Its hard to believe nearly a whole year has passed since I last updated this blog, sincere apologies if you check in here every now and then. This last year has simply flown by in a flurry of business, the likes of which I could not possibly imagine! Fingers crossed that the next year will be slower and easier, but that's not likely, although I live in hope....
So one major reason for my absence is the arrival of our fourth child, another girl, who arrived here on the farm on christmas evening. She has settled in fine, but sure has taken up a chunk of time.
My vegetable garden was a mixture of success and failures, but as I tell my kids we learn a lot more from failure than success, so I am sure learning lots! Our biggest issue here has been water, so this year we installed a 115,000L water tank, which is now 2/3 full. That should make keeping the garden alive easier, especially since we have also gone high tech and bought a pump and sprinklers! My days of watering by watering can are OVER! My other major issue has been rabbits.... and while we have STARTED on a fence it wont be finished in time for this year's garden, so I'm not going to bother planting crops that they eat, like peas and bean, and grain crops.
Our polytunnel is now officially finished, with doors, sprinklers and lots of plants (including bananas, coffee plants, lemon grass and a few other warmer climate plants. They like the more balmy conditions inside the tunnel, although the snow we had still made it a little chilly for them, hope they can hang in there a little longer, as spring is just around the corner (the wattles are starting to flower and so are the daffodils/jonquils).
|the finished doors, the top swivels so hot air can vent out with the doors shut.|
|the inside of the polytunnel showing banana plants in the back and vegie beds at the front.|
We have caught the mushroom bug, after doing a short workshop at our local community garden. We did one shitake mushroom log as part of the workshop, but have since bought dowels to do some other logs here. Its a fun (but time consuming) process and the kids helped out too (despite them all LOATHING mushrooms - luckily I have mushroom eating in my genes and can cope with a glut!).
|the kids hammering in the mushroom inoculated dowels into holes drilled in the logs|
|each silver wattle log had about 20 holes drilled into it evenly spaced.|
Our eldest daughter has gotten into duck keeping, and now cares for our expanded flock of ducks (we hatched some ducklings late last year - born on christmas day too...).
Our goats are milking OK, but in the process of drying off in readiness for kidding (fingers crossed) in spring. They aren't too impressed with the winter grass (or lack of grass), so its quite a chunk of my time devoted to trying the coax them to eat - and yes everyone thinks goats will eat anything, but they are such picky eaters....
So there you go, a snapshot of the last year. Hopefully I will get around to updating this blog more regularly again, wish me luck!