Thursday, June 20, 2013

Local olive trees being used by local people.

Fremantle has a lot of olive trees. They are tough and a fair few people do get out there and collect the fruit. I have seen old Italian men out in the park with a ladder and a tarp to collect lots of them. 

I collected a bucketful a couple of months back and did the soaking, rinsing rigmarole and then finally bottled them last week. These are from a housing estate near my place. I found out the other day that one of the neighbours up the road has been collecting the olives from the trees along her street and making oil out of them. Hilton Harvest community garden had a community olve oil event last month too, where everyone collected local olives, weighed them, all were taken to a place to be pressed and the people got back their quota.
It may be that soon someone in the local area may buy an olive press for the community to use. That would be easier than having to drive a tonne of olives to Upper Swan or wherever.

It's great to see people making use of local resources.

Now, hopefully, my olives won't be horrible when I get to try them in a couple of months time...

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Fruiting time list for Perth.

Fruit trees for Perth and when they will produce. Mostly snaffled from The Dawson's Garden World Winter catalogue.

Ch.. ch..Changes

Heh, nuffin drastic just yet, but with uni done and the ever present concept of going away from Perth eventually to a block we have been doing things to see if that's waht we really want to do. Thinking about what would we do there, how will it be financed, how long til we get there? Where do we even want to go? Ahhh, it's complimicated.
We want somewhere to plant more trees and to somehow make some money while we do the small farming thing. Obviously it would be cool if that place has some sort of rainfall... and therein lies the rub.. there's not a lot of that around these parts..

It's a shame when people buy little blocks of land and do nothing useful with it. There must be ways that small land holders can produce something of a living. There's always the workshops and interns sort of aspect too, teaching people while they help you do stuff on the farm.

But, first, to somehow get out of the current job into something a bit more aimed at where I envision I want to be in a few years.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Bana grass is a great hedge but....

..maybe not when it is quite such a fire-prone plant and leads to the front door from the street!

Bana grass hedge
The last few days have been bana grass maintenance days, involving long sleeves and gloves to keep the itchy hairs off the skin. I have done this job a lot and find that if I let the hairs get on me they stay itchy for a while, and need a shower to get rid of them.

Itchy little hairs.
Cleaning out the dead lower leaves removes most of the fire danger as the tall thin culms of the grass only have leaves near the top once established. Cutting out older stalks is also a good way to thin it, or to remove the older ones that just have a silly banner bit left on top. The sticks don't really make very good stakes but they do chip well, except for the soft green leaves.

The dry leaves that have been collected have been added to our composty pile down the back. It doesn't take long to get good big bags of them, so they are quite handy as a compost ingredient.
Off to become compost.

Considering ths spot the bana grass has been in it has done well and made a great job of protecting the west side of the house from nasty Perth summer sun and the ocassional storm that passes by from time to time. The wind off the ocean can be prety strong and the leaves get shredded and send the wind over our roof to the next house up the hill!

Narrow windy places are hard to find plants for, so the bana has done well for us, but I think I would try and use something else given the chance again. Maybe if I had a goat I would feel differently about it.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

And now that I have finished university, I will..

ummm, try and figure out how to  get into the world of real work. Work that uses my head instad of my poor nursery-worked body!