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Lavender Hill calling

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  • #238381
    chesterchester
    Member

    Think its time to introduce Lavender Hill and log down our progress. Our dream is to become self sufficient and happier with our lifestyle. Only 3 gentle sloping acres nestled between 2 national parks and Macleary River. Our villiage of Bellbrook is very small with lots of friendly folk, pop 130 Lots of clearing of lantana, unwanted bush, slashing and mulching going on at the moment. Soon a borehole will be sunk and power put on site. The veggie garden about 1/2 acre, has been pegged out, green mulched and will be fenced in soon ….. all to keep out those straying pesky horses from chewing my fruit trees:@ Only good thing they poop everywhere.:) Our “Greek Room” will be for olive trees and English lavender, planted under the trees with a long shallow pond. We want to plant the trees either side of the pond. Just like the rose gardens at the alhambra in Granada, Spain. They both need little water . Rescued a ” 3 nude ladies” statue which will have a special place at the end of the pond. My citrus trees can’t wait to get planted : 1 lemonade, 2 emp. nandarines, saville orange, red grapefruit & figs (so far). The plan is to build the chookhouse in the centre of the veggie garden and the divide the area into 4 sections, rotating the chooks as needed. Plan to plant trees around the perimeter . 3 Bird feeders , made of steel posts with huge ceramic saucers on top for seed and water have been planted near a huge blackbutt tree. Close to a Japanese styled pergola that we building at the moment. Bower birds,magpies, doves and finches are hanging about for a free feed. Wallabies graze early morning . Our home away from home is a old purple caravan with a paved area in front of it. … got to get the neighbour & DH used to some colour. Unfortunately we need to be in Sydney for another 4 years so time spent is just not long enough to get all the work done quickly. We will have wait just a little longer ………..

    #279658
    newepochnewepoch
    Member

    That’s a nice spot you’ve chosen. I remember driving through that area as a child and one day hoping to live there. Good luck to you.:tup:

    #279659
    GeoffGeoff
    Keymaster

    That sounds great chester, and it sounds (reads??!) like you’ve got some wonderful plans for your place. I love your idea of a Greek room, never been to Granada but I can conjour up a vision and it looks pretty good! I’m looking forward to seeing some photos as it progresses!

    #279660
    chesterchester
    Member

    Geoff, I went to Spain about 18 years ago on a two week Holiday, and must admit I have always had something about the mediterian countries , their food and culture. The Alhambra is really something to see, the gardens are full of water feature , flowers and trees. Worth checking it out on the net. I have chosen olive trees which I hope will be suitable for our area. 6 x UC13A6 , 4 x Manzanillo, 6 x Kalamata. It takes at least 5 years for a good crop of olives, maybe press for oil but would rather have olives to eat. Got plans to build a outside bread/pizza oven to bake fresh bread , smothered with semi sundried tomatoes and olives ….. can’t you smell it πŸ˜‰

    #279661
    GeoffGeoff
    Keymaster

    Now you’re teasing me πŸ˜‰ I’ve got one of the wonderfully named UC13A6’s in the rocky part of the back yard, you’d think they could have picked a better name for it though. I’m looking forward to sitting under the grape covered pergola eating pizza (and drinking home grown wine) myself, just got to get the pergola and pizza oven πŸ˜†

    I just looked up the Alhambra, and it’s amazing. The gardens are great, and some of that architecture, wow! The Salon de Mocàrabe pictured on wikipedia, they actually went to the trouble of carving that sort of stuff?! People are amazing. Let me know if you build yourself one of those too:clap:

    #279662
    forestforest
    Member

    it sounds wonderful, chester. I’m looking forward to updates.

    #279663
    chesterchester
    Member

    Just finished loading the trailer & car ready to head off for another 2 week working bee, this time without the dogs. No wet muddy paws !!!! Had a few drops of rain 10mm, 3 mm, and hopefully a shower or two in the next week. George will be joining me in a fortnight, catching the countrylink train to Kempsey. Hope to go fishing at South West Rocks or maybe try for Bass upriver.:)

    #279664
    chesterchester
    Member

    Having slashed and cleared the verge of long grass, weeds and lantana, and thrown out of the window rubbish, it looking good. Bought 7 Liquid Amber trees to plant as a wind break and also for their size & autumn, they are still small trees but should be lovely in a few years time. πŸ™‚

    #279665
    KiewietKiewiet
    Member

    It sounds lovely! How about some photos of progress? I love seeing how places grow and develop. How much time do you spend there at the moment? Just a rough guess.

    #279666
    chesterchester
    Member

    My sons attempt at photo downloading was not very successful, might have to try again, I am not very computer literate, a bit like a parrot needing to repeat the same thing over again. The compost bin DS built was a bit like the Eifle Tower and needed some sturdy foundations to help it upright. That done and some more fencing/screening/painting, general cleaning up and a day clearing lantana/saplings with a tractor did the job nicely. We can now see what we bought. Bought 12 sugar cane mulch bails for $4 each near Grafton , used 1/2 a bale in the compost bin with raked up leaves, old horse manure, lucky it rained so no need to water it. Need to add grass cutting next time I mow and also some B&B. Atleast we had some good rain.

    #279667
    forestforest
    Member

    it sounds like to coming along well, chester. :tup: when will you move up there?

    #279668
    AnissaAnissa
    Member

    Hi Chester,

    Good to here things for coming along nicely. Sounds like fun!!!

    #279669
    chesterchester
    Member

    It looks like I might be able to move with all our animals in about 18 months. We have decided to get the plans into council for approval within the next 6 months and then take out a loan to cover building. A very basic home is planned. I just have to have a big kitchen as that is where my family like to gather around a huge table. We would like to build a studio/cottage for renting out aswell. That should help with the morgage. Rental properties are very scarce in Bellbrook. Lets hope it all goes according to plan:)

    #279670
    chesterchester
    Member

    A huge CNC machine was installed at work ,it came all the way from Japan in steel crates (freebie) which with a little imagination and lots of welding are going to be revamped into a small workshop with a wooden deck attacked to it and the other into a spare room and shed for the ride on and concrete mixer. We will have to clad it and put a few windows in. That could be my wood carving workshop, got the tools and wood but never had the space to work without packing up at the end of the day. Now getting them off the car trailer was something else as they weigh about 600 kg each, attached D shackles to the steel floors, tied some rope to a tree and slowly pulled it off the trailer with the Falcon. Soon had them positioned correctly and leveled out. Now we don’t need a container anymore and it only cost hiring a car trailer. πŸ™‚

    #279671
    chesterchester
    Member

    The wooden fence is looking real good, that the one I was busy painting on my birthday, cemented in treated timber posts 1800mm high and screwed on reject hardwood 90 x 35 mm horizontal slats which are painted Brunswick green to protect them. It looks cosy. Constructed a square raised veggie bed for 9 rhubarb plants and still plenty space to plant strawberries. Plante a few potatoes that were sprouting in a bottomless wooden box which I painted purple, lined the box with sugarcane mulch and filled the hollow with good soil and compost, covering with more mulch. hope it works! A succulant garden has been started near the front gate, heaped a lot of sand which I had delivered (4 scoops of it) , planted 9 agave, 6 tall growing thorny things forgot the name) and 7 prickly pear leaves which I hope to replant when a bit bigger. found a lovely dead root bit of dry wood and mulched with tea tree mulch. got so much work done in the 2 weeks but in 30 plus it was hard going, DH thought I was a dark fella when I picked him up at the station.:)

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