Whiling away Wednesday

Hi All,

Writing blog posts in comments is a great way to share the love without labouring a point in a post. I can caption my brains out and that keeps me on track and pertinent to the post. At the moment, February is shaping up to be a hot month. Most of our summer so far has been overcast and more like autumn but it seems Franderella WILL go to the ripe tomato ball after all. “PHEW”! I was getting a bit worried about all of those green tomato recipes I was going to have to find and make! So on with the photos for this week…

A good friend that I met on the "Fans of Grassroots Magazine Australia" Facebook page that I follow studiously asked me if I would like to have some plums. Why yes PLEASE Ruth, I would love some :). She also gave me some perennial leeks. I have planted most of them out and gifted a few to friends. The good thing about me planting them out is that when Ruth moves, she can get some back from me to populate her new garden.

A good friend that I met on the “Fans of Grassroots Magazine Australia” Facebook page that I follow studiously asked me if I would like to have some plums. Why yes PLEASE Ruth, I would love some :). She also gave me some perennial leeks. I have planted most of them out and gifted a few to friends. The good thing about me planting them out is that when Ruth moves, she can get some back from me to populate her new garden.

Plums sliced in halves ready to put on the dehydrator sheets

Plums sliced in halves ready to put on the dehydrator sheets

Dehydrated plums that look like raisins. They are a bit tart but will be great in muffins

Dehydrated plums that look like raisins. They are a bit tart but will be great in muffins

Coconut kaffir lime rice with perfectly ripe foraged peaches sliced on top. An amazing breakfast made even more amazing when eating it in the sunshine on the weekend on the deck :)

Coconut kaffir lime rice with perfectly ripe foraged peaches sliced on top. An amazing breakfast made even more amazing when eating it in the sunshine on the weekend on the deck πŸ™‚

Dried cherry and dark chocolate muffin mix

Dried cherry and dark chocolate muffin mix

Dried cherry and dark chocolate muffins

Dried cherry and dark chocolate muffins

The very first of my new subscription of Grass Roots magazine to arrive in our mail box. No more hunting around in random News Agencies in the vain hope that they might have a copy :)

The very first of my new subscription of Grass Roots magazine to arrive in our mail box. No more hunting around in random News Agencies in the vain hope that they might have a copy πŸ™‚

The steps down from the deck. Nature appears to be taking back it's property. Might be time to get the secateurs out and tame her a bit...

The steps down from the deck. Nature appears to be taking back it’s property. Might be time to get the secateurs out and tame her a bit…

 

Here is a stand of creeping groundcover raspberries that I will be harvesting for rooted cuttings soon. I want to get a good selection of them growing in pots if anyone else wants some as no-one that I have mentioned them to has ever heard of them or can find another source of them

Here is a stand of creeping groundcover raspberries that I will be harvesting for rooted cuttings soon. I want to get a good selection of them growing in pots if anyone else wants some as no-one that I have mentioned them to has ever heard of them or can find another source of them

 

This is the area under the deck that was very difficult to grow anything in. We chose species that like arid conditions and that would take the full sun  in this area and now there is a reasonable amount of vegetation in this area and it looks a whole lot better now

This is the area under the deck that was very difficult to grow anything in. We chose species that like arid conditions and that would take the full sun in this area and now there is a reasonable amount of vegetation in this area and it looks a whole lot better now

This is a lovely standard grafted "Cascade Falls" that my daughters gave me for Christmas one year. We planted it out  under the deck and although the wallabies took an early fancy to it, it seems to be recovering nicely

This is a lovely standard grafted “Cascade Falls” that my daughters gave me for Christmas one year. We planted it out under the deck and although the wallabies took an early fancy to it, it seems to be recovering nicely

Just to show you how much vegetation is in this previously sparsely planted area. This photo was taken from the side of the garden

Just to show you how much vegetation is in this previously sparsely planted area. This photo was taken from the side of the garden

This indoor plant has been living the hard life underneath a conifer in the side garden. Someone obviously once put the pot out in the garden and forgot about it. Many years on and it is still alive. It is one of the plants that have benefited greatly from us putting in a larger fenced area and clearing out the weeds from under it.

This indoor plant has been living the hard life underneath a conifer in the side garden. Someone obviously once put the pot out in the garden and forgot about it. Many years on and it is still alive. It is one of the plants that have benefited greatly from us putting in a larger fenced area and clearing out the weeds from under it.

The water wicked strawberry bed is going great guns. I only just topped it up with water today so it is working really well and the strawberries all have a new lease on life and are fruiting like crazy. It's really wonderful when an idea actually works :)

The water wicked strawberry bed is going great guns. I only just topped it up with water today so it is working really well and the strawberries all have a new lease on life and are fruiting like crazy. It’s really wonderful when an idea actually works πŸ™‚

One of the pumpkins that are growing around the peripherals of Sanctuary. I keep having to remind them to stay on the outside of the gardens and some of them are repeat offenders...

One of the pumpkins that are growing around the peripherals of Sanctuary. I keep having to remind them to stay on the outside of the gardens and some of them are repeat offenders…

The top corner experimental garden in Sanctuary is starting to look pretty good. This was previously hard baked soil that nothing much grew on. I put some Jerusalem artichokes here to see if they would break up the soil and used them as the "stalk" part of the 3 sisters equation. The pumpkins seem to be liking it here and there are grapes around the perimeter of Sanctuary being trained up stakes this year that we are going to espalier next year.

The top corner experimental garden in Sanctuary is starting to look pretty good. This was previously hard baked soil that nothing much grew on. I put some Jerusalem artichokes here to see if they would break up the soil and used them as the “stalk” part of the 3 sisters equation. The pumpkins seem to be liking it here and there are grapes around the perimeter of Sanctuary being trained up stakes this year that we are going to espalier next year.

The first of the new gardens that we planted out with basil, tomatillos and eggplants and I have been planting all sorts of other things to fill in the gaps. I love experimental gardening :)

The first of the new gardens that we planted out with basil, tomatillos and eggplants and I have been planting all sorts of other things to fill in the gaps. I love experimental gardening πŸ™‚

My 4 pots of turmeric are having a ball out in the ground and have doubled in size since I planted them out and are sending up new shoots all over the place.

My 4 pots of turmeric are having a ball out in the ground and have doubled in size since I planted them out and are sending up new shoots all over the place.

This is one of the poor long suffering cardamom plants that I recently planted out. They are looking a bit raggy at the moment but there are lots of new shoots coming up out of the old leaves. They both seem to be happy in their new situation and one day they will mass with the turmeric and I will be halfway to having my own fresh spice rack in Sanctuary

This is one of the poor long suffering cardamom plants that I recently planted out. They are looking a bit raggy at the moment but there are lots of new shoots coming up out of the old leaves. They both seem to be happy in their new situation and one day they will mass with the turmeric and I will be halfway to having my own fresh spice rack in Sanctuary

Steve took this shot of the sun going down behind a cloud last week.

Steve took this shot of the sun going down behind a cloud last week.

My new kaffir lime has a fruit on it! This is the best photo of the fruit that my camera would let me take. It gets bolshie sometimes and refuses to cooperate.

My new Australian native fingerΒ lime has a fruit on it! This is the best photo of the fruit that my camera would let me take. It gets bolshie sometimes and refuses to cooperate.

My kaffir lime is jealous of all of the attention that the native finger lime is getting and has decided to start putting on some new growth and has flower buds!

My kaffir lime is jealous of all of the attention that the native finger lime is getting and has decided to start putting on some new growth and has flower buds!

I planted out a bag of very sprouted potatoes that a friend gave me from her pantry in the last of the new garden beds and they are going crazy in there. I planted out beetroot seed in front of them and lolo russo lettuce as well. The empty looking space is for the sweet potato cuttings to grow into but as it has been quite cool for this time of year they haven't grown very much so far. This next week of hot temperatures (hot for us ;) ) should see them get growing a lot faster.

I planted out a bag of very sprouted potatoes that a friend gave me from her pantry in the last of the new garden beds and they are going crazy in there. I planted out beetroot seed in front of them and lolo russo lettuce as well. The empty looking space is for the sweet potato cuttings to grow into but as it has been quite cool for this time of year they haven’t grown very much so far. This next week of hot temperatures (hot for us πŸ˜‰ ) should see them get growing a lot faster.

I took this photo from the new garden area looking back at the existing first 2 veggie gardens

I took this photo from the new garden area looking back at the existing first 2 veggie gardens. Note the triffids hiding among the nasturtiums πŸ˜‰

Check out how tall my initial tomatillo plant has gotten.

Check out how tall my initial tomatillo plant has gotten. I have more growing quickly in the new garden beds

One of my 4 pepino shrubs growing like topsy in among the tomato plants. I was most happy to discover that pepino's are actually perennial so that means that my babies should carry on through winter if I interplant them with lots of winter veggies to protect them from the extremely minimal risk of frost damage.

One of my 4 pepino shrubs growing like topsy in among the tomato plants. I was most happy to discover that pepino’s are actually perennial so that means that my babies should carry on through winter if I interplant them with lots of winter veggies to protect them from the extremely minimal risk of frost damage.

Looking from between the first 2 garden beds towards the back of Sanctuary. I am really happy how the gardens have come on and to think, this time a few months ago, there were just weeds up there!

Looking from between the first 2 garden beds towards the back of Sanctuary. I am really happy how the gardens have come on and to think, this time a few months ago, there were just weeds up there!

Lastly this is where I have planted out most of the citrus trees and experimental compost gardens. As you can see, my love of pumpkins has somewhat skewed the contents of the compost buckets and thus I find myself loaded with free pumpkin vines that are all starting to produce large fruit. I am guessing they are the creamy skinned pumpkins that look like Queensland blues but with creamy yellow skin that I was buying not so long ago. I really like them so fingers crossed they stay true to type :)

Lastly this is where I have planted out most of the citrus trees and experimental compost gardens. As you can see, my love of pumpkins has somewhat skewed the contents of the compost buckets and thus I find myself loaded with free pumpkin vines that are all starting to produce large fruit. I am guessing they are the creamy skinned pumpkins that look like Queensland blues but with creamy yellow skin that I was buying not so long ago. I really like them so fingers crossed they stay true to type πŸ™‚

As Mr Peter Cundall would say “That’s your bloomin’ lot this week folks!” I hope that our gardening endeavours have given you something to think about this week, even if it is just “Oh MY their gardens are messy!” ;).

 

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57 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. brymnsons
    Feb 04, 2015 @ 19:52:27

    Oh my how messy! πŸ˜€ Only pulling your leg. Looks lush and green, unlike my backyard that looks cooked and dry/dead … Been hot one day and bloody hot the next. Those dried cherry and dark chocolate muffins sure looked scrumptious… any left? Lovely photo Steve πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 03:03:56

      I gave the rest of the muffins to some (male) friends who love “food”. The best kind of food audience ;). It’s been pretty mild here up until now. This week we have heat for the very first time in sequence so poor Earl is going to suffer but the garden might just get going finally. I will suck it up if it means my tomatoes start to ripen finally πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  2. The Snail of Happiness
    Feb 04, 2015 @ 19:57:02

    Ooh what lovely pictures… I’m so glad that sanctuary really is providing a sanctuary and that your new fencing is allowing the appearance of unknown gems elsewhere. I also really love your strawberry boat. However, I didn’t spot any pictures of Earl, Bezial or Stevie-boy this week,,, have they all been good boys or are they in disgrace?

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 03:05:15

      Stevie-boy was AWOL and Earl and Bezial don’t come with me to Sanctuary as I wield the dreaded “hose of DOOM!” and I tend to be quite lax with where I am watering at any given time and they like to wander and are apparently (according to them) allergic to being sprayed with the hose πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  3. thecontentedcrafter
    Feb 04, 2015 @ 20:22:36

    Yes that garden is still looking lush and growing everything it can. I love pumpkins and am just a tad envious of all yours! But I echo Dr Snail – where are the boys? Have you not had any mail recently? It is extremely hot here too, and inclined to mugginess. Most unusual weather for the far south even if we are the Riviera of Antarctica. The last week of so it has rained for a bit every day, thunder storms and occasional windy blasts of hot air – even puppy has run out of steam! My tomatoes are suffering a bit with heat stress, the tiny garden area closely resembles an oven in the late afternoon! I find I’m looking forward to winter! xo

    Reply

    • aFrankAngle
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 00:09:00

      Looking forward to winter? I expect 2-5 cm of snow by this time tomorrow.

      Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 03:07:57

      I did have mail and got my Grassroots magazine Ms Pauline but nothing else, although I did see an advertisment on the side of a Facebook page for “2 hanging vases for $16” and went mad and bought them with visions of them hanging in my kitchen window growing cuttings. It is only just starting to get hot this week Ms Pauline and starting today. Yesterday was quite cold at 22C but from today it starts to ramp up and we are hitting 31C on Saturday which is really quite hot for Tasmania. It MUST be hard conditions if “You” are complaining about the heat and looking forwards to winter! πŸ˜‰

      Reply

      • thecontentedcrafter
        Feb 05, 2015 @ 05:16:34

        I migrated to this part of the world for the cooler living conditions! Climate Change is causing me some issues with this. It was not so hot overnight and I am soooooo grateful for that – I actually slept. The postal service is being abysmally slow. You have more mail due than your vases, not from me though. πŸ™‚

      • narf77
        Feb 05, 2015 @ 15:51:20

        Interesting… now my interest is piqued.

  4. aFrankAngle
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 00:14:46

    From what I can tell, you are Grass Roots magazine! Nonetheless, did you get it sooner or later? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTQS3hkmUVk … bug what are Franderella?

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 03:13:09

      Lol, good segue Mr Frank. I actually got it sooner as I now subscribe so I get it earlier than the regular News Agent hunters. Franderella is the Aussie version of a fairy tale princess but rather than be into handsome princes and fighting my way out from under the oppressive and stifling regime of my 2 step sisters and wicked step mother, I am rising to the top of the tomato producing game and actually getting ripe tomatoes. An altogether more “boring” “arella” but whatchagonnado? It makes “me” happy πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  5. cathyandchucky
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 00:32:10

    Lovely Fronkiii 😊

    Reply

  6. quarteracrelifestyle
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 05:31:42

    Your garden is looking very lush and productive Fran πŸ™‚ wonderful! Now I am going to have to check out that Facebook page. Many (too many!) years ago I bought a pile of Grassroots mags at an op shop and spent weeks reading them from cover to cover, I had never been interested in vegetable gardening till then. I don’t know why I bought them, I think the covers being hippyish appealed and they were my intro to growing my own.

    Reply

  7. mattb325
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 07:04:41

    Very nice! I like how the plantings are coming along – you are lucky to be having heat again – summer looks like it has waved goodbye here in the mountains πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 15:54:35

      I think I will migrate to those lush green mountains with lots of rainfall. Everything is starting to dry out most alarmingly here.

      Reply

  8. Littlesundog
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 08:26:08

    All I can do is dream away as I scroll through your photographs… Spring can never arrive soon enough for me. I long to have my hands in the dirt, planting and nurturing. Your gardens are so lovely and beautiful! I do a lot of dehydrating when we have fruits (the last three years we had nothing but apples – all the other fruit trees got hit with a couple of late freezes and frosts), but I do a lot of herb drying. We pick wild plums here, as well as wild blackberries. How on earth do you keep up with harvest of so many fruits and vegetables? How do you make time for the kitchen when you are harvesting so much?Does it ever seem never ending? πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 15:58:15

      We haven’t harvested much yet as we have had a very mild season and everything is taking it’s time to ripen but now that February is here it has heated up a lot and so at least my tomatoes should ripen up πŸ™‚

      Reply

  9. christiglover
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 11:22:45

    February is hot there AND here. But it’s WINTER here in Hawaii and Monday was the highest temperature ever recorded for us on that date — 88 F, 31 C! And we’re so dry, too. Only 2.8 inches this year so far when normal is 10.23 inches. Something is up. I’m with Pauline. Climate change. I didn’t come to Hawaii for this kind of heat!

    Your garden and plantings are glorious, my dear Franderella (love that). We have several vegan people in our lives now and I’m appreciating your concoctions more and more. Austin is eating a pile of purple sweet potatoes, turmeric, lemon juice, coconut oil and a few sprouts as I type. Very pretty food. πŸ™‚

    I like your new blogging idea of pictures and captions of events and spilling your heart out in comments to your faithful readers individually. And then we read the comments! It suits you, and acknowledges what you do anyway.

    I’ve been blogging for 4 years this month. I wrote it weekly for 3 years, and now I’m down to 2 per month. Which is suiting me better these days. I think about it a lot, though, how it has changed and what I should do now.

    Hugs and love to you and your “old” man and the doggies, Christi

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 16:04:48

      Austins dinner sounds lovely. I wish we could get purple sweet potatoes easily here. I would try to grow one! ;). I think people appreciate the new format now so I will stick to it now. The thing about posting more sporadically is that people actually look forward to your post. I know I do. BIG hugs from Sunny Sidmouth and sorry about the heat!

      Reply

  10. foodnstuff
    Feb 05, 2015 @ 12:21:57

    I’m suffering pumpkin envy when I look at yours. Mine are just not flowering 😦

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 05, 2015 @ 16:06:43

      I wonder what is up at your place Bev? The pumpkins are just seeds from those creamy yellow skinned ones I was talking about that are the shape of Queensland blues. I have had a fair few turn yellow and drop off as well but quite a few have set and are growing really fast. Sorry your’s aren’t flowering :(. What kind are they? Hopefully they didn’t sterilise themselves last year with a weird hybridisation event!

      Reply

  11. Chica Andaluza
    Feb 06, 2015 @ 03:45:03

    Messy?! That’s a PROPER garden!! Looks wonderful and I love the way you make use of every little bit of space and everything that comes your way. Tell Stev I love his arty-fartys sunset shot – verrrrry nice πŸ™‚

    Reply

  12. Chica Andaluza
    Feb 06, 2015 @ 07:12:29

    Size 5 I’m afraid 😦 but I’m sure the disapppointment of not being able to borrow my DMs will be cancelled out with this fabulous curry! Looks amazing…I think I have some chicken thighs in the freezer….

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 07, 2015 @ 06:07:37

      I seem to be wearing an enormous pair of chook thighs at any given time. Nature is a biotch! ;). Hope you liked that curry. I saved that blog to plunder later as it looks like it is now defunct. What a loss! That blog is amazing. I also found a spectacular parsi tomato chutney there that made me squeal inside. Not often chutney recipes do that to me but then we Chook thighed women have a penchant for strange predilections πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  13. Lori Fontanes
    Feb 06, 2015 @ 21:59:05

    Our garden is completely under snow cover so it’s a sight for sore eyes to see all your greenery! Thx for sharing!!!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 07, 2015 @ 06:22:57

      My garden has gone insane. I am actually afraid to go up there now as things keep errupting out of the soil. We are going through a hot spell (for us) and the garden has apparently just woken up like Sleeping Beauty and is going for broke. I have SO many green tomatoes that need to ripen (late start to the season for nature NOT me this time!) that I am starting to dread trying to work out what to do with them all at the moment but this hot spell appears to be carrying on so maybe…just maybe…I might get some red tomatoes this year! That’s if I keep the pumpkin invaders to the peripherals of the garden…it’s like peace keeping on permanent stand off here on Serendipity Farm. Glad you liked all of the greenery. I suspect it is more to do with those wonderful “memories” of green things than the actuality of being in the garden. Sort of like remembering having a baby about 10 years after you actually had one with only fondness and forgetting about all of the torture you went through at the time ;). Have a fantastic weekend/week and don’t worry, your snow will melt soon enough and you will be a slave to your garden overlord all over again πŸ™‚

      Reply

  14. Hannah (BitterSweet)
    Feb 06, 2015 @ 23:11:04

    Oh, wow, such an amazing bounty of plums. I don’t think I’ve seen so many ripe stone fruit in one place, outside of the market, of course! That is one very good friend you found yourself, indeed.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 07, 2015 @ 06:24:59

      Poor Ruth is snowed under with produce if you can believe it. She has a couple of acres of fruit trees, berries etc. and hasn’t been able to look after it as well as she usually can this year as she hurt her knee at work. She has just about sold the property and has told me that I can take all of the cuttings that I want. She is a WONDERFUL friend indeed :). I can share her cuttings back with her when she finds her place and starts to garden again :). The largest of my cherimoya babies just sent a root out through the bottom of a largish pot. Time to repot them, they are going mental!

      Reply

  15. Robbie
    Feb 07, 2015 @ 04:48:17

    I am a little behind in my reading this week of everyone:-( It is around noon here in the USA. I had to break down and purchase some organic kale ( mine is all eaten -by me!) today from California-shoot! Last year, I had more than I needed,, bu this year I did not plant enough in the spring. I envy ALL the green + it does not look messy to me-it looks lush and green + not white-LOL:-)
    That is interesting about tumeric. Do you eat the root as ginger? I have never grown it but what pretty plants. Is it a perennial in your area. You have such an abundance of food!
    Have you ever grown that beach plum? I want a plum tree. I had one a few years ago but the rabbits or critters chewed a few of my baby trees down to a twig! I have guards on all 7 of my new dwarf trees this year..grrrr..those critters. The blueberries are all wrapped in chicken wire. I can’t see anything under 14 inches of snow…until it melts, then I can see if it all survived-fingers crossed!!!
    Lovely photo of your sunset-shades of pinkish-purple glowing behind the dark trees….a great view to rest and watch after a long day in sanctuary…( long sigh)…..I miss green…thank you for sharing your green paradise!
    Happy Gardening:-)

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 07, 2015 @ 06:34:26

      I am trying to give anything a go here Robbie. I don’t take “You can’t grow that there…” as anything other than a challenge and so many things I have a go at growing seem to do well here so I am just going to keep soldiering on and growing weird and wonderful things :). Turmeric is wonderful stuff. A very powerful super-food and you use the root like ginger. It is the most amazing bright yellow/orange colour and the root is very fragrant. I bought a couple of small fresh roots from my health food shop. They were heinously expensive (as it doesn’t grow here in Tassie) and I decided to just try them in pots last year. They re-sprouted this year and when I checked them (tipped them out of their pots) they had more roots! That tells me that they will grow here and quite happily. I have had cardamom (the spice) growing here for years and bought it from a nursery that gets incredibly heavy frost so it should be OK on our frost minimalist property. My motto is “give it a go, you haven’t got much to lose and you have everything to gain!” Especially when you are growing things from seed you collected yourself

      Plums are the easiest and most hardy fruit you can grow. They grow well in cold or hot climates and are world wide (not sure about Antarctica and the Arctic circle πŸ˜‰ ). You can put a plum tree in a container and they will fruit. They are incredibly hardy. My blueberries have their own little protected area. It might not be pretty but it certainly stops the critters! The possums are too scared to climb on it thanks to our rickety cobbling together (EVERYONE is a critic! πŸ˜‰ ) and the wallabies can’t invade it as we used corrugated iron to put around the base. It’s sort of a very VERY large raised bed with quite a lot of very spoiled blueberries living inside it. I spotted our blackbirds walking around the top of the netting we have over it (thick netting, not bird mesh so it can take all kinds of things walking on it without caving in or tangling them in it) and looking down lustfully and wistfully at the blueberries below. I think I have them foiled! If you can foil a blackbird you can foil most things as they are clever little buggers

      Don’t worry, you get to ponder your garden anew each year. We don’t get that luxury of a time of rest as I have to start thinking about my winter garden right NOW apparently! Some of my blogging gardening mates already have their seedlings up and read to plant out so I had best get my act together and get planting brassicas! You know me, I want strange ones. Does anyone do red Brussels sprouts? How about blue cabbages? What about other strange brassicas? You can bet I will find them! πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  16. Robbie
    Feb 07, 2015 @ 15:58:33

    I love red brussel sprouts. I grow this one-
    https://www.adaptiveseeds.com/brussels-sprouts-red-bull
    I hope you can find the seed. The leaves of the plants are just like cabbage + you can eat them while you wait for sprouts! You know me, I love the color red!
    Tumeric is a spice they are trialing for cures for a variety of diseases. Many years ago, I read it stopped tumor growth in mice. It is an amazing herb. Do you have any good recipes to use tumeric? It is not my husbands favorite-darn! It stains my counter when I use it + I have read it is good for dying nature fibers.
    You are very blessed to live in the “perfect” climate for growing. You don’t get rest + I admit, I get spoiled for a few months out of the year!
    My daughter just picked up my “little buddy” -grandson! I am taking dogs out and stopping by to see what you said-
    This week-my old dog add my grandsons oreo mini cookies and had the “you know” all week! Don’t let your dogs eat oreos they are EVIL for dogs! I told her don’t even bring his oreos over here!!what a mess:-(

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 07, 2015 @ 18:37:30

      Oh dear :(. We don’t buy them. I make most of our cookies (we call them biscuits) and the dogs can eat them as they usually just contain butter and coconut and oats etc. I will take good note of not feeding them to the dogs but as they have dark chocolate in them I wouldn’t try to be honest. Turmeric is wonderful in smoothies and I use heaps in curries and soups. It adds a gorgeous colour and flavour to whatever you add it to, so long as you don’t put too much in. My friend, who had cancer, heard that it was a great anti-cancer/tumour product and bought a capsule machine and started making herself capsules of it. She was taking about 10 capsules a day and was starting to feel ill. Her doctor told her that he wouldn’t recommend more than about a teaspoon a day MAXIMUM and he is Indian so he should know!

      Reply

  17. Robbie
    Feb 08, 2015 @ 01:50:51

    I know tumeric helps shut down the blood supply to tumors. I use to take tumeric pills in my early years after being dx, but they were EXPENSIVE! I started thinking about all the stuff they try to sell in pill form and decided to get all my “alternative medicine” from the food I eat. Just recently they found out some herbal/pill companies that sold at local store chains were mixing sand with their vitamins + hardly any of the “stuff” you were buying was in the pill! I don’t trust all that stuff you purchase over the counter. You are smart to grow it! I grow what I can or purchase it “dried” from local herbal growers. For example, I drink “holy Basil ” or “Tulsi” tea and have for 10 years. I purchase it from Pacific Botanicals in the pacific northwest of USA. We also have one tea company in USA that grows green tea which I drink a lot of + I found them a few years ago. I try to grow ” vitamins”i Or “alternative medicines” myself or purchase in raw form. People even take green tea pills-geez just make a cup of tea-LOL…

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 08, 2015 @ 18:33:31

      There’s not enough money in a cuppa Robbie, if you stick a bit of watered down green tea in a pill you can charge a fortune for it. That’s most of the problem with the “health food” industry, they are just middle men peddling “food” that they make incredible claims for when food SHOULD be our medicine and we don’t need some middle man upping the price of “superfoods” when they are simply “food”. We just need to be able to access well priced healthy food and when these people put claims on things (whether they are actual or not) it elevates the price and it’s the middle men who really win. Growing our own food puts possibilities right back in the growers hands, much like growing your own food.

      Reply

  18. The Twisted Yarn
    Feb 08, 2015 @ 23:10:48

    Ahhhhhhhhhhh. Thank you yet again for bringing such colour and loveliness to a dull winter’s day in the UK. (It does feel odd reading the words ‘February’ and ‘hot’ together.) I’m so impressed by the sheer variety of foodstuffs that you can grow where you live. It seems as though you can produce everything we can grow in merry ol’ England, plus a tonne of other, more exotic produce besides. Can you perhaps detect a tiny note of envy in my voice?

    Dried plums in muffins, you say? Yet again, I’m going to have to fetch a cloth to wipe drool off my keyboard.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 09, 2015 @ 03:28:18

      I have been SO busy I haven’t had time to read my RSS Feed Reader. I am sure there are a plethora of backed up posts wafting around in cyberspace waiting to haunt me with guilt but hopefully I will be on top of that this morning. Thank you for your envy. I will trade you the envy for the hard work ;). Just planted out another red grape variety and noticed that there are Swiss brown mushrooms growing out of the mushroom compost that I used around some of my plants and specifically in my mint bed! Mint and mushrooms are not flavours that figure predominately in most recipes ;). It’s all a wonderful experiment here on Serendipity Farm and lots of fun even with the hard work factored in πŸ˜‰

      Reply

  19. thegingerbreadlady
    Feb 08, 2015 @ 23:25:23

    I am NOT – I repeat: NOT – going to read your blog before lunch any more. I wasn’t hungry before I started but now I’m STARVING. Figs? Yum. Plums? Yum. Muffins? Yum … but Steve’s meat pie? Oh. Emm. Gee. There’s a word in German called ‘Futterneid’, which could be translated as ‘food envy’ (more like: trough envy, it’s used for animals… when they’re golloping down their own feed while keeping an eye on what the other animals are getting) and I’m seriously experiencing this now. If I ever come to visit, I’d like to put in an order for a slice of that pie, with a big pile of delicious plums for desert (keep that friend! She’s worth her weight in stone fruit.)

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 09, 2015 @ 03:32:46

      Lovely to see you down on Serendipity Farm (which isn’t really a farm, just 4 untamed acres of lush weeds and mad native animals) Ms gingerbreadlady. I have admired your wonderfully penned blog from afar…from far FAR away (about as far as you can get away to be honest πŸ˜‰ ). I love that word ‘Futterneid’. Sounds like me in a good cafe. Thank you for your food envy, it is much appreciated. My word for the day is “golloping’ and I am going to use it shamelessly and with impunity. Cheers for expanding my vocabulary to the max and on a Monday too! πŸ™‚

      Reply

  20. Yelena
    Feb 10, 2015 @ 11:38:51

    O my, look at all those plums, so many of them-))) So smart to dry them. Super!!! I usually make a plum jam, if you need a recipe I have it on my blog.

    Reply

  21. Namita
    Feb 11, 2015 @ 01:22:02

    Hey Fran,
    Your garden is beautiful, bountiful, blossoming with nature’s blessings and your hard work and love. Yes, it gave me enough to think ….I was just wondering if I was there with you, I would have made plum jam and plum cake. Oh pumpkins! I would be tempted to make pumpkin soup. Reading Grassroots magazine in your deck sipping tea would be quite an experience. I loved your dehydrator sheets. I am going to google and find out more about them. I would love to have them here and use them when we have bumper stone fruits in summers.
    I am quite surprised by the fact that turmeric and cardamom is growing at your farm. Turmeric grows here but cardamom does not. It does not bear pods here. Your variety of lemons hold me in awe. Tomatoes, potatoes beets ……love this endless list. Fran, how do you use turmeric? here the rhizomes are boiled and dried. dried rhizomes are powdered and then used. Raw turmeric is also used for specific purposes.
    Waiting for your next post!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 11, 2015 @ 03:16:27

      Turmeric is a most wonderful and useful root and here it is used fresh in smoothies and curries and in lots of other recipes. Indian cooking and medicine have given us so much and turmeric is one vital element in many recipes. I use dried turmeric a lot but the fresh is very potent. It is supposed to be very good for arthritis. I am not sure if my cardamom will grow pods here (I doubt it) but I wanted to grow it when I found 2 pots of it at a small nursery years ago and decided to just plant them out and see if they grew :). The dehydrator is priceless and you can make solar ones as well that don’t use electricity. I am thinking about making one as we may as well harness the suns energy to work for us when it is hot outside πŸ™‚

      Reply

  22. Margaret Griffin
    Feb 11, 2015 @ 17:30:02

    Hi Fran, I thought I might get this comment in before this week’s post appears.

    I am intrigued by the sunset photo. It looks like a space ship is coming in to hover over your garden.

    Good luck with your tomato crop. Will you be drying some of them in your dehydrator? I was once given some home dried tomatoes sprinkled with herbs and they tasted amazing!

    My tomato growing efforts have so far produced 4 tomatoes.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Feb 11, 2015 @ 17:52:01

      That’s 4 more than we have Margaret ;). We have lots of tomatoes but a possum invaded Sanctuary and ate the only one that was attempting to ripen in any way. We have now fixed the problem but our tomatoes are still green. We have our fingers crossed that we might get a dry warm march and we might still get a few ripe ones but it is looking dodgy. This year was pretty cold and wet right up to the beginning of February. I will find a way to use the green tomatoes even if it means attempting green tomato wine! πŸ˜‰

      Reply

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