Thursday, 6 January 2011

Garden Update - Surprise, Surprise!

It's come as quite a shock to myself, certainly to The Man, and probably to most people that I derive such satisfaction from working in the garden.

And, unlike the soupmaking,
sewing and

This doesn't seem to be just a pregnancy phase. I seem to have had quite a few 'crafty' phases!

Actually, I'm still into the sewing, just more into the crocheting right now...

 And to prove to you that I haven't completely abandoned my plants... is an update!

The green beans (aka climber or runner beans) are reaching for the sky!
Boy, are they moving!

I actually nailed some trellissy-type netting stuff to some planks and  added it to the top of my old Mainfreight pallet frame, thinking they needed more room to grow.

Until I realised that they are classified as an indeterminate plant, which I think means that their growth will continue unchecked as long as conditions are favourable. I think!

My pumpkin plants are doing well.

Maybe a little too well...

I think I might have overdone it here.

If I disappear, it will be into this budding jungle.

Maybe we need to invest in a GPS.

Just in case!

VERY excited about all the flowers peeping out from under those huge leaves....
 Treena's heirloom tomato plants are in this photo.


Just so you know - the upside-down coke bottles are not for decoration.

The faucet part of my hose connection broke. I'm not sure how, ask The Jord if you really want to know.

But I now don't have a hosepipe!

I found keeping these bottles full of water was a more effective way of watering plants than wandering around the garden with buckets of water!


You can make individual cow plop tea in each of them - so you are directly feeding the roots.

And PLUS: I think NZ may be facing another late summer drought where we aren't allowed to use the hosepipe anyway... so, this way I'm not!

My cauliflower is growing beautifully, they just haven't formed heads yet.
Apparently they might not - I planted them at completely the wrong time of year!

 The cabbages, however, are forming heads..

I'm just hoping there aren't any horrible little caterpillar eggs hidden inside them waiting to hatch and destroy them as the little monsters eat their way out...

Oh! And in case you were wondering - the evil brew didn't work.

What did work was my grandmother's remedy - watering them with a soapy mixture of laundry detergent and water.

The caterpillars clearly did not like Persil as much as I do!
The celery is still alive.

They were not happy until I planted upside down  coke bottles next to them and watered them directly to their roots.

This is the hottest part of my garden...

It was the first place I put the upside-down bottles and the first place I mulched.
 Poor babies...

The heads are starting to look good but the outer leaves just... don't.
This lot is still going.

I just cut the outer leaves and the continues to supply me with lettuce leaves.
Delighted by the success of these!

They are the upside-down tomato plants in old milk bottles.

And it's worked!

I'm so proud!
 Not happy about this though...

Apparently it's called blight and it happens when growing conditions are too wet.

It's been far too humid for  these tomatoes!
But all four of them have tiny little tomatoes on them.

I suppose my next challenge will be to see if I can keep the birds away from them!


  1. I was watching a 'Gardening Australia' DvD today on vege gardening and Peter Cundall was showing us how the caterpillars only attack the outer leaves and never do damage to the heart! Isn't that good! You probably need to pick off any blighted leaves and put them in your bin so the fungal spores don't spread through the tomato plant much..Your garden looks great!

  2. Thanks Carol - I lopped off a few of the branches a couple of weeks ago - and moved them all to a drier part of the garden, it seemed to give them a boost.
    And thanks for the reassurance regarding the caterpillars - I was worried about the hearts...

  3. Blight is such a pain! Spreads like far no sign on my tomatoes :)

    Nice vege gardening skills there with the upside down milk bottles. You have given me an idea....

  4. OH WOW!!! Well done girl!
    For the tomatoes, maybe a bag you make of tissue paper... NOT bog paper man! Tissue that you get ina stationery store! Should let decent light through and unless you whack it around, will hold together for a rain or watering...
    SO clever you!

  5. Hi Anonymous...
    My advice - try and find a bottle bigger than 3 litres - it has worked well in that, it's like a little mini greenhouse, but I'm a bit concerned about how much root space they have. And I'm feeding them up a bit extra with my cow tea in order to compensate. May the blight stay away from your garden!
    And Sally, will keep that in mind should the birds become a problem. The common way to solve the problem here is to put netting over it all, but I'm not sure of the cost of that!


I love hearing your thoughts!


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