First watermelon harvested and banana talk

Ash

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Currently my family and I are on a small suburban patch of dirt that has surprisingly given us some fine fresh produce. We started off with a nice passionfruit tree that is in its 3rd year of bearing fruit, and it is plenty for the family and friends. I have harvested exquisitely tasting brocolli, okra and tomatoes. But the most impressive produce I have plucked from the tiny backyard vege patch is a small watermelon that looks pretty normal at first glance but the crisp and sweet taste of it transformed my senses dramatically.

I am now looking forward to real subsistence farming in the next phase as we prepare for a larger block of dirt to live on over the next few years...
 

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Mark

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That's a wonderful sized and nice looking watermelon for a backyard job! Watermelons aren't that easy to grow in the backyard so don't underestimate your achievement - very well done :twothumbsup:

When you compare or indeed are used to supermarket produce and then taste backyard produce it really is a wow factor every time isn't it. I find food gardening so addictive and I suppose that's why we kept expanding to where we are now.

Today I saw on the news a particular devastating strain of mosaic virus from the NT has been found on a property in northern QLD - it affects melons (cucumbers, watermelon, pumpkins, etc). I don't want to sound alarmist, but the more we grow ourselves the better insulated we are to unexpected commercial crop failures - not to mention all the other benefits of course.

Is the plant still going strong or is it getting a little too cold where you are for cucurbits?
 

Director

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Well, if you get any spares I can trade you for some avo's and macadamias. :)
 

Ash

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Mark, it does seem now the remaining melons are not growing much further and the recent chill has stifled the vines so I may not have much more this season. But I know for next time how I can go about this.

From my little patch there is only room for a few but when we finally expand there will be more to harvest and I would happily barter. :)
 
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Director

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No worries. Happy to drop some avos into the surgery if you'd like?
 

Director

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Are you in my neck of the woods (that is quickly becoming a concrete jungle)?
How are your avos growing around here?

Totally.

Avos are doing fine?

The bananas are coming along nicely as well but a bit too early to pick just yet. :)

(You'll need to PM me the surgery address though as your homepage link is kaput. :) )
 

Ash

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Bananas - I'll be hanging out myself to see if they do well in this more temperate climate
Yeah, unfortunately the website was taken down today as it is going through a server overhaul...
 

Mark

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Avocados grow remarkably well in Toowoomba even though it should be a little too cool for them there the volcanic soil compensates for the colder climate up there and the trees grow fantastic! Can't say the same for Caboolture sadly :(
 

Director

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Bananas - I'll be hanging out myself to see if they do well in this more temperate climate
Yeah, unfortunately the website was taken down today as it is going through a server overhaul...
Let me know when you're ready and I'll dig out some suckers for you. The stock is from 40 year old lady fingers, no GM and very little hybridisation (AFAICT). Just stick them in a easterly aspect for best results. On the odd years that we get frost they will go all brown and daggy but then reshoot in the spring. They fruit when they're ready but need to be harvested when they're at the right size and then left to rpein on the kitchen table.

 

Ann

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Beautiful melon Ash! We just planted sugar baby watermelon. I have heard they can be a challenge to grow. I hope ours turn out as nice as that one!
 

Ann

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I would love to be able to grow bananas and exotics here in Texas. Unfortunately one needs a greenhouse for that here. I am excited to start some pomegranates, they do well here. Olives also!
 

Mark

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I would love to be able to grow bananas and exotics here in Texas. Unfortunately one needs a greenhouse for that here.
You might be able to get away with a banana tree against a sunny wall in your climate and just nurse it through winter.