The Plant to Plate team had an awesome time with students from Terrace End School for the first session of term 2! Students, with the support of the P2P volunteers made some delicious food – see recipes to the left – and enjoyed a yummy, tasty, healthy, lunch together. It always makes us so happy to see everyone working together to produce something outstanding. Cooking isn’t all fun though, everybody had to chip in to wash, peel, grate, weigh, mix, wipe, wash, dry and put away – but many hands make light work and the not so fun stuff goes quickly when you have your friends around to help you. I hope everyone enjoyed there lunch and has given one of the recipes a goat home with your whanau.
There was plenty to be tackled in the garden beds as well. Our last visit to Terrace End was in 2020 and although students and teachers had done an amazing job keeping the gardens tidy over the summer months, the warm, wet autumn weather meant lots of new weeds fighting to take hold. The students did a magnificent job getting these ratbag weeds out and preparing the beds for planting. Thanks to our friends at Awapuni Nurseries there were lots of healthy herbs and vegetable seedling ready to go. I hope that you have been checking the gardens regularly to make sure it is well watered and the weeds are kept down. We are looking forward to coming back later term 2 and we hope to be able to harvest some of the produce to use in the cooking!
It was a wonderful day and Iwehope everybody enjoyed themselves, we look forward to seeing you again in term 2.
Until then, happy gardening everyone! Jacinda
Growing an Avocado tree is so much fun! It does require quite a bit of patience – they can take up to 8!!!! years to produce fruit, but they are lovely trees and a challenge is good!
JOBS FOR THE AUTUMN GARDEN.
Autumn is the time to harvest the last of the summer produce, clear and prepare for the winter garden planting. I find the garden starts to look a little rough around the edges in autumn. Pruning fruit trees, pulling out the old zucchini plants and spent tomatoes to tidy things up is a great plan. Remember not to put your tomato plants in the compost bin as they can spread any diseases this way.
Once the garden has been tidied you can start to replenish the soil with compost, sheep poo or whatever you usually use. once worked into the soil get your winter vegetables in. Sow carrots, radish, swede and turnips directly into the soil and keep the soil moist. Brassicas – cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and kale – but make sure to watch for slugs and snails. Also, white butterfly caterpillars can destroy your crop in a few days. Kiwicare has a great organic spray you can use which won’t hurt our bees and other beneficial insects. Lettuce, silverbeet and spring onions are also great to plant this time of the year – Red lettuces grow better in the winter than green ones do, so they are a great option.
Gardens can be mulched after planting which will help to keep weeds done over the wetter months. It’s a good idea to turn your compost bin before it gets to cold and if you get frosts cover the bin. I use an old piece of carpet and some black plastic to keep the heat in.
Most importantly, enjoy the warm evenings outside before the cold sets in – walk around your garden and pick the last of the cherry tomatoes and strawberries.