Saturday, May 12, 2012


Organic farming is hard work am I not even going to pretend that I am not rather stiff in the muscles, gardening is better exercise than Yoga, maybe not, but is does get you fit and I am getting a winter tan.

I might know a fair amount about planting and perma culture; but harvesting and packing for selling is a whole new ballgame. There is also a lot a routine involved, as I said previously some things simply have to be done and done at certain times, this does make for quite a lot of routine and I am not a big routine person, but that aside I am learning a lot. Different plants are handled and packed differently, Spinach does not mind a bit of water, but water just makes Lettuce soggy, so the Lettuce must be well drained after washing and before packing, stuff like that.

Part of the garden

Colin was a bit upset with me yesterday, I took too much initiative, thinking I am helping, but as he said, he knows the routine and the process and to be fair and honest, I do not. The fact is I appreciate his honestly and straight forwardness. Instead of  building up resentment and anger, just spit it out and get it over with, I like that kind of honesty and in the end I do think we understand each other better now.

I am busy making an Organic insect repellent, which I hope to sell, it is really a very basic but very effective concoctions with mostly Kakiebos (Stinking Robin or something like that in English), they grow all over the place so my raw material is free. This plant is consider a weed by the uninformed, I have to admit that they (Kakiebos) can do a hostile take-over; probably the reason it is seen as a weed. To make this organic spray you simply soak the leaves, with some Marigold flowers in water for about two weeks. You strain and use by spraying onto your plants. Fleas also do not like Kakiebos very much, so Kakiebos is also often used in Organic flea control on dogs (not sure about cats). The fact is most insect do not like the smell of Kakiebos. 

It is a rather sharp smell, but I do not find it altogether fowl smelling, although the final product is obtained from plants that have been rotting in water for two weeks, so that is rather smelly, even to humans. Most pesticides have a rather unpleasant smell and very often protective gear is needed when the stuff is sprayed, because you are handling lethal poisons, this Kakiebos concoction just smells bad, but does no harm, to you or the environment. This reminds me of a cartoon I saw the other day, it is this man spraying is crops with some chemical pesticides, while wearing mask and protective clothing and a little squirrel asks his if he also wears the mask and gear when he eats the products.

Laura, another Volunteer buy in the garden

There is a guy just up the road that farms exclusively with cabbages and when he met Colin the other day, he asked him “are you the guy doing the experimental farming?” This made me laugh, because if you think about it, who is really doing experimental farming, Colin with tried and tested methods in co-operation with nature, or somebody working against nature, poisoning plants and soil alike? I would rather think Mr. Cabbage is the one mindlessly experimenting, but he will obviously not see things that way.  Each one to his own and pop goes the world.

There is a tip on how to keep birds out of your fruit trees, hang your old DVD’s or CD’s in the tree; birds do not go near those shiny round things…

New Age scare crows, shiny DVD's in the trees

I am also on the short list for the position I applied for near Howick, the one as Organizational Assistant at Zuvuya.

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