Horse poo wagoner

When one joins the cottager classes one is beholden to become organic in order to attain to all the accouterments of the lifestyle.

In this pursuit my mission is to create a perched vegetable garden on the sands of Beachmere.

'Perching' is nature's way of doing business in order to  colonize sand as on Fraser island where whole lakes and river systems are perched on sand  so that the water stays put rather than all of it seeping though the granules .

Since to do this you need lots of mulch and other organic matter  my all you can eat recipe is a generous mix of horse poo and seaweed.

My new backyard is sand all  the way down such that digging it is like slicing through butter. I get the manure from a local farm and the seaweed from the foreshore -- sea grass.

I lay down wet cardboard, like a canvas, and arrange the stuff on top adding blood and bone and a sprinkling of lime.

If you consider the photos at right it is a very sterile environment with one beautiful tree -- a Silky Oak Grevillea -- being all that was growing above the grass when we moved in.

So the last five weeks have been hard yakker collecting organic matter by hand and making it come together in biomass nurturing possibilities. This meant carting poo and seaweed some distance --a couple of kilometres each time -- so the two could marry.

My main tool was my trusty bike cart which I use as a hand wagon (above).

Seaweed and horse shit....ah, what a marriage!

And when you get enough of it, you begin to shape the earth into something like this, below:

These are shallow beds, despite my obsession with 'raised beds'. But here raising the soil line  isn't a  drainage imperative as the soil is a sieve.But the more the soil layer gets fatter, the more room I'll have to grow stuff underground.

My one indulgence was to purchase some great corrugated iron edging  (pictured right) which comes in easy to move and embed 6 metre long strips. So as the garden grows -- as in Mary Mary quite contrary... -- I can move the boundaries to a new border as I stock up with manure and seaweed.


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