Braybrook Blitz: One Year On
One year ago today Karl, Rayna, Tara, Jamari and Curtis from Braybrook hosted permablitz #98 at their place. Rayna sends us this wonderful update…
It’s hard to believe, since it’s been so busy around here, but it’s been a year since a bunch of wonderful people came to our house and blitzed our garden. You can read about that day here andhere. I like to tell people that was the day our house became our home, and it truly was.
So one amazing year onwards and our family has been loving the fresh goodness almost every day since. We’ve eaten tomatoes, potatoes, garlic, zucchini, beans, peas, eggplants, spring onions, rhubarb, warrigal greens (bush spinach), figs, chillis, peppers, cabbage, broccoli, broccolini, cauliflower, a big range of herbs and of course, fresh eggs. And we’ve shared all of our bounty with our friends, family and neighbours.
[Ed’s note: all photos have since gone – sorry!]
The last month has been super busy as we get the garden ready to pump out the summer goodness. Lots of soil prep, planting seeds and seedlings, building climbing frames and of course weeding
We’ve put in two more garden beds since the blitz. The corrugated iron one we won from the awesome crew at VEG at this years SLF. Currently growing the last cauli, a broccoli I’m saving for seed, onions, watermelon, pumpkin, cress and some flowers. The wooden one was a great find fromReverse Art Truck and is housing some eggplants, radish and spring onions.
This was the bed we built on blitz day and has just been topped with soil and compost for the summer growth. I planted it out yesterday and today and it contains tomatoes, corn, radish, spring onion, beans, zucchini, cucumber, lettuce and cress. Might pop a couple of strawberry runners in there too if there’s room. I also had the help of my lovely friend Emily to build the climbing frame out of sticks pruned from trees around the garden. Use what you have!
This garden is humming along! I built a bamboo climbing frame and there’s capsicum, eggplant, beans, tomatoes, potatoes, strawberries, cucumber and broccoli in there now.
This is a wee bed my dad built. It’s my favourite as it’s a little show garden. But it doesn’t get a huge amount of light so it’s tricky. But I have an artichoke, garlic, eggplants and flowers in there. Oh and a rogue dill plant..
Here’s a fun little upcycling experiment I’m trying out. I found an old shopping trolley on the side of the road with no wheels. So I pulled it home and turned it into a spud garden. When you grow potatoes, your supposed to let the shoots come up and then cover them with soil. If you repeat that process a couple of times, the plant sends out more shoots with more spuds. So I’ve been doing this in here, adding about 20cm of soil each time. When the top dies off, I can just tip it all out and let the kids find all the potatoes! It’s working pretty well so far.
The food forest in the chook run is going great. [Ed’s note: the food forest is actually behind a fence and not accessible by the chooks or they would eat most of it!] We have bush spinach, rhubarb, strawberries, yukon, caped gooseberry and calendula growing in there. And also a lemon, a lemonade, an olive and a couple of feijoa trees cruising along. Our very own orchard!
I don’t spend much time in the front gardens any more so I’ve aimed to plant stuff that’s as low maintenance as possible. There’s a plum, a fig and an olive tree. As well as sunflowers, zucchini, tomatoes, squash and some flowers and herbs.
The one garden that’s not coming along as well as we would’ve hoped is the nature strip. We probably put in too many grasses and not enough ground cover. So we’re hoping to get some more of them in soon. But with all the rain, the plants that are there and growing nicely and some of the grasses have started spreading from seed. So it should fill up soon. The tree in there is an ornamental pear, and I’m hoping to do some guerilla grafting next year and get it fruiting
So we are now growing: artichoke, garlic, tomatoes, potatoes, zucchini, chilli, capsicum, cucumber, eggplant, radish, spring onions, onions, lettuce, beans, corn, broccoli, watermelon, pumpkin, strawberries, bush spinach, rhubarb, lemon, lemonade, mandarin, olives, feijoa, fig, plum, lemon balm, rosemary, oregano, lemon thyme, mint, chives, garlic chives, spinach, thai basil, nasturtium, cornflower, sunflowers, cress and chickens and kids!
Oh and I bought the bloke a homebrew kit for his birthday and gocco printed a bunch of labels designed by one of his best friends. So we’ve got that going on too!
We’re hosting christmas this year so I’m aiming for a 80% homegrown meal. It’s gonna be a fun one!
We’ve got more plans for next year including building a shade over a courtyard, putting in a swale and planting more fruit trees.
Thanks again to all the amazing people who came to our blitz, and all my friends who’ve been helping through the year. Words can’t explain how much I love my garden.