Why can’t cyclist ride single file on the road? Why must they ride side by side in pairs or trios? Back where I come from, drivers would have gleefully run you off the road for obstructing traffic. I am not against cyclist, I love cyclist who are understanding and try not to get into the way of motor vehicles. Riding in single file, and in return I also try to be nice to them. No… riding side by side, taking up almost half the road and cars have to cut their speed by half when they can’t overtake due to oncoming traffic, its quite frustrating. In an apple to apple comparison, imagine you are a cyclist cycling through a shared walkway with people on foot and those buggers are walking side by side doing a Backstreet Boys MTV shoot blocking the whole path, what are you going to do? Say there is a tiny gap that you can quite tightly squeeze through, would you go through? Now, upgrade to a car and bicycle situation. Capisce?

Caesar is growing up really fast. He understands “NO”, which is really good, that will stop him from ripping things apart. He is still quite a rascal, but he is going through the fear stage, so he can be quite freakish at times too. He is still learning leash etiquette, I have to purposely take him out to the orchard where he has minimal distraction for practice. He farts too, and like we say about the silent killer, his silent fart stinks real bad!

On the tucker patch, I am carrying out a controlled demolition of the mustard cover. With a pair of secateurs, I cut them back into the ground removing the top growth completely. Hopefully, they don’t re-sprout. I have a very interesting theory on this method. Leaving the roots in the ground ensure that the soil microorganisms have time to look around and move into new homes. The rotting roots can also be food for them. Pulling the roots out and leave it above ground means exposing it to sunlight, soil microorganisms would not like that. Its like people affected by the Christchurch quake, if their house is totally damage, they are evicted and would suffer more stress, compare to those whose house can still be live in albeit damaged while they look for a new house while still having a roof to sleep under.

I have been supplied greens from this 1.8m x 1.8m plot for the last few months now. There’s still plenty of greens in there to last me through to Spring, the dwarf peas are flowering too! The covers protects the flowers from frost, I hope I would have some peas before Spring! The trick to keep the heat is to keep the cover on when the sun is shinning to trap heat, and to remove it on other times for extra air circulation.

I have 100% garlic cloves sprouting on my heat trap which is really lovely! However, only one out of the few Oriental Sno Pea from Koanga Gardens Preservation Pack  germinated. The heat trap is also a wind trap, which resulted in wind erosion, I had to put some crates around it as windbreaks.

I applied Mycorrcin and Seasol on the garden yesterday. Its their mid-Winter booster, I also hope that with the Mycorrcin application, I can kick start the establishment of Mycorrhizal fungi. It takes 3 months for them to establish, so they aren’t useful for your annual vege patch, but they are good for perennials, shrubs and trees. There arise another theory of mine to plant perennials around and among your vege patch, establish them with Mycorrhizal fungi so that when you plant your annuals, the fungi can freely establish themselves on the annuals without depending on store bought products.

From the book Creating A Forest Garden by Martin Crawford, its interesting to note that in an area where Mycorrhizal fungi is well established, there arise a network for nutrient redistribution. For example, a cherry tree in the area needs some Nitrogen but there’s a lacking in its root zone, the fungi will head for the Nitrogen-fixing plant such as Alder and obtain the Nitrogen, and bring it back to the cherry tree. From one end of the field, to the other. The many things that happen underneath our feet, amazing.

By the way, if you happened to come by the Orchard Cottage and saw my beautiful roses, please ask me if it is politically safe to smell the roses before you proceed to take a whiff. The reason being I piss on them religiously. There will be a smelling withholding period.

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