Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A brush with Tibouchina

It is as if the bud is blushing, knowing how tantalisingly beautiful the show will be....

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image Then, it is gone, leaving a splash of sunset...

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Whoever said.....

....the food garden is not beautiful?

  imageimageCamomile and red cabbages







Fennel flowers and seed heads
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Carrot seed heads
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A new flush of strawberries
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Perfect tomato weather now
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Huge balls of leek flowers
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Red Russian Kale makes me smile
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 image Incredibly hairy tomato stems

Life is good in the food garden, and oh so pretty.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Soil and people, for life

Thanks to my good friend Deb for sending me this link!

People with nothing are often the ones to inspire us, as you will see at Soil For Life.

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Read more stories like the one below, from Cape Town, South Africa at Soil For Life.

Did you watch The People's Supermarket?

They take the food co-op idea even further by firstly, utilising the man-power of the members to pick local fruit and vegetables rejected by the big supermarkets, for reasons such as the cucumbers are not straight enough or the tomatoes are not big enough. Many farmers struggle to make ends meet because of the uniformity that supermarkets demand of the produce; a uniformity that says nothing of taste, nothing of fairness to the farmers and nothing of the growing methods used.

Secondly, to minimise wastage, they create prepared dishes from food coming up to its sell-by date. This has proven to be such a big seller that they cannot keep up with demand.

Thirdly,the system provides inspirational training and life skill opportunities to the local community and many have managed to gain qualifications and get paid jobs simply by participating in the scheme.

Great news! Pass it on... Join in.... Be part of the solution not part of the problem.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Apples....

Its all very well, this whole "simple life" thing but it takes a hell of a lot of time, every single day, and is seriously getting in the way of blogging.... I have sentences being produced in my head all the time, for a blog piece I want to write, but that topic, and subsequent topics, are requiring all my energy and time, leaving little space in my day for writing.

image Like now.... apples..... the first of the season are just arriving at the markets and I was so excited to find Gravensteins at the Cygnet Market last week. They don't keep well... so now I want to make apple pie but I really have to write what's on my mind... You see, Gravenstein is a crisp, juicy, delicious eating and cooking apple which I had never seen in Adelaide. Which brings me to a very important point - Tasmania used to be nick-named the Apple Isle. It has the perfect climate for apples and hundreds of varieties were grown here for all Australians and even shipped around the world, in the northern hemisphere's off season. It really was the basis of the economy for Tasmania for a century or more. The important word is "was".....

However, for some ridiculous reason, cheap, inferior apples are now being imported from China and New Zealand, to fill the shelves of the big supermarkets on the mainland and overseas!!! Tasmanian farmers are therefore ripping out orchards of heritage apple trees in order to find something else to grow that the world of supermarkets will buy. It is criminal that Tasmania is being treated this way. It makes my blood boil as I have never tasted better apples and never seen such variety as the apples at the markets and in the gardens here.

This has far-reaching consequences for Tasmania. One of those closest to home is the recent closure of the Cygnet Fruit Processing Company just down the road from me. I used to see the steam coming from the chimneys as I sat in my kitchen and ate my breakfast last winter, grateful that I did not have to be at work on those frosty mornings. imageBut now no more steam.... No more work there for the locals and no tins of delicious, out-of-season apples and other fruits for the customers to buy.... No more cardboard boxes proudly stamped with Cygnet Apples ink..... and long gone is the Cygnet Apple Festival, along with the Apple Queen parade down the main street.

All that is left is the story.

Sigh....

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Raw milk

A message to all residents of Cygnet and surrounds from a local farmer:

If you or anyone you know is interested in bath milk, which is fresh, unpasteurised, unhomogenized cows milk for bathing and cosmetic purposes only, not sold for human consumption, please phone 0409837502

Without more customers, this service will very soon become uneconomical for the farmers to continue and those of us who have various uses for the milk will be very disappointed.

Call today!