Jan 08

The Good Earth – On Vacation Without Your Plants

Another podcast segment from The Good Earth

A segment from the December 2016 edition of The Good Earth podcast is available on the TGE website


Click on the link, turn up the sound and re-live the madness


and you can find a selection of the previous Podcasts there as well


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Dec 23

The Internet of Chickens -Teaser

Back at the end of August another fox got in and killed two chickens before I scared it off. Grrrrrr!!

“That’s it”, I thought, “I wont let this happen again, I’ll build an automatic door for the chicken coop and that will (hopefully) solve the problem”.

I looked around to see if there were examples of automatic doors and, not surprisingly, I found quite a diverse range of ideas, DIY and commercial devices. After looking around and deciding on a design style there was nothing left to do except build it. Easy!

Well three months later,      I finally finished it.

Why did it take so long? Well, that will be the subject of another post (probably several really) detailing the construction, the false starts, the changes along the way and the programming (!) of, what is the start of,

The Internet of Chickens

For now, here is a short video showing the door opening in the morning to let out the chickens. And it was very nice to know that the chickens were being locked in at 9:00pm while I was out.


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Apr 09

HAZELNUTS! and Other Late Harvests

HAZELNUTS! yes, we have hazelnuts 🙂

We planted three hazelnut plants last year and it looked like we were going to get a nice crop, so excited! But, the cockatoos discovered them,  and then there were none 🙁

But, while chasing one of the chooks away from a rogue piece of packing foam, I discovered these hiding in the mulch.

IMG_2562-hazelnuts sesame_count-transparent

Three! Count them, one, two, three!

AH, AH, AH, three little hazelnuts!




And very nice they were too 😀

Next year I will make sure they are properly netted and protected.

We also harvested the last of the grapes and the figs.

IMG_2539-grapes-web IMG_2448-figs-web

Only the quinces are left and I have to get them indoors pretty quickly because the birds have started on those, since there is nothing else around.

How is your harvest going?


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Feb 04

The December 2015 Edition of The Good Earth

A little bit late to be sure but…

The December 2015 edition of The Good Earth podcast is available on the WWMN website


Click on the link, turn up the sound and re-live the madness


Remember you can find all the previous Podcasts at



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Sep 25

First Peppino of the Season

Hooray, we have our first Peppino of the Season YUM! 🙂



What’s a Peppino, I hear you ask? Well, it’s a great little fruit, twice the size of a chicken egg, that does well in both warm and cold climates provided it has protection from the worst of the frosts.


The peppino (pepino dulce) fruit resembles a melon (Cucumis melo) in color, and its flavor is similar to a mixture of honeydew or rockmelon and cucumber. It is sometimes called pepino melon or melon pear. Its botanical name is Solanum muricatum.

It doesn’t matter how you describe it, it tastes great and it is easy to grow. It has a partially upright, sprawling habit and can be treated similarly to a Tomato. Although the seeds are tough and viable it is mostly propagated by cuttings.

It is well worth trying if you like the flavour of melons.


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