The vegie patch is looking a bit wild and woolly after so much wild La Nina weather this year, but lucky for us our favourite yacon and sweet potato fare best when planted and ignored! The loofas and pumpkin have also decided that they can manage their own affairs just fine and are launching on. The Hass avocado was the only casualty of the never ending wet season, so a new mate will be needed for the Bacon avocado. The Blue Java banana is just starting to fruit and we were very happy with our aerial potato trial- very much a winner over ground potatoes in a monster wet season!
The best time to plant a tree was 10 years ago, and the next best time is now. Our orchard was the first thing we planted when we arrived at Honeyvale Farm. It was lovingly watered with grey water and protected from rabbits with tree guards. Despite a few break ins from the cows most trees have survived well. The first few mulberries never tasted so sweet! After searching far and wide for interesting species, our orchard holds date palms, tsaba nut, bananas, coffee, macadamia, pecans, mulberries, olives, mangoes and tropical varieties of apples, nectarines, chestnuts, walnuts and pears. We are adding syntropic agroforestry concepts with pigeon pea and other biomass additions. One day soon geese will graze between the rows to fertilise our orchard.
In April 2023 our 750 grafted pecan trees will arrive ready to plant. We can't wait! Pecans are a great choice for this area as they have very few local pests and diseases. They have a long taproot adept at cycling nutrients from deep in the profile of our weathered volcanic soils. Pecans are also tall and deciduous, providing great opportunities for winter interrow cropping or grazing. Here are our trees growing steadily in Pat Connelly's awesome Mcleans Ridges greenhouse full of the next generation of macadamias and pecans.