Building a vegetable patch – our hits and misses

With a bit of spare land any self respecting green warrior must have at least a semi serious vegetable garden and orchard. Nothing beats the feeling of drinking a smoothie made from freshly picked organic fruit and greens from the garden.

We obtained advice from many sources but we quickly learned that trial and error is the best teacher. We opted for raised garden beds as they are easier on the back and protect the crop from hungry wombats.  We also discovered in the off season, they are a good place for recycling/composting rabbit litter (when the compost area overflows).

As of today, we have 9 raised vegetable beds, and more than 15 fruit trees, (various apples, a range of citrus, apricot, plumcot, macadamia and a pear tree).

The first golden rule was to choose a location with as much sun exposure all year round as possible. We installed the fruit trees along the driveway and the  garden beds as shown below on the sloping area, facing north, outside the kitchen window.

Raised beds need to be filled up and we chose straw hay bales along with other organic matter, cardboard, and rabbit litter.  This is all topped off with our own compost or mushroom compost from the local nursery. We are able to minimize the amount of compost purchased by composting and using large amounts of waste from our many rescued animals.  One thing to be aware of is that rabbit bedding/hay/droppings etc, eventually breaks down to make good compost but it needs time.

The following pictures show the process as it evolved over several years.