veggie patch paradise

Many years ago, I saw this picture in a magazine and have coveted this veggie patch ever since. It is Pete’s Patch, a working vegetable garden in the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens, Hobart, made famous by local legend Peter Cundall.

1.Pete's patch

There was a veggie plot of sorts when we moved in, with two long, narrow, concrete edged beds and a big space in the middle for spuds.

2.before

Our new design incorporated the existing beds as paths and we set about building.

3.during1

We procured reclaimed hardwood roof trusses from the local salvage yard to make the boxes.

4.during25.during36.during47.during58.during6

The centrepiece was designated for our fruit salad tree – one tree bearing lemons, limes, mandarins & oranges.

9.during7

The posts were sunk and braced in readiness for the concrete.

10.during911.during10

I was eager to get some vegetables going. We ordered a truckload of loam and, after laying six sheets of newspaper, filled the boxes with a lovely soil/ mushroom compost mix. The planting began.

12.during1113.during12

Another truck, another load – road base this time – was wheelbarrowed and spread along the paths.

14.during13

I don’t mind admitting the whacker packing is man’s work!

15.during14

Seven months into the project, the first bricks were laid.

16.during15

We collected old bricks from wherever we could find them. Fortunately for us, a house nearby burned to the ground (it was empty at the time) and we scavenged most from there.

17.during16

Michael laid, I laboured, just over 3,000 bricks!

18.during19

Now to keep the critters out! A double layer of shade cloth around the bottom also helps with protection from the wind. Wire around the top to deter any climbers.

22.during20

Almost done.

48.finished124.during22

The “verandah” of wire around the top is supposed to keep possums out because they won’t climb upside down.

26.during23a27.during24

Michael very cleverly made the doors to fit the angles of the slope

28.during25

and we were finished.

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Now we can just enjoy the veggies.

Or so we thought! Following a stealth attack by parrots, we decided we needed a roof. Gable supports and bird netting did the trick.

46.finished2

With some left over bricks & timber and an old laundry tub, Michael constructed a fantastic washstand to complete my dream.

47.washstand23.during21

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