$&#&@+ing cats

There are a group of about 5 feral cats in the neighborhood. I have decided that my new beds are the perfect Kitty litter. I have experimented with putting bottles of water in the beds to deter the cats- the idea being that cat’s will not defecate where there is water.

It did not work.

I have read that the cats like the soft compost but not a more prickly mulch. I am going to there for experiment with a straw mulch. This should not be a problem for planting because everything I am planting at this stage is being transplanted from the greenhouse.

Planting to early

In my keeness to get planting, I have planted my early broad beans too early. In Mid January we had a warm spell and so I thought I would benefit by planting out the broad beans that had grown well in the greenhouse.

The last 3 nights have had hard frosts and there’s more to come. I expect to lose most of this crop and so I have sown some more as backup.

Summer solstice update 

It’s the summer solstice tomorrow so I thought I’d do a general update. 

Things are growing well.  The salads have been the most successful with plenty more than we can consume.  The tomatoes are looking to be pretty decent too. 

Both chickens are still alive and laying on average about 1.5 eggs a day.   All 25 fish are going strong and have grown significantly. 

I’m building a new floating raft bed that should be about 3x the size of my existing one so that I can dial up my aquaponics salads and basil.  Once I get that going I’m going to test différent types of salads for a bit of variety. 

I’ve been servicing my compost in preparation for a fall planting of winter crops.  

But it’s not all good news.  It seems my potatoes got sick and I lost 2 out of the three plantings. 

New salads going in this evening. 

Slug prevention

Many of my young plants were getting massacred by slugs and so before I transplanted my next phase of salads I wanted to slug proof the beds. 

So first I placed tubs with sugar water (as previously described), I then laid down a boarder of spickey mulch that I harvested from local park.  

Last of all, I added a fence so the chickens don’t piss me off when we let them out. 

Long rose radishes 

Over spring I have failed at reaching my target of 20 radishes a week for several reasons.  First thing I learnt is that i’m not planting enough radishes, and taking in to account losses and slow growing runts.  So instead of planting 20 every week and hoping to harvest 20 every week, I need to plant many more.  I’m going to change my apporoach over summer. 

Having said that, these rose radishes are lovely large successes.  They take longer but are much more worthwhile.  I’m going to focus on this type of crop going forward.