Sunday, 25 January 2009

A gift-wrapped garden...

BEFORE (showing trenches ready for seedlings)
And so, ‘lettuce see’ what it looks like next day (see the article 'Lettuce begin...' below), after pre-dawn watering and wrapping in shade-cloth, and with the Adelaide weather forecast being: -
Sunday Max 30
Monday Max 35
Tuesday Max 41
Wednesday Max 41
Thursday Max 41
Friday Max 39
Saturday Max 35
AFTER (showing shade-cloth in place)
Note the rain-water tanks in the background; two of these tanks also store the week's water ration. There are no pumps or water pressure systems; just hoses and buckets.

Watering requires patience, but such slow furrow irrigation (with the orange flooder on the end of ordinary hose connected to the tanks, shown in the pumpkin patch) soaks in well, allowing the soil to act as a water store until the week's water ration arrives on Sunday and Wednesday between 6.30am and 9.30am. The dark soil is actually compost laid over clay. It won't contribute much to soil fertility until after the next winter rains have broken it down and earthworms have incorporated it into the soil. But it makes an excellent mulch. Water spreads out underneath it, and plant roots follow.
Some folks put all their spare cash into their superannuation funds. I'm putting mine into compost (purchased by the truckload) and soil fertility and better soil water-holding capacity.
After all, you can't eat money, it will get hotter, and water will become scarcer.
So gardening under these conditions is excellent practice for a drier future.

1 comment:

Deborah Cantrill said...

keep cool everyone- don't forget to keep your animals as well as your plants cool & shaded. We will be on fire alert as well.