Organic Food Gardens

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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.


Finger Lime

Finger Limes

Finger Limes are a native subtropical shrub that produce limes in the shape of a finger.

The tree is slow growing in temperate zones.


  • The tree has dense small green spiky leaves.
  • The flowers appear in spring which are small white and pink and the fruit is ready to pick in late summer.
  • The fruit can be used as you would use a normal lime.
  • Finger limes are also nice on vanilla ice cream and vanilla yogurt. Good in stir fries, salads, gin & tonic and beer.

Bananas

Grapes & Bananas

Grape vines provide food and summer shade. Bananas are easy to grow and are good if there is a wet or boggy area in a garden.

Banana

  • Banana flower and fruit.
  • As the flower moves away from the fruit, the flower is cut off so the plant puts its energy into the growth of the fruit.
  • The flower can be eaten however there is a method and process which is common in some cultures.
  • Cover the bananas with a bag which has holes at both ends to protect the fruit from possums, birds and fruit bats.
  • Harvest when fruit begins to yellow.

 

Grapes

Silky chickens

Silky chickens provide eggs, pest control and manure


Tomatoes in the front yard

Tomatoes growing in raised garden beds in a urban front yard



Quails

Quails are good in small spaces.
Quails are cute, provide eggs and manure as well as eating leftover food.
Quails can be great pets.
They provide eggs and manure

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 Stingless Bees

Native stingless bees on a balcony garden.
Honey bees in a urban front yard.
The honey bees provide lots of honey for the residents and the excess honey is sold or traded to neighbours and friends.

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Photos of Edgeworth David community garden at Hornsby.

 

 

Community gardens are great places to learn about all aspects of organic gardening. They always have great people from all age groups and backgrounds willing to share knowledge and friendship. 

Edgeworth David community garden always welcomes new volunteers.

Volunteers can come along on Wednesday mornings or Saturday mornings. Weekly, Fortnightly or Monthly.

   

What is Permaculture ?

Means: permanent agriculture.

Permaculture is a way of incorporating the home, garden and surrounding environment into an organic sustainable way of life.

  • Permaculture works with nature to grow multi purpose companion plants.
  • One can  incorporate animals, beneficial insects and organic soils.
  • Producing food in ones backyard or balcony.
  • Permaculture can be implemented in front and backyards, balconies, roof top spaces, community gardens, school gardens, farms and semi rural properties.
  • Balcony gardens can include pots to grow herbs, vegetables and dwarf fruit trees.
  • Balcony railings can support climbing food plants.
  • Worm farms and pot full of water can include aquatic plants and fish.
  • Worm farms are a clean enclosed compost system that can be placed in a shady position on a balcony or in the garden. 
     A deep pot without a drainage hole filled with water can become a small pond with aquatic plants and fish
  • Backyards, roof top places, community gardens, school gardens can grow lots of multi purpose fruit and vegetables plants as well as including ponds, chickens, native stingless bee hives, composts, guilds and food forests.

Permaculture creates a natural and happy place. 

Chickens

    • Silky chickens provide eggs and fertiliser.
    • Great for turning over soil in vegie beds between seasons.
    • Good pets for children and will tolerate cuddles.
    • Can live up to 10 years.
    • Councils generally allow 5 chickens per household.
    • No roosters in urban areas.
    • Coup needs to be fox proof and have perches for sleeping.
    • They require nesting box in coup for laying eggs.
    • The only on going costs are seed and castings for coup floor.
    • Generally each chicken has particular characteristics and they will voluntarily go into their coup when it gets dark.

Silky Chickens

Fruiting guava

Small to medium size tree, full sun to part shade.
Provides good crop of fruit each summer autumn.
Cherry, strawberry or lemon flavoured fruits.

Flowering Guava

Flowering Peach

Small tree prefers cooler areas.
Beautiful pink flowers in winter which bees love.
Fruits summer.

Flowering Peach;

 

Community garden

growing veggies in raised beds

Growing food in containers and planter boxes


Growing Potatoes
Potatoes can be grown from spring to autumn. They can be grown straight into ground soil or in planter boxes.

Potatoes garden bed lined with newspaperhealthy soild added to the bed

Always use good healthy soil which can be a mix of premium potting mix and compost. Seed potatoes can be purchased from garden nurseries or if the potatoes in the cupboard at home start to seed then plant them.

Potatoes added onto the soilPotatoes then covered with more soil and lucerne

Once potatoes are in soil cover them with additional soil followed by lucerne or sugar cane mulch and then water. After a while the green stems will appear with leaves. As the stems grow cover with extra soil and mulch just leaving the very top of the stem / leaves exposed to the sunshine. Continue to add mulch during the growing period of 3 to 4 months. Then once the stems begin to go brown / yellow and die back, it’s time to harvest the potatoes.


Finger limes and Bananas

Finger limes and a finger!

Finger Limes

Finger limes are small leafed evergreen shrubs that produce a fruit in summer. The fruit is in the shape of a finger and is a native lime. The fruits skins can be red, yellow or green and contain acidic juice and tiny beads. Finger limes can be used in salads, stir fry, drinks like iced water and gin and tonic or even spread on top of vanilla ice cream.

Finger limes naturally grow in the sub topics and topics of Australia. Can be grown in temperate areas. They can grow to about 2 or 3 metres and are prickly bushes.


Bananas

Bananas are naturally an understorey plant. That means they grow naturally in the shade. Bananas are good in water logged areas of a garden as they will suck up water. In temperate and cool temperate zones lady finger bananas are best as they are the only bananas that will tolerate the cold.

Bananas can be grown from a sucker and from the time of planting to the time of harvest it will be about 18 months. Once the banana fruit has been harvested cut the stalk back to ground level and the process will begin again. Usually bananas are planted in what’s called a banana circle.  Each section of the large circle should only contain 3 or 4 stalks with each stalk at a different stage of development. Otherwise you can just have a couple of stalks growing in the corner of the garden.

Bananas like organic fertiliser, apply monthly and water during dry periods. When a bunch of bananas form, a bell flower will develop at the front of the bunch. Over time that flower will grow away from the fruit, when this occurs cut the flower off, that will then result in the plant putting its energy into developing the fruit.

grown by Ben and Jamie

grown by Ben and Jamie @ Eco Garden - Fagan Park

Any questions on Finger limes or Bananas just email


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