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Home Style Cooking - with a Twist

As a young person Roger wanted a garden like (both) of his grandfathers had had .  A variety of veggies, lots of berries and fruit trees.  He did not want a farm or to be out in the sticks, but he did want a workshop too and therefore a block which was bigger than generally available in the city.

Hot dry summers, possums and sheep had destroyed most of the previous gardening efforts before they purchased these properties - ‘tho the mulberry tree had been growing steadily for 150 years, the bay remained as a thicket and cherry plums a nuisance. 

Until they helped the town get a water supply in 1986 planting native trees was their only gardening success, then they installed a little Hardy-Pope microjet watering system (which is still working after nearly 30 years) and set about developing the garden proper. 

A variety of apples, pears, peaches, apricots, quinces, plums, nectarines, cherries, olive, fig, almond and walnuts

The garden boasts an asparagus bed, big raspberry patch, loads of strawberries, leeks grow wild here perennial scarlet runner beans

along with numerous rhubarb plants.

People ask “who does all the gardening?” They say “can’t you tell .. no-one”

In the ’70’s Roger had learned from David Holmgren about his concept of ‘Permaculture’ so he was interested to apply some of his principles to organise a low input by planting perennial vegetable varieties and allowing self seeding he used the watering system to create a variety wet and dry places, Ultimately, here in the hot dry summer, the watering regime determines what grows where in the veggie patch. 

Not so much creating an environment for a plant, rather managing a variety.

People say “You are lucky to have those apples and pears visible from the street.  Fruit on the trees attracts customers to your cafe.”

I say “luck has had nothing to do with it, we put extra soil there before we planted the trees”.

All of this concept reflects into the amazing foods available for your seasonal delight.