Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Autumn gardening

Over the weekend, I finally re-planted my vegetable patches.

They were in a sad state!

When I first set up a vegetable patch in September 2009, I was a complete novice. I was also working with a courtyard, rather than a garden, which is why I have above-ground planters (they have a layer of weed mat, and then just soil).

I had a lot of fun planning what I would plant, and then monitoring progress as things grew. As that first effort was a Spring planting, I had heat-happy plants: tomatoes, capsicum, eggplant and baby corn in one planter, and lettuce, carrots, leeks, and spring onions in the second planter (the second batch are actually happy with hot and cold weather).

Things went from this...

Cherry tomatoes, capsicum, eggplant, baby corn

Lettuce, baby carrots, leeks, spring onion

To this...


...in hardly any time at all.

Unfortunately, I learnt the hard way that you really should follow spacing directions! 15 to 30cm between plants seemed like so much, and the seedlings were so small, that I may have ignored the advice on some occasions. I ended up with quite crowded planters (and rampaging baby corn!) and my capsicums didn't end up bearing fruit. Lesson learnt.

I suspect if I was more experienced, I would also have managed to keep a constant crop, instead of allowing things to run their season and then die out over (a very hot) summer. I'm not sure how normal it is to have to completely re-plant after 18 months.

Irrespective, I did, and this time I was planting in Autumn. After consulting websites and garden planting guides, I elected to plant lettuce, leeks, spinach and bok choi in one planter:

(Coriander at the front)

And snow peas and beetroot in the other - from seed, so there's nothing to see as yet!

I also added to my herb patch, to result in coriander, oregano, rosemary, thyme and sage. We also have parsley, although I forgot to photograph it.

And a bonus - a goji berry plant!

A complete impulse buy when I saw it at the nursery :)

I'll look forward to (hopefully) watching these grow, and then enjoying the produce. There really is something magical about eating things from your own garden.

Let's hope I get to that stage with this crop!


  1. Wow!! I'm really impressed by your little nursery. I started growing my own mint and parsley recently, and it's really fun witnessing the progress.

  2. @Kayla
    I know, it is amazingly fun! I never knew how much until I started. It's good to hear you've got a herb collection going too :)

  3. Fantastic! They all look wonderful. I'm really impressed that you had corn in there as well. Happy growing over winter Kari.

  4. Oh gosh, envious! There is literally nowhere in my apartment where I could grow anything!

  5. @Hannah
    Oh, that does make things hard. One day though! I'm looking forward to having more than a courtyard one day too (although perhaps the upkeep will make me regret those words...).

  6. Its wonderful how you are making the most of your space - it does show it can be done. I'm impressed with you growing your own goji berries - wow!

    I do like the look of your containers too.

  7. Look at all your great container gardening. I am eager to start planting but there is still the risk of frost around here. Late May is the goal!

  8. @Mangocheeks
    Thank you - although the test of the goji berries may be in whether I get any goji berries! Fingers crossed :)

  9. @Carolyn
    Frost is one thing I don't usually have to worry about! An advantage of a hot climate I suppose...good luck with your planting when the time comes.


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