Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A garden letter from Yuendemu

Yuendemu is 500km north west of Alice Springs - deep in the Tanami desert.  Its a bit further north than Alice Springs  and has its own special gardening challenges so i though it would be good to inclue Trevors email outlining his latest garden trials and tribulations. I've ncluded my response to Trevor, followed by Trevors letter.

Hi Trevor, having you around for a cuppa and a chat was lovely and more than enough payment for our citrus. Look forward to the next one! I have been enjoying the Kefir and have been having it on my morning muesli - so thanks for that. I think it's a great supplement to my diet and immune system.

Frome  Jervois - I have just received 3 turkeys (which promptly flew out of the yard and into the neighbours yard) and dispatched one rabbit, a tray of tree lucerne seedlings and Cape gooseberry, old man saltbush seed and Acacia victoriae seed. We have a good little swap thing going - she's good at animal raising and I'm good at growing seedlings and plants. I'm going to get some ducklings and young chooks from her next year.

Good to hear about your garden successes. The carob is a pretty hardy tree - I'm thinking of planting a row of then down at the Steiner school.

We have been getting grapes from various sources - always yummy. We are harvesting snake beans now, tomatoes, carrots and pumpkins (jap)cucumbers and zucchini. Amaranth and pigeon pea growing well and being fed to the rabbits. I have a good crop of asparagus grown from seed coming along (do you have asparagus?) and I've extended the hothouse to have a hardening off area.

The lady i have been getting rabbits from is leaving town but luckily I have another fellow here who is starting off with a pair from Evon, so we shall be able to continue to exchange genetic material.

Love to see some photos of your work in the garden

Cheers for now,


Hi Chris,

Thanks for forwarding Michel's letter.

I must thank you for the lovely grapefruit and oranges. I enjoyed them
thoroughly. If you want to sell your produce I'm happy to buy.

Its been really hot here lately with the 40+ temperatures making it
tough for the plants. But I still managed to get a decent harvest of
grapes though the birds got about 1/3 of it - in spite of the bird
netting. The little buggers got in between the birdnet and shadecloth

I've been having a good time making compost with horse, cow and chicken
manure together with the kitchen waste from the Old People's Home next
door and straw dust from the chook house. I'll have to get some photos
and put them on facebook. I'm also making 'bokashi' with the excess vege
waste. I'm still working on getting the watering right and also the ph.

The leopard melon vines are flowering and setting fruit. I'm trying my best to go around pollenating the females but the thrill of the season has to be the three carob trees I transplanted from small pots. The new
growth is delightful to watch considering the plants sat in small pots for nearly two years quite neglected.

All my best wishes to you and your family for a lovely season.



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