Saturday, 25 February 2012

Chomp Chomp Chomp

It's raining, it's raining, tra-la-la.  Lovely lovely rain which has been steadily falling for most of the afternoon, filling the tank and giving the ground some needed moisture.  The temperature dropped accordingly and we happily donned ugg boots and cardies.

We've had a busy week, with 3 days of it spent in Perth catching up with family and friends.  Our other main mission was to clear up the remains of a big acacia tree we had to cut down about 18 months ago, as it was growing at such an angle over the driveway that we couldn't get any big trucks onto our property.  The main trunk was chain sawed up at the time, but the awkward top of the tree with its many itty bitty branches, we dragged to an out of the way spot and left it.  Over time the grass has grown long around it and we kept reminding ourselves that not only did it look like crap and was probably a lovely place for snakes to live, it was also not in keeping with fire safety management.
Steve spent a while dragging the bits of tree closer to the shed to be dealt with.  This is about a quarter of the branches to be cleaned up.  They are brittle and misshapen and a challenge to deal with, as we had to break them up into manageable sized bits.  I am sporting many bruises and scratches from being poked by sharp bits of wood!
 We have had this mulcher for many years, using it in suburban Perth to mulch prunings.  Whether it could cope with tough rural life remained to be seen, but it rallied and worked its little heart out.  A real workhorse.  Here I am, complete with safety apparel like a good girl, assisting the passage of branches down the chute, and watching the chewed up bits spit out the bottom.
The end result is a pile of wood chips.  Rather pathetic looking pile actually, considering the bulk of tree that was fed into it and the hours it took to produce! But it's in keeping with our ethos of recycling and reusing where possible, so we were well pleased.
 The mulcher handles an amazing size of branch but it does have its limits, so the larger pieces Steve cut up with the chain saw and we will use this lot for firewood.
This is where we are using the mulched wood.  This is at the side of the shed where I strung up a clothes line.  It's bare sand out there and the wind tends to whip the sand around, but now I have a nice wood chip floor instead.

Our mission is to become as self sufficient as possible, but as we are starting from nothing, we will have to wait a few years for fruit trees to grow big enough to produce, and there is a lot of work ahead building up our sandy soil with manure and compost so we can grow lots of veggies, but for now we are enjoying a small but very yummy tomato harvest from a tiny tiny area for growing.  Remember the King George Whiting Steve caught last week?  That's them on the plate and they were delicious!  We also resurrected our bread maker and filled the shed with the delicious smell of bread cooking.  It was a very nice meal.  :-)

Steve also did his handyman thing and strung up a light outside the shed.  We are still getting used to the novelty of having power here, and realised the other day that it's a pain in the bum not having light outside and what could we do about it now we were in the modern world and had electricity at hand.  I can now water my pot plants AND drink my wine at night and see what I am doing - thank you Steve.  :-)


  1. Yay new post! You have both been very busy, wow. Love the wood chip path. Enjoy the lovely rain! :) x