State of the Union (call for help)

We've been living here on Lantanaland for about two and a half years. I always said that I wanted to just sit back for a few years to gauge the mood of the land, not to do any major works of infrastructure until we had an idea of where we would like the place to end up. I feel that I have a good feel for the land now. I know I have to cope and plan for snakes and goannas in my chook and duck pens. I know what sort of fence I need to keep in goats ( bloody decent ones) and I have a rough idea of how we can start shaping the land.

The first part came when my fantastic parents and grandmother gifted me a ride on lawnmower for birthday/Xmas. It let's me keep the house and surrounds neat when I'm busy. Last year we were away in February and the lawn got away from me. I can put in the big weekends knocking it back with brushcutter and push mower, but the big ride on allows me to keep it under control. Think of it like an old fasioned war or a zombie movie. I've establised my defensive zone but the grass is always trying to breach my perimiter. Now I am secure enough to start sending out sorties armed with cricket bats and shotguns to drive back the undead, I mean lantana.

The way that I think I will do this is to split the place up into smaller zones, fence them off and let the animals clear them out a bit. I can then get to bits of lantana, plant some trees and plan for each bit while the animals clear the next patch. Another key to this will be a winding path on an easy gradient down to the dam that I can quickly mow. This will be the core access to the rest of the property, I can keep it clear and work off it.

This probably means I will need some more animals, two cows and some milking goats. Maybe a few geese for a particular feast i have in mind. Goats, if you can keep the little bastards fenced, are great value. Should be tasty too. It all goes back to making my grass give me a valuable product, rather than just growing, get slashed, grow get slashed.

The other big consideration is whether to build a new house or add to this one for a future family. Eventually I want to run a cooking school that embraces paddock/garden to plate and the current house we are in would be a great little venue for such an enterprise, with a bit of work. A new house might allow us to put in things like a decent kitchen, a walking in insulated pantry and a secret library with a revolving bookcase door from which I CAN RULE THE WORLD, MWHAHAHAH.

Sorry.

Anyway the point is I would like to have a working bee day sometime in the middle of winter where I have a go at the first major project that will set Lantanaland on the path to perhaps one day being the cooking school that I want it to be. I'm not just asking for free graft either, for anyone who comes and helps, even if it's just for half an hour, I'll be offering food, food that you just won't get at a woolies or IGA. The centrepiece will be spitroasted chickens and duck, for sure and maybe some guinea fowl and geese. But these will be MY birds, raised here on my scraps and grain and grass. There will be pancakes made with my eggs and maybe milk and cream and butter. There will be homemade sausages for lunch, there will be smoked salmon and bacon from my cold smoker, veges and fruit from the garden.

What I'd like from you guys and girls who read this blogs is ideas, or send it to people who have ideas. I want as many suggestions for how I could do things or the way that you have done things or seen things done. I'd love for people to come help me too, but I'll put that call out when we get closer to the time, which is when those tasty, tasty chickens are ready to go into the oven.


Lantanaland from the iPhone