Just finished planting a small orchard in Northcote. We used 3 wine barrels and managed to fit 7 fruit trees. 2 apples, an early and mid season variety, that spreads the season for fresh apples. 2nd barrel a white flesh peach and a nectarine. And number 3 barrel a Kaffir and Tahitian lime (covered cooking and G&Ts) and a Eureka lemon, all on dwarf root stock which means you get the fruit in a small space. Then to cap it off herbs to fill it all out. So a small orchard and herb garden in a small space in Northcote. All edible.
The first saturday in July so have been on The Good Earth with Mike O’Connell, 3WBC talking about winter vegie gardens.
Once again selling broad beans as a star crop. Why? Because they’re so easy to grow for great results, and not just the eating. These are a really simple crop that look great over winter, filling gaps in the garden that may otherwise look quite bare. Just head out to your local nursery or seed seller, buy the seeds and a bag of compost (because you should always feed the soil if you want good results). Spread the compost as a thin layer, 1 bag per square metre is good, cultivate in lightly, plant the seeds about a finger depth, and water.
Mike tells me the birds got to his so you might want to protect with netting, or a scarecrow or old CDs on string also deter the blighters.
Come spring when you are ready to harvest cut the plants off at the base, leave the roots in the ground because there’s lots of good nitrogen down there. Then you will be ready to plant out summer greens in the same patch and use up some of that nitrogen.
Rug up, put on a beanie and get moving out there, the cold will disappear in no time.
Today is the winter solstice, no doubt we are all looking forward to warm sunny days and balmy evenings, but one of the best times in Melbourne is now with beautiful crisp mornings and bright sunny days. Get out and marvel at the trees, kick the autumn leaves if they’re still about. Visit a nursery for bare rooted trees and roses. Don’t be put off because the plants all exposed, it just means the plants are dormant so the nursery can sell them cheaper without pots to take up more space. Check out all the fruit varieties available. There are lots of multi graft options which means you can get multiple fruit on one tree, perfect for small spaces.
Now is the time to research trees for your garden. There are plenty of to choose from, varieties that will suit a small garden, whether it be a small back garden / courtyard or front garden.
Like all other parts of a small space, trees have to work hard through all the seasons. Consider leaf colour (especially now) but also the bark colour and the sculptural effects of the trunk. Think multi trunked Crepe Myrtle and Maples. Of course fruit trees are also a great option, citrus for evergreen – in pots or in the ground – or deciduous. – apple, pear plum and so many more. The beauty of fruit trees is of course you get the fruit, but they are also easy to maintain as a small tree.
And, then there are native trees for bird life. The options are endless, consider summer shade – for you, for the dog, the kids play area, somewhere nice to sit in the summer shade.
Email Small Spaces, we would be happy to help you choose a tree for your garden.