Design Project: February and March Implementation

Standard

I’m going to combine the update for February and March since February was a short month. For those months, the implementation plan scheduled:

  1. Patio cover installation
  2. Buy mat for kid’s play area under patio
  3. Choose pavers for under the clothesline
  4. Install pavers for the clothesline area
  5. Buy and install new clothesline
  6. Water tank quotes

So what happened?

These activities were based on having the patio cover installed and otherwise prioritised, so they have all slipped from their schedule.  Instead, this is what I did.

The soil around the avocado tree received some attention with sheet mulching, all the while hoping that it wasn’t too late for the tree and it would show signs of life again.

Avocado tree with rubbish

Avocado tree with rubbish

Avocado tree with cleared area

Avocado tree with cleared area

Avocado tree and ground condition

Avocado tree and ground condition

Home made compost

Home made compost

Alive compost

Alive compost

Avocado tree with some compost

Avocado tree with some compost

Avocado tree with cardboard

Avocado tree with cardboard

Sheet mulching helpers

Sheet mulching helpers

Avocado tree with soil building layers

Avocado tree with soil building layers

The herbs grew in the kitchen window

Marigold seedling

Marigold seedling

Thyme is growing

Thyme is growing

Slow growing chives

Slow growing chives

The pumpkin plants flourished

The pumpkin reaches up

The pumpkin reaches up

Pumpkin leaves angled to the sun

Pumpkin leaves angled to the sun

The pumpkin spreads

The pumpkin spreads

Green fuzzy pumpkin leaves

Green fuzzy pumpkin leaves

I drew an avocado tree guild to begin our first food forest.  I have noted the layers of the avocado guild (tree, shrub, herbacious, ground covers, rhizosphere) on the right, and available resources, and needs on the bottom right.

Avocado tree guild drawing

Avocado tree guild drawing

I set up some pots for Miss Z to grow sugar snap peas and flowers for a butterfly garden to educate her on growing plants, give her some responsibility, and allow her to forage her own food when the time comes.  This follows permaculture principle #1 observe and interact.

Pots with seed raising soil and compost

Pots with seed raising soil and compost

Sugar snap peas for the big pot

Sugar snap peas for the big pot

Butterfly garden mix for 2 pots

Butterfly garden mix for 2 pots

Pea straw mulch on top

Pea straw mulch on top

I set up a new area for growing sweet peas along the pergola, which will add beauty, attract insects, reduce weeds, and improve the soil for when we’re ready to start growing a passionfruit vine.

New trellis and soil for sweet pea seeds

New trellis and soil for sweet pea seeds

Sweet pea trellis section

Sweet pea trellis section

I had a quote to replace our 2 full flush toilets with water-saving dual flush toilets.  This was bumped up the priority list as we were toilet training our little one, and it was complicating matters to turn on the water at the wall to be able to flush the toilet (long story).  This helped us to use permaculture principle #6 produce no waste (or less waste, in this case).

I had 3 quotes for a patio cover – at last!  My husband used the http://www.homeimprovementpages.com.au/ to outline our job, and then we shortlisted our top 3 for quotes.  I wasn’t impressed with one company, was imagining the sky with another company, and grounded with a vision with the last company.

What I learnt from that

I love growing seeds! It’s fascinating to watch for changes every day and see how they evolve. Having seeds on the kitchen window sill is great as not only do they grow well there, but it’s very easy to check on them and give them water if they need it. The pumpkins have been an unexpected joy. I’ve never grown pumpkins before and I was amazed at how quickly they grew and I loved to admire their fuzzy leaves and beautiful yellow flowers. I noticed that they attracted bees and ladybirds, which was a bonus.

Having a drawn plan of a guild makes the implementation much more straightforward and quicker. The implementation highlighted to me that we don’t produce enough compost to meet our needs, and bags of compost from Bunnings are almost siphoned into our clay soil. It strikes me that it would be more efficient to have a truck deliver a few cubic metres of compost and then shovel it into a wheelbarrow and tip it where we need it, but that would probably require a working bee.  The other point is that our home made compost springs up gifts from the seeds that are in it, and I’d be inclined to only use that in our food growing areas because of that.

I took advice from Sarhn from Greener Me to teach Miss Z to grow her own plants and have found sugar snap peas are very easy to grow.  Miss Z enjoyed sprinkling seeds in the pots.

What about the plan?

The hardscaping has been delayed but is still on the agenda.  Lots more to come!

I’ll give course news in my next post – are you excited?

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4 thoughts on “Design Project: February and March Implementation

  1. Well you are on a very exciting journey! Well done and congratulations on getting started (the hardest part of any journey). Well done also in getting your Little One involved. Such important skills to pass on. Well done!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Sarhn! I have a vision now and am dying to make it all happen, so having patience is pretty tough! Small and slow solutions, right? Miss Z loves being involved with it all and I want to show her things while she’s eager to take it in 🙂 Thanks for sharing your stories, which makes it easier to make the most of it for first-timers 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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