Sunday, 31 July 2011

The First Winter

The First Planting Day
Our first planting day was a great success.  The sun shone brilliantly all day and the Winter gardeners, visitors and Friends of the Garden managed to complete a mass planting out, as well as learn a great deal from the experts present.  We were gifted with a large number of plant donations and the NLFG thanks its supporters including John Pinnegar, Peppertree Place Coburg, Angelo Eliades and Bunnings Preston, as well as countless individuals who donated cuttings and seedlings.

Pathways marked out ready for planting

Plum trees in the Food Forest

The back garden bed.  Look at all those plants!

Watering in at the end of the day

The Winter Season

Despite the slow growing season, planting out a new garden in Winter has provided an excellent opportunity to plant bare-rooted fruit trees, berry canes and root crops, and to establish perennial ornamentals and edibles in new homes.

The Food Forest has taken great shape under the direction of Angelo Eliades of Deep Green PermacultureThree plum trees (Santa Rosa, D’Agen and Donsworth), three apples, and a mulberry tree now stand as the forest canopy, with a dwarf mandarin, berries (raspberries, currents and a jostaberry), and scented and companion plants forming the mid-layer.  Ground covers include wild (alpine) strawberries, lettuce, Asian greens, herbs and violets.

The Food Forest Plan - Angelo Eliades

Winter edible planting throughout the garden includes strawberries, potatoes, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, tat soi, bok choi, Chinese cabbage, kale, silverbeet and rainbow chard, garlic, onions, leek, spring onions, edible cannas, lettuce varieties, mustard, parsley, coriander, watercress, dill, Warrigal greens, Jerusalem artichoke, rhubarb, nasturtium and broad beans.

Companion, scented and flowering plants form an important part of the garden and a third of the front garden bed has been planted with a variety of plants including lavender, daisy varieties, calendula, cornflower, hollyhock, salvia varieties, as well as some native ground covers and shrubs.  These plants are dotted throughout the seasonal beds as well and will act as bee forage, attract beneficial insects to the garden and act as ‘helpers’ to our fruit and vegetable varieties.

August in the Garden
  • Trellis will be erected for the berries in the Food Forest, an additional berry bed and for a planned passion fruit plant near the water tank. 
  • Pathway construction awaits some enthusiastic volunteers!  Stepping stones will criss-cross the garden beds and the Food Forest and will allow for easy access to plants.  We plan to construct these paths from reclaimed and re-purposed materials, such as bricks and timber.
  • Succession planting will be an ongoing task in the garden and the back garden bed has been planned to ensure there will be food to harvest every month from the garden.
  • Growers will begin to propagate seed for the coming Spring season this month and we’re hoping to grow some interesting heritage/heirloom varieties.

The Darebin Council Sow What When brochure is helping to inform us of suitable planting times as well as the plants that do and do not get along together!

The next planting and working bee day is on Saturday August 20th from 10am.

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