Organic Food Gardens


The main focus for our blog is to pass on information and tips about growing food using Permaculture methods, to help vegetable garden owners take responsibility for their garden and their own backyards allowing them to supplement their diet with real whole foods grown by themselves in a fully supported and natural way.

Autumn is a good time to add organic matter to the soil and garden beds.

Compost Bin
Chook Pooh

Complete fertilisers

Can be purchased in bags or one can make create compost from kitchen scraps, dry leaves, coffee grounds and garden clippings.

Compost can be mixed / dug into the soil. Composts improves the soil and adds valuable nutrients to aid plant grow.

Homemade compost is best as it contains recycled goodness.

Worm Farm

Chicken manure

This can be purchased in pellet form and is best applied during rain. Spread around the drip line of trees and shrubs.

Cow manure

This can be purchased in bags and is added to the soil. Its great as it improves the soil. Raw cow manure is best mixed into compost and allowed to brew for a few weeks.

Horse manure

Cold dry manure. Can be applied straight onto a garden and mixed in. Or horse manure can be added to open compost bays or bins and allowed to mix and brew.

Liquid Fertiliser

Liquid fertiliser

Worm farms provide worm juice. Seasol is a great organic liquid fertiliser.

Acid Loving Plants

Acid loving plants

Include, Blue berries, Azaleas and Camellias. These plants require specific acid loving fertiliser and or compost.

Compost Ready Best times to add fertiliser, generally autumn and spring.

Autumn Tasks - Vegie Gardens

Vegie patch - If your home vegie patch has been overrun by weeds, there are a few ways of renewing it.

Green Manure MixOption one

Pull out all the weeds and plant a winter green manure crop. Green manure crop is made up of a mixture of seeds like oats ,lupins, rye corn and dun peas. Green manure will grow over winter, it will crowd out weeds and when dug back into the soil in early spring will provide nutrient to the earth. Green manure can be purchased on line, see Green Patch if you live in NSW or the ACT or see Green harvest if you live in Queensland.

Option two

Either pullout all the weeds or leave the weeds and cover with sheets of damp newspaper. If you leave the weeds in the patch use extra sheets of newspaper. The paper acts as a weed mat. Then place down a layer of mulch this can be Lucerne or sugar cane mulch. You can allow the patch to rest over winter or plant winter vegetables and winter annuals. If it’s to be the latter place soil over the layer of mulch / Lucerne and mix soil with compost, cow manure, blood and bone, and chicken pellets. Then place another layer of Lucerne over the top of the soil mix. When planting vegies and flowers make a hole in the Lucerne, drop some soil into the hole and plant your seedlings. Then spread Lucerne around the base of plantings. This is called a No dig garden.
for more information on  No dig gardens .

laydown newspaper to cover the garden Cover with lucernRest the garden till spring

Shady vegetable garden

Let them rest over winter, you could try green manure or just mulch with newspaper and Lucerne. In summer try leafy greens like Asian greens, all types of lettuce, Spinach, Silverbeet, some chillies and bananas.

For more information on Winter vegetables and flowers.

Early Autumn
The hot summer days are now fading away and cooler darker morning and evening are slowly beginning.

Time to harvest the last of the summer fruits and vegetables. Lots of autumn jobs to undertake. After the last of the summer vegies have been harvested it’s time to add organic matter to the soil. Compost, blood and bone, organic pellets will improve soils, remember to rotate the new autumn crops. Where legumes ( plants with pods ) pea’s / beans were grown in summer plant leafy greens like lettuce and spinach in autumn. The leafy greens will use the nitrogen that the legumes released into the soil during the summer growing period which helps to produce foliage. Add organic liquid fertiliser when planting new seedlings.

In the citrus garden the fruit trees will have lots of green fruit which will start to ripen in May. Continue to apply organic fertiliser every 4 to 6 weeks till the first harvest. Add around the citrus trees chicken pellets, blood and bone with liquid fertiliser. If there is mulch or Lucerne around trees lift up or rake to the edge of tree drip line then place down fertiliser, water in and place back mulch / lucerne around tree.

In the orchard it’s time to prune the spring fruiting trees. Generally prune trees into a V or vase shaped tree removing any cross branches that are growing across the centre of the tree. Keeping the centre of the tree free of branches allows for better air flow and allows sunlight into the centre of the tree. Add organic fertiliser and mulch to the base and around the drip lines of the trees.

As the deciduous leaves start to fall rake up and add to compost. Leaves, grass clippings and garden waste can be added to outdoor composts and should be turned with a garden fork each week. Food  can only be added to enclosed composts and worm farms. Composts provide a great source of fertile soil and worm farms will provide liquid compost. If you live in a unit or town house a worm farm will suit as it is a contained clean compost.

Autumn is a good time to apply organic fertiliser to all garden beds and lawns. If you live in a cool climate zone plant out garlic now straight into the earth. Also consider planting a plum tree, there are some low chill varieties. If you live in a temperate zone place garlic in the fridge for a couple of weeks, this will give it the chill it requires and then plant out into the garden. Garlic will take about 6 months, when the leaves begin to die back that’s an indication that its ready for harvest.

Summer Harvest
Summer Harvest

For additional information on autumn plantings .

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