Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Saturday, July 18, 2009
I saw many of such kind of flowers at the long bean trellis and there was a solitary single red long bean at the moment. There will be more coming, I'm sure , looking at the flowers on the trellis.
There should also be some green long beans on the same trellis too. I'm watching out for them.
I was at the CG in the morning about 9 am when I saw at the corner of my eyes a couple of big yellow botches on a planting trellis. I realised that it was the pumpkin flowers. I quickly ran over to check and saw a couple more male flowers bloomed. Then I looked for the female flowers with the familiar buldge .... but alas! I only saw a single solitary one and it hasn't bloomed yet.
So not in sync .... how to produce baby pumpkins ah?
Saturday, July 11, 2009
This is grown in the CG and I've ever tasted a tea made with it's leaves and Marigold flowers when I visited my GCS friend's office garden. As it was my first time drinking such a tea, the taste was rather special and I really won't mind drinking the concoction again except with a little bit of sugar this time round :-)
Here's the link for it's medicinal uses ...
About the female flowers .... they did appear but for a short while and they don't bloom cos' most of them somehow self abort. How now? I see the many male flowers blooming away again at this time of the year. The vines always turn more lush after adding new compost to the planter bed.
Female pumpkin flowers .... where are you?
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
See how the Ceylon Spinach has taken over part of the CG fence. I know the Bangladesh worker who cleans the area always cut the leaves for a meal. I asked him once how does he eat the leaves and he told me he cooks a curry with it :-)
I couldn't stand to see it's life dying away at the water logged area. I made space in the planter bed and transplanted the entire plant to the new area. I trimmed off all the diseased branches and almost all the leaves to allow new growths. After about a month, it is growing well and it looks healthy and I am happy. The curry plant lives!
Monday, July 6, 2009
This is the sitting area looking up from the fruit trees terrace. My neighbour has been working very hard to get this area to look inviting and presentable. The vertical frame is on the right and this is to experiment with building a green wall on the fence. The whole area is still "Work In Progress". As for the fruit trees, there is plan to make a pretty walking path to link them together so that visitors will have a pleasant visual experience when they visit to look at the fruit trees. From my guess, it would take a good two years before the fruit trees would bear fruits good enough to be harvested. So it's a long wait and meanwhile we've been fighting pests and fetilizing and pruning the trees.
We have rows of growing plants, flowering and fruiting too. The CG is not liken to a vegetable farm where we plant rows and rows of vegetables. It is a garden and we aspire it to be like the gentle English Kitchen Gardens where pretty flowers and vegetables grow together on each planter beds. We have the pretty flowers or medicinal herbs somewhere planted in the centre of the planter bed and the vegetables would be planted on the right or on the left of the central plants in the planter beds.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
It has come to my knowledge that someone in the old group has been passing rumours to the 'big boss' that the CG in this area had been left in a bad state and there was no improvements made. I find this accusation so ridiculous and that the big boss actually believed the rumours.
Presently the CG may not be the best in the estate nor is it ready to win any competition yet cos' we've been left to pick up the pieces after the old group left the garden management to the new group for the last seven months. I came into the CG seeing lots of empty brown plots and an over run medicinal plants growing in three planter beds.
The proof is here in this link ....
So a report card is in order here in the pics below. Here is the view of the edible garden section.
The view is taken this morning from the third floor of the block of flats next to it.
I would definitely say the garden is lush now but improvements can still be made. We have many plants flowering and fruiting. There are also newly planted vegetable seedlings. There are some plants in transplantation shock at the moment as we've moved them to an area more suitable for them to grow. We are also fighting pests in an organic way. We've got a group of elderly ladies who come into the garden almost everyday and even during the weekends to water ,weed , fertilise and plant. We've had visitors who come to the garden feeling very happy cos' they see the blooming Mirabilis which greet them with a sweet fragrance when they come through the garden gate and always leave with some seeds or plantlets or even harvests.
The new group here works in harmony with one another. We do not sabotage the work of another fellow gardener. Fellow gardeners help one another to fight pests, water and weed together. We may have our differences but we always try to resolve problems in an amicable way.
So you tell me now if this CG is in disarray, worse from the last time when we first took over?
Even if this is the 'demons' excuse to take over management of the CG, how could someone believe blatant lies of others without even checking first hand? HAIZ! Blatant politicking in place and I'm caught in the middle. I just wanna plant my plants peacefully and be happy giving away and sharing my harvests and plants with like minded people.
These plants have fruited. My only grouse is that they are not the size of those we buy from the supermarkets. They are also ant magnets and pests seem to love the juicy fruits. Many a times the plants had almost died off and then they grow back again after dousing them in chilli/detergent mix with water.
Saturday, July 4, 2009
My neighbour got a call from her friend to go to the CG in the night. Her friend had just returned from a Taiwan holiday and gave her three thick Mulberry stem cuttings. So in the darkness of the night in the CG she planted these stem cuttings. She smsed me about them.
These stem cuttings are huge .... about three to four cm in diameter. She said the mulberry trees from where these stem cuttings came from gave our huge berries. Oh yes, I really hope so too.
I can see green leaves coming out from the stem cuttings. Root well cuttings and I will give you a better place in the CG to grow permanently :-)
Friday, July 3, 2009
This time these tomatoes are grown by a feisty elderly lady in the CG. She grows them well and they are getting bigger, taller and fatter by the day. I observe that she puts compost around their growing stems during this growing period about twice a week. The only snag is that the tomatoes are having a snail attack now and even the snail pellets don't seem to have any effect. The next best thing is to put a border around the stem to hinder the snail from going near the stems. I will post a pic later once I've taken a snap shot of it. The tomato plants all seem to have a plastic skirt arround them at this time of the year :-)
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Here are some plants which I'm growing and trying out on the vertical frame .... Not all of them are suitable and I'm still in the process of planning and growing plants for filling up nine inch pots of compost.
Here's the idea of 'verticalscaping' from Grandiflora ....The color scheme here is very helpful for me to put the kinds of plants together to create the effect. Now it's the task of getting suitable plants, growing them bushy enough to be put on the vertical frame to hide the sight of the bamboo poles. My guess is that it would take many more months before I can complete this project of mine.
I thought that it would be quite soothing to have a some plants as back drop at the fencing area and then the idea of the VG came to light. Since we have some bamboos and cable tie and a saw in the CG I proposed to my neighbour that we could decorate the fence using a vertical frame and place pots of plants there to get a hanging wall garden. She quite like the idea and the idea of the vertical frame materialised.
Dh and I spent one afternoon about two hours just constructing the frame roughly. I spent another couple of hours over several days to strengthen the frame structure using raffia strings.
I encountered several problems in the process ......
* Using bamboos for an open air vertical frame .....
I don't know how long the structure can remain intact cos' I can see ants and insects making their homes inside the bamboo poles. Maybe better to use those plastic water pipes or even metal water pipes to construct the frame.
* Using cable tie to secure the frame .....
These are only good to help you construct the frame roughly cos' they tend to slip away from their original positions. The joints in the bamboo frames need to be secured with another set of strings or twain. Maybe need to use nails to secure the joinning point so that the poles will not slip downwards after some time.
* Using potted plants with garden soil ....
I can't use soil as the planting media in the pots. It's too heavy for the poles to withstand about ten pots per row. So now I'm changing the soil media to using compost to plant in the pots.
My worry now is whether the plants will grow well or at all in the compost media for the specific plants.
Here's a pic of how the vertical frame looks ......
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
There was a discussion about this plant in the GCS forum. It was reported that the plant has some kind of properties in the leaves to help reduce the presence of the dengue carrying mosquito. I got cuttings from a kind GCS member when she was pruning her plant. They rooted easily and now I've transferred them to grow further in the CG. I will look for a place in the ground to plant it in the CG cos' understand the plant can grow into a tree.
Here's the link about the discussion ...