I have been inspired by the gardens at the different houses we have been house sitting at.
At Geraldton, Naomi made raised beds from old water tanks and had a flourishing veggie garden on pure sand. (Take another look at it here and be inspired) Malanda had a large organic veggie garden fuelled by copious horse manure and lots of love. (Check it here)
So I came home determined to create an organic veggie patch.
The garden, now, is a crowded tropical paradise, lots of shady areas, so were am I going to find a place for vegetables? Then last week Jack pruned back some of the natives along the road front and suddenly the morning sun flooded along the front of the palms. But palms are voracious thieves stealing all the water and nutrients that veggies need. So I will use Naomi’s solution and make a raised bed.
First a trip to Bunnings, the local hardware store to do the homework. A 2 metre x 1 metre, ready-made corrugated raised bed would cost $99, ouch… I could buy a lot of veggies with that. So to plan B, make our own.
We bought 9 Planks @ 1.8 metres, 3 of them cut in half for the sides, and 4 battens for the corners at a cost of $14.
Jack assembles the structure then paints the inside with a special paint that will stop any of the chemicals from the tanalising treatment seeping into the soil.
While he does that I clear the area where it will go in front of the palms.
The blue box is filled with tough rhoeos that will be going to a new neighbour who loves receiving my rejects. Notice that large bromeliad right in the middle of the patch? It will have to come out…
I will have to find this a new home.
Now to bring the bed around. I am going to create a no-dig garden.
In the base goes cardboard, old carpet, papers that have been soaked in a bucket of water and other organic rubbish.
The compost is ready and it goes in next.
Followed by a liberal sprinkling of chicken manure. Then more compost.
Lucerne mulch gives an added boost of nutrients, then more cow manure.
In the 28 degree heat the sweat is dripping off me by now, but it is nearly finished.
Finally top off with sugarcane mulch, and give it a good watering. Jack has built it with the corner battens raised so I can put netting across to keep off the birds. Crows are a real problem.
Now I will wait for it all to settle for a week before putting in the seedlings.
Finally I want to share these photos of the Poinciana in full flower. It is about 9 years old and this is the first year it has flowered so well.
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Glad to see I’ve inspired you to go raised. Luckily no nasty birds here, only cute insectivorous ones, though I now have chooks again (well secured from the vege patch). Such characters.
Ha ha, you should see my garden now, wouldn’t call it flourishing any more. But the dragon fruit are already flowering!! And have just planted a new mulberry tree (in the front yard after the lime tree died). The Great Wall is done (phew), and I chopped down the old mulberry last weekend, so now it’s pond building time….