Hi from New Zealand

mischief

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You know, I always dreamed of living in the middle of a forest clearing...in a Wizards tower....oh well, back to reality.

I've been promising myself one of those fancy weather stations so that i can find out what exactly is going on with our weather, but so far, thats as far as I got.
What I have been doing over the last couple of years is adding as much carbon to the soil, either in it or on top of it, as I possibly can. Its volcanic silt type soil, so very free draining and just gobbles up organic matter.
I have come to the conclusion after years of adding lawn clippings, that my soil need more brown stuff, ie, carbon.

Today, I cleared the next couple of paths, levelled them and laid weed mat down so nothing can grow over them while I get to my next priority= pave the path in front of the courtyard gate and sow the next lot of seeds.

My sweet corn is coming along nicely, but I managed to cook my cauliflower and broccolli seedlings yesterday, so I am going to have to resow them. I forgot to take off the cover and we had a scorchingly hot day so they all fried and died.
The upside is that the eggplant seedlings just love it and sprung up wonderfully.
 

Lazy Gardener

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So nice to have some one here... who's a gardener... from the southern hemisphere! We can all live vicariously while we watch the snow flakes sifting down through the sky... and sipping our hot cocoa!

According to a google search, you are in growing zone 10B! Equivalent to the very southern tip of Florida in USA. So, if it doesn't get too hot in your summer, you could be gardening year round. I'm just a tad envious, though I don't handle heat well. I absolutely wilt when temps get above 23* C.
 

mischief

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So nice to have some one here... who's a gardener... from the southern hemisphere! We can all live vicariously while we watch the snow flakes sifting down through the sky... and sipping our hot cocoa!

According to a google search, you are in growing zone 10B! Equivalent to the very southern tip of Florida in USA. So, if it doesn't get too hot in your summer, you could be gardening year round. I'm just a tad envious, though I don't handle heat well. I absolutely wilt when temps get above 23* C.
Err, I have been to Tampa bay, Florida, trust me, Soooo hot and humid you melt, ours are slightly kinder.
Having said that, if I get my act together again, I will be gardening all year round again....just no tomatoes, etc in winter.

Funny you should say..get too hot in summer.. cos a couple of years ago I measured 55c in the back yard. I dont actually know how hot it got cos my thermometer only went to 55c..
I had it a foot off the ground where I was going to set up my chicken forage yards and wanted to see what temps they would be experiencing there. Needless to say, I grew trees and shrubs for them so they didnt fry.
 

Lazy Gardener

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Do you loose chickens to heat stroke? I've had birds overheat, with resultant electrolyte imbalance, even here, in Maine. One late spring, I noticed my 8 week old chicks stumbling around. I realized that I myself was a bit dizzy from working outside on the warm day (though it wasn't even up to 80*F). I came in, tanked up on water, made some electrolyte solution, gave some to the adults, chicks, saved some for me. Within 1/2 hour, the chicks were back to their perky selves.
 

baymule

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Jags, gotta have tough chickens to survive Texas heat! But I did put their coop on deep shade.

So you have volcanic soil that eats organic matter? I get it, we have sugar sand here. I call it living on the beach without the ocean.

Plant clovers, they fix nitrogen in the soil, cut it down after it goes to seed and it makes a nice Matt of organic matter. Even after our Sheep eat it down, there is still enough to put a lot of organic matter in the soil. Then the Sheep walk around making seed deposits wrapped in fertilizer pellets! LOL
 

flowerbug

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with really sandy or mineral soils i always recommend a bit of clay to go along with that organic matter as it will help hold moisture and nutrients but also keeps other OM benefits around longer (worm pellets with a bit of clay in them will clump and stay together longer as compared to just sand - this means if you have very fine sand or silt that will help hold it in place longer so it doesn't blow or wash away). if you mix a little in with the sheep food they can do the distributing of clay for you through time. a little minerals won't hurt 'em. :) it doesn't take much to make a difference in any garden.
 

milkmansdaughter

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Welcome from Alabama. I don't remember anyone mentioning that we love pictures! :D
I'm hoping you'll share more on your beekeeping. We've been planning on adding bees for a while now. Maybe this spring now that my husband will be retiring.
I hope what you're able to plant and grow translates well. It'll be very interesting to see what things are the same, and what's different.

How much land do you have to work with?
 

mischief

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Do you loose chickens to heat stroke? I've had birds overheat, with resultant electrolyte imbalance, even here, in Maine. One late spring, I noticed my 8 week old chicks stumbling around. I realized that I myself was a bit dizzy from working outside on the warm day (though it wasn't even up to 80*F). I came in, tanked up on water, made some electrolyte solution, gave some to the adults, chicks, saved some for me. Within 1/2 hour, the chicks were back to their perky selves.
I decided that I really needed to get some shade in there before I put the hens in.
It's actually been 6 years since I had 'chooks'. My how time flies, but I have been offered some that are needing a good home so I might be back in the egg game soon....like next week.
 
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