Leiari Locky

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since Mar 29, 2012
Gippsland, Victoria
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Recent posts by Leiari Locky

Ooh, me too on how to shear a sheep. I have a drop spindle now, have made yarn and knitted a whole 3-inch square coaster with it (it was a small ball of yarn!) and am seriously looking into sheep breeds now. Only 2 sheep, so shearing them myself. A new skill to learn.

I'm planning to order a bunch of different sheep wool tops to spin this week so I can feel the difference between breeds. Also, some silk, Angora and Llama, because why not? Happy to post some thoughts if anyone is interested.
If you have clay it's probably easier to get it going again with a couple of light soaks, the aerating will help with that. I'd add some Seasol/seaweed solution too before any actual fertiliser, let it come up and see what you have to work with. If you end up adding new seed hold off on fertilising till that's up. Good luck with it.
6 months ago
Comfrey is excellent around fruit trees, just keep in mind it can end up more than 2 feet high and 3 across and give your lemon tree enough space. Comfrey can overwhelm smaller plants with its big leaves. It might die back a bit in your climate - I had one just west of Sydney that was fantastic, looked scruffy in winter but stayed there, but the plants here in Eastern Victoria disappear entirely.
I can't help with your questions but I would love to see pics of the colours and a know a bit more about the process. We have a lot of avocados coming through the house and the colours sound lovely.

Is there any of it left? Hard to tell in the pic. I'm pretty sure what the US calls Bermuda we call Couch grass, lots of low skinny runners, happy to go under and over anything, but makes a lovely tough lawn? It should still be around under the sand, under the sheds even, depending how long they've been there, and giving it some air and water will have it popping up in a week. After that, I'd suggest you reseed major bare patches and topdress those. In a few weeks, you'd have a better idea of the overall condition.

We have a reasonable amount of couch cover in the front paddock - our place was empty for three months over a very dry spring/summer and after we moved in there was some autumn rain, but I didn't irrigate the paddock at all. The grass sits more or less in stasis till it rains then kicks off again. So hopefully you have grass there just waiting for some TLC.
6 months ago
I'd love to have a go at basket weaving, or any kind of grass weaving. Weaving in general? There's lots of interesting ideas for small looms around and fibre/fabric/proper actual rug weaving looks fun. I've just started embroidery, planning to make some pretty shopping bags, with my slowly improving sewing skills. If anyone has an old treadle singer I would adore a care and use tutorial! That's off topic though.

I've been knitting for almost a year and am eyeing off drop spindles too, (and researching sheep breeds, but that's getting ahead of myself) so more on that, if it's not already up here somewhere. With winter about to really kick in I'm wanting to try all sorts of things. Felted boots would be nice and warm!
I'll start some experiments with the water then.

Actually, when it comes to compost tea, can I just, say, use a 1000 litre tank, fill it with green stuff, add water, sit for x amount of time, let some out (it's an old calf feed container with a tap in the bottom and hole in the top) dilute, use and just continue adding more grass and water? That's a thing people have been doing forever isn't it? I have other herbs and weeds I can add, so it wouldn't just be Kikuyu. 95% Kikuyu, but not all...  

That would shift it completely from problem to bonus fertiliser. The problem is the solution and all.
Google has a few results that suggest six weeks till it's ready to use, so a two month fertilising schedule seems feasible.

I also remember one of Peter Andrews books suggesting mulching Kikuyu with Kikuyu would help control it. Long term probably but I have the time and space to try lots of things.
8 months ago
We do have absolutely lovely soil under the bits that have already come out! So there is a plus to it.

I have a couple of old baths for water that I could ferment it in, and a barrel, how long is enough to kill it so that I can safely compost it? I don't trust my heap to get hot enough to deal with it otherwise. So far it's been piled on bare spots in the paddock and left to dry - at least if it survives and roots there I have grass where it's useful.
8 months ago
We moved away from our house for a couple of years and came back to find it's less garden and more 'raised Kikuyu lawn with occasionally visible brick edging'. Round up isn't an option, hand weeding has been somewhat successful, does anyone have a success story on this kind of situation? Or pointers? Encouragement? It's kind of daunting.

We have 2 and a half acres in eastern Victoria, (Australia), so no snow, but I'm hoping the cooler weather coming will slow the grass down a bit. I've focused on removing any visible above ground bits and as much underground as possible. All new planting will be annuals for a couple of years so I can redig after each crop comes out and catch any runners. I'm working a bed at a time - the current one is 20m by 5m, bordered by the driveway on one long side and paddock on the other, only half badly overrun. It was a mix of citrus, herbs, flowers and vegies. The rest are/were smaller but have no delineated edges right now and were fruit trees, grapes, vegies and herbs.. We didn't have this much kikuyu before but there was a horse with access everywhere and it seems to have eaten everything else.

There are some parts I can dig a trench to cut off the roots and cover with plastic, but a lot of it is in the mixed orchard/forest garden in progress. The trees will eventually shade the grass out, but most are only 4 or 5 years old and not doing too well with the grass around them. We dug out a couple of small citrus and found kikyuy all through the root ball. It's possible to remove from those size trees but the bigger ones, not so much.

On the bright side, I can do a complete redesign of the garden because anything moveable is being moved while the grass comes out.

So, anyone else dealt with this and won?

8 months ago
I have a few of brands I like, mostly Australian.

Kookai is a flashy upmarket fashion brand that also happens to do solid good quality merino tops and dresses - mostly of the cropped/skintight/low scoop neck sort, but there are exceptions worth looking for. My favourites have all been found on ebay for between $12 and $30 with postage, so they end up pretty affordable. The best ones are long sleeved crew neck dresses or tops that are a double layer of fabric. I've been living in mine since moving back south to Victoria. Dresses for out in town, tunic and roll neck tops for weeding in. I'm looking at the sleeveless dresses for wearing to bed.

Ktena knitting mills does Merino Skins thermal underwear - my original pair is still warm and soft, a few holes and I replaced the waist elastic, but they're 6ish years old and were worn most days for most of the year for 4 of those. They're around $50.

Smitten (Australian, in Tasmania) does high end merino, dresses, tops, thermals, lots of lovely stuff, $100 and up retail, occasionally comes up secondhand. So far good quality, though I think the Kookai fabric is softer.

Also worth checking on ebay, Country Road does nice long merino cardigans that make a fantastic dressing gown. Light and warm, mine was a bargain at $25 posted. Also lovely with a dress in town on chilly days.
Other fashion brands I've tried - Witchery does lightweight merino, more delicate. Metalicus is thin, wouldn't buy again. My Scope brand top is thick, a little prickly but warm and comfy. David Lawrence was ok but wouldn't bother again.  

I machine wash all of my clothes with wool detergent and sometimes on the wool wash - I do have a front loader though, not sure I'd do that in a top loader.

Hubby is fond of his Icebreaker (New Zealand) top, he's had it 15+ years and it's still very warm, with only a few small holes. I don't mind the brand but it's not warm enough for the price for me, even secondhand. Okay as a light weight mid season layer.
9 months ago