Friday, 14 December 2012

Want mulch? You mow girl!

I think that I have mowed more grass in the last two weeks than I have mowed  in the rest of my entire life! I have mowed for two reasons -  to remove long grass from around the house and house yard as a part of fire protection and to gather mulch in the form of grass clippings for my new vegetable patch.

In the past, in my city patch, I would use some grass clippings for my mulch - but as the grass clippings there were very green and a little too 'hot' to add to the veggies and, as the quantities of mowings were small, I used to buy  most of my mulch - normally sugar cane. But here at Highfield, the grass is plentiful, high and dry (and therefore cooler for the veggies) and potentially dangerous fire wise so close to the house, so, off with their heads!

I don't want to think about the size of the space I have mowed... it's huge and I suspect that the mowing miles I have done have contributed to the loss of a couple of kilos!  It was all mowed with a 'regular' mower, not a ride-on  (I think I want a ride on mower for Christmas - Santa - do you read blogs?). But as a result of all this activity I have mulched  my newly made veggie beds, mulched under the crab apples and mulched a couple of potatoes plants that have appeared all on their own in a corner of the yard.

In three short weeks we have made a number of veggie beds, a short one in the front of the house, a small one on the side that  is called the zucchini ward, and a really long patch all along the side of the house.

There is also a small patch right at the back, a potato pile in one corner and three pumpkin / melon mounds.

As we have only just started, there is hardly anything evident in the beds right now. The only plants that can really be seen are those that I re-located from the city (tomatoes, fennel, eggplants and chillies).

Crab apples with garlic chives
Other things that have gone in really recently are:
  • Cucumbers - Space Master
  • Climbing beans - Blue Lake
  • Dwarf beans - Red Kidney, Borlotti, Cherokee wax, Sex without strings -  lots of  beans to help build fertility
  • Pigeon peas (thanks Linda)
  • Beetroot -  Moulin Rouge, Cylindra (I think the ants carried away all the Cylindra seeds though) and Crimson Globe
  • Spring onions 
  • Rocket
  • Radish - Scarlet Globe
  • Pumpkins - Musquee de Provence and Baby Blue  (thanks Bek)
  • Melon - Tigger (thanks Bek)
  • Nasturtiums
  • Sunflowers
Then there are other things being raised in seed punnets - comfrey, fennel, basil, zinnias, red marigolds, padron chillies, long cayenne chillies.

Depressingly, this looks like a list of things I should have put in a bed in October ... oh well, I couldn't do it then so I will just have to see what crops I do get...

But as a beacon of hope of productivity, today I picked some of the first tomatoes (Broad Yellow Ripple Currant), raised in Sydney and re-located to Highfield. 

And there are crab apples to wait on.

One woman went to mow, went to mow a meadow.....


  1. And no ride on!! You must have super shoulders!

    1. Hi Cat! Not so many muscles, but I am feeling pretty fit!

  2. Yay for the Broad Ripple Currants. My mum started out with a normal mower when we first moved to the country...they now have a lovely ride on - I think they still enjoy using it too.

    1. They are pretty good little tomatoes those ones, I know you grow them too. Of course the problem with ride-ons is that they dont have catchers, so I will have to use lots of energy raking! Oh well, cant have everything.

  3. That dry grass will make a great mulch, unlike the green stuff which as you say, gets hot and tends to mat. As I work full-time, my one little indulgence is having someone mow my lawns. I'm on an 'average' house block but the back lawn is shinking all the time as I've plonked three large raised beds and two small ones on it.

    My newest large addition is being filled with lawn cuttings and kitchen and veggie patch refuse until I get around to buying and (carting!) in some soil. It's like a large compost bin and the chooks love scratching around in there. I throw in any spent potting mix or compost (like from my potato bags) and eventually it will be put into service to grow 'something' - I'm not sure what, yet!

    1. Nothing wrong with a little hired help. Do you mean those lovely corrugated raised beds? They'd take some filling I'd guess. Like the idea of putting the chookies inside to help with the work.

  4. Yes, I have the 'Birdies' ones that you can get at Bunnings. I love 'em. Oh, and I don't put the chooks in - they just hop right in, themselves! Any beds that have veggies in them, I need to cover with bird netting otherwise I'd have nothing left. I can't believe the mess and damage that two chooks can do! They free-range all day as they only have a little coop and they go stir-crazy if they aren't let out. And I'm a big softie and can't bear to think they might be unhappy!



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