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Monday, August 5, 2013

Seedlings for Spring, Who Knows How to Germinate Capsicum and Eggplant?

An interesting morning (for us). Across the river the boss rang yesterday (Sunday) and said he was heading back to Sydney "Don't worry about rushing over tomorrow morning, none of the cows look close to calving". Arrived at 10 am to find two new calves and a third on the way! As my dairy farmer used to say when asked when the Springers were due? "Sometime in the next three weeks" was the standard answer.

Spent some time ear tagging the newborn and then slowly moved all the new mums into a fresh paddock (now that we have a mini herd of 10) and set up a grazing strip in an adjacent paddock with a good crop of Rye and Clover. Only a small strip to start and gradually increasing their quality and volume of feed as their stomachs adjust.

On the neighbour's property next door the herd of 7 on the river have all had their calves as of this morning. A gate to a new paddock with some greener feed was opened and some relief for us as we now only have to check them every few days instead of daily. Up on the Hill only 11 of the 16 have calved.

The Tomato seeds we planted have all germinated and have now been all transplanted in larger pots. They have started to fill out and all is looking good for a Spring planting.

Transplanted Tomato Seedlings

The only problems have again been with the Capsicum and Eggplant seeds. Only one Capsicum has germinated. What is the matter? We have this problem every year. Does anyone have any suggestions?

The morning went quickly with cattle work leaving the afternoon for a period of intensive weeding. With surprise that went well with most of the weeding complete by nightfall. Only one bed to finish tomorrow. The fine Lucerne mulch (ex the mulcher) has worked well and only the edges of the garlic stands had to be tidied. Will try to make some more fine mulch material tomorrow and get the onion stands mulched.

The beauty of having plenty of composted material on hand was that generosity could be extended to any plants that were a bit slow in maturing. A few Carrots, Beetroot, Spinach and Pea plants needed a little lift.

With the westerly winds blowing all day things were drying out and needed a solid water on dusk when the wind stilled for half an hour. Will need to pump up again tomorrow - thank you 7 mega litre dam you are a life saver.

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