Friday, 13 February 2009

Windy Old Friday

First, a couple of pictures of the new place for your viewing pleasure.

Below is the beginnings of the orchard, a pair of neat rows of holes, all filled with golden, black coloured, goodness. The rabbits haven't been digging into it as I had feared they might, though the goats have been wandering over it for some reason. Apples will be in row number 1, to the left, row number 2, probably odd fruit like plums, pears and peaches. I intend on at least one more this season, for the grapes. I've got four or five varieties so far, just want some of the wine varieties to cover the drinking side of the grape equation.

Next is a sepia stained picture of the tree we felled. This big fella was a little close to both the house and shed sites for comfort. Being dead it was only a matter of time before it decided to start dropping bits of itself across the landscape. There's a fair bit of firewood in it, and I'm toying with the idea of making one of the big logs into the base for a picnic table, but I'll have to see how I go for time and enthusiasm. Why the arty sepia? It was taken on my mobile, which provides for washed out photos, so a bit of playing around produced something more palatable.

Still no DA for the shed, sadly. I called them up yesterday, then again this morning after they didn't call me back as they had said they would. The news is not too promising. Sure we've been told we should get our DA by the end of next week, but in passing he mentioned that it's taken so long because he had to review the whole history of the previous subdivision and the DA for the house. Then he mentioned conditions relating to road shoulders and access to the block. Seems ominous considering it's just for a darned farm shed for storing some of our stuff out of the weather.

I guess I'm working myself up into a lather over nothing concrete, and fearing the worst, but I've got past experiences to guide this anticipatory enthusiasm. I'll let you know now, if things don't go well when I receive the offending document the blog post to follow will contain the word "rant" in the title to forewarn you :-) If it's really bad I might just insist on council buying the block of land from us and we can pick a spot in a region with a more reasonable bunch of bureaucrats. I'm also toying with the idea of creating a "council watch" website, where we can post horrendous stories of their malfeasance, and view a matrix of their authoritarian-ness, region by region. Might help me if we decide to move on rather than put up with the ...

On a much more positive note, it's Friday. Yes, that's the one. I like posting on a Friday, because it's when half my mind is turned to plans for the weekend, and that invariably involves assessing what has happened before. I've got more to say then, twice as much in fact. Half about what was, half about what may be.

I'm slowly working my way through the seedling trees in the greenhouses, potting them on. The Black Wattles in particular, as they're growing well, and will do even better with an upgrade prior to planting out this winter. I shall occupy some time this weekend finishing that task off (5 down, 24 to go, though I did take care of some other bits of plant life last time, fig and lemon verbena cuttings that have taken well, etc. I actually got around to turning the old chook yard into a new greenhouse, and shifting the plants out of the glasshouse that didn't need to be in there, which then led to the potting on mentioned in the first place. It's a long and winding road for sure.

You can see the remaining wattles to be potted on mid-top of the image above. To the left are three avocado trees, these will need to go back in the glasshouse for winter, they don't like the frost. I've got to pick a nice microclimate out at the new place for them, and that requires a bit of observation through winter. At the bottom are half a dozen or eight or perhaps even nine (lets make it ten shall we?) carob trees, grown up from seed.

On top of that I'm going to get our generator up and running. Did I mention we had a generator? Won by the skin of the teeth on eBay week before last, a beautiful old 16hp Briggs and Stratton motor on a 7.5kVA/6kW Dunlite generator. Should be enough for all our tomtoolery out at the new block, including welding. All it needs is a new spark plug and a bit of fresh fuel (oh, and a new air cleaner element, but that can wait!).

No doubt there'll be a trip out to the block on Sunday, most likely for another round of digging holes for trees... We've got to have somewhere to put all of these, eventually!

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