Belladonna Bess

An edible garden in Wellington, NZ

A long weekend gardening October 24, 2010

Filed under: Garden,Photos — belladonnabess @ 10:25 pm

Four days off all at once. I managed to spend a good part of it gardening. Only one post for 4 days – this is mostly chronological but not quite.

Constructing: a cloche/ Faust house. It was meant for my zucchinis, but Faust moved in before I had even got it fully secured. He has spent most of the last 4 days in it. Here he is.

Planting: 3 zucchinis (one Cocozelle, one Zephyr, one of the usual dark green variety) – at the  other end of the cloche from where Faust has taken up residence. I grew the Zephyr from the last of my seeds, but the others were bought.

Also planting: pak choi seedlings

Unearthing: a wheel of concrete 2 feet in diameter. I tried to dig a hole in which to plant one of my apples, and ended up doing some sort of suburban archaeology, excavating this enormous piece of concrete. I got it out, but I can only move it by rolling it, and I’ve no idea what I’m going to do with it now.

Planting: apples – “Blush Babe” (where the achaeological dig was), “Polka” (it’s so nice I need two, especially because it tends to biennial bearing) and “Adore”. Blush Babe is a genetic dwarf – it branches but stays small, Polka is columnar and Adore is one of the new disease-resistant home garden varieties, on M9 rootsock.

So now I have an orchard! Six apple trees (plus the two pears).

Staking: Adore is a little flimsy, with a long trunk and 3 perfect branches for a vase-shaped tree. I’ve used 3 strong stakes and very firmly attached it to the stakes, otherwise I doubt it would still be there now.

Wiring: I put up the third wire on my fence (for the espalier). Should have done it earlier, because last weekend’s wind broke off one of the pear branches that I was going to use.

Tying: my espalier pears to try and get them into shape and somehow encourage a replacement branch for the borken one. Also doing a bit of pruning.

Transplanting: strawberries from various locations around the garden to the bed in front of the boysenberry. I have to net that garden if I want any boysenberries, so I might as well grow something else that needs netting in there. I also found some self-sown white strawberry seedlings, so transplanted them, as well as some borage, lettuce and limnanthes seedlings.

Sowing: more cucumbers since most of my last lot got eaten by a snail.

Weeding: everywhere. Especially the blueberry bed and around the pear trees.

Piling: weeds and half-made compost with dug up dirt from the apple holes, coffee grounds, sawdust etc, into two piles. One will probably become this year’s pumpkin pile. If you look at the photo of my garden – the piles are the sawdusty things at the back, between where the apples are.

Protecting: the asparagus – I’ve put a windbreak up because it was just getting so bashed around. It might be a coastal plant naturally, but clearly not a wind-tolerant coastal plant.

Germinating: peas, beetroot (started coming up at least a week ago though), carrots. No sign of the beans yet.

Sprouting: my Jersey Benne potatoes are up. I mounded the ground up around them a bit.

Flowering: my garden has lots of flowers. A lovely dark red dianthus that I grew from seed, Geranium phaeum, Primula veris (orange one), Limnanthes douglasii, Nemophila ‘Penny Black’, Calendula and Tagetes marigolds (no not for pest control – that’s largely some sort of urban garden myth – but because they are pretty and I like eating Calendula petals), Lipstick strawberry, pansies, still a few anemones and daffodils, sage, honeywort, a little bit of borage and phacelia. Basically it is quite colourful right now.

Anticipating: more broad beans. The dwarf early green, only sowed on June 20th, nearly have pods ready. Sutton’s dwarf doesn’t even have pods forming. So I’m really impressed with the dwarf early green – have to see what it tastes like though. Also spinach, which is close the size where I can harvest some leaves. And strawberries, which will need netting next week.

Eating: radishes, broccoli, lettuce, miner’s lettuce, Cape gooseberry, broad beans, carrots, white alpine strawberries (the plant in the asparagus bed seems to be the earliest – plus it is a giant of a plant).


One Response to “A long weekend gardening”

  1. Hedera Says:

    Faust is gorgeous!!

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