Dry vs Drive

After a hiatus of a couple of weeks, I’m battling to get back into the swing of things. It’s as if the dry heat and smoke haze have sapped up all the drive and energy. We’ve obviously been maintaining things, well, mostly, that is.

Firstly, happy new year! May it be a good one.

Irrigation update

This time of the year, if we don’t irrigate, everything dies, it’s as simple as that. At Dreamland, two of the four tanks are empty already, and we’ve still got to get through January to March, so we’re supplementing royally with town water.  At Homeland, we started on our January tank more than a week before the end of December, and that one is also dropping very fast. What was all green a month ago, is now all a dull brown. Homeland’s nice compost fodder producing lawn is turning into a big brown burr weed patch.

Heatwave days

Fortunately, we’ve only had two days of over 42°, but they were really harsh with hot winds. Everything took strain – most of the vegetables are burnt, the bees took a heavy knock – in fact, we lost one hive – and the chooks just managed to survive on their ice water and frozen watermelon. Egg production dropped to almost zero and then slowly started picking up again.

Dry bees beard

Some of the vegetables and fruits have been burnt by the dry hot days

Summer plantings

Summer is not a good time to put stuff in the ground, but the two Concorde grapes we ordered arrived very late, so we just had to plant them. At the same time, we also started with the “French screen” for the front yard – those cypresses have been waiting in pots for much too long already. Although they are all irrigated – anything without a dripper just dies, fullstop – they still get the odd manual top-up too.

Summer harvests

On the more positive side, we have harvested 11 kg of honey from the strong hive, we get the odd beetroot, patty pan and courgette from the vegetable garden. The lemons and limes have been quite consistent too – they’ve been good in the mojitos and gin cocktails over the festive days.

Family visit

On the most positive side, my sister and my niece visited us from the UK over Christmas and New Year. Good festive family fun, lots of driving around and doing things. You Yangs, Serendip sanctuary, Rickett’s sanctuary, Ballarat wildlife park, Great Ocean Road, and a handful of beach days, coupled with dinners, drinks, games, laughs and good times. It feels like we were away on holiday ourselves!

Dry trip

Bush fires

You just can’t ignore the devastation going on around Australia at the moment. Thank God we have been spared from any action and only experience the odd hazey smokey day. We’re praying for all those affected. Hope a few politicians wake up.

About martin@muchmoremulch.blog (207 Articles)
My name is Martin Rennhackkamp, I now live happily in Lara, Victoria, Australia with my wife, two children and two dogs. My interests, apart from the obvious Organic, Biodynamic and Permaculture Gardening and Farming, include sustainable living, surfing, horse-riding, a wide variety of music, dancing, nature, birds, reading, Christianity and a few other things which I never get to...

7 Comments on Dry vs Drive

  1. I have been thinking of you over the last few weeks. I have two sisters in NSW and am checking the fire maps daily (both O.K so far). Sorry you’re having a bad time of it this year. Keep safe.

    • martin@muchmoremulch.blog // January 13, 2020 at 12:00 pm // Reply

      Thank you Nancy. Yes it is very troubling over here. We are thankfully far from the fires (so far), but it is so dry, it can burst out anywhere anytime. Yeah I just went through an emotional and energy dip at the same time. Hopefully the year fill pull itself up by the shoestrings 🙂

  2. I’m glad you and family are safe. It must be so worrying for Australia, though!

    Anyway, I am glad you have been able to harvest some crops in spite of dwindling water reserves, and I am sorry you lost a hive.

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