Friday, 28 May 2010

The wonders of mushroom compost...I love it!

 I am so fortunate to live where I do and have access to some wonderful mushroom compost.  I purchased 10 bags some are shown below.
look at my little swiss browns growind

The thing is with 10 bags they grow and grow

1kg mushrooms here
Two kgs here

and still they keep growing. I
We have so much mushroom prepared and frozen now it does make me feel quite happy that I can pull out a bag and make a very quick soup or rissotto for dinner or when guests stay.  We are having quite a lot of people calling in and staying due to DH illness so it helps to have lots of easy things in the freezer.  As we do not have take away near us and definitely no home delivery services. 

Similarly with pumpkins, sweet potatoes and carrots cheap now I am making pumpkin soup, with sweet potato and or carrot.  Some I am making into a curry pumpkin soup.  It can also be watered down with more stock and make a simple quick rissotto.

Quick easy meals with bread/toast/or grilled cheese on toast.  Filling and warming on a cold winters night or evening.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Thinking about gardening

As the northern hemisphere is getting into the prolific months of the produce garden and we in the southern hemisphere where I live are battening down the hatches and preparing for colder temps, rain, sleet, some snow and gale force winds. Today a perfect example the wind isblowing strong, the rain is coming down at almost right angles and yet when the sun shines it is lovely (as long as one is inside by the then the wind picks up again and rain splats the windows.    The hens are hardly venturing out of their coop and the smaller birds dart quickly to the bird table and are almost blown off.
I guess when you live in the Roaring Forties it is only to be expected. I do quite like the wind.  You will have to remind me that I posted this later in the winter when I am bemoaning the

Ah now the garden.   I am not sure why I seem to be in the more normal mode of get into the garden and get things done springtime mood.  It just may be the house is needing quite a big sort out and I truthfully am struggling to face it.  So I instead sit here procrastinating about my plans for the garden, and checking out all my faviourite blogs.  (something I have not done much of lately).

I have prepared nearly all my existing fruit and nut trees for the winter during autumn.  I have 9 more on order.  I am looking forward to the new trees coming to see if there is any difference with the performance of the trees I purchased last year and the year before.  Non of which have really thrived. Mainly due to very low rainfall the first year and too much water this year.

These new trees will be planted in the chicken run.  They will be fenced off from the hens to enable them to establish themselves.  They will be watered and nurtured as will be the trees that are established sort of.  I am hopeful that I may get fruit of more than the cherries this year.   It would be lovely to grow apricots, peach, nectarine and plums.  All of which I have at least one of already.    I would love to find 9 fresh road kills that I could dig into the holes for the new trees.  I will have to keep an eye out and go out for drives early in the morning once the holes are dug.  Putting these in deep.  I have done this with one of the vegie beds that I will be using this year.  (It has been dormant for a year by the time I use it again).

Kale, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower have all been planted.  My cherry tomatoes have all been removed now and they were incredible providers I will put in some more in spring.  I have two self sown plants that are full of larger tomatoes, but I feel that the chances of them ripening now are dwindinling.  Mind you they are protected by a very large Geranium.

I have purchased more terracotta pots for using as watering into my vegie garden beds, and I may put some around the new trees and any that I transplant, as I would think that several around each would assist in development.

I have plenty of fencing wire to make protective cages for the fruit trees and will be able to pop poly pipe onto the star pickets support around them to make netting covers to keep the birds off.  Oh see how my brain is

  It has been quite a hard emotional roller coaster the last three months, the next few will be I would imagine worse.  As we deal with my DH's cancer.  He is going strong, if loosing weight and we try to keep on top of the pain.  He is currently building me pelmets to keep more heat in the house for winter.  He has a list of all the things he wants to do so he knows that I and his girls are looked after.  He is so active up and down the ladders and of course his pain increases with the activity. He is happily doing all of this, and whilst it is difficult we as a couple are muddling along with support of family and friends.  The bad days are bad and the good days are so wonderful. 

At one stage I was off to my GP for anti depressants as it was getting me down.  I could not get an appointment for 2 weeks, kind of felt shattered by this.  The next morning dawned sunny warm and my garden was calling.  5 hours in the garden and anti depressants no longer on my mind.  So my garden is my anti depressant and my life whilst hard is actually great and we are still happy with each other enjoying what ever time we have together, sharing emotions and talking planning what needs to be planned.  Laughing, at times frustrated and generally living our life together in love and contentment.  Dont get me wrong.  I would love to have years more together.  He is my best friend.  It is not to be so we have the time we have and we are trying to embrace it honestly.

Now if only the house work could become my antidepressant too.  Actually I know the house is adding to my stress.  I am not a natural domestic goddess on the cleaning front.  I am the kind of person who has a rush of energy 3or 4 times a year and all the windows sparkle, the clothes are all ironed and not a thing is out of place.  The rest of the time is just keeping on keeping

I am writting now.  It is almost 1pm today and I am going to log off  I vow to now go and spend time getting on with the spare bedroom.

This post was written a week ago, and I forgot to post it.  So here it is.  The spare room is looking better!