Friday, December 4, 2015

Couscous Salad: I might just get healthy

I'd like to be 85kg before I go to Perris in May. As a personal trainer once said - "you can't outrun a bad diet" so this is perhaps a start.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Loquats for my students

I'm teaching tomorrow -Saturday - so I might as well take some loquats to my students.

The birds have found them so if I don't take them off now there won't be many left.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Whole JalapeƱos!

Wow. I bouggt this tin for almost nothing in the US last May. I didn't know they were whole.

Well, tomorrow's wraps will be interesting.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Water: Pretty darn good

I've got to thinking about water recently.

The essence of life.

Growing up in Adelaide in the 1970s it was fair sport to complain about the water. "Adelaide tap water" was an epithet my dad used regularly.

But times move on. The days of runninh a bath that has a brown tinge and an earthy smell. Gone. And our water is safe to drink. At 0.4 cents per litre.

There's a far higher chance of getting poisoned out of a rainwater tank.

Sure, by comparison, Melbourne water or spring water are sweet, sweet life. But where ours costs a maximum of $3.84 per kilolitre.

The sweet sweet life you see below costs about $640 per kilolitre.

Adelaide water is pretty damn good.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Boar taint: yuk!

I swear that the reason pork sells so badly is because of a thing called "boar taint".

By the time a male pig gets to a certain age, his hormones make the meat such that it stinks - almost like it has gone off.

It takes a strong stomach to get through that and most people just say "yuk! I don't like pork"

But I've gotten past that. Sweet pork loin chops are a special thing. I bought some rind just today to make a plate of crackling

Bup bowww. I got most of the way through cooking it but just can't stand any more. It's disgusting. I'm sure it's boar taint.

Seems like the dog has had a win tonight. And Coles might need to think better about their suppliers.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Hard pruned citrus: Now the grapefruit

Before we know it, the citrus will be moving. A blood orange i just pruned lightly was just building its flowers.

So it was time for the grapefruit. The hardest I've ever pruned this one. But at least I got all the citrus galls off.

And will I kill the plant? I'll stand on my record.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Perennial basil seem to be doing fine

A buddy ripped off a few shreds of this and said it's the best yield plant he's ever had.
A few weeks in water to set some roots and now they're planted out. Sharing the early spring with some poppies. And the Trinidad Scorpion Chilli is overwintering nicely.

Roses! You're in containers from now on!

The area I grow my roses is too shady. This winter I'm pulling them out an putting them into containers, so I can have them in the sun.

Cool. I've already got a few watershoots telling me it was not such a silly idea.

The poppies can share the pot for the early part of their spring.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Citrus gall wasp: Nature's helper

If you have thes things you have to cut them out. It's plague on Adelaide.
And it's a horrible feeling because you have to cut back hard. Some people hate to do that.
But the beauty comes in the next year or two. 
Established citrus LOVE to be cut back hard.

Rats: Let this be a warning to you!

I was in someone else's garden just then and saw this. I have many similar things.
"Rats, if you don't behave I'm gonna set this, and kill one of you.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

The perfect hot chocolate: these moments warm me

Recent experiences have shown me that these moments are lost so quickly. And for a while you're left with little more than the memory of these good times. A lesson in carpe diem.

My dog destroyed her dog bed

Bless her. She's hard on these beds. After a few years of bouncing on this one, it's done.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

New toy: a stick pruner

Cool! A mini chainsaw on the end of a 12ft pole. The pruning possibilities are endless.

Kicking a soccer ball with Jonah

I managed to score a little time on a sunny winter afternoon to have a kick with Jonah.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

California does desert plants well

At this hotel in Los Angeles I am impressed at how good the desert gardens are.

It's like they've embraced the aridness and made it beautiful. I have every one of these plants but never thought to put them together this way.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Sweet Riesling: Just not for me

I did a vertical (residual sugar) tasting on Riesling recently. I loved the drier ones but thes two (16 and 25 g/l) were just not for me.

I rwcognise that they are brilliant, complex wines. But..

They can only sit in the fridge for so long before I drink them or tip them. Sorry about that.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Winter time freeze some soup

There was too much Tupperware in the drawer and not the freezer. Either that or i have a bunch of really important jobs I'm neglecting.

But it's nice to get some food in the freezer again.

Sun on my river redgum

Yeh yeh. I'm gonna have to cut it down one day but for now there's something nice about it.

Squashed passionfruit

This appears to be the only downside to having a passionfruit growing over your driveway. The odd casualty - but at least it's only about one in six.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Golen Elm and Sunburst: I'll grow here, then

I planted these trees about 23 years ago. I find the garden provides my best metaphors. The sunburst on the right is rangy, takes up lots of sunlight and needs to be cut back - hard - every few years.

The golden elm has never needed to be pruned but has simply taken what it'll get. Still a majestic tree the golden elm has allowed the dominant sunburst the centre and has still grown tall and beautiful.

Nature finds a way.

Coddled eggs on vegemite toast

This touches something deep in side of me. I believed that this was what a poached egg was until in a high school home economics class I was told just just to boil some water and crack an egg into it.

No. But yes. I suppose that is poaching.

I got a coddled egg kit from mum's estate a few months ago and thanks to my three lovely chooks I have been able to do this on a regular basis. The Tabasco sauce a recent addition.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Super hot chili. Ready to go.

My friend Paul gave me a seedling last June. It's either the Bhut Jolokia or the Trinidad Scorpion. Either 1,000,000 Scoville points or 1,500,000. Hot, given that a Jalapeño is either 5,000 or 50,000 (Paul and myself don't agree on that).

But hot. And it made for some hot taco mix.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

A Phoenix Nashi?

This Nashi finally died this year. Utipa. But there a heap of rootstock coming up - I'll get some scion wood in July from the rare fruit society and see if I can make a Phoenix rise from the ashes.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Peachtree - shaddup

Right. So you self seedwd in my driveway five years ago. Since then I grafted a set of donout peaches onto you and espaliered you up my driveway, bearing fruit.

I grafted Nonno Guiseppe's favourite peach onto you two years ago and you have fruit ripening.

Hey! Self seeded peach in my driveway. If you're unhappy I'm sorry, but you weren't doing much with that good rootstock.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Angel's Trumpet: Pruning Nana's "Darwin Plant"

I gave the Brugmansia to Nana about ten years ago. Both Nana and my Mum are dead.

As we're clearing up Mum's place - where Nana lived for a while - I came to remember when I gave it to Nana.

First of all, it's a pig of a plant. It won't die and will just get long and rangy. Its flowers are nice enough, but everything about the plant is poisonous in some way. I offered some cuttings to my father in law and once I knew what I was talking about he promptly and politely declined.

But Nana liked the plants and I did at the time. When I gave it to her I reminded her that the Angel's Trumpet is unpopular because some people might boil up the flowers for their drug effects and some kids have died.

Nana shrugged. If people are stupid enough to do that why is it my fault. I call it the Darwin plant. Just another element in the process of natural selection.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Ghost Chilli ripening from the top down

One of the hottest chillies there is. 200 times as hot as a Jalapeño. And it ripens in a funny way.

Saturday, January 10, 2015