It’s getting decidedly colder where I live now, in Canberra (Australia’s capital city), and I don’t think Kim Kardashian’s ever even been here, though she might have eaten some of our tomatoes. Gardenate tells me that I live in a cold/mountain zone, though I think Canberra really falls somewhere between cold and temperate. We do have winter frosts though – we had our first one a few nights ago, which I consider to be about two weeks early. Usually in Canberra we can expect to get our first frost by ANZAC day (April 25), but not too much before. It wasn’t severe though, and didn’t bother my zucchini plant, which I’m hoping to get another couple of weeks of produce from.
As for Kim, you’ll need to check out the inspiring reads below if you want to know more about her relationship to tomatoes and blog post titles. See if you can figure it out.
Even with the cold it’s not too late to plant more in the vegetable garden though, and I got some more seedlings in last weekend. Leeks, spring onions, silverbeet, beetroot, lettuces and garlic filled up my small available space nicely. Next month I will add some snow peas too, and more garlic and probably some more greens (pak choy or something similar). That’s probably all though, because come the Spring we’re planning on re-arranging our garden space, so we don’t want to be planting too much that we can’t harvest by around September/October. Also we don’t have a lot of space at the moment, as a big compost pile is taking up a good third of our usual vegetable garden.
In January this year I decided I would make my particular focus for this year be on our food supply – eating more ethically and particularly locally, and seasonally. That’s been reflected in the articles here on Sustainable Suburbia, with lots of “How to grow” articles, as well as some interesting topics like Angela Christensen’s article Rediscovering Food: Local Food Security and What it Means For You and Eileen O’Sullivan’s article on Vertical Vegetable Gardening Ideas. We’ve been a bit slack about our vegetable garden for the past couple of years (since baby number three was born, in fact), but it’s coming back into itself now.
Elsewhere in Autumn (and Spring, for those on the other side of the world) there have been some fantastically thoughtful, inspiring and amusing posts as always. Here are a few that stood out for me, many maintaining the food focus:
- What on earth do I do all day? “Deep breath. Kitchen and house in general is a mess so I give it a quick clean but honestly couldn’t be stuffed so I put the kettle on instead for a cuppa. Sit down with said cuppa only to realise your PE shirt is still in the wash. Get up hang it out and call a friend to ask the name of what manual worming solution is. Tea goes cold.” From Murra Mumma.
- Five Ways to Incorporate Bush Tucker into Your Diet “…the one that resonated with me the most was the observation that Australians are very, very good at accepting and incorporating other ‘ethnic’ cuisines into our diet, and yet we’ve all but ignored the foods of our own country.” From Frugal and Thriving .
- From there to here – “You’ve heard it before, but we have to grow more of our own food. And if you’re city-bound and can’t, we have to find ways to step outside the vulnerable industrial system and create networks that can.” But to make sense of this post you will first have to read her ‘game on‘ post. From inner pickle.
- Why are we urban homesteading? “It’s more than just preparedness, it is about education, entertainment, satisfaction, contentment, increasing our skills and knowledge, family time, being good role models, community building, improved health, and of course, we feel it is a good way to lower the impact our lifestyle has on the planet too.” From Eat at Dixiebelle’s.
- What I had in mind “So, we were all splattered in mud and our feet caked in the stuff and we were climbing fences and throwing bikes over to the other side and it was getting quite hot and sticky and the kids were grizzling at full force and I suddenly thought ‘wouldn’t it have been easier just to stay at home and stab myself in the face with a fork?'” from Blue Milk.
- Exiting the Rat Race “Not only did I feel fully connected to my family, which brought me great joy, I began to feel connected to the Earth, through my gardening endeavours. I may have said this before, but growing your own food is one of the most uplifting and spiritual things I have ever done, and certainly one of the most fulfilling.” from The Simple, Green, Frugal Co-op.
- Meat delivered from the farm “In our little family, and to my local community, I would like to think that the small changes we are making will make some kind of a difference. Reducing consumption, supporting local producers, growing as much as possible in my garden, reducing waste, and feeding my family unprocessed fresh food are things at the top of my list at the moment and things I am thankful I can effect a change in.” From A Fresh Legacy.
- Kim Kardashian’s Tomatoes: 5 Thoughts on Blogging “Recently, for reasons I find flatteringly inexplicable, a few people have asked me for tips on blogging. It turns out my advice is basically the same: ‘pay attention to what resonates with your readers, and write a lot.'” From NorthWest Edible Life. (And if you want to know what the deal with Kim Kardashian and her tomatoes is, you’ll just have to read the post!)
- Planning an Edible Garden “To me it makes sense that most of the garden space I have should be used to feed me and my family. I would encourage others who are thinking about planting edible plants to take the plunge -you won’t regret it. Even committing to grow a few of your favourite herbs in a few pots by your back door can be a rewarding experience. ” Another from A Fresh Legacy, but this was a guest post from Natasha Kuperman of Swap Shuffle Share.
- The Incredible Power of Habit “Growing a garden is great, and if you have the dirt I encourage you to give it a try. But I can tell you one of the biggest and most common gardening challenges, it’s one they basically never discuss in gardening books– Eating what you grow.” From Apron Stringz.