Saturday 25 October 2014

Missing in action

It has been a while since I put a post up. Actually that is an understatement! I've not been sitting on my hands though. I've just been focusing on blogging elsewhere. Pop over to the  Yackandandah Community Garden blog to see what has been going on.

Friday 13 June 2014

Yellow submarine

If you are heading along the Hume Highway, drop into Holbrook and take a look at the landmark submarine.

It's gone from this......

to this.........

photo from Holbrook Yellow Submarine face book

I have a suspicion the district has run out of yellow wool! Drop over to the Holbrook Yellow Submarine facebook page or the ABC news article to check out all the details.

Saturday 22 March 2014

Yack Community Garden officially opened....

It has been a tough slog at times, but last Saturday we finally got to officially open the Yackandandah Community Garden. Read more over at the Yack garden blog.

Sunday 2 February 2014

Full steam ahead.....

We have only got 5 weeks until the Yackandandah Community Garden official opening, so it is full steam ahead to get as much done as we can. With daily temperatures continuing to be over 40C, there have been working-bee's in the cool of the evening or early morning to try and get things finished. On Saturday we had a 7am start, and it was the perfect time of day to be in the garden. The sun light streaming down was glorious.

There was rock edging being built, gabion baskets at the end of the terrace beds to be filled, concrete sleepers to be cut and squeezed into position, and of course the daily watering. It really was a hive of activity, until we decided to call it quits at about 9.30 when it was already getting too hot to work.

So how are the seeds and seedlings we planted before Christmas going? Fantastically. I think we are all a little surprised at how well things have grown and survived with the heat.

We have even started to pick zucchini and cucumber in the last week or so. Can't wait until we have all the infrastructure in place, and we can plant it all out. Next summer should be spectacular!

Monday 13 January 2014

Shade glorious shade.......

Things are moving ahead at the Community Garden. Our main shelter  has come to life in recent months. Just as with the rest of the garden, the shelter has been made from recycled materials. The main beams have been made by "laminating" layers of recycled timbers (once we pulled all the old nails out!).

The upright posts are solid tree trunks complete with bark, and took some fancy chainsaw work to get them all level.

The next step is to have a concrete slab poured, but that hasn't stopped us using it for shade. And boy do we need it, with the next 4 days forecast to be between 41C  - 44C

Friday 13 December 2013

How much bunting is enough cont....

The day shone bright. 
The music played. 
The crowds arrived to the first High Country Christmas Fair. 
All was in readiness.

Federal member for Indi Cathy McGowan made the official announcement, with the help of some of the kids who had helped to make bunting. We had made a whopping 7782.3 meters.

The official documentation has been submitted to the Guinness World Record  organisation, and now we wait. We wait for the official nod. But you know what, I actually don't care. It has been such a blast to be a part of this project. To enjoy the laughter and energy of a fantastic group of people. To see so many parts of the community get involved, and to have the enthusiasm run through the district has been brilliant.  

It's Friday night as I write this, and normally I would be at YCEN making bunting. But now that it is done, what do I do with my Friday nights now???????

How much bunting is enough cont...


Friday 6 December 2013

Bunting on the news......

We made the PRIME 7 news tonight.

Can't wait for the announcement of how much we made, at the High Country Christmas Fair tomorrow.

Monday 2 December 2013

How much bunting is enough cont......

The time had come!

Had we made enough bunting to break the Guinness World Record . It was time to see if all the hard work from so many had gotten us over the line.

There was last minute "I'll just do this last bit", and "I couldn't stand it if we were only a couple of meters short, just let me finish this".

There was untangling  that would drive a sane person crazy!

The bunting was laid out on the primary school oval, over many many hours, with tent pegs keeping each row in place.

The distance was confirmed by the Surveyor. The size of the flags and the distance between confirmed by the Justice of the Peace, Councillor, and Police Officer. Everything was correct and met the rules.

And then it had to be carefully packed back into the "Official Transport Vehicle"s (5 in total), ready for the team to hang it around town this week.

So how much did we make? Lots and lots and lots. But we will not know until the official announcement at the  Yackandandah High Country Fair this Saturday. Fingers crossed.

Monday 28 October 2013

Step to it......

It may not look like much has changed at the community garden, but it has been buzzing.

One of the community corrections gang is a qualified plumber, so it has been great to have his help laying the main irrigation pipes, and hooking up to the water tanks.

We have planted out the steep slope at the base of the "utility area" to stabilize the bank. They are all tube stock of local species grown by Jill Dawson from Our Native Garden, and are super healthy. They have been in for 4 weeks now, and already starting to flower. Jill gave us a great tip to suppress the weeds. She suggested we use water soaked shredded paper around each plant (up close to the stem) to block out any light from the weeds that would inevitable grow. Together with layers and layers of soaked newspapers and a generous layer of mulch, it seems to be working well.

The recycled concrete drain pipes have been driven into the ground to build a retaining wall to help support the bank. We are going to smooth off the rough edges and plant into the pipes. Should look great with plants trailing over the edge.


The real success  over the last few weeks has been the building of the main steps from the lower level to the "utility space". Being a gardener on a slopping block, I really value the importance of a good step. These ones are fantastic.

A community garden is about "community" as much as it is about "garden", so I want tell you about the people who are part of our garden community. 

Les has his back to us in this shot, and he has been a driving force in getting the garden built. He wasn't happy with how the steps had worked out first time round, so ripped them out and started again. So at 5.30am he was mixing concrete, read to re-lay the steps.

Elaine is getting an update from Les, and is our project coordinator and mentor from Sustainable Gardening Australia. She has been instrumental in getting our garden and four others built through the "Community Gardens in Bushfire Affected Areas" project, and is passionate about community gardens and the benefits they bring. Unfortunately the government has pulled the funding from SGA, and Elaine is the last staff member remaining. Thankfully she is staying on to see our project to conclusion at the end of the year. Even though she will not have a "business" connection to the garden any more, we all hope she will still feel a personal connection to what she has helped build.

So what next for the garden? We have the planning permit through to start a build the pergola / shelter on the lower level, so that looks like the next step!

Thursday 24 October 2013

Bearded Iris fever....

For such an easy to grow plant, the display is spectacular. If you haven't grown a Bearded Iris, give it a go. You'll not be disappointed.

Thursday 10 October 2013

Unwelcome visitors........

One of the best things about the warmer weather is that you can walk around without shoes.

One of the worst things about warmer weather is that you get unwelcome visitors.

Has anyone tried one of these pulsating devices to keep unwelcome visitors away (the snake kind, not the human kind)? This will be our 5th "snake season" in the house, and thankfully we have only had 1 snake sighting. But to my mind, 1 is 1 too many. With long grass in the neighbour's land, we thought this was worth a go.

Tuesday 8 October 2013

Are we there yet?.........

 So just how much bunting can we get made in the next  8 weeks?

Monday 7 October 2013

Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree....

Well not quite. This one comes to visit quite often, and is really happy for us to get up close. Makes me wonder if he has been hand raised. Later in the day he joined me in the vegi garden, and while I was planting seedlings he sat on the bean trellis. Fantastic to see him watching for worms, swoop down and gobble them up.

Monday 30 September 2013

The first planting in the Community Garden...

It has been a busy few weeks at the Community Garden. 

Weather has not been our friend over the last couple of weeks, with rain making the site too muddy to work on many days. So when the sun has shone, we have made the most of it.

We have had a great workshop on grafting. Having been the recipient of a surgical graft, I can sure see the similarities.

The Corrections Victoria guys have been back a couple of times to continue with the retaining walls, and this week they start on building the steps between the beds. I have to say that without their help, we would be so much further behind.

The steel bars have been driven into the ground for the curved gabion wall, and there has been heaps of shoveling of very heavy wet soil to back fill the retaining walls.

And most importantly, we have the first plants in. The top terrace is a row of fruit trees, that will be espaliered across the pool fence.

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