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Archive for the ‘gardening’ Category

After five years waiting, a crop of three apples is a bit of a let down. The poetic description is what made me buy the heritage tree in the first place, “Apples as big as a boy’s head.” Who could resist such a tag? Ever the optimist, I’m already thinking that next year the tree will be more mature and maybe the  apples will be bigger… and more than three would be nice.

Mmm, I’ve just cooked them up and they were a bit tart but broke up into a fluffy white pulp and had a great flavour!

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This is my new favourite way of dealing with all the home grown tomatoes. Rather than processing and bottling them in jars, I’ve been slow roasting trays in the oven and freezing them. All it takes is a bowl of ripe tomatoes, cut them into quarters, cut out the core then place them skin down on the tray. Sprinkle with oil, salt & pepper and roast in the oven until they are as done as you want. When they’re cool, the skin peels easily off the back before you put them into snaplock bags and freeze. Excellent.

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Insect Hotel.

At last we’re having some beautiful summer weather, just in time for Waitangi weekend. I took a walk around my garden this morning, admiring the lily out in flower and the fushia in full bloom that a friend gave me a cutting of five years ago. Around the side of the house where it’s dry and dusty and the lawn won’t even grow, I’ve constructed an insect hotel. I’m intrigued by the idea of a place where beneficial insects can take refuge in the nooks and crannies. Not a masterpiece but it looks better than the bare dirt…

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This year I’ve bought two big plastic containers from the Warehouse and had good success in germinating my seeds in them. For the first week they were well watered then sat inside by the sunny ranch slider with their lids on. Once the seeds were just sprouted they were easy enough to put in a sunny place outside with the lids off or if the day was too rainy the lids stayed on outside getting the light, then brought inside with the lids on overnight.At three weeks I’m happy to have healthy looking seedlings ready to pot on.

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