Whether the weather be fine
Or whether the weather be not,
Whether the weather be cold
Or whether the weather be hot,
We'll weather the weather
Whatever the weather,
Whether we like it or not.
We’ve had a lot of rain lately, ask anyone around town and they’ll let you know that we’ve all had too much of a good thing, and no doubt in a few months time, the earth will be baked dry by the hot summer sun.
At BurraBee Farm we have a predominantly clay soil that resists the absorption of water in heavy rain, and so when the weather warms there is very little captured water and the ground dries very quickly. Sandy soils can have problems too, with water draining out of the porous soil too quickly, taking the nutrients with it and leaving little behind for the warming weather.
As custodians of our own little patches of land, what can we do to help the soil cope with the extremes of weather that we are experiencing?
Mulch – mulch helps keep water from evaporating from the surface of clay soils and keeps to water at soil level in sandy soils
Fluffy Soil – once we’ve prepared a vegetable bed we make sure nothing and nobody steps on the soil, this keeps the bed ‘light and airy’ a bit like a sponge cake. This ‘fluffy soil’ has the ability to absorb water like a sponge
Organic Matter – Decomposed cow manure and chicken manure, compost and bio-fertilisers all add lots of organic matter to the soil. The organic matter also has sponge like properties and can hold many times it’s own weight of water.
Imagine a fluffy soil, full of organic matter and with a thick layer of mulch on top – this would be a perfect patch for dealing with the extreme weather patterns we are seeing
This weeks tip is from Helen (thank you Helen you've saved me a job this week), come to our stall at the Farmers and Foodies market and we'll have a little something for you
Before planting in the garden use your garden fork to break up the soil twice as deep as you would normally dig. This increases air flow, allows a little of the good topsoil to penetrate deeper and gives the plant roots easier access to the nutrients below
We only have a few Harvest bags available this week as we have been focusing on the spring planting and bed preparations. To order your very own Harvest bag online here.
What's on around Canberra
- 17 September - 16 October
Floriade 2016: Life in Bloom, 9am - 5:30pm - Commonwealth Park Canberra
- 19 -24 September
Australian Cool Climate Wine Show - Murrumbateman Recreation Grounds
- 23 September
Farmers and Foodies Market, 3-7pm - Old Bus Depot Kingston
- 24 September
Canberra City Walk Markets, 10am - 4pm - Petrie Plaza Civic
Merrymead Plant Sale, 9am - 1pm - 255 Goyder Street, Narrabundah
Government House Open day, 11am - 2pm
- 25 September
Westside Village Markets, 11am - 4pm - Lake Burley Griffin
Old Bus Dept Market, 10am - 4pm - Kingston28 September - 2 October
NightFest : Market Place, 6:3pm - 9:30pm - Commonwealth Park Canberr
A little bit of fun...
Trees communicate and even help each other grow. There's so much happening in our soils and we're just beginning to understand some of it. This TED talk by Suzanne Simard an ecologist with 30 years of research in Canadian forest. You'll be amazed at what she discovers.
The video link will take a while to load, grab a warm drink and sit back and listen to how trees communicate.
Thanks to all our lovely CSA supporters! We feel very humbled by your support and are very much looking forward to growing and sharing the harvest with you.
We wish you a wonderful start to spring. We look forward to catch up with you next week. Please do drop us a comment below. Let us know your thoughts on the TedTalk, gardening tip and anything else you'd like to chat about.