(Somewhat) Wordless Wednesday…

Hi All,

 

Today’s blog post is a little bit different than my usual word filled ramble. Today I am going to talk in photos while I give my brain a bit of a rest from the muses endless clatter. Please click on the link at the end of this post to visit an African farmer who has given me pause for thought and great hope with what we are trying to do here in our little patch of paradise…now on, to the not words…

 

Our old lecturer from last year gave Steve this excellent Adobe book when Steve was dropping off our last assessment in the city. Thank you Chris :)

Our old lecturer from last year gave Steve this excellent Adobe book when Steve was dropping off our last assessment in the city. Thank you Chris πŸ™‚

 

Spread rounds of bread dough of your choice with garlic butter...

Spread rounds of bread dough of your choice with garlic butter…

Bake them till golden brown...

Bake them till golden brown…

And serve them with some delicious home made veggie and lentil soup :)

And serve them with some delicious home made veggie and lentil soup πŸ™‚

How to train a dog to use a treadmill...hint...make sure to have a LOT of treats...

How to train a dog to use a treadmill…hint…make sure to have a LOT of treats…

"Seriously? You want me to walk on this?!"

“Seriously? You want me to walk on this?!”

"OH I get a treat? Sign me up!" ;)

“OH I get a treat? Sign me up!” πŸ˜‰

My little indicator apple tree next to the protected pile of manure to prevent Earl from using it as a ramp to evacuate from the compound

My little indicator apple tree next to the protected pile of manure to prevent Earl from using it as a ramp to evacuate from the compound

I have been keeping myself very busy working hard in the garden. This is an almost extinct pile of earthworm packed horse manure

I have been keeping myself very busy working hard in the garden. This is theΒ almost extinct pile of earthworm packed horse manure prior to me wheeling it up to Sanctuary

And this is a pile of very damp oak leaves just about to be moved into Sanctuary

And this is a pile of very damp oak leaves just about to be moved into Sanctuary

Happy chooks scratching through the remains of the pile and that log selection contains a small oak tree that grew from the debris

Happy chooks scratching through the remains of the pile and that log selection contains a small oak tree that grew from the debris

Acess to Sanctuary via the shed

Acess to Sanctuary via the shed

A big compost pile in the corner now covered in manure and leaves

A big compost pile in the corner now covered in manure and leaves

More manure and leaf piles that are feeding the surrounding citrus trees as well as becoming the beginning of future garden beds in the process. I keep adding buckets of veggie scraps and plant material and dry leaves and the worms and fungus do the rest

More manure and leaf piles that are feeding the surrounding citrus trees as well as becoming the beginning of future garden beds in the process. I keep adding buckets of veggie scraps and plant material and dry leaves and the worms and fungus do the rest

The last of the currant compost piles inside Sanctuary. Earl has claimed this one to roll in...

The last of the current compost piles inside Sanctuary. Earl has claimed this one to roll in…

Happy rhubarb in its forever home surrounded by oak leaf mulch

Happy rhubarb in its forever home surrounded by oak leaf mulch

My transferred Jerusalem artichokes in their new bed where they can grow and expand to their hearts content

My transferred Jerusalem artichokes in their new bed where they can grow and expand to their hearts content

Weeds pulled out of garden beds and sunlight accelerating the growth of seeds that were already in the beds. Lots of free tomatoes, pumpkins and "other" things are growing

Weeds pulled out of garden beds and sunlight accelerating the growth of seeds that were already in the beds. Lots of free tomatoes, pumpkins and “other” things are growing

Curry the male Currawong in mid splash

Curry the male Currawong in mid splash

I managed to save a little honesty plant inside Sanctuary and it has rewarded me by flowering. Now I just need to remove that blackberry that is giving it a hug

I managed to save a little honesty plant inside Sanctuary and it has rewarded me by flowering. Now I just need to remove that blackberry that is giving it a hug

 

We had to redo our new compound gate as the old one was built out of obviously very green treated pine that warped magnificently. This new "Donna Hay" green gate is made out of dry timber and should last the distance

We had to redo our new compound gate as the old one was built out of obviously very green treated pine that warped magnificently. This new “Donna Hay” green gate is made out of dry timber and should last the distance

Steve got tired of my dehydrator being in his music room and made it a new shelf in the laundry

Steve got tired of my dehydrator being in his music room and made it a new shelf in the laundry

Veggie seedlings on Monday

Veggie seedlings on Monday

Veggie seedlings on Wednesday

Veggie seedlings on Wednesday. Growing like weeds πŸ™‚

Looking back outside the glasshouse door you can see a dog sniffing around for the chook that I just saved that was stupid enough to fly into the dog compound

Looking back outside the glasshouse door you can see a dog sniffing around for the chook that I just saved that was stupid enough to fly into the dog compound

My purple artichoke babies :)

My purple artichoke babies πŸ™‚

The other inhabitants of the glasshouse enjoying the sunny weather

The other inhabitants of the glasshouse enjoying the sunny weather

I grow my nut trees from seed I collect on my travels and I obviously have 2 different kinds of walnut here :)

I grow my nut trees from seed I collect on my travels and I obviously have 2 different kinds of walnut here as you can see by the leaf structure πŸ™‚

Look Bev, how your babies have grown! :)

Look Bev, how your babies have grown! πŸ™‚ These are pepino cuttings a good friend sent me and aren’t they healthy little babies. Bev certainly knows how to grow a mean pepino πŸ˜‰

Even under the potting table is green!

Even under the potting table is green. This is a lemon balm growing out of one of the cracks in the glasshouse concrete floor

The first of the rhododendron blossoms on Serendipity Farm. The surrounding neighbourhood is full of them and we are enjoying basking in their beauty on our early morning dog walks :)

The first of the rhododendron blossoms on Serendipity Farm. The surrounding neighbourhood is full of them and we are enjoying basking in their beauty on our early morning dog walks πŸ™‚

The first of our raspberry futures :)

The first of our raspberry futures πŸ™‚

Wait a minute...isn't this for the dogs? ;)

Wait a minute…isn’t this for the dogs? πŸ˜‰

Bezial relaxing after a particularly difficult trot around the garden...

Bezial relaxing after a particularly difficult trot around the garden…

My 2 fig cuttings that were bare sticks over winter that are now taller than the fig cuttings that I planted out last year. Ready to be planted out

My 2 fig cuttings that were bare sticks over winter that are now taller than the fig cuttings that I planted out last year. Ready to be planted out

Potato, yacon and "other"patch

Potato, yacon and “other”patch

Zucchini and some form of cabbage or cauliflower seedlings. My friend that gave them to me has no idea which they are ;)

Zucchini and some form of cabbage or cauliflower seedlings. My friend that gave them to me has no idea which they are πŸ˜‰

That very overgrown area at the back of Sanctuary is just about to become my grape arbour. Who says that compost isn't worth making? This area was where I threw a few buckets of compost last year and look at how much vegetation is growing in this small patch. Compost folks, compost now! :)

That very overgrown area at the back of Sanctuary is just about to become my grape arbour. Who says that compost isn’t worth making? This area was where I threw a few buckets of compost last year and look at how much vegetation is growing in this small patch. Compost folks, compost now! πŸ™‚

This photo was taken standing inside the fence looking back towards the rear compound fence. These trees would have been devastated by the combined efforts of the possums and the wallabies by now but the new compound seems to have given them a much better degree of protection than I would have initially thought. Earl is obviously VERY good at patrolling and marking "his" patch ;)

This photo was taken standing inside the fence looking back towards the rear compound fence. These trees would have been devastated by the combined efforts of the possums and the wallabies by now but the new compound seems to have given them a much better degree of protection than I would have initially thought. Earl is obviously VERY good at patrolling and marking “his” patch πŸ˜‰

Look at how my little indicator apple has grown! It might just be a rootstock apple but I can graft onto it. Apple futures on Serendipity Farm, I never would have thought it possible :)

Look at how my little indicator apple has grown! It might just be a rootstock apple but I can graft onto it. Apple futures on Serendipity Farm, I never would have thought it possible πŸ™‚

 

http://permaculturenews.org/2014/10/28/glimpse-climate-smart-agriculture-kenya/

Anyone who is struggling with the costs of growing vegetables and gardens in general take heart from Maurice’s story and go and get yourself a bucket full of hope, possibility and enthusiasm from this mans dreams that he turned into realities with his steadfast and most determined actions. He is a credit to penniless people everywhere and a great example of how anyone can do this, you just need to find ways to access cheap/free soil builders. We are just about to pick up 3 trailer loads of grass clippings from Glad’s place next door. Another garden bed inside Sanctuary once they rot down. Its all in the possibilities and in recognising them when they raise their heads πŸ™‚

Last but by no means least…here’s a little pre Halloween image where I become a zombie thanks to Papa Doc Earl…

"BRAINZ!" ;)

“BRAINZ!” πŸ˜‰

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79 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. cathyandchucky
    Oct 29, 2014 @ 18:39:01

    Beautiful blog Fronkiii 😘

    Reply

  2. The Snail of Happiness
    Oct 29, 2014 @ 19:20:56

    We are being visual, so…
    πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    xxx

    Reply

  3. brymnsons
    Oct 29, 2014 @ 20:06:57

    Wow the seedlings must be possessed! I had some seeds growing in an egg carton but while I was away the damn snails got to them, sigh… oh well back to the drawing board. Sanctuary is looking great! Love the photo of Bezial relaxing lol. They will get to love that walking machine, which equals snacks πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 03:41:32

      If Steve dangles snacks in front of me, “I” might get to love that walking machine πŸ˜‰ Bugger on the snails. Our scourge is more the slugs that slink out at night time and leave sliggity trails all around the stumps of what is left of your veggie seedlings. Using egg cartons is an excellent (or is that “eggsellent”? πŸ˜‰ ) idea and very sustainable πŸ™‚

      Reply

      • brymnsons
        Nov 08, 2014 @ 20:25:19

        Yes I’m trying to recycle as much as I can. I needed to put crushed egg shells in and that would have stopped the buggers… never mind I will remember next time x

      • narf77
        Nov 09, 2014 @ 04:33:46

        I have lots of crushed egg shells…I have lots of eggs! Pity we didn’t live closer as you could have as many eggs as you liked and I would be thanking you for taking them ;). My garden will NEVER have a calcium deficiency again. The first year I got zucchini blossom end rot. I didn’t know what it was till I checked it out and it turns out the compost that we had bought in to make the gardens out of (raised bed no rocky dig) was very acidic and cancelled out the calcium so I made lots of compost with lots of egg shells in it and hopefully this year, along with some organic lime, we should have sorted out the problem. Nothing like a rotten ended zuke to make you question your garden! πŸ˜‰

      • brymnsons
        Nov 09, 2014 @ 15:58:30

        I know, it would be terrific if you were around the corner. Bruce would be a very happy man to have eggs on tap lol. What a bugger about the compost eh, hope the eggs and lime to the trick x

      • narf77
        Nov 10, 2014 @ 03:09:32

        They should do the trick (the eggs and lime) nicely fingers crossed. If some of my bolshie crew keep on being clucky (and sneakily so) Bruce could have had chook on tap as well! πŸ˜‰

  4. Margaret Griffin
    Oct 29, 2014 @ 22:49:11

    Hi, With Maurice as inspiration, goodness knows what you will achieve at Serendipity Farm. Although I hope you don’t get attacked when you are out scavenging for things to use in your agricultural pursuits.

    With all those seedlings, you are going to be very busy in Sanctuary over the next few months.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 03:44:47

      Glad you read that article. I loved it. It really gave me a boost and I felt an instant camaraderie with Maurice and his efforts. If anyone tried to give me a thrashing while I was collecting discarded items for the garden I would be a LOT more vocal and no doubt physical than Maurice was! They would certainly have a reason to believe that I was “mad” ;). I will be planting out daikon, french and black radish seedlings over the next few days as well as planting out some English spinach and some more chard. I will be sharing seedlings with the community gardeners over in Beaconsfield as I will have way too many to plant out. I have yet to master succession planting πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  5. Robbie
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 00:21:59

    “Maurice likens soil-use to having a bank account: you can’t keep withdrawing indefinitely if you have nothing saved up. At the moment, it looks as though his neighbour is in the red”
    What an inspiration this man is + thank you for sharing his story!!!!!
    You are an inspiration too with all that you have done…you deserve an “almost wordless wednesday”-lol.
    Your place is amazing + all the work you are doing.
    Love the fact you grow your nut trees from things you collected. My father grew all his trees from little seedlings he collected from his property…being resourceful is a goal for me this next year!
    If you ever figure out how to get a dog to walk/trot on a treadmill , please fill me in…I tried with all five of our dogs over the years + I never was able to figure that one out!
    You + Maurice have inspired me to get back to the drawing board + DO MORE next year:-)
    Don’t let the muses rest too long for we would miss them if you ever quit:-)

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 03:54:47

      The muses are not talking to me at the moment and I fear a fermentation of muses will equal the effects of shaking up a home brewed ginger beer so I doubt the wordless Wednesdays will be a regular event (not that my 1200 odd words was entirely wordless methinks πŸ˜‰ ). I love Maurices gumption (isn’t that an awesome word? πŸ™‚ ) He just decided to do something and set out doing it. He used free resources that were being discarded and wasted and that no-one else wanted and look what he did! I was in awe and it really made me determined to utilise the wasted and free resources that we have around us and find out where there may be more. I know there are a lot of horse studs around here that would be most happy to have us remove the manure (Stevie-boy won’t be as happy for me to find a “lot” of horse studs for him to have to remove the manure from but whatchagonnadoeh? πŸ˜‰ ), Glad’s daughter Wendy next door phoned up yesterday and asked us if we wanted about 3 big trailer loads of grass clippings from up the back of their property. Yes PLEASE πŸ™‚ and we will be off to collect a few trailer loads of seaweed in the near future. Spring is all about new possibilities and I am throwing myself into the new possibilities and chances to make our soil bank rich with natural resources that are being wasted or unwanted :). I picked up the walnuts from under a couple of trees on our walks. No-one else was picking them up and they just laid there so I figured that I could pick up a few and I have some lovely 2 foot tall saplings to plant out on Serendipity Farm now. I did the same with hazelnuts that Glad’s daughter Wendy gave me from her tree for eating. I overwintered them in damp potting mix and they sprouted and grew. Same with chestnuts that I bought to eat from the shop and forgot that I had in a bag in the fridge…I got a LOT of chestnut babies from that experiment. Jessie, from Rabidlittlehippy fame has grown almonds from a packet from the shop and Sarah from sarahthegardener has grown peanuts from a packet. I think gardening allows everyone a chance to grow a garden if they are resourceful and willing to try new things and learn from other people. I love the possibilities and Maurice made me very excited by his approach. Earl could be tempted to walk on the treadmill as he loves to walk but Bezial was only standing there because he had just eaten a fist full of treats and got straight off when the treats disappeared ;).

      Reply

      • Robbie
        Oct 30, 2014 @ 09:57:48

        I just typed a long reply to your reply…I’ll be back for I have to take the dog out…I had something to say,too!!! In a bit , I’ll be back:-) until my reply…hold on:-)

      • narf77
        Oct 30, 2014 @ 17:16:12

        πŸ˜‰

      • Robbie
        Oct 30, 2014 @ 14:06:35

        I totally get being excited about getting free “stuff”to feed your soil! We were busy this weekend clearing the front yard and used our shredder for the first time. That thing is scary-lol. I would of never had it around with kids living at home– it would worry me too much with them around. I love it though for I cleared all the beds out of weeds, sticks and a mix of brown and green. I had piles and my husband and I fed them into the shredder and I got buckets of green and brown to compost directly on the beds. I have been building my soil like that for the past few years and I have earthworms in my soil with every dig!
        When I first started back in 2000, I had rock hard clay and no life in my soil. I would dig for hours and never find a worm or life at all…dead, dead soil!
        My father taught me to “trench compost” many years ago and I practice it all over my yard. I compost in piles, trench and on top of beds…any place I can find to build life filled soil-lol
        I have to put dwarf trees on my property now since the large trees are few. I have only two on our property, a pin oak and silver maple. I also have an old pear + apple that are so old and any day may tumble down.That is all the space my property will allow of the large tree types. My father was like you when I was young. He was always putting little trees in places and watching them grow from a twig.
        I put in dwarf fruit trees this summer that only get about 6-7 feet tall and wide. That was all I could do for it would be too much shade for my crops and the large trees take up all my yard space….
        I will be using my treadmill ( not the dogs-lol) here soon to keep in shape! Time to go inside and take a break from all the work:-)

      • narf77
        Oct 30, 2014 @ 17:24:42

        Steve and I were just laughing hysterically at this part of your comment…
        “I had piles and my husband and I fed them into the shredder ”
        LOL! Can’t stop laughing about that one. Most people use preparation H but not you, you have them sussed! πŸ˜‰
        I have the opposite problem in the space stakes to you and could plant all day for a year and still have room for more but our soil is rock hard clay as well (with rocks) and adding soil ameliorants is the only way to sort it out and put life back into it. My grandad was a trench man as well. I swear he dug up his entire back 1/4 acre and composted it all. Their property was dark sand and he changed it into fertile soil by trenching. I would do the same if we could actually dig anywhere and not hit rocks. It’s hard enough coaxing (bribing) Stevie-boy to dig me holes to plant out my trees without having to resort to begging for a trench ;). STILL laughing about the piles in the shredder…just made my day πŸ˜‰

      • Robbie
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 00:06:50

        lol!!! I just read that + had not idea “piles”-yep, those are a problem if you have them-lol…too funny:-)
        But I did have piles of garden stuff-lol
        My parents live up in the Northwester portion of our state which escaped glaciation. It is rocky, hilly and sounds just like your soil!
        They have to bring dirt in to build a garden. I just had rock hard clay and few rocks. I am grateful I had something to work with to start my garden.
        I use to want more land but as we get older I am enjoying being closer to work.
        The other night my husband and I were watching a video of all the underwater life where you live. AMAZING!!!! It was neat to hear them talk about your place + think that is in the water ( pictures you post) just a walk away from where you are—but you do have to go in the water-lol…what beautiful creatures you have swimming around your place, my dear!!!

      • narf77
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 04:25:26

        Was it about “Tasmanian” waters? We are a lot colder than the mainland and Tasmania temperatures mean that our creatures around here aren’t anywhere near as magnificent as those on the Great Barrier reef up in Queensland that is more like Florida in it’s temperatures (or Hawaii more like). We can dig out soil but it is backbreaking to dig a hole. I am glad I don’t have glaciers to contend with, it might break me! πŸ˜‰

      • Robbie
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 00:09:57

        close to my husband’s work right now-down the street…not my work. My work is here at Palm Rae Potager-where I spin my wheels! I no longer teach.

      • narf77
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 04:29:49

        Spin your wheels? You are a potter?

      • Robbie
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 02:54:31

        I was thinking words mean different things in different places…..I should of used I put a large ‘pile” of things over there..lol..instead of using a plural form “piles’ for in some countries it means “hemorrhoids” lol..here we don’t use “piles” we call them hemorrhoids…here a “pile” is stuff piled up in a heap…just like arse and ass…:-) well, now I will remember not to use “piles” in our country..instead be clear ..I put a pile of sticks in the wood shredder-lol…makes me think of when I called our “crockpot” in front of someone from Germany and they were laughing that we called it a crockpot!

      • narf77
        Oct 31, 2014 @ 04:29:04

        Hee-hee ;). You wouldn’t think that 2 countries that both spoke English would have cross-over words like that. Another word you might want to steer clear of is the word “Fanny”. You guys use it for what we call “bums” but in the U.K. and in Australia it is equated with “lady parts” as Mr Jeremy Clarkson from Top Gear fame would call them and every time Americans say “Fanny pack” we titter like pre-pubescent boys ;). You are right about arse and ass. An ass is a cross between a donkey and a horse here but an arse is an arse whatever way you spell it ;). We call them crockpots as well so its just the Germans being strange πŸ˜‰

  6. Angela @ Canned Time
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 00:40:07

    You guys just kill me with all your plants and goings-on! How do you stand the winters all locked up?
    I need one of those Butterflap things, although I’ve never heard of them, they look suspiciously edible πŸ˜‰
    Hope you’re not working away too hard and are able to sit and watch the lovey view there in the evenings anyway. Good luck to you in all your efforts. A truly admirable home / with and without all it’s shortfalls β™₯

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 03:59:51

      We are currently splitting our time between our last assessment task for our course and the garden and surrounds but Springs siren song has hit me hard so poor Stevie-boy is being dragged along in my wake ;). Winter isn’t that hard here and we rarely drop below 0C (32F) and as we are close to the river (our front gate practically opens up onto the river bank) and our property is steep and rocky, we rarely suffer from frosts either so we can garden right through the year. I have plants to extend Sanctuary after realising that we now have a large area of fence that could act as a “side” for a Sanctuary extension. One of Sanctuaries sides would also act as a “side” so that means that we would only have to dig 2 sides worth of holes in order to get more than double the area that we currently have of animal proof garden and THAT excites me! I could include an orchard in the second side :). Steve is studiously ignoring my idea as it means him digging a lot more “holes” in our rocky soil but you know me…I am determined ;). Cheers for the lovely comment Angela and hopefully your approaching winter isn’t too hard on you guys and Mr Floydy. I will never forget that image you shared of him staring out of the glass door at the snow bank πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  7. thecontentedcrafter
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 05:10:29

    I am tempted to write “Words fail me” and leave it at that…………

    But, alas, I can’t! πŸ˜€

    It looks to me as if you have enough foodstuffs growing on Serendipity to feed at least the whole northern Tasmanian population and possibly the south as well. I am in awe of your ability to grow stuff from nothing and to keep adding in and hauling in all the required manures, mulches and sundry other good additives for your soil. My tiny wee garden [which I am quite proud of] would be a five minute tick on your list of things to see to.

    Isn’t it amazing what dogs will do for treats. [Don’t tell him, but Earl just lost all his street cred by being photographed on that treadmill AND eating treats for being there!] I had a treadmill for years and never used it. I recently sold it for a lot of $$ to someone else who will keep it for years and never use it πŸ™‚

    Glad to see a shot of Bezial doing what he does best. And I’m thinking that last photo is a Steve work of art? It’s very clever whoever did whatever they did to it.

    Your man Maurice is amazing – what an inspiration! Perhaps his gentleness is what enables him to be so successful at being a great human being…… the world needs to celebrate people like him instead of football players and starlets πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 05:34:23

      Big spaces are easy. Tiny spaces take incredible planning and time. You need to make them count, to make every inch count where big spaces you can bosh a tree in and forgedaboudit. We inherited our treadmill for free and I seriously doubt that my lack of monetary handing over is going to engender me to standing on it and moving in a fronterly direction whilst being offered treats. I did that for many years back last century when life was numb and so was I. I spent hours a day facing forwards and walking or stepping or climbing or cycling 40km to get away from my demons. Didn’t work. I learnt a very valuable life lesson. You need to like yourself, love yourself even, in order to live the best life possible. I learned to like myself. I dun good.
      Earl is one of those incredibly rare creatures who doesn’t give a fig what other people think of him. He gets up on tables, he stands on his owners chests, he patrols his fence line like a Roman soldier complete with a large feather (not in his hat, in his mouth…that chook really should have moved a bit faster…) and if anyone laughs at him or questions him they are met with a blank stare of non-recognition. Earl is an enigma. The very closest thing to a wild entity that this little black duck is ever going to get to live with or to hug. Earl is great like that. He shows me life lessons. He isn’t afraid to subjugate himself for a scratch or a cuddle but try flipping him upside down to rub his belly and you quickly realise that he is always on point…I am equal parts in awe of and in love with Earl. He teaches me to live in the moment but I am still a bit too scared to live as “in the moment” as Earl is. I might bask in the nude on the deck this summer a-la-Earl. I might not brush my hair for a day. I might walk around in bare feet inside the safety of Sanctuary and not care that earthworms are squeezing up between my toes. I might, but I might not. I reserve the right to be the opposite of Earl should I see fit πŸ˜‰

      I think I would like to meet Maurice. Anyone with that much drive and determination in such a smiley body is an instant allure to me. Maurice could teach me more in a day than a highly expensive permaculture course in a week and the lessons I learned at Maurices place would last me a lifetime.

      Reply

      • thecontentedcrafter
        Oct 30, 2014 @ 06:11:51

        Then you should write to him! Maurice, not Earl. Though Earl too should the desire so move in you……

        I am with you 100% on the doggie ability to live in the moment. I think we are most blessed to have this minute by minute reminder to just be and do what makes us happy. When Siddy takes up his nightly battle with the remains of a plastic six-pack seedling pottle and shows me how much effort it takes to tame said pottle – with much shaking and growling and tossing aboutness, not to mention the leaping and tossing and more-fierce growling, I experience both utter joy and deep awe at his complete involvement and abandon and happiness in his game. Oh for a tiny bit of that!

        Thank you for your encouraging words re my tiny garden. I shall write a post about it soon and look forward to hearing your thoughts on it.

      • Born To Organize
        Nov 06, 2014 @ 10:14:47

        I’m not sure if I’m commenting in the right place, but your comment really moved me. You’re so right about dogs and about animals in general. They teach us so much. It’s important to live in the moment, but much harder to achieve, isn’t it. Sending a big, smooshy hug your way. xox

      • narf77
        Nov 06, 2014 @ 14:41:49

        Thank you Alys πŸ™‚ Dogs can be better friends than humans in some cases. They are amazing companions for the lonely, the infirm and the elderly and for people who are unable to communicate well with other people they are a fantastic highway to friendship that person may never have known otherwise. Mieka is now living on an awesome 10 acre farm with 2 cattle dogs and her new owners love her to bits. She has learned that the electric fence is NOT fun and has also learned that catching chickens is a no-no ;). Jan and Peter are very happy in Germany and are developing their new business nicely. It would seem that everyone and everything has worked out well and we are enjoying our walks in the morning with just the 4 of us and are not missing Jan and Peter too much πŸ™‚

  8. Littlesundog
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 08:04:39

    My favorite photo (besides Earl who is ALWAYS the star in my eyes!) is Steve looking just as bewildered as the dogs on that treadmill. Isn’t coaxing with snacks kind of defeating the purpose of the exercise??

    Everything is dying back here, so I drool over your plants coming to life, and beautiful flora blooming all over. They are predicting our first freeze here on Friday night. I guess I had better get my rear in gear and get things put away for the season and get prepared for Jack Frost and Old Mr. Winter. Bah!! I’d rather be with you and Earl, basking in the warm sun!!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 17:15:27

      Christmas just isn’t the same according to Steve when its hot and everyone goes to the beach and has a luxury bbq for their meal rather than traditional hot fare. Fancy swimming on Christmas day eh? πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  9. Joanna
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 10:51:44

    hellllooooo!!!!! this is Joanna the Peel shouting from far far away…. how are you bonnie Fran, it all looks glorious and exciting and fecund… any day now the sound of gunpowder will torment the small doglets here as it is Nov 5th and I bet they wish they were in Tassie, though the treadmill looks a bit terrifying, I fell off one of those the one time I tried one in a gym xxxx

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 17:18:09

      At the speed we had the dogs on the treadmill, snails would have been zooming past them. I figure you would have been safe ;). We are all facing up to the increase in activity that comes with the onset of spring and we have even had a few hottish days to remind us that summer is predicted to be long and hot this year. NOT looking forward to that but it could be worse. We don’t have fireworks here on Nov 5th so our dogs are safe although I will be honest with you, I reckon Earl would love them πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  10. foodnstuff
    Oct 30, 2014 @ 12:56:43

    Hey, I like this style of blog. Since I don’t have time to troll right through your obviously fascinating and multifarious life exploits, I always look at the pictures and look for the explanations of the interesting ones. So easy now. Read it all in half the time. Glad those pepinos are going well. πŸ˜‰

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 30, 2014 @ 17:19:32

      The pepinos are just about to move into the ground along with some long suffering currants and my grape vines. Next we will be planting out nut trees (and working out how to stop the native animals from hoovering them up). Hope your growing season is going well and cheers again for those magnificent pepino’s πŸ™‚

      Reply

  11. The Twisted Yarn
    Oct 31, 2014 @ 09:07:06

    Wow, your photos are beautiful. It looks gorgeous where you live.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 31, 2014 @ 10:01:14

      You only get to see the gorgeous bits. There are lots of things that would never even sniff at the heels of gorgeous around here that I am either too ashamed (weeds) or they make me twitch too much (all of the work that we still have to do) to include in my posts. I am trying for honesty but ended up just putting a picture of an honesty plant. You have to start someplace πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  12. Chica Andaluza
    Oct 31, 2014 @ 09:40:43

    Wow – I am going to start ordering my organic veggie boxes from you πŸ˜‰ So much hard work and I can’t believe how quickly everything is growing. Love the treadmill workout – mine (the pups that is) are starting to get porky as they don’t like going out in the rain! What an inspiration that farmer is – just goes to show what you can do with hard work and determination.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 31, 2014 @ 09:57:15

      Bezial has lost a bit of weight thanks to being walked constantly now but he is still on the hefty side and a bit of walking on a treadmill would be good BUT he does his very best to avoid actually stepping on it. Sort of defeats the purpose ;). Maurice, the farmer made my month. I loved how he had a dream and started with nothing but a bit of degraded land and turned it into a permaculture paradise full of possibilities (ALL the “P’s” πŸ˜‰ ). πŸ™‚

      Reply

  13. cityhippyfarmgirl
    Oct 31, 2014 @ 14:21:30

    I had to chuckle at your Donna Hay green gate, I can very much see that.
    Also your dehydrator in the music room, why oh why Steve would you not want it in there πŸ˜‰

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 01, 2014 @ 03:47:51

      Hey, a girl has to be colour coordinated even when she lives out in the sticks ;). Sometimes Stevie-boy can’t hear his 4 amps blasting out his rock icon status over the sound of dehydrating possibilities πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  14. rabidlittlehippy
    Oct 31, 2014 @ 16:48:02

    About to head off to look at the 2 linkies. The recipe and the Kenyan farmer. Compost is THE BOMB! The other thing I have come across in my internet travels is biochar and even the native South American Amazon peoples used it to repair and build up their poor soil. I looked in my fire and saw 2 BIG chunks of charcoal in there which I shall extract, crush and add to the gardens. It absorbs and holds on to nutrients. I might just soak it in worm wee or such before adding to either my compost or the gardens direct. It IS all about the soil!

    Are those seedlings from your long out of date seeds? If so, woo hoo and here’s to nature. πŸ˜€ Tenacious!

    The compound is looking awesome and I bow to your hard work in the compound and Sanctuary with all your manure shoveling. Nice work!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 01, 2014 @ 03:52:46

      Onto “other things” that are keeping me holed up inside at the moment (other things that can’t be mentioned because my daughter’s mental tentacles stretch into some unbelievable places…). Once I have finished this task I will be free to manoeuvre around my head space again. SO much to do here. Might crawl under the bed with Earl for a bit of a breather (Sorry…Earl AND our old kitchen table πŸ˜‰ )

      Reply

      • rabidlittlehippy
        Nov 01, 2014 @ 13:09:09

        Budge over then. I fancy a small space under a bed in which to curl up inside of and twitch too. Sadly under our bed is taken up with drawers of books, boxes of outgrown clothes and dust bunnies.
        As for the unmentionables… πŸ˜‰

      • narf77
        Nov 02, 2014 @ 04:53:19

        It’s lucky Earl can’t fit under there any more as ours is cram packed with guitar cases and an entire dismantled kitchen table now. At least if the bed ever collapses we won’t have far to drop ;).

  15. Boomdeeadda
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 00:02:53

    Good Gosh, that garden of yours looks like a full time hobby, all be it, job perhaps. Composting seems to be the magic ingredient. Mr B tends to enjoy ‘Honeycrisp’ apples, which happen to be the most pricey ones at the market. Yesterday I bought maybe 10 and it was $12. At 2.99 lb or 6.64 kg, we should eat the cores, LOL. You will live thru the apocalypse, will I will parish from scurvy, LOL

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 02, 2014 @ 04:52:24

      Might be time to find someone in your local area with one of those honeycrisp apple trees methinks Ms Boomdeedaizee. I still need to coerce Stevie-boy into digging holes so that I can plant out all of those tree food futures. He is dragging his heels and finding all kinds of other jobs to do and has a spotless shed and music room now but he is going to run out of things to clean soon and it will be hole digging day and those babies will get planted out ASAP. Can’t wait to see them take off in the ground. My 4 fig trees that I planted last year (from cuttings I took from a tree) are growing like crazy and there is nothing more satisfying than seeing food futures prosper. I adore figs and the best way to get them is to grow them yourself. Thos honeycrisp apples cost the same as a kilo of t-bone steak here so they MUST be good πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  16. Sarah the Gardener
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 06:49:55

    Looking really good Fran. You have done heaps of work. Your garden and compound look so lush! Cheers Sarah : o )

    Reply

  17. Boomdeeadda
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 08:23:34

    Fantastic Figs! I love fig bars but that’s the only thing I know. What will you do with them? I think produce is even more expensive than beef here on the prairies….we got cattle but no fruit growers. Except for ones in private yards that may or may not give good fruit. Everything comes from BC or California or even Mexico. Not to much heat here for a good part of the year. xo

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 02, 2014 @ 09:38:01

      Figs love it cool (but not frozen πŸ˜‰ ). I adore them fresh from the tree and am planning on having 6 trees to keep me in the custom that I wish to be kept in. I will dry excess (HA πŸ˜‰ ) and use them as sweetners in cakes. I think I could live on figs πŸ™‚

      Reply

  18. Hannah (BitterSweet)
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 12:58:56

    Hrm, that book right there is quite familiar… Oh yes, it was an old class textbook! I do believe I still have it on my shelf, actually. Even though I’ve moved on to Photoshop CC, I can attest that it’s a great reference for retouchers of all levels.

    Hope you had a very Happy Halloween!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 02, 2014 @ 16:04:31

      Halloween isn’t much chop here, no-one really celebrates it so we had a very quiet night but Steve did saturate his brain on horror movies so he was happy ;). Our old media lecturer gave us the book as they have upgraded their stash and even though we have CS6 there are some really interesting hints and tips in the CS4 book. Steve is the photoshop man. I can barely use it. I love Illustrator, it’s my new bestest software mate πŸ™‚

      Reply

  19. Lrong
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 21:23:57

    Looks like you have lots of veggies being planted in your garden… I see the net cover over the garden… what a good way to keep the birds away… and the Guyanese Butterflaps look delicious…

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 03, 2014 @ 05:25:18

      Thank you Lrong. I am growing vegetables from seed for the first time this year. We have a very short growing season here in Tasmania so I am hoping I haven’t left it too late to plant them all but everything seems to be growing well and I should be planting most of them out within a few weeks. We have had some pretty cool weather in the mornings but that netting (that we got free from a local salmon farm) encloses the whole garden protecting it from the native animals that eat everything. The birds are less of a problem here to be honest. Those Guyanese butterflaps were really good. I found the recipe online and decided to have a go and Steve thought that they were really tasty and even at the leftovers cold like small buns/rolls sliced with cheese in them. Thank you for visiting Serendipity Farm. Today we will be planting out fruit and nut trees that we grew from seed as well as 2 carob trees (also from seed) and transplanting a small almond tree that isn’t doing very well where we planted it. Lots of work but very rewarding πŸ™‚

      Reply

  20. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Nov 04, 2014 @ 04:20:52

    Lots of lovely pics. I’m not surprised Steve wanted to move your dehydrator out of his music room – those machines make their own music when they are in use – rather loudly!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 04, 2014 @ 05:05:09

      They certainly do Jean and at the moment my dehydrator is only being used to make dog treats once a fortnight so it really was taking up a lot of his space in there. It has it’s own home now and everyone is happy πŸ™‚

      Reply

  21. Finn Holding
    Nov 04, 2014 @ 05:52:47

    Hello Fran, I love your picture of Curry, looks like he was having a lot of fun :-). And I reckon your butterflaps need to be recreated here in Cambridge, they look very good indeed

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:12:10

      Namita’s recipe is easy peasy and all you need is your favourite bread recipe and follow her instructions. Steve loved them and was eating them the next day sliced in half with thick slices of cheese and tomato. A big (and easy) success πŸ™‚

      Reply

      • Finn Holding
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:41:21

        I can feel some baking coming on πŸ™‚

      • narf77
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:50:40

        Try them, they were delicious and we did them in the covered bbq so they truly are easy to bake πŸ™‚

      • Finn Holding
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:55:25

        I will indeed. I just cut a deal with my son that me and his sister will make pizzas on Saturday and while we’re doing that he can make the dough for the butterflaps. Job done!

      • narf77
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:56:51

        Excellent multi-tasking…is there anything else you can get him to do at the same time? Maybe the washing up? πŸ˜‰ (HAHA!)

      • Finn Holding
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 07:07:36

        I was pushing my luck with cooking, I reckon I’ll quit while I’m ahead πŸ˜‰

        But I’m really looking forward to it, it’s going to be a seriously messy afternoon and I reckon I’ll need industrial hardware to deep clean the kitchen after that!

      • narf77
        Nov 04, 2014 @ 15:56:25

        Better you than me, but this might be the start of a brave new career for your son (or not πŸ˜‰ )

  22. Linne
    Nov 05, 2014 @ 07:56:33

    Lovely post, Narfie! Thanks. Gotta run, sorry. More later.

    Reply

  23. Born To Organize
    Nov 06, 2014 @ 10:09:02

    Extraordinary amounts of work getting done. My hat is off to you both. Love the spooky transformation at the end. That was fun. Your pooches always make me smile. Happy days ahead.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 06, 2014 @ 14:39:01

      Happy days and hugs Ms Alys. Surely it is cooling down in hot California now? Do you get much of a winter? My son’s partner Kelsey comes from Texas and her grandmother told me via Facebook the other day that it was freezing there. I am not all that wonderful when it comes to U.S. States but I am sure that Texas is close to California isn’t it? Does that mean it is cooling down a bit for you guys as well? I hope so.

      Reply

  24. Sue Dreamwalker
    Nov 10, 2014 @ 02:25:33

    Working my way backwards I can see how already your veggies are growing.. And loved how that treadmill got worked ;-).. It looks as if everything on Serendipity is coming along just fine… πŸ™‚ Great work by the pair of you… You have worked hard.. πŸ™‚ .. xxxx Hugs Sue xx

    Reply

  25. Sue Dreamwalker
    Nov 10, 2014 @ 02:26:32

    Oh and forgot to say,, Loved the ‘Spooky Photo shot’ very clever! πŸ™‚

    Reply

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