The Weekend Wrap – 16 September, 2012

No farmer’s market this weekend, instead I took Miss One and my sister to the country to visit my 90 year old grandfather.  He’s been spending a week in respite care at the local nursing home.  My parents are overseas and it has been left to my aunt (my grand-father’s daughter-in-law) to make sure he’s looking after himself, so this week gave her a bit of a break as well as testing the waters for a possible move to permanent care at the nursing home for Pa.  He’s had several bouts of pneumonia and a couple of falls so living on his own is getting potentially difficult.  He seemed happy enough for the week, I’m not sure how he would feel about leaving his home of forever though and seeing him in there was definitely strange for me.  We took him to the pub for lunch and then back to his house for a coffee and so he could look at some old photographs, then we returned him to the nursing home.  The best part of the trip was that Miss One was in good form, smiling, laughing and fascinating by my grandfather.  That was a darn sight better than the last visit, where she took one look at him and burst into long, loud howls.

Today was a home day, catching up on some washing, shopping, cooking and gardening.  I made another batch of cereal, some bread rolls, these great muffins (which have very little sugar in them, but taste delicious) and a pot of noodle soup with oven baked salmon for dinner.

In the garden I did a little of that weeding left in the forgotten corners of the garden.  I’ve been pouring boiling water on the weeds in between the pavers.  I was either naive thinking they would die fairly quickly or it just isn’t working, because besides looking a little wilted not much had changed.  I’ll keep doing it for a while and see what happens.  I also fed my lemon/lime tree and gave it a good water (it doesn’t get much rain).  It is completely covered in flowers on both the lime and the lemon side, I also saw some tiny limes starting to form, how exciting.  On a not so good note, about half my garlic looks cactus!  One section has been decimated by black aphids and despite me squirting them off with the hose everyday they have continued unabated.  Today I sprayed them in a last ditched effort to save them, but I think it might be too little too late.  Some have already dried up completely and the rest of the plants looked decidedly sick.  I have garlic growing in two other areas, one patch the plants look small and stunted, but the third patch have nice thick stalks and look strong and healthy, I’m hoping they are forming nicely underneath as I don’t hold much hope for the rest.  Finally I planted a second lot of potatoes, this time pink fir.  They really should have been planted first as they were quite wrinkled and had long roots growing from them already. Hopefully they will still grow well.

And that pretty much filled my weekend.  One more week of work and then a two week break, I’m so looking forward to it!  These last nine weeks have gone so unbelievably quickly though.  But before the working week starts I’m going to settle down to watch a bit of ABC, Kevin McCloud’s Grand Desing and Call the Midwife – two great shows.  Enjoy the week everyone!

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11 Responses to The Weekend Wrap – 16 September, 2012

  1. How lucky you are to still have a grandparent. I lost my last grandmother a couple of years ago – it’s so scary to think that my parents are the oldest generation in my family still left – must be scarier for them though.

    I’m with you on the aphid front. I’m squirting my garlic regularly too, and no luck so far 😦

    • Barbara Good says:

      L I am very lucky to still have a grandparent, but he comes from good stock – they all live long lives. His uncle died at 107 and was still driving (somewhat scarily) at 99. He also got a chainsaw for his birthday that year – another scary thought. I lost my grandmother on that side about a year before Miss One was born. On the other side my grandfather died when my father was 19 and I lost my grandmother on that side when I was 8.

      The aphids are right little pests aren’t they.

  2. I didn’t think any thing ate or bothered garlic. I too spent some time weeding this weekend, I don’t mind it, actually I find it soothing in a strange way so I also tend to weeding around some of the trees neighbors have planted just because it’s there.

  3. Hi, glad you liked the muffins : ) Interesting to hear what is happening to your garlic. I actually have a similar thing happen to my garlic chives. The little black aphids have totally destroyed two plants – and it’s not the first time either. Each time I’ve just started again but would love to know why they are so selective to all things ‘garlic’ and how to get rid of them safely.

  4. Liz says:

    I have the black aphids too – and had them last year. My understanding is that they are attracted by damp soil which kind of makes sense and at least in part goes to explain why they spraying isnt working – I have tried it a lot too. The only thing I’ve found to work is spraying them with Pyrethrum, sometimes more than once as they are persistent buggers.

  5. Liz says:

    I forgot to mention I found a new farmers market on Sunday – its at Pascoe Vale primary school – cnr Gaffney St and Cumberland Rd Pascoe Vale. It was their first one this Sunday and they are going to hold them on the 3rd Sunday of every month. It was good, I would have liked some more fruit but otherwise the range was pretty good. I bought bread, olives, pistachios, smoked trout, apples, leeks, fenugreek, carrots before I ran out of cash.

    • Barbara Good says:

      Thanks for letting me know, I know where the primary school is, I’ll try to make it there next time. The fruit has been pretty limited at all the markets lately, but I’ve been to one or two with almost no fruit sellers at all. I know what you mean about shopping til you run out of cash – that’s much budget mechanism, only take what I want to spend otherwise I’d go mad buying all sorts of things.

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