There is good news from yesterday. Hanno's doctor said he thinks he can be treated for the glaucoma with drops, and these started last night. The other eye with the cataract and bleeding retina is being monitored. He said he wants to see if the bleeding stops by itself, apparently it often does. Hanno has to go back to check the progress of the treatment next month. I want to thank everyone for their good wishes and prayers. Hanno hasn't read the blog for a few days because we've been quite busy here but when he does, I'm sure he'll be very touched by your thoughtfulness.
Kathleen flew home yesterday morning. Moey, she used to work in northern WA and has just spent a month filling in for another worker who is away. Perth was just a stop over. Shane and Sarndra visited in the afternoon on their way back home. Sarndra said some butterflies were released for the baby at the funeral which I thought was a sweet and innocent gesture from grieving parents.
So now it's back to work. Today there will be a fair bit of gardening done because we're in another transition period out there. It's the end of winter and the garden is showing its age. Most of the cabbages have been picked, the cauliflowers are all gone and we need to fill bare patches and plan for spring. I really should have sown seeds two weeks ago but other things got in the way, so that will be done today.
Here are some seedlings Hanno put in last week. They are bok choi, buttercrunch lettuce, bulls blood beetroot and leeks.
Continuous supply from the garden is the most challenging aspect of food production for us. We often have gaps when we have to buy tomatoes, pumpkins or potatoes. We try to monitor the garden as best we can but seasonal and climatic variations make precise planning very difficult. But, it is what it is, we know that nature will always have the last say and we just go along for the ride. Whatever we get from the garden we are grateful for and we hope to shorten those gaps in production every year.
If you are new to vegetable gardening, it is a good idea to know your food. Tomatoes aren't just tomatoes and there are many different kinds of lettuce. Get to know what you're eating - they all have different characteristics. The old heirloom types were often named after the growers, the grower's neighbours or what the food looked like, so often the names are just as lovely as the vegetable. Supermarkets have taken away our ability to know our food but I encourage to get acquainted again. When you plant, find out what type of seed you're planting and put up a little sign over the seeds so you remember just what it is you have there. Soon you'll be on friendly terms with all your vegetables and just like people, you get to know their names first.
More lettuce planted a few weeks ago under the lattice with Tropic and beefsteak tomatoes.
Another chore I need to do today is to clip back the capsicum (pepper) bushes. They have produced smaller than usual fruit over winter but with a good cut back, they should give us another year of service before being replaced. I have saved seed from these wonderful plants and will probably plant up a few more of them for summer.
And now friends, I have to prepare for a talk with my book agent. She is phoning soon. :- ) I hope you all have a lovely weekend.