Ian's microfarm.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
29 August , started planting the new natives, just into the little now empty front patio brick flower bed , establishing two zones , damp well watered & dry ( further away for the nozzles ).

Plants planted were
1x each rice flowers
2x each fan flower
1x each

Taller plants at "back and at southern end". The hope is over the next few years these will create a nice thick mix of flowering natives that's attack lots of native birds, insects, bees and marsupial visitors at night as well providing nice cover for frogs and skinks and geckos.

The bed is about the same surface area as a 4ft coffee table.

Tomorrow WEATHER GODS permitting ( more rain heading our way ) - I'll select plants from the stash of new natives to go into the 6m x 1.5m bed to take advantage of the big lattice work privacy screen ( have some native flowering climbers for the job ) that provide some colour while we wait for the 2 grevilleas , 2 banksias , and 2 tea trees in that bed to grow and start flowering.
Will be adding another Wattle and 2 new ( extra banksias ) as well.
Have some threaded 8mm Poly Tees so I can easily add extra nozzles to the bed as needed.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Front patio brick flower bed planted .

One of the superclusters fan flower plants didn't make it, broke the tap root when extracting from tube.



BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
30 August

Got strawberries Galore !! should be a enough for my wife to have a real treat on our 40th in week Fathers' Day and our anniversary are the same day this year.



















Got equivalent to maybe 3 shop punnets worth that'll be ripe in a week , another 5 to 6 punnets worth that'll be ripe over the next 2 - 3 weeks and lots of flowers changing to berries too.

:D My wife is getting really keen to start picking and eating them . LOVES strawberries !!!

Will be having enough strawberries to make pies, tarts, homemade ice-cream & to freeze the surplus , and maybe share some the new & very nice young couple next-door.

I think I can call the experimental on-fence gutter plant-troughs a SUCCESS.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
30 August 6m x 1.5m bed some flowers , lots of spare space for more plants ( yep needs weeding - so much for mulch an inch thick deterring weeds ).

S end near garage .

zoom in on native hibiscus (in above)

zoom in on yellow Goodenia varia native groundcover "gold trail" ( in above )

Moving N between middle and S end


Banksia oblongifolia - fern-leaved banksia and Correa alba prostrate creeper Ground cover ( near front (peaking over sleeper)

Moving N to middle of bed.( x ~ 3m )



Zoom in

zoom in on Banksia ericifolia ‘Orange Glow’ forming flower ( in above )


N end .

Zoom in on white Leptospermum liversidgei Mozzie Blocker tea-tree flowers (in above)


zoom in on red/pink flowering Grevillea lanigera 'Mt Tamboritha' (in above) , next to it to left near NW corner is Grevillea bipinnatifida x banksii = Grevillea ‘Coconut Ice’ (not yet in flower but the bigger shrub now).


Missing are
Leptospermum Tickled Pink
Chamelaucium MY SWEET 16™ - waxflower
don't know what happened to them (no sign of a plant where they should be)
both out of stock @ my supplier australianplantsonline.com.au

And the Fan Flower Scaevolea ‘Superclusters' Ground Cover plant has died.

So some space to fill + plants to replace.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster

Last of the latest batch of natives and herbs planted today in the L shaped bed and 6x1.5m bed.
Herbs into pots.
Perenial Basil was cactus.
Running Postman creeper very dry , but might just be dormant so watered and it's inside on the kitchen window sill to see if it springs back to life.

The Burgandy Emu Bush ( plant E ) in the L shaped bed looks very dry but there are green leaves on ends of stems so left in the ground and planted a 2 different rice flowers either side of it. It might be winter dormant.

The Discovered we have a pair wild eastern bluetongue skinks living behind the 6x1.5m bed and the carport and garage. Very shy so couldn't get photos of them.

Tomato seeds sowed in a small plastic pot , my gardening guide for Aus Subtropics says September is time to sow tomato seeds.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Wife harvested a dozen ripe strawberries today , some were overripe , and one looked like it had a tiny bite on it.

Tasted OK , just cut the damaged bit off .....



BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Little black ants have been raiding the strawberries ( some of them ) , were some in a "nibble" on one today.

Bloody hell , Mr Kookaburra didn't do a very flash job at gluing the PVC manifold together, it sprung a leak , needed some regluing to fix .... wasn't pushed together very well and I think he was too stingy with blue solvent glue .

The water hammer probably didn't help either. Added a couple of extra stakes as support to make sure the manifold is well supported here on.
Called in a local plumber to check it and make sure all joins are well glued and all screw fittings good and tight. ( Worth it to get it right .)

Missus isn't sure the timer on the L shaped bed is working . I don't recall hearing it come on today .... battery low ??


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
17 September Update.

Growing so many strawberries some of them are becoming overripe before my wife picks and eats them .

She's taking 6 to 8 per day to eat w/ her brekky Wheatbix.

Plumber back, the leak was another badly glued PVC join, Mr Kookaburra didn't use the HIGH PRESSURE PVC Blue Solvent I bought, he used some rubbish green solvent ( that the plumber says is only for storm water pipes and down pipes ) .... all the PVC fittings on the 20mm PVC manifold have been reglued . Can't turn on the taps for 24 hrs to pressure test.

Replaced batteries in 2 HOSELINK timers, were 2/3 full .
Discovered the L shaped bed's timer's clock was out of whack but program looked OK .
.. so reset and reprogrammed both while I had them and reset their clocks and relocked the program.
Suspect someone has been in yard fiddling with the L shaped bed's timer as I know the clocks and programs were fine last time I set them.
So the L shaped bed's timer has likely been working OK only not watering when AT EXPECTED TIMES AS PER THE SCHEDULE WE THOUGH IT WAS ON.

Somehow water got inside the L shaped bed's timer , not a lot , but enough to fog the inside of the screen and to leave a little puddle on the coffee table when I had the battery cap off while I was reprogramming it.
Contacted manufacturer to ask how big an issue this might be.

Inline filters were clean .

Plumber tells me his boss will be interested in his company ( EnviroMate ) doing drip irrigation upgrades for us in the future, just like plumbing work only fiddly and time consuming ..... got to be better at than Mr Kookaburra was.

So hopefully all sorted ON SUNDAY when we turn the two taps back on.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
22 September .

Finally heard back from HOSELINK , they agree the tap timer should be weather and water proof , can't explain who water made it's way inside , and based on the fact that after my replacing the batteries with new , and resetting the clock and reprogramming , and the turning the tap back on resulted in no water they think it's cactus.

New (replacement) has been sent dispatched to me FOC as the timer is still under warantee.

So I'll get 2 new HOSELINK taptimers / builtin rain detectors ( one 1 bought last week , and a spare ).

Plumber will be quoting irrigation system expansion for the 4 planted beds.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Believe I've worked how the HOSELINK TAP TIMER failed.
Mr Kookaburra damaged it's water proof inlet seal on top of the timer ( screws onto the tap ), when he forced the 20mm Cl12 PVC pipe to bend to the bottom outlet of the timer.

When the low pressure GREEN solvent joining the PVC pipe to the Tees and the 90deg bends and the F and M 3/4" thread adapters failed , water sprayed as a high pressure jet directly at the timer and forced it's way inside.

I'll remedy this problem by having the plumber when he returns to expand my native garden beds' irrigation system by adding 30 new variflow drip emitters and variflow microdrippers for the new natives we've recently added to the 6x1.5m , 6x3m , L shaped bed and brick patio flower bed , but modifying the tap end of the PVC manifold with a Flexible Hose 20mm Water (3/4" Female x Female ) x 600mm, this will help with reducing the effects of water hammer too.

The freed up W end of the 20mm Cl12 PVC manifold will need to be supported as it'll no longer be supported off the bottom of the timer - easy fixed by adding a timber stake at it's W termination .

Plumber reckons about 1 hr to do all this.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
My seedling Roma Tomatoes are looking pretty good.


My tower of herbs are looking good, but I think the 2 newer batches of stawberries are dead.

Pomegranate cuttings are going bonkers. The new raspberry and naturtiums (in pots ) are doing great.

Lemon grass and vanilla grass ( mixed with nasturtiums in back pot ) are thriving.

The mulberry sapling is looking very happy


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Went out in the patio to watch the spectular lightning late last night and heard something land in my gum tree , and from there straight to the Billy Button and Desert Blaze kangaroo paw flowers.

About the size of a mouse and super cute , I watched two of them licking the flowers like crazy. Had to look them up , wish I'd had a camera handy but I think taking photos would have spooked them.

It's a squirrel glider.

I've know there are Brush-tailed possums around for years and often seen them in my tree when it's in flower.

Nice to see the squirrel gliders are being attracted to my garden too. Maybe they are the ones who have been raiding my ripe home grown strawberries .... that's fine , I don't mind sharing my berries with them/.


BD.org Sicko
Original Poster
Scored a free Hoselink Tap timer, I'd ordered one , and the distributer sent me a replacement for free under warantee for the one that has had water inside it.

They accidentally sent me 3rd one with another order ( of seaweed extract concentrate & some Hoselink 13mm fittings and 13mm to 13mm snap to hoselink twist connect fittings ), contacted them about their "oops" and was told thanks "you can keep it gratis".

Reports of a big water spout of RedHead yesterday with big supercell that we got the edge off about 3pm.
Never seen such big hail stones , parked car across the road had it's drivers' window broken and some severe hail damage to the bonnet and roof.
Some the hailstones were nearly 2" in diameter , no cracked roof tiles fortunately. My front yard turned white for a while til the hail melted.

My niece lives in Armidale and told me they had a scary period when they had a tornado hit the town. Their home was undamaged , but they saw the tornado and the havoc it caused ( trucks and big 4x4 cars over turned and some homes destroyed ).

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