Saturday, April 30, 2016

The late, great tomatoes

A lot of people in Tasmania had bumper tomato crops this year due to the warm, dry summer, but not me. I started from seed way back in August, then moved the seedlings from the dining room into the greenhouse as soon as it was warm enough, but they didn't grow as strongly as in past years. Only four plants were worth transplanting in the garden - but once they were in, wow! They grew quickly into healthy plants, each with a good crop of tomatoes. All green. And that's how they stayed, until the weather started to cool and the plants started to die off. Not a single one ripened. So I pulled out all four plants and hung them upside down in the greenhouse.

Since then, one or two tomatoes have started to colour up every day or two, and I bring them inside to ripen on the windowsill. In the meantime, I've bought kilos of lovely local tomatoes from the Huon Farmers Market to eat and make passata from. Still, it's true that home grown ones are the best. It has been a long wait, but my home grown ones are super sweet and delicious. Better luck next year?

Monday, April 25, 2016

Munching on

While I did the annual chook shed clean out on the weekend, pulling out the past year's worth of bedding and general detritus and replacing it with (expensive) fresh straw, this pademelon sat nearby gobbling up the chooks' lettuce. He was so close I could hear the munching.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Hartz Peak revisited

Today was the day. Finally, I climbed Hartz Peak in absolutely perfect weather. Last month I went there with some walking group friends and a cloud sat firmly on top of the mountain, so we stopped at the saddle and enjoyed the view from there. I've been to the top before, but never seen more than glimpses of the vast mountain ranges to the west through swirling clouds. But today, we woke to a clear blue sky and sunshine and you can see for yourself just how incredible the view is. I'm glad we went early. We were first entry in the walker registration book for the day and first to reach the top. By the time we returned to the car park, it was full.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Huonville Dog Park

I've met quite a few dog owners in the local area who don't know that there is now a fenced dog exercise area in Huonville. Check it out - it's in Heron Street next to the public swimming pool. Turn left after Woolworths if you're coming from the south.

When we first moved to the Huon Valley we looked on the Council web site to find out where the off-lead dog parks were. Apart from the Franklin Foreshore, the closest one was in Huonville. When we got there, we were disappointed to find it was a small piece of shady, boggy land. No fence. No other dogs. Our own front paddock was better.

Since then, the Huon Valley Dog Walking Association worked with the Council to expand the area used for the dog park, fence it, improve drainage and add amenities like seating, poo bags, a water tap and bowl and plants. It's now a lovely spot to take your dog for a good run or just some sniffing and socialising. It has proven so popular and and feedback has been so good that it's rumoured Council is considering further fenced dog exercise areas in other Huon Valley towns. Great news for dogs and their owners.