Urban Farming. Doesn’t that sound exciting?! So much more exciting than ‘vegetable garden in the back yard’! I’m excited about this ‘segment’ of my eco crusade. Yet again, I always come up with an excuse for not growing my own veggies. And the excuses are normally to do with our climate. There is a fairly small window of opportunity for planting a variety of vegetables in North Queensland. From April through to July will be the busiest months and it’s all about being organised and planning ahead. So in 2016, no more excuses!
I have very fond memories of eating the vegetables from my Grandad’s garden. Climbing beans and carrots mainly. Don’t carrots just taste amazing when eaten straight from the ground? Obviously, you wash the dirt off first! But so fresh and so crunchy!
I’ve been collecting seeds because there are pumpkins and watermelons galore at the moment. It feels like every street corner has a trailer full of melons and pumpkins for sale! Or maybe I’m just a bit more aware this year because of this project. So I’ve got seeds from a butternut squash, a jap pumpkin, a watermelon, a capsicum and dill. They have been drying in the sun so I think the next step is to store them in containers and record the date.
And in the past year, I’ve been adding to the collection of herbs that we grow. We now have mint, sage, rosemary, a bay leaf bush, parsley, basil, lemon grass, native coriander, thyme (you can never have too much thyme!!) and chives. It feels like such an achievement. And it feels so good when you can use it in your cooking.
My husband has also been tending some fruit trees. We have bananas (3 big bunches on at the moment!), passionfruit, lemon, lime and mandarin. We haven’t had any fruit on the lemon, lime or mandarin yet but hopefully soon. I’m hoping to grow watermelon as well next year and maybe some rosella. It’s actually the month to plant rosella now so maybe I should just take the plunge!
We sprinkled the compost around the ‘ornamental’ tropical plants the other day and now we have pumpkin vines sprouting up everywhere. I wonder if they will keep growing. If we get lots of pumpkins, then we will get to eat lots of pumpkin scones! I have been practising making the perfect batch!
According to the website Gardenate, it is time to plant Basil, cowpeas, rosella and sweet potato. And I only just learnt that sweet potato vines have beautiful blooms. Can’t wait to continue this journey of discovery!