Saturday, January 24, 2015

January Garden Blog 2015

Well the BIG news is that it has started to rain and we have had 340 mills in total, what a difference that makes, less stress, less or rather no time wasted watering and of course all seven tanks are full with 108,000 litres of water stored.
I have also started a Facebook page called 'The Giving Garden', it's full of interesting articles I have written and great photos. Has received 500 likes in a short space of time.

The only downside is the mowing; with it being so wet it’s hard to find a day when the grass is dry enough to mow, then when you do its extra long, but what a change to see green instead of brown.
I have an infestation of ‘spider mite’ on my Amorphophallus collection, so it’s a regime of spraying for a while until I have killed them all; you can’t see them by eye as they are so small but you can see the damage they do to the plant.

The garden is very messy at the moment with the gums shedding their bark, the Macadamias and Neem trees are losing their leaves.
I was almost killed this month when I was walking through one of the pathways when a gum branch fell on top of me, I was so lucky to be standing in the v of the branch, half a metre either way or I would have been a goner. Not my time to go yet.
One garden presentation this month and that is Maleny Garden Club, it’s a nice friendly club and well worth the drive up there.
I have 17 bookings already this year.
I stripped an old garden brought in crusher dust, soil and compost, moved a water outlet and replanted mainly with a selection of Cliveas, should look really good when established.

I also had to rebuild two bridges, this time I used a hardwood timber instead of treated pine and will oil not paint.

I really have not stopped since the ‘Open Garden’ and am feeling the pain as all my joints and back are aching. This is the first year where we did not have a holiday after the ‘Open Garden’ and it certainly feels like it.

I have bought a container of ‘Wood Vinegar’ to use in the garden especially for propagation; it’s worth looking into and testing as there are some interesting articles about it on the net.

I split up my native bee hives and have three new hives to go to new homes.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015


Myrciaria cauliflora ‘Jaboticaba’ is a small fruit tree from South America. The fruit is sometimes called ‘Amazon Tree Grape’.
It bears large amounts of grape size fruit on the trunk and main branches and the time between first flowering and eating the fruit is about 30 days.
The tree can fruit several times a year dependant on the weather.
It is slow growing and can reach up to five metres high, but like me you can keep them trimmed to a desirable height.
They like a sunny position and do best with plenty of water.
There is no need to spray the fruit as the only things other than you that will eat them are birds.
They do not get fruit fly grub.
They grow well from seed but I recommend you buy an advanced tree as they are initially very slow growers.
Jaboticaba’s can be eaten fresh and Judy makes a great Jaboticaba Jam. Some people say Jaboticaba wine is nice.

 Judy’s recipe for Jaboticaba Jam.

Have a couple of bowls handy and a sharp pointed knife then pick up the washed fruit, pierce the skin and squeeze the pulp and seed into one bowl and the skin into another. Do this a few hundred times and you will have enough for quite a few bottles of jam. Simmer the pulp for 10 minutes then put through a strainer then throw out the seeds. Chop up the skins in a food processor or similar to a rough texture only adding minimum water. Simmer the skins for 10 minutes then add the pulp and skins together, measure amount in number of cupfuls. Heat up this mix and add sugar cup for cup with the mix then boil until jam thickens.
If you have trouble setting the Jam add 'Jam setter', if you need to do this then you have added too much water in the skin chopping process.