leaving out a packet of Aldi Milk Arrowroot biscuits to make them appreciate what they normally get, then went outside for a bit of a wander with the camera.
Look at the colour in the above photo! I had one stray red cabbage seedling, so I shoved it in the garage wicking bed, where it sat and did nothing all summer. It was shielded by the beans growing above it so the cabbage moths didn’t find it, but it didn’t get much sun so it just sat there and sulked. Now it’s beginning to take off, though the looming mass of celery behind it might slow it down a bit. The cos lettuce next to it is a self-sown one. Remember how I let the cos lettuces from Ceres go to seed? I saved some and just let the others drop their seed into the bed. There’s hundreds of them now.
This is only one slice of a garden bed. I have lettuce popping up everywhere. It must have been in the compost because it’s all around the bay tree in its pot (I planted garlic around it but no lettuce) and in all the wicking beds. I’m thinking that tomorrow’s lunch will be lettuce and radish, because the radishes are doing well too.
This is a mix of radishes and turnips in the Square Metre wicking bed I planted. As I was taking this photo I noticed a few of the leaves had been eaten by something.
This fat fellow turned into a protein snack for one of the gerls.
The peas in the driveway wicking bed have gone berserk. They’ve grown so tall and thick that I can’t get to the worm farm feeding station to lift the lid off to keep feeding the worms, so I guess the worms are on their own for a while. These peas will be harvested, then cut down at ground level to keep the nitrogen nodules they form in their roots in the soil for the next lot of plants to use. I just love peas! So does Tom20. I’m not sure I’ll tell him what these plants are. (heh heh) The only time he ever goes near these garden beds is when he’s taking the bins out on a Sunday night and he usually waits until it’s pitch black to do it, so with a bit of luck my secret will stay safe.
The celery has really come into its own since I pulled out the summer plants shading it. Last week I did a demo for a really good friend of mine and the two women who came loved the machine, yet weren’t able to buy one straight away. They were raving about the vegetable stock paste I made, so I decided to whip up a batch and split it between the two of them. (My friend just loves these women.) All the ingredients in the veggie stock paste is just vegetables, garlic, an onion, some herbs and salt. You cook it in the thermomix for 20 minutes, blitz it and it replaces stock cubes. One tablespoonful in a litre of water and you’re good to go. It’s totally natural, cheap as chips and lasts in the fridge for 6 months. (Not that it ever would last that long… you use it in everything. It adds so much depth of flavour.) Anyway, this glut of celery I’ve got is FANTASTIC for using up in this stock paste. I just threw in 3 or 4 sticks of celery, some sad veggies from the crisper and some herbs from the herb garden and the job was done. I’m definitely growing celery again. It took ages to grow but I’m reaping the benefits now. Even the one I put in the ground is growing, though it’s being swamped by the warrigal greens.
One last thing I noticed. I planted my lone lime verbena in a big pot fertilised with compost and chicken coop bedding, then planted a ring of garlic around it, just in case vampires like lime verbena tea. (OMG! So much better than lemon verbena! I got my plant from Diggers and I’m going to have to find out from foodnstuff how to take cuttings because I want 150 of these plants in my garden. Or at least one or two more.) Anyway, see the ladybird on the garlic? It means I have a happy, pesticide-free garden. How great is that?