Tuesday, December 9, 2014

a week in our kitchen garden


Remember when I posted my blog last week and I said I had lots to show and tell you and so I'd post again soon? Well here I am eight days later and not only has time flown - but my garden has grown, making me all out of date. But rather than ditch that garden blog idea and move on, I thought I'd quickly snap a few pics of what it looks like tonight and bring you right up to speed.

Make sense? I hope so.

So just over a week ago we removed the protective covers off the peas because they had grown as tall as their roof. We'd finally made those covers after losing the previous three pea plantings to mice or birds or possums. It was so great to finally see those leaves emerging out of the soil instead of the soggy seed shells. We weren't so successful with the pea plantings in the beds behind that we'd covered with black crates.

And now a week later we've made trellises for the pea plants to climb up. My farmer boy made them out of the old bit of fence that closed my parents' block opposite ours.

Oh how I love to see those little pea tendrils reaching out and climbing up and wrapping around as the vines grow taller.


A week ago we were cutting and eating big rocket leaves.

One week later the succession planting has popped its head up between the rocket rows and we are madly picking and eating the overhanging leaves to give the little baby leaves light and space to grow.

A week ago the hot house was full of little baby seedling ready to plant out into the kitchen and market gardens, this week it is emptying out and the spinach is going to seed.


Last week there were so many more roses in bloom than this week.

But this week Pepper's birthday flowers seem to be blossoming more brightly than ever.

Last week we were still picking and eating from those kale plants. This week those kale leaves are on the top of the compost pile and the beds are full of soil and ready to plant.

Last week the garlic was still looking tall and green. This week, maybe even tomorrow, I'm planning to pull it out.

Last week we noticed that the cos lettuces on the left hand side of that bed were not really thriving so we pulled out the silver beet triffid that was overshadowing them and now this week they are slowly on the move.


This week the onions are fatter and taller.


I love these three beds but I always forget they are there because they are that much further away from the house. Onions, garlic getting ready to be pulled and mega leek.


And future pesto growing new leaves every day.

Not pictured are the tomatoes in the poly tunnels, the veggies and flowers in the market gardens and the fruit in the orchards.

I had a little panic the other day that we aren't really harvesting all that much from the kitchen garden at the moment, that we are behind where we usually are in other years and that we might not catch up. And then after a few long minutes of hyperventilating and comparing and pulling out seeds, it occurred to me that panicking defeats half of the purpose of the kitchen garden.

One half of the purpose of our house garden is to feed our family, for sure. But the other half purpose is love and enjoyment and passion and therapy. Stressing about the garden is just wrong.

So in between the craziness of the end of the year I am squeezing in moments to plant and weed and thin and fork and dig and harvest and enjoy and breathe deeply and love. It's so much nicer this way.

Wishing you growth wherever you are.

And tell me, how does your garden grow at the mo, I'd love to know.

Biggest love!



  1. I get hungry by looking at all these wonderful pictures fo the plants! Yumm!

    We will recieve a little balcony garden for christmas (handmade by my dad). I am really looking forward to grow from herbs and salats next year :)

    Take care

    1. That sounds wonderful Anne, herbs are probably the most important part of every kitchen garden. x

  2. Enjoying the first of our summer tomatoes, lots of rocket, beans and silverbeet. I'm so envious of your garlic - my crop this year was tiny - maybe I'll have better luck next harvest - after all gardening is about learning from your mistakes and learning from others.

    1. I planted garlic in three different parts of our farm this year and the ones in our house garden grew best. I have no idea why. In other seasons it's been the opposite. So weird. x

  3. Ours is going up and up. We have baby corn, capsicums, cucumbers, snow peas and more green tomatoes than we can possibly eat. The zucchinis are rotting with all the rain and not enough drainage - you can't have everything. x

    1. All of that sounds delicious and I'm not a fan of zucchinis anyway. xx

    2. Do you garden in clay dirt, along with us in Wichita, KS. ?

  4. Oh you! It's 9.40pm here and raining, and I am suddenly itching to get in to my garden! Photos eight and nine set my heart a flutter. My garden is a rather neglected of late, as babies and gardening are not the easiest mix. But I have had a fantastic crop of cherry tomatoes, and I am enjoying my home made sun dried tomatoes on a daily basis. I still have mulberries in the frezeer, which are a delight on my breakfast. And my asparagus is looking promising after I thought I'd killed it. It's been so hot and humid. I think Autum will be a good time for me to get back in to the swing of my veggie patch. xx

  5. I am so excited about my garden this year. Heaps of corn! Heaps of tomatoes! Pumpkin vibes everywhere but nothing there yet. Our very first apples! Zuchinis are sorting themselves out after a wobbly start. Peas are climbing. Silverbeet is MEGA! Red onions popping outta the ground after self seeding. Chillis popping up everywhere they shouldn't. The eggplant had flowers but nothing yet. Watermelons & rockmelons have flowers & are reaching out everywhere. And what I thought were capsicums look more like giant chilli so I'm not sure what's going on there. All of it makes me happy. Very, very happy x

  6. your garden is so beautiful, i love it! Our growth at the moment is in the way of a possible new job adventure. I have been offered a teaching position about 3 hours away, but they want me to start in 3 weeks GULP & DOUBLE GULP - I will either except or deny the offer tomorrow afternoon, so fingers crossed for a clear mind and open heart as we decide what is best for our little family! Enjoy all of your garden growth and the green and lush time ahead -

  7. Your pictures are lovely especially since we are headed into winter. Your leeks!! We love stir frying leeks with ground beef and equal parts soy sauce, maple syrup and balsamic vinegar-so yummy over rice!

  8. So beautiful! I have been surprised this year at how quickly everything is going to seed - our cos lettuce is not playing nicely, neither is the rocket or late broccoli we planted! The seasons keep reminding me that they the garden, regardless of the month and what it's 'meant' to be doing.

  9. Yes my garden (all 16 metres squared) is my escape and I refuse to stress over it! I find the greenery calming and the great thing about gardens and plants is they are like hair- if you have a bad haircut it grows back, if your plants get frostbitten or nibbled by possums you can always grow more. They're resilient. I can't wait until I have more room to grow (plans in the pipeline).

  10. looks wonderful :) My broccoli which is a summer variety - unusual... has been attacked by cabbage moth larvae fattening themselves up. It took a long time for the kids and I to get these off. I may end up pulling them out :( lettuces are looking nice and herbs are fab. Tomatoes are gaining strength every day. It has been very hot with some rain so that is the weather they like. Think it will be a long summer.

  11. I love the wire fence being recycled and used for the peas. We have some like this laying around, so I think I'll do the same. I also have tomato vines lying around instead of climbing. I haven't as yet got the sticks in to hold them up. I'm thinking this fence wire will do the trick and won't disturb their roots.

    I also love your bit about not stressing over the kitchen garden. I was looking out our kitchen window this morning looking at those tomatoes, stressing and wondering when and what I was going to do about them. Now I've got the what and I just need the when! LOL! And yes, my planting is a little behind too.

    Take care lovely Kate. Happy days! xxoo

  12. Sometimes I plant things with the best intentions to harvest it all lovingly, but then life gets busy and I forget and things go to seed and I feel like such a lazy, wasteful gardener. But then I see all the insects that come to visit my seed heads, and then the new plants that pop up months later, and I realise that there are many ways to garden and that the full cycle of nature has to unfold for things to continue.

  13. Goodness, so busy, but such a beautiful garden. Like you say, so important to enjoy the process, it is the best bit after all. I think I should not worry about finishing things so much and enjoy the process a little more... I suspect there's a fine balance to these things though x

  14. How beautiful, I can't wait to be growing more of our own food.

  15. Oh my gosh how can every single bed in your garden be filled with such awesomeness? I love the way you refer to your basil as future pesto... and those baby rocket are so cute....

  16. What a wonderful rundown of you garden, Kate. Here in Brisbane we are on a suburban block with a pool and lots of big trees so our space for growing is limited. This year we have put in a big effort though , particularly in trying to find ways to save our sweet peas and kitchen herbs from the possums- it seems that's all they can find to eat through Winter and Spring. Most of our lettuce/ rocket type things and coriander go to seed very quickly once the weather starts to warm up but the basil is loving Summer. It's looking like a second batch of pesto is not long away. I love the feeling of space at your place that you convey through your photos here. And here's to love, enjoyment,passion and therapy! :)

  17. So jealous Kate of your gorgeous garden with all those vegies and flowers. I do miss my garden and have been thinking about getting a semi-permanent one started but I am afraid that our kelpie might decide to dig it up instead. I am sure you will have lots of produce soon and will be thinking about what to do with it.

  18. Man...I love your garden and your words! It is so pretty & productive! I am harvesting zucchini, cucumbers, basil and just a handful of tomatoes. We do live in the same country, right?! x

  19. I can't wait to grow my own food one day. We're living in an appartment right now but we're already saving to be able to buy a house WITH GARDEN one day. And then I'll plant my own vegetables. My mum already does it and there's no comparison with her tomatoes to those from the supermarket!

  20. Have you tried Kale Pesto? same but different


  21. ~g r o w~ so so lovely kate, it's all like a garden fairy tale.

  22. What a lucious home garden! It's stunning and I can imagine the time you spend in there reaping all the delicious benefits! Lovely post, thanks for sharing. Bec

  23. so how good is homegrown kale? how does it differ from store bought (organic)? because every time i try kale it's so darn tough! and not that tasty :(


  24. Your garden is coming on really well, especially those peas. There's very little growth where I am - at least not visible. Though I noticed yesterday that some primroses are flowering - at totally the wrong time of year.

  25. Kate your garden is GLORIOUS!!! Ours is also flourishing. This is only our first year at playing with our new space, so we have big big plans for more gardens and more varieties... exciting isnt it?!

  26. I love your garden. I also love mine, but it is winter now and so the garden is sleeping. I planted garlic last week and also some pretty things like tulips. I am trzing to grow the Queen of the Night tulips. Also there is some ginger growing in the pot in the kitchen. I really want spring :)

  27. Hi Kate, I love your photographs and the way you go about your garden. In fact, I love your blog so much that I have nominated you for a "Harmony & Peace" blogging award for "bringing harmony & peace, love & beauty & positivity to the world". More information is on my blog where I have linked to yours:
    I do you you approve and accept. Thank you for sharing your piece of the world. Through the internet we can all visit despite the miles between us. Wishing you a peaceful and happy Christmas.
    Cheers, Jodie

  28. Love, love, love your blog! I used to try and have two different gardens, one for us and one for the market and our farm's CSA. It got to be too much for me so we just eat out of the market garden. Even though our seasons are opposite (I am in the southern part of the US in the state of North Carolina) I cannot wait to read what you post next so that I may get some wonderful tips. I get so tired of doing things the same way year after year.

  29. Oh the pea shoots are oh to cute!!! Some lovely stuff :) I have just had my first pickings of cherry tomatoes!!! My very first vegetable grown at home, so special!


Thanks so much for stopping by...

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Kate XX

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