30 June 2009

Winter working bee Sunday 5thJuly 2009

Hey folks! Its that wonderful winter time of the year again and yes, the Garden is cranking with plenty of fruit tree and vegie goodness...
We have just come off the back of another fabulous and successful Veg Swap on Saturday and a midday sell out stall at Sunday's Coledale market!
The inner circle will assemble around 10am for a glorious day of mattock swinging, vegie planting, liquid tea splashing, compost building, local food preparation, warm cuppas, laughter and well mannered frivolity!
Our regular monthly organic gardening enthusiasts - we look forward to catching up with you and new comers are always welcome. Feel free to bring a plate of something wholesome for a 1am lunch. See you there!
If you can't catch up with us at the Garden Sunday, see us at our organically colourful stall at Thirroul Public School's Fete of the Earth from 10am.

22 June 2009

Last Swap of the Season!

It's great to know that the swap has been so well received. The consensus seems to be that the vibe is really good and the fruit and veg is truly worth swapping. Thanks so much to everyone for making it work.
We have decided that the next swap will be the last of the season (sorry, but we've got to let the earth rest once in a while, ya know?!)...don't worry, we will kick off again in spring! Listening to 2SER today, a food expert claimed 50% of the world's food goes to waste in some form or another...man, we've got work to do.

So DO NOT miss the coming swap on Saturday June 27 from 9-12. It will be business as usual with loads of both common and unusual edibles and of course coffee from the Port Kembla Men's Group. We're guessing this swap will be citrus heaven, so if you are feeling a bit swine-ish then come and get fixed-up.

By the way, if your garden has totally gone to bed for the winter, maybe rummage through your book/magazine collection for something to swap. The Garden is looking for old (and new) organic gardening magazines like Warm Earth and Grass Roots to build a local public collection of organic/permaculture/ sustainability/self-
sufficiency related resource materials. Books welcomed too.

We leave you with reminders of the last swap. Thanks to VJ for the photos. See you on Saturday!

19 June 2009

Breadmaking at TAFE

Did you know Wollongong TAFE runs bread making courses? They are 1 night a week for 18 weeks. I've just finished the basic bread making course, which gives you all the basic knowledge and hands on experience in baking a range of white, wholemeal & rye breads in various shapes & sizes. Following that you can also do "Artisan Breads" which includes things like sourdough & bagels etc. Here's a few pics of the class in action. Hopefully these skills will come in handy once we get our pizza oven up & running.

08 June 2009

All mushrooms are edible.

Some only once! Words to live by for sure, but sometimes you've got to take the plunge if you want to be a gastronaut. Who first pulled a random mushroom from the ground and shoved it in their mouth anyway?! Generations of brave (and/or really hungry) humanoids have paved the way for you to enjoy the fruits of the forest. So show some respect!

The images above are just a small selection of local fungi photos. Everybody probably recognises the red one, Amanita muscaria (fly agaric). It is the archetypal fairy tale mushroom. It's poisonous! Don't eat it! But of course that hasn't stopped others, including Siberian and Scandanavian shamens who have historically consumed it for mind-expanding purposes. You've been warned mortal.

But we save the best for last. Lactarius deliciosus. Totally edible and growing in a pine forest near you...after a bit of rain and a warm spell. It's common name is 'pine mushroom' or 'saffron milk cap'. The Spanish call them 'rovellones'. Are they good? I challenge you to find many other living, edible, organisms who have a binomial name meaning 'delicious'. They are one of the meatiest mushrooms around and never go slimy. They should be cooked, like most wild mushrooms. Slice them up and saute in butter with garlic and a pinch of salt. Garnish with parsley and eat a pile of it on toasted sourdough with a little extra virgin olive oil. But this is not the only way to enjoy them, as you can see in the photo, a local fungivore is contemplating his options.

02 June 2009

Next Working Bee Sunday 7 June

Yes its on again. The monthly working bee is on Sunday June 7th. If your new to The Garden it's a perfect opportunity to come along & check it out. One of the regulars can give you a tour. And once we have draw up a list of things to do, your welcome to pick something that suits you & join in. It could be anything from turning the compost to feeding the chooks to labeling seeds or helping organise the lunch. Talking of lunch, its normally around 1pm and made up of whatever salad etc the garden has to offer plus whatever people bring along. Hope to see you there. Maddog. NB If it absolutely buckets down we usually give it a miss.