Sunday, April 1, 2012

Please take a tour of our garden!

Please take  a tour of our garden!
1st April 2012

House mint, Spearmint and Oregano {Origanum vulgare by Carolus Linnaeus, is a common species of Origanum, a genus of the mint family (Lamiaceae)}

These plants love growing together in the shade of a fence. No kitchen garden should be without these. Mint will run and crop up between pavers and concrete cracks but emits a
lovely aroma when trod upon

Rosemary - Rosmarinus officinalis - recently given a 'haircut' - Loves lamb, simply created to flavour lamb. Its the "Remembrance" plant.

Variegated Oregano (large pot) and Spindly Thyme - a culinary and medicinal herb of the genus Thymus - most flavoursome type in small pot to right. 
Don't let the 'stringy thyme' put you off in favour of the softer, fuller plant as this one packs a real flavour wallop.

Lavender - Lavandula angustifolia - can be used in cooking - use fresh or dried flowerbuds, mostly, which contain the essential sweet oil - leaves contain little oil

Poor old parsley -  Petroselinum hortensegone to seed. Not much good in pots but
will take-over any herb garden if ground planted

Onion chives Allium schoenoprasum - need a hair cut - have seed flowers (mauve)
at present. Great for flavouring stews, soups and casseroles. They are the smallest of
the edible onion family.

Helichrysum italicum or Helichrysum angustifolium is a grey flowering plant of the daisy family Asteraceae. It is sometimes called the curry plant because of the strong smell of its leaves. In addition to some cat scaring effects, the plant does have some other benefits. While,
despite its smell, it is not used in curries, it is edible and can be used in potpourri, and to give flavouring to stews and soups.

Basil - Ocimum basilicum of the family Lamiaceae (mints) - grown for its fresh leaves
and available for ready use. Don't 'chop it', 'tear it' and add to soups and salads and is the essential colouring for 'Pesto'. 

Great on two day old toasted crusty  bread with olive oil and chopped tomatoes. Loses flavour in cooking.

Garlic chives, Allium tuberosum - Finer than onion chives, Both leaves and the stalks of the flowers are used as a flavouring in a similar way to chives, green onions or garlic and are used as a stir fry ingredient. In China, they are often used to make dumplings with a combination of egg, shrimp and pork. They are a common ingredient in Chinese jiaozi dumplings and the Japanese and Korean equivalents. The flowers may also be used as a spice.

My favourite use is in Vietnamese cooking, where the leaves of garlic chives are cut up into short pieces and used as the only vegetable in a broth with sliced pork kidneysMany garden centres carry it as do most Asian supermarkets.

My pumpkin vine - Queensland Blue pumpkins this year - Cucurbita maxima .  Blue hard-skinned pumpkin from the 1800's. Large ridged fruit with dense delicious orange flesh, can store for up to two years. The crop more than justifies the space needed.Ten seedlings planted in an old truck tyre full of rotted garden compost and given a 'controlled roam'.

Hiding in the growth is this big beauty - about 6 to 10kg and one of half a dozen.

First successfully established Meyer Lemon tree - into its second season and bearing fruit (just under and to the right of the flower cluster). Will need to put a protective cover over it soon as the frosts are due from Anzac day on 25th April.

Second pumpkin vine - grew from a discarded seed sprout.

Privileged view - the "Forbidden Interior" of my shadehouse - barred to all but myself and escorted visitors - Grandkids KEEP OUT! lol!

Potted Garlic Chives and potted Basil  with Bok Choy - brassica rapa chinensis - behind it. Fertiliser is a seaweed liquid mix which his diluted and half a cup to a gallon of water in a watering can.

Mature Black Kalamata Olive tree in fruit. Its not sure what to do 'cos its fruited so late in season.

New Black Kalamata Olive tree- should fruit next season.

Shadehouse with Lemon tree and Olive tree  to left, Bottlebrush shrub 
 - Callistemon  in centre right. Bottlebrush leaves are a common indigenous medicinal
used as a poultice on scrapes, cuts and burns.

Shed for larger garden implements, overgrown by Choko vine - The 'Choko', or, chayote (Sechium edule), {also known as christophene or christophine, cho-cho mirliton  or merleton (Creole/Cajun),  pear squash, vegetable pear,  chouchoute}.

Choko is an edible plant belonging to the gourd family Cucurbitaceae , along with melons, cucumbers and squash.

Small garden tool storage (right), 4,000 litre tank (centre) and pump and 500 litre tank on small stand to left effectively 90% drought-proof the yard.

Access from garden area to the 'house yard'

Potted Kaffir Lime tree - leaves used in Asian cooking and some other ornamentals in pots.
Tilia is a genus of about 30 species of trees native throughout most of the temperate
Northern Hemisphere. They are generally called lime in Britain and linden or basswood
in North America. 

'Peace' area - every yard should have one - with birdbath and pottted plants hanging from ornamental pear tree.

Sitting area. Great for morning 'Smoko' breaks, quiet reflection, writing, etc.

Originally a 'time out' area for grandkids and visiting canines - now serves more as a sheltered reading area on hot afternoons and a small 'potting area'.

Last of the 2011 crop - Oh! That reminds me, I have to go bring it up and cut into it for the roast lamb BBQ this evening!



North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard said...

I so enjoyed the "tour" and herbal education, John. Thank you. I can't wait to win a big Lottery so I am able to come visit in person !

"Just Me"

JohnD said...

Pleased you liked it. We are into early Autumn now, so things start changing rapidly. Anzac Day (April 25 - which is our sort of "Memorial Day" for all those who served their country) is the local and 'unofficial' beginning of winter. Frost threats start then and wont be clear until Remembrance Day on the 11th of the 11th!