The garden in review!

When we first moved into our new house in late 2009 the garden was bare and mostly lawn. There was a retaining wall with small shrubs below it and a gorgeous golden elm but that was about it. The garden space is only small as most of our backyard is taken up with a Studio and in-ground swimming pool, but we were determined to make the most of the space we had.


We quickly filled the area below the wall with pots of herbs and then began to transform the lawn into our vegetable patch. In October of 2010 we had a 3500L water tank installed and two tall galvanised beds. Along the fence we dug a trench garden for beans.


By November the garden was already looking good!

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We grew cherry tomatoes, tomatoes, lettuces, beans, cucumbers, capsicums, kipfler potatoes, eggplant, button squash, zucchini, and sundry herbs.

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Even though we were supplementing our diet it wasn’t enough for Jamie. He also started planting out the front, but I will do a post on that later. By March of 2011 he had created his own mini greenhouse with an old window and we began using foam boxes as planters as we had run out of pots! We also added a new 1.2 m square bed. We discovered that pumpkins grew surprisingly well in the galvanised beds, but sadly early rains ruined many of the fruit though we did get to eat some.


In May we were growing winter vegetables including kale, spinach, chard, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbages, broad beans etc. The plastic butterflies are an attempt to keep away cabbage moths. It works reasonably well but is not totally grub proof!


We started to get more and more produce, so much that we even had to share with family and friends 🙂

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April 2012 we added another bed plus another trench garden for beans and peas in front of the water tank.

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This shot is taken from the corner compost bin next to the water tank. It gives a different view of the garden and shows the Studio and the edge of the pool!

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December 2012 the garden was full of summer vegetables including corn. Sadly, we are yet to succeed with corn. I think it is because we have planted seedlings. Next year we plan on planting the seeds straight into the ground.


Summer of 2013 was a weird one due mainly to inclement weather. Still we managed to grow enough to sustain us and were able to preserve some too!


By August we had yet another bed to plant. This is so we can always have one fallow to enable some early seasonal planting. We also got ourselves a 2.4m square plot in a community garden. More on that later. We were given some free pots via so filled the retaining wall both on top and below with herbs. No more ugly foam boxes 🙂


By September 2013 we had an abundance of fresh organic produce and the garden itself looks fabulous! The watering by hand was becoming too much work so we had a pump installed for easy watering.


We had a bumper harvest of broad beans in October 2013! Enough to freeze for the winter months.

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And at the end of 3 years of hard work the garden not only looks amazing but is a place of joy for the both of us.



About A Kailyard in Adelaide

A Kailyard in Adelaide! We are working hard to be domestically sustainable in the foothills of Adelaide. As we both work fulltime this is not an easy task, but we do our best growing much of our own produce in our yard and in our community garden plots. We reduce, recycle and reuse as much as possible and try hard to not consume mindlessly. We have 5000 l of rainwater, a 5 kw solar system, and use a green energy provider for all our excess needs. Rachel: Mother, partner, teacher, writer, reader, crafter, cook, gardener, artist. Jamie: Father, partner, lecturer, therapist, would-be-politician, gardener, photographer, music lover.
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6 Responses to The garden in review!

  1. Liz says:

    Fantastic post 🙂 I can’t wait to read more!

  2. Rachel and Jamie says:

    Thanks Liz, glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  3. Sandra says:

    Wow! Y’all have accomplished so much in just a few years. I have a personal goal of becoming more self-sufficient by gardening, but have yet to start in earnest because of a few bad starts. I’m envious and impressed by your drive and embarrassed by my own laziness. 🙂

  4. Rachel and Jamie says:

    Thanks Sandra 🙂 It is a lot of work at first, but once you start it gets easier!

  5. Wow! Your garden is looking magnificent – thanks for sharing! You should join the Garden Share Collective next month, I’m sure the lovely folks from that group would love to hear more about what you’ve been doing:

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