A Visit to Shoestring Gardening

Shoestring Gardening gathering

I had a break from my regularly busy weekend schedule, and took up an invitation to visit Shoestring Gardening in Wyndamvale, Victoria.  My friend Jabir asked if I was interested in having a look at the new aquaponics system that the group had installed at their regular meeting place, the Eco Living Centre. The location was about 40 km (~25 miles) from where I live, so around 1.15 pm, Ben and I   [Continue Reading …]

Planting Time for Brassica and Allium


In our temperate climate, it is now time to plant vegetables of the Brassica and Allium families. Common members of the Brassica genus is Kale, Cabbage, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower, and Kohlrabi.  These are only a few cultivars.  You may also be surprised that mustard is also a member of this family.  So is Swede/Rutabaga. Common members of the Allium genus is Onions, Leeks,   [Continue Reading …]

Harvesting the Pumpkin Patch

Harvested Queensland Blue Pumpkins

Big day in the pumpkin patch!  It was time to clear out the veggie patch in the front yard, which included searching for all the pumpkins hidden throughout the garden. This is what the front garden beds looked like before I started work this morning. This is the front of the front yard towards north. And this is the towards the back.  That is a heck of a lot of cleaning up to do!  I was   [Continue Reading …]

eBook Writing Again!


It has been a long while since I wrote and published an eBook.  The last one was my cheese making eBook Keep Calm and Make Cheese, which was published in April 2013. That is 12 months ago, so I have been slack for far too long. So what am I writing?  Well, actually dear reader, I am writing two eBooks! The first one is an eBook idea that I tried to turn into a course, but after a fair bit   [Continue Reading …]

TGoG Podcast 057 – Suburban Food Farm in Autumn

The Greening of Gavin Podcast

During this episode of the podcast, I give a Suburban Food Farm update for this season, and talk about the types of vegetables to plant during autumn in a temperate climate zone. My climate here in Melton West is Hot Zone 10, Cold Zone 4.  I mention all the different types of vegetables I will be planting over the next few weeks, and what I have done to prepare the garden beds ready for them. I   [Continue Reading …]

Our Home-grown Jonathan Apples

Home grown Jonathan apple compared to commercially grown Jonathan

It's apple season at the house of GoG!  I have three apple trees, however only one is doing well, the Jonathan apple.  The other two (granny smith and cox orange pipin) will be moved from the front yards during winter as they are being starved of water and nutrients from a large tree quite close to them. We planted this tree back in 2007, so it is now seven years old.  I have been using   [Continue Reading …]

Grow Food Not Lawns – 4 Reasons Why You Should Dig Up Your Lawn

Grow food not lawn - Veggie patch, January 2010

It is probably a well-known fact that I do not have a lawn.  Correction: I don't have any lawns, anywhere on my suburban block (except for the nature strip and I am working on that). I am a strong supporter of the grow food not lawns movement, if there is such a thing. In fact, one of the very first things we did after our green awakening was to dig up our lawn so that we could save water.   [Continue Reading …]

Losing My Voice, Again


Unfortunately, I have not recorded any podcasts this week, as I have some sort of virus.  I caught it from Kim, who caught it from Anna (who is visiting from the UK).  Frustrating to say the least, as I really enjoy producing podcast episodes. We are both a bit ordinary at the moment, and my voice sounds like a Darth Vader with the helmet on.  Not nice.  When I recover I will start recording   [Continue Reading …]

Gardening Up A Storm


Gardening is so much fun, and even better when the objective is to grow your own food.  Today was a brilliant day for gardening.  Sunny, cool, and I was in a productive mood.First things first, I had to collect some radish seeds that I had hanging up in the carport.  It is so easy to collect these seeds.  Let a single radish go to seed so that it forms these little seed pods.   [Continue Reading …]

Yet Another Garden Bed!

Garden bed made from scrap wood

When is enough, enough?  Well as far as I am concerned, you can never have enough veggie beds! We had some space available in the pool area, so I decided that we could put in a small wicking bed for salad greens.  This bed is close to the back door so it is going to be idea for pick-and-come-again lettuce varieties.  The position is perfect and it will only get morning sun and then shade from   [Continue Reading …]

Holiday Wrap Up – So Much Gardening Fun!


As this is the last day of my holiday, I thought it would be nice to share some of the little things I have been doing around here during the past week. I was just saying to Kim that I cannot remember when I felt so relaxed.  Thankfully I had the forethought and planning to set the blog in auto mode over the first part of the holidays, so that you all received interesting and relevant   [Continue Reading …]

How To Save Vegetable Seeds


Originally published in October 2010, this post went on to inspire many to start saving their own vegetable seeds.  It is one of the most frugal acts of gardening!Wouldn't it be really cool if you didn't have to buy vegetable seeds ever again? Well, you can, with a little bit of knowledge and practice.  Seed saving for the crop next season is fun and very cheap, and the beauty of it   [Continue Reading …]

Growing Queensland Blue Pumpkins (Winter Squash)


This spring and summer so far has been exceptional for growing one of my favourite pumpkins, the Queensland Blue.So that my overseas readership doesn't get too confused, in Australian English, the word pumpkin is what we use for all form of winter squash.  These beauties are no exception.Queensland Blue to the left and right (Australian butter top and bottom)This variety is quite easy to grow   [Continue Reading …]

Sustainable Living in the Suburbs

Suburban Food Farm

Recently I was given the opportunity to present to my work colleagues about sustainable living.  Naturally I jumped at the chance, however to make things a little more challenging, I was only given a 10 minute time slot. What type of message can one get across in 10 minutes, with so much stuff to talk about?  How do I cram in 7 years worth of life changing behaviour? A challenge indeed,   [Continue Reading …]

TGoG Podcast 044 – Suburban Food Farm in December


Time for an audio update about what is growing around the Suburban Food Farm in December.  Lots of food growing very, very quickly now that the summer has finally begun in earnest. During the podcast I mentioned one of my favourite pickles recipes which is Bread and Butter Cucumbers, just like my Mum used to make when I was a kid.  Delicious. Also, I talked about the chooks, in   [Continue Reading …]

November Suburban Food Farm Update


I am so grateful that I have a food garden.  Not only for the food of course, but for the psychological therapy it provides me.  It keeps me well grounded in the here and now, and stops me from worrying about some future event that is somewhat out of control.Anyway, with this weekend free, I devoted it entirely to the seasonal change over, and a little bit of maintenance.Firstly, it was   [Continue Reading …]