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Bellandarreh Farm

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  • #534278
    BelBel
    Member

    Phew, can’t believe it’s been a month since I updated this thread. It’s been VERY hot and we had a bushfire come to within 4km of our house. We feel very grateful to still have our lovely property. Another 2 homes and sheds burnt down today in nearby Eden Valley too 🙁

    The veggie bed below ended up being incorporated into the chicken area when we remodelled the shadecloth veggie garden. I’ve added some horse poo, drippers and sturdy wire over the top and now it’s going to be a chicken greens bed. I’m hoping that as the greens grow, the chickens will peck what grows through, but leave the roots to grow

    These are another 2 beds that I’ve remodelled and filled with horse poo, ready for winter. I’m hoping that it will attract some worms to the area. I’ll also add a heap of compost once it’s ready:

    And a few photos of my chooks just because I love them!

    #534279
    BelBel
    Member

    The biggest problem with the property, aside from the hot dry sandy soil is the RABBITS!! Here are some of the massive burrows:

    DH has been shooting them when he gets time, but I think it’ll need more time and a multi-faceted strategy before we make any impact. We have had to fence areas and put shadecloth/wire structures around trees and garden beds to keep them out. They took a particular liking to the young leaves of our transplanted citrus trees 👿

    Here is our rabbit-proof fenced herb garden:

    The old orchard where I have put in some citrus trees (in the shadecloth). I think the trees are apples and pears, but they are old and neglected. I’m going to prune them right back this winter and give them a good feed and see what happens. If they don’t come back next spring, they’ll get the chop!

    While we’re waiting for herbs to grow out the front, we have planted some seeds in the window sill inside. We made pots from old milk cartons and got the kids to decorate them with permanent textas:

    Here’s another chicken coop that DH has been fixing up for me. It will house some of my chickens once the chicks grow a bit bigger. We want these ones to free-range around the house area during the day:

    And lastly, a photo of one of my cheeky blue Australorp chicks on our pear tree:

    #534280
    russruss
    Member

    What a great spot, looks amazing. Would love to have a look around!

    #534281
    froot_loopzfroot_loopz
    Member

    looks really good Bel.

    I want an australorp but no one will take me driving to get any.

    I made chook feed bins, and they do eat through the wire and leave the roots intact.

    #534282
    froot_loopzfroot_loopz
    Member

    Im extremely jealous of your shade clothed area

    #534283
    BelBel
    Member

    The heavens have opened 🙂 At least 65mm since yesterday, but the rain gauge filled up over night, so it was probably more than that. The leaky dam is filling up (pity actually – we were planning to get someone in while it’s dry to re-seal it), tanks are filling and all the plants are getting a good drink. It’s such a nice relief after all the stinking hot weather.

    I’ve also been busy preserving the fruit that’s ripened in this heat. We were so lucky to buy a property with some fruit trees already established.

    And lastly, my faithful sidekick Hugh – helping out with a bit of garden maintenance. I got a few herbs and seeds planted yesterday, just in time for this rain.

    #534284
    lavmanlavman
    Member

    You weren’t lucky to buy it, you were lucky to find a property with some fruit trees already established, you were smart to buy it. :clap:

    We are planning to cover our garden area with shade cloth, but not sure what percent shade to use, we had a look at a nursery which uses hail guard and they said there is no shade protection, but it felt cooler than out side.

    Just wondering what yours is covered with and are the sides covered as well?

    It gets way too hot for plants like lettuce to take up enough water to survive, funny how the weeds seem to manage ok though, we have a shade house which we think is some where between 30 to 50 percent shade, root crops seem to do ok but the lettuce go leggy, I am thinking that it is too closed in. :shrug:

    #534285
    caddiecaddie
    Participant

    Just love the side kick!!!!

    What breed is he?

    #534286
    mudhenmudhen
    Member

    Forget the fruit, all I could think of was how much Hugh has grown!! He’s a lovely chocolate lab, Caddie and was just a baby when I visited Bel before Christmas.

    Seriously, though, great work with the preserves! And I agree with Lavman – luck had not alot to do with it! It was certainly a property worth waiting for 🙂

    #534287
    BelBel
    Member

    lavman post=360197 wrote: You weren’t lucky to buy it, you were lucky to find a property with some fruit trees already established, you were smart to buy it. :clap:

    We are planning to cover our garden area with shade cloth, but not sure what percent shade to use, we had a look at a nursery which uses hail guard and they said there is no shade protection, but it felt cooler than out side.

    Just wondering what yours is covered with and are the sides covered as well?

    It gets way too hot for plants like lettuce to take up enough water to survive, funny how the weeds seem to manage ok though, we have a shade house which we think is some where between 30 to 50 percent shade, root crops seem to do ok but the lettuce go leggy, I am thinking that it is too closed in. :shrug:

    Thanks lavman. We looked at a lot of properties but fell in love with this one.

    As for the shadecloth area, I’m not sure what grade the shadecloth is. I’ll take a closer look and another pic when I get a chance. It is a beige colour and covers the whole roof as well as the sides to up to sbout 1.5m. The top half or so is chicken wire which allows bees in but keeps birds out. There is some extra shadecloth rolled up along the top edge so I suspect I could roll that down to give more coverage if I needed to.

    Mudhen is right – Hugh is a big baby chocolate lab. He’s not very pleased with all the rain!

    #534288
    fruitfulfruitful
    Member

    things are looking great there Bel, well done with all that preserving. What a bone!! Our pups found heaps of really good bones when we first came to our place, quite amusing!

    Lavman – we have built some shade houses and used 50% white shade cloth, it works really really well in both summer and winter, the lower portion of the sides are clear poly corrugated roof stuff. Both hubby and I are amazed that the 50% white does so well.

    Enjoying your updates Bel :tup:

    #534289
    BelBel
    Member

    Thanks fruitful 🙂

    I’ve got 4 days off work this week to get some things done around the farm. I’ve got a massive list of things to do, not sure how many I’ll get done. For starters, I’ve got a trailer load of horse poo to unload, 2nd chicken coop to complete, bread to bake, school lunch box snacks to prepare, plus a heap of winter seeds to plant out into seedling trays.

    The farm has come to life after the recent drenching rain (up to 150mm in 2 days). The dam is full of frogs croaking and spawning and grass and weed seeds have germinated everywhere.

    We got a new alpaca on the weekend – a pregnant girl called Aphrodite. I also picked up 6 Australorp chickens on my way home yesterday – 4 pullets to add to heh laying flock and 2 roosters (1 for the pot and possibly 1 to keep).

    #534290
    VanessaVanessa
    Member

    Wow it seems like you are very busy!!

    #534291
    diannedianne
    Participant

    :laugh: I love the way you picked up some chooks on the way home, like the rest of us would just pick a some bread :laugh:

    #534292
    froot_loopzfroot_loopz
    Member

    Bel, have you ever preserved pears? I have a tree full of pears and I dont know what to do with them

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