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We may finally have a solution to the mystery of the snowpea and watermelon seedlings, which went missing without a trace last term. A visit by Katrina to the garden late one afternoon found a flock of ibis making themselves quite at home there. Earlier this term we noticed rather significant pock marks in the mulch around the corn seedlings, which now make sense because they clearly fit the profile of an ibis's beak! So it seems the ibis were responsible for eating our seedlings! Not content with seedlings, they've apparently been devouring the juicy worms which are growing fat in our layered garden beds. We really want to keep our worms, as they continue to improve the soil daily. As a solution to this problem, we put thick layers of newspaper around the corn seedlings and mulched over the top with lucern. That should keep the ibis at bay!
At the garden we have a pile of spare car tyres, so we decided to make use of them to plant some potatoes. Grayson, Vincent and Ioan were keen potato planters, placing soil, followed by sprouted potato pieces, more soil and finally mulch in the bottom of the tyres, then watering well. Over the weeks, 4 out of 9 have grown into potato plants. As they grow, we are adding more soil and mulch, leaving part of the plant to stick out of the top. More tyre layers are added as the plants grow taller.
Rumi, Sam & Rueben took on the task of planting some pigeon pea seedlings (donated by Andrea) along one edge of our garden area. These plants will help to break down the soil, which is mostly clay, ready for planting fruit trees at a later time. They had their work cut out for them, as digging was quite difficult in the hard ground.