Harvesting the Big Guns for Christmas 23rd Dec 2017

The final harvest of the Ballanisters 2017 crop was a pre-Christmas bonanza where the Giant Russian bulbs got pulled up. They were such glorious sizes it almost seemed a shame to rip them from their earthen throne at the front of the row. But what a treat. These guys really were the bulb on top…

Harvest Day 5th Dec 2017

Being a busy time of year for everyone makes harvesting a bit tricky – finding a spare few hours let alone a day is a challenge. On top of that, picking the right time to pull them relies on a few variables, like how recently it’s rained, and whether bulbs have formed fully without being…

Real Farmers Irrigate 9th Nov 2017

Harvest time is approaching and some other growers are starting to pull their bulbs up already. This weekend I pulled a couple of bulbs to check on their size and shape but although they are looking great, the cloves are not quite fully formed. I figured it’s going to be at least a couple of…

Watering. It’s Actually Not Complicated 19th Oct 2017

Today was a rare time that I had an actual weekday free so I hotfooted it out to the garlic at Cam and Ginny’s patch. The added bonus of it being a weekday was that I got to bend the ear of Tony the resident Farm Manager and Enabler of Handy Machinery.  I was expecting…

Nettles.. They’re Not so Bad… Sept 16th 2017

After dinner chats a fortnight ago, I got the general gist from Jess and Kel that the weeds were starting to spread and celebrate their own existence. The ladies had each been out for a look and it seemed  a proliferation of nettles had popped up along the sides of my row only. Of course…

Eating not Garlicking Sept 1st 2017

The beauty of growing garlic, unlike some other vegies, is that they take a long time to grow. This means that over Winter (the most miserable time to farm in North-West Victoria) we can afford to take a little time out from the usual tasks and almost forget all about the garlic. Which is basically…

Weeding and Not Fertilising 23rd July 2017

Today Kel and I  got stuck into the weeds popping through on the garlic and after this week’s steady rain there was some suspicion there’d be more to come before we could say “Hey, lets go get a pie”.     It’s a kind of cheap path to enlightenment, weeding. You find yourself becoming so…

Planting for Cam and Finding Plover Eggs 23rd June

This was the view greeting us today as we arrived, ready to plant some of Cam’s garlic in the spare row. Farm Manager Tony has a meticulous style and knows what he’s on about. He combed through the top soil to loosen and uproot any weeds (mostly nettle) so it was ready for us to…

Nettles and Rabbits 2nd June 2017

I headed out today on my way to Gordon to check the bulbs’ progress, hopeful the mulch had been doing its job. After a quick look over, it appeared that, unlike last year’s Kykuku bonanza, our weed of choice this season was going to be the humble nettle (Urtica dioica for the latin lovers). As…

Laying Down Hay Mulch May 6th 2017

I brought my brother out to the patch under the guise of “a cuppa and catch up with Cam and Ginny” then surprised him with a rake and roped him into helping me spread the oat hay mulch over half of the bed before the the rain set in. I eventually let Marky off the…