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Winter Gardening July 2013

The Garden Share Collective



I enjoy Winter in the garden. It is a lovely quiet, unhurried time. Everything grows slowly and there is not as much to do as in the warmer more productive months.

It almost feels like the plants stop growing, after the super growth and production cycle of Summer and Autumn.  I enjoy the slow down and the slightly different function that the garden takes on.  I plant garlic, onions and leeks to grow over this period. This year I have also added shallots. They will slowly gain in size and bulk over this period and into the warmer months.

In Summer I keep pots near the house that allow me to squeeze in extra produce.  In the Winter months these become “lazy girl” pots eg: full of lettuce, close to the back door so that I do not have to venture in the cold and rain to the garden!


This month I am joining The Garden Collective. A group of bloggers gathered by Strayed from the Table to share their vegetable patches, container gardens and the herbs they grow on their window sills. The goal is to encourage more people to grow clean food, organically and sustainably. That is the reason I started this site, plus I love to cook and share my recipes.

Winter in my garden – July 2013

In my garden this month, Mr Fresh and the boys added three bare rooted fruit trees. I have been waiting for bare rooted trees to be available to add to our collection for some time. After much pondering and debate, the correct locations were selected and the boys got to work…

Bare rooted trees

Our fruit tree collection now includes:

  • Apple – Delicious and Pink Lady
  • Apricot
  • Feijoa
  • Lemon
  • Mandarin
  • Orange
  • Peach

All we have to do now is nurture them and patiently wait years and years to be rewarded with fresh fruit. I am sure they will be worth the wait. I am already dreaming up ways to use them 🙂
At the Farmers Market a couple of weeks ago I picked up a little kale plant and some rhubarb crowns. They have also been added to the garden this month.  I am more than a little late to take up the kale revolution, but better late than never I guess….

Farmers Market plants

When I collected my rhubarb crowns I took the opportunity to ask the farmer for his best growing tips. I have taken note of those and am looking forward to a little crop in the warmer months and a bumper crop the following year. I shared some of the tips here on Facebook if you are interested.


This month I have also planted more carrot, beetroot and pea seeds plus I planted some eggplant seeds into trays (yes, early I know but I like to experiment…)

If you are new reader, unfamiliar with my garden set up, I live in a suburban area outside of Melbourne and have three raised vegetable beds and a herb bed.  I also use the space between the beds to plant, plus a collection of pots around the garden and near the house. Each Spring I creep a little more further into the yard with productive plants.

When it comes to gardening, my weakness is that I can not grow anything that is not a vegetable or fruit. All other plants in my care die. it is true! This may be because I have little/no interest in non productive plants….Mr Fresh is in charge of the non productive areas of our yard and it is my aim to continue to expand into his areas and add more and more vegetables and fruits 🙂 

Planted in my garden now is:

  • Artichoke
  • Beetroot
  • Blueberries
  • Broccoli
  • Capsicum
  • Carrots
  • Chilli
  • Fennel – a single one survived the birds…
  • Garlic
  • Herbs – Coriander, Rosemary, Oregano, Basil, Chives, Lemongrass, Parsley, Tarragon,
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Onion
  • Peas
  • Pumpkin
  • Potatoes
  • Raspberries
  • Rhubarb
  • Rocket
  • Shallots
  • Spinach

Harvesting now:

Mostly salad greens, herbs, chilli, miniature capsicums, broccoli, beetroot, and lemons.

Fresh from the garden

We have also just collected our first oranges from our little tree that was gift from my Aunt when we moved to this house.

First orange crop

Garden jobs in the coming month:

  • Monitor the eggplant seedlings I just planted. They are taken inside to the shed each evening
  • Build up the earth around the leeks as they grow
  • Dig in compost to the areas of the garden that are currently free from any plantings, in preparation for Spring
  • Review the garden layout to prepare a plan for Spring planting
  • I may plant more seedlings to be raised for planting in the garden at the start of Spring

I will continue to “bug”, nag and provide a friendly reminder to Mr Fresh about building me a frame around my three raised beds before Summer. I would like to protect the plants better this year from the very healthy and greedy neighborhood birds who frequent my back yard.

I am looking forward to reading about some of the other gardens in the Garden Share Collective.






What are you doing in the garden at the moment?

I received a letter from one of my readers late last week asking for some gardening advice.  On Wednesday I will be providing my top three vegetable gardening tips in a bid to help her and also to show that vegetable gardening is not always easy, or successful. I will be sharing some of the challenges I have faced, and the things I have learned.  Be sure to return and check out my tips, or follow via Bloglovin’ to receive all post updates. Happy gardening.




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{ 24 comments… add one }
  • farmer_liz July 1, 2013, 8:33 am

    Hi Kyrstie, I’m visiting you from the collective this morning 🙂 Your garden looks similar to mine at this time of the year. I find that all brassicas do really well in the cold, especially because all the bugs die off. My kale is still growing after 12 months, I love veges that can manage without much care. Your pots of lettuce are a great idea. Cheers, Liz

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:29 pm

      Hi Liz, I wondered why my broccoli started to grow better in the last week or two!

  • lizzie @ strayedtable July 1, 2013, 8:49 am

    What a great garden. Its never to late to join the kale revolution. My favourite is red kale, its a little sweeter than the other two varieties and you might be able to grow it a little better than me here in QLD. It gets too hot here in summer.

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:28 pm

      Thanks for tip on the red kale I will keep an eye out for it.

  • e / dig in hobart July 1, 2013, 9:48 am

    complete garden envy. wow. and light envy – your last photo looks amazing. it’s great to read how much you are growing; i feel very inadequate next to you and the other garden share collective-rs! but inspired as well. you have reminded me that, after the activity of spring and summer and autumn, it is nice to slow down and take this time to rest ourselves and our gardens.

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:28 pm

      Thanks so much for your lovely feedback. Don’t feel inadequate, we all have our garden challenges and I just happened to grab my picture on a lovely winters day 🙂

  • giulia July 1, 2013, 4:50 pm

    i really hope my balcony plants will survive..i am in italy for 2 weeks and have no one to water them for me 🙁 thanks for such a informative post!

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:27 pm

      Have a wonderful time Giulia, if you loose any plants it will be for a good reason!

  • Lisa the Gourmet Wog July 1, 2013, 6:03 pm

    Hooray for those oranges! Boo to having to wait for your other fruit trees to flower but as you say, it’ll be well worth the wait 🙂

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:26 pm

      Thanks Lisa, the oranges were fabulous 🙂

  • jeanie July 1, 2013, 9:54 pm

    So many people down South it seems have problems with birds – we don’t, but we do have a Ginger Cat that has a problem with them – we could do some cool pictures of him lounging about perhaps?

    Lovely seeing gardens in different states and stages – and nice to pick up a tip or two here or there…

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:26 pm

      Maybe a cat picture would work Jeanie, it is one of the things I have not tried!!

  • Jane @ Shady Baker July 2, 2013, 11:36 am

    Hi Kyrstie. Your list of vegetables growing in your garden is impressive! Good for you. I love the first photo…is that garlic? How beautiful to have your boys involved in planting fruit trees. They will be worth the wait! Patience is a virtue in the garden isn’t it? Happy gardening to you.

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:25 pm

      Thanks Jane for taking the time out to visit. The first image is of leeks. There are garlic at the end of that area also but they are not in the image. Happy gardening to you too 🙂

  • Melissa Loh July 2, 2013, 2:19 pm

    What’s eggplant shedding? And where did you get your blueberry plant? You have such a great garden harvest.

    • Kyrstie July 2, 2013, 2:24 pm

      Hi Melissa, thanks for stopping by. i can’t see where you saw eggplant shedding? I have planted eggplant seeds and to ensure they sprout and are not impacted by the cold evenings or morning frosts I take them indoors to the garden shed in the evening. I got my blueberry plant from a local nursery 🙂

  • Claire @ Claire K Creations July 2, 2013, 9:20 pm

    Wow you have so many fruit trees! How exciting when they all fruit. This is the third post in a row that I’ve read with kale. I must plant some!

  • Erin @ she cooks, she gardens July 3, 2013, 1:46 pm

    Looking great, Kyrstie! Envious of all your space and excellent light.

  • Merryn@merrynsmenu July 3, 2013, 2:37 pm

    Your greens and lawn are so, well, green! Your orange tree looks divinely healthy and it will be well worth the wait for your fruit trees What excellent gardening! You are so lucky to be able to grow good blueberries.

  • Penny Leishman July 6, 2013, 9:06 pm

    Very inspiring, cannot wait to get out into my garden next week when finally have a few days at home .
    Also super keen to try slow cooker recipes. Will let you know what tribe scores them out of 10. Penelope

    • Kyrstie July 11, 2013, 8:19 pm

      I look forward to hearing how you go Penny.

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