Showing posts with label Kao Kee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kao Kee. Show all posts

Monday, December 12, 2011

Garden Gadgets, Possum Problem

12 December
- milk spray on grapevine
- bicarbonate spray on pak choy pods, destroy fungi-infected pak choy pods (hot water treatment)
- weeding around patch at front of house

14 December, cloudy with sunny breaks, 21 deg max
- watering the garden
- harvesting pioneer beans, tung O, strawberries, kao kee

15 December, sunny.
- milk spray grapevine, kao kee, hydrangeas
The naughty bush-tail possum nipped and ate the young shoots of my choko vine.

Here's another shoot eaten. On Monday night, my boy and I camped in our back garden and for the first time, I saw the 'burglar' jumping onto my plum tree and walking on our fence and on our shed.

I have been harvesting pioneer stringless beans for freezing as the quantity was not enough for cooking.

The bean plants, about 5 of them, are growing beans at different speeds.

My wisteria in the pot climbed up the beam in a clock-wise fashion. Not too sure if I would get any flowers.

A yummy bunch of Tung O (edible chrysantemum) for soup.

Beans and a fig (brown turkey).

Made a few cups of lemon balm tea this week. Refreshing!

A bunch of kao kee for soup too.

Steady supply of strawberries every day.

Here's a look at 3 of my wonderful gardening gadgets : Left to right - 1. Handsfree nozzle 2.Green Spray head. 3. Blue fireman nozzle. They are precious to me for watering my garden since I suffer from shoulder and neck problems, as they are handsfree and the sprays are adjustable.  Care to be taken when using them as if they are dropped, they can damage quite easily.

I bought this cheap spray unit from Bunnings for $7, the cheapest displayed. It actually works wonderfully. This morning I used it for the first time for milk-spraying my grape vine, kao kee and hydrangea. It really beats using 500ml spray bottles which really aggravates my shoulder/neck problem. It is also fantastic for large quantity of solutions.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

First Strawberry Delight, Rocket & Spinach.

Hooray! I harvested my first ripe strawberry delight yesterday before going to church. Super sweet and juicy! Cant wait for more to come!
The free rocket seeds given by Bunnings have provided us with yummy salad greens for sandwiches.
Kao Kee Vegetables.  They are growing well and I harvested the tender shoots for stir-fry together with my spinach so that the plants can become bushier.
One of the many clusters of Carolina Black Rose grapes.  I gave the whole vine a good trimming so that the larger clusters can grow better :
The spinach this year is doing very well. Very big and leafy :
 Here's the basketful of spinach and the kao kee vegetables on the left :
We had the spinach stir-fried with garlic, shitake and golden mushrooms.  Hubby said 'Yummy!'.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Edibles Update.

The last three days have been sunny and warm with temperatures between 21-23 deg celsius. So, every day, we spent some time out in the garden doing things. The work really does seem never-ending.
Common Onion Chives /Allium Schoenprasum
Two evenings ago, I went out to the front garden to harvest some chives for a pasta dish. It was then that I realised I have two types of chives growing at the same spot. I did some researching and found some info on The picture above shows the chives used in western cooking. I have grown these from seeds. These chives have leaves which have hollow cylindrical interiors. I did a check and am quite sure that they are called Allium Schoenoprasum or common onion chives.

Chinese or Garlic Chives/ Allium Tuberosum
The chives in this above picture is actually Chinese or Garlic chives, Allium Tuberosum. My friend, Eliada, gave two small pots of these to me. They were given to her by another friend. As the chives looked very similar when young, I thought they were onion chives. Now that they are older, I can actually see that these two tufts are Chinese/Garlic chives. In dialect, they are called Gu Cai. These have flat leaf blades. I am actually very happy knowing they are Chinese/garlic chives, as I use them in Chinese cooking and need larger amounts. Onion chives are used as garnishes and only small amounts required.

Yesterday, I repotted the  Kao Kee cuttings. They have 100%  rooted as each stem cutting is putting on new leaves. Now I will wait and see how they grow.
Water chestnuts! It's been a headache trying to figure how I should grow them. I dont like failed experiments but how can experiments always be 100% successful? The styrofoam tub where I first planted the corms is covered with a layer of algae. After chatting on, I dug out the corms, prepared a few pots (potting mix+fish fertiliser), planted them in, topped up with garden soil, stood them in a tub of water. Here goes the experiment... The corms which I have harvested are really small, about 1 to 2 cm in diameter. I feel cheated by the company where I bought them from. I dont hold much hope that they will grow well.
Here are  some carrot seedlings.  Free seeds from Bunnings Wareshouse. It is my first go at it.
The rest of the seedlings (eggplant, okra/lady'sfinger, capsicum etc) are growing really slowly, even though I put the pots in a styrofoam box and cover well to get as much warmth from sun. I do not have a green house or seed propagator tray, which will speed growth up. At the local nurseries, I could already buy bigger plants.
My white currant plant has put on its green leaves and clusters of flowers too. Looking forward to having white currants. The blackcurrant plant is just beginning to catch up but no flower clusters in sight yet.
The Carolina Black Rose grape vine has produced lots of shoots. It is amazing to see new shoots sprouting every other day. And there are lots of flower clusters. I contemplate pruning off shoots to allow for fewer but stronger flower clusters but did not get down to it in case it is a mistake. I have not seen bees visiting my back garden but thankfully grape flowers are bisexual so they are self-pollinating.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Updates After Our Trip

Our family just came back from a week of getaway - to Mt Buller for the snow and to Sydney + Nelson's Bay.  With a hobby such as gardening, I had to do all that I could to keep it going fine before I went away.  I was happy that not one plant died on me when I came back. The pak choys and gai choy/mustard green in this patch are growing well.

My propagated strawberry plants have done well too.  Before I left, I placed pot dishes under the pots and water them well. Whatever excess water was collected in the dishes and the plants get their water throughout the week from absorbing the water in the dishes.
This is galangal ginger which I bought last autumn from the Melbourne Flower Show. I have removed their plastic protection so they would not get frosts. They dont look too good now but I am quite confident they will take off soon.
I germinated some rocket seeds which were given by Bunnings when I went shopping.

My lemongrass with its plastic protection removed.  Surely looks better than without protection.
Found a herb growing in Figgy's pot.  I thought it was a coriander but it turned out to be parsley.

I realised I am not the only gardener who uses styrofoam boxes for gardening. I used this box to place the 'Kao Kee' vegetables which I am trying to propagate. After using the leaves for soup, I made a mix of propagating sand & compost, trimmed their stems, stuck them into the mix and watered them. I covered the box with plastic and stood the box in the shade while we were away.
Here's how the stems look like. Hopefully, they will root and give me Kao Kee vegetable for soup.  I have no idea what the English name for this veg is.  I only know the dialect name for it.  It is yummy when cooked with pork liver and wolfberries.
Just found out that one of the two original green globe artichoke plants is having a flower!!!

Four of my 12 sweet corn seeds have germinated. That was very long time but I guess we didnt have much warmth to germinate the seeds with the cranky unpredictable spring weather.
"All that mankind needs for good health and healing is provided by God in nature...the challenge of Science is to find it." - Paracelcus, the father of Pharmcology, 1493 - 1541