Here we are on the last day of autumn, on the threshold of winter. All the garlic that I planted on the evening before setting off for China is up and thriving. Garlic loves to get an early start. Late Feb and early March seems to suit it best around here. I know this because this is when all the old, last-years cloves that missed harvesting, all start to shoot up, looking for the last of the warmth as the days get shorter. If these little fellows know that it is time to shoot up, then this must be the time. So in they go, or went in this case. I didn’t get time before leaving in the hectic weeks before setting off. So it was a case of do it now in the evening dusk or miss out. I’m glad that I made the effort now.
Its a very much smaller crop than I have managed in previous years. This time about 100 plants. It’ll have to do. At least it is something. I realise that I can’t do everything. I’m very happy with what I have achieved.
When I returned from our little break away in Canberra, but before we left for Cambodia. Apart from building a kiln and making some more porcelain stone bodies from my recycled turnings. Janine and I managed 2 half days in the garden. Cleaning out all the old dead and finished summer plants. It was all cleaned out and taken to the big compost heap behind the pottery. This is one of the chooks favourite places. They can spend hours in there. They really want to get into the vegetable garden to ‘help’ us! But alas, they are kept locked out. We don’t need their kind of help in there just now.
The chooks like to see what is going to the compost and ambush Janine on her way demanding to see what is nice and possibly edible in the wheel barrow. They decide that un-ripe, green and sour golden berries are just what they love. and as long as we peel of the paper coating, they gobble them down.
We prune off all the dead asparagus fronds and top dress the 2 beds with compost. It all starts to take on a look of care and attention again, instead of the wild riot of form and colour that was there at the end of the rampant summer growth. Janine mows the orchard while I wheel-barrow compost and spread over the garden beds and all around the citrus trees.
I will be time to start pruning the orchards and grape vines soon. But before I can do that, I have some Korean sericite porcelain to make. Everything in its own time.
Nothing is ever finished, nothing is perfect and nothing lasts.
However, for now, the garden and orchards look loved again.