I continue on with my creek bed digging obsession. I keep dreaming of big pools of water and deep streams, rather than inch deep trickles and sloshy flooding from the sand build up in the creek.
I've been spending hours down here with my trusty spade. It's looking a bit like a moonscape at present, until the grass regrows on the newly heightened banks, and I hope hope hope that the water is obedient and goes where I want it to.
I've been bringing my trusty iPod and little speaker down with me, so I've been immersed not only in digging, but the absolute pleasure of listening to Stephen Fry narrate the Harry Potter series of books with his excellent array of voices.
Here's Steve sitting on one of his benches, enjoying the beauty of the area.
Speaking of benches, he's made three now, with number four on the saw. Look at this, this is an old piece of painted jarrah that our friend Mel gave us. Looks like an ordinary old pergola post or such like.
But look what happens when Steve gets to it with his bench saw and planer! He sliced it in two, rounded the edges and gave it a coat of varnish. Look at that magnificent colour and grain, so beautiful.
Then he got busy with his welder and da dum, another lovely and useful bench. He's a good 'un. :-)
Meanwhile, we have been neglecting the veggie patch, look at it! The lower end has been invaded by kikuyu grass and we've had to leave it there as there are loads of sweet potato plants in amongst it.
Steve had a little dig around on the outskirts of the sweet potato plants, and joy of joys, we've managed to grow some decent looking ones, along with some rogue potatoes! Yeehar. I try every year to grow them and at best have managed a few spindly looking, tiny ones, but if these ones are anything to go by, hopefully there will be more sturdy, chunky ones under all that grass. They've been growing for about 18 weeks now, so we'll probably start harvesting them in a couple of weeks. Then we can get onto the task of eradicating the grass.
In stark contrast is this nice, neatly weeded veggie bed. Steve planted this bed with potatoes, broan beans, cabbage and cauliflower over the last six weeks. We had a morning session weeding it the other day as fifty million tiny tomato plants came up, threatening to smother everything. So, weeded and the potatoes hilled up, it's looking good. The cabbages and cauliflower plants have been chewed by the cabbage white butterfly caterpillars, but they've gone now so the plants should all recover nicely.
This is terribly exciting....do you know what you are looking at? They look like big, ripe oranges don't they. But they're not, they are almost-ripe Fuyu persimmons. There are five on this little tree, and they are huge! I tentatively picked one this morning, as they are not quite orange enough, but it was irresistible. And it was YUMMY!!!! It hadn't quite attained full sweetness, they are a very sweet fruit, but it was still delicious. We'll leave the remaining four for another week or so, to be absolutely perfect. :-)
Out the back is a straggly looking plant, but in autumn it produces these pretty bell chillies. They are quite mild thankfully, I think it might be stir-fry for dinner tonight.
The duckies have now been integrated with the chooks and all is well. There hasn't been any bitching or pecking, the chooks are still wary of the ducks but all is calm. The ducks are getting a bit less scared too which is good. I was reading this morning that Muscovy ducks are not really ducks, apparently most ducks are bred from Mallard duck origins, but the Muscovy ducks are different, they are more like a goose, or to quote the article, "large, perching waterfowl". They don't quack (I did not know that!), they make little huffy and whistly noises, they waggle their tails (very cute) and apparently in the wild they like to roost rather than sleep on the ground, fascinating! These two sleep on the ground, but I guess they have come from an intensive breeding farm where they probably lived in a shed and thus had no access to roosts, so they may not know how. One day they might copy the chooks and hop up onto a roost, it will be a weird thing to see! When I pop up to Perth next week I will find out the names that have been chosen for the duckies by my granddaughters - watch this space! :-)
Meanwhile the chooks are waiting impatiently for the net to come off the persimmon tree so they can get in there and dig up bugs and worms in the soil. They are such useful girls.
We had unexpected visitors again over the last week. These three sheep have been popping in and out for a quick graze then they are off next door and goodness knows where else. No idea where they are from or how they got in.
When Anne and Ian came to stay last week, Ian took this timer photo of us all. Isn't it great, with the lower angle it's picked up terrific reflections in the windows, along with four happy people. :-)