At this time of year, there is so much happening in the garden it’s sometimes hard to keep up. I don’t like to miss out on anything interesting so every morning I do a quick tour, coffee cup in hand. Today, I took a few snapshots of this morning’s goings-on.
The pond is now a regular watering hole for wild bees, honey bees and paper wasps. I can see the wasps pollinating the nearby passion fruit vine. Thanks to them, we have enjoyed a bumper crop over the last 4 months, picking 2 to 3 fruits everyday. The peach tree blossoms are covered with bees guaranteeing an abundant harvest this summer and plenty of preserved peaches over the winter months.
More bees and beneficial flying insects hover around the native daisies. I remember planting these last autumn and it is amazing how fast they have grown and spread. There is a slight movement nearby and I notice I am not alone.
One of the local Magpies has joined me. She is very tame and hovers within a foot’s distance whenever there is freshly dug soil. I like worms too but don’t mind sharing. In return she keeps garden slugs under control – just another friendly ‘swap and share’.
A little further, wild lettuce is going to seed. During winter, I uprooted a few plants from a neighbour’s verge and transplanted them in the garden. They are weed-like plants and that means there is no need to harvest, store and re- plant seeds or nurture and transplant seedlings. These pest-free plants will self-seed prolifically next autumn. Fresh, young leaves make a nutritious addition to soups, salads and stir-fries.
Wherever I turn to look there are spring blossoms– apple, apricot, orange, peach, plum, fig. I recall all the back breaking work preparing the soil to plant the young trees and an ancient quote about ‘reaping what you sow’. I know we often reap stuff we have not sown – bad stuff sown by others or just by plain bad luck – yet this sowing will bear fruit. There will be abundant, fresh-picked, free, organic fruit all summer long – more than enough to eat on the spot, preserve and share around.
The citrus tree, covered in new blossoms, is still producing end of season, sweet, juicy fruit – endings and beginnings in shades of orange and white.
Other edibles going to seed are Asian greens, lettuce, wild rocket, amaranth and parsley. I used to collect these seeds, store them over winter to re-plant in spring. Thanks to years of composting and zero chemical use, our soil is much improved and they now self-sow readily. It’s just a matter of pulling out the seedlings we don’t need and gifting them to fellow gardeners.
Before I go, let’s take a quick look in the vegie patch. There is silver beet, celery, parsley, lettuces, spring onions, garlic, leeks, broad beans, asparagus… It’s time to think about what to harvest for lunch.