wet season arrives …

Last night I had a 2metre python in my tent, couldn’t catch it, so it hung out all night not far from our bed …. consequently I didn’t get much sleep !!  Most probably trying to make a late night snack out of Soxy the new kitten (who sleeps on my bed) – a small handful of black & white fluff.  Soxy the kitten and Safari the dog have become best buddies, brothers from another mother you could say.

IMG20170403115141.jpgWell the wet season arrived in January and hit the driveway hard gouging tracks into the clay, after a few adventures sliding backwards & sideways at a reasonably fast pace in my 4WD I got it graded and filled with rock as a temporary measure until the dry season, when I’ll need to spend alot more money and time on it.  1489120675809The drainage around the house has carried the water away beautifully and apart from a few storms where the rain was sideways through the house, we managed to stay dry and have indoor fires most nights – yes it gets cold up here !!

1491748845254I’ve just finished cobbing in two casement windows, putting them in sideways and will cob a half lotus flower into each, a beautiful simple design by Maia. IMG20170208165458.jpg We’ve also done alot of cutting glass bottles with metho/string/fire and embedding them into the walls, time consuming but well worth it to see the final wall with the morning sun shining through the coloured glass, stunning !!

We outgrew the small greywater kitchen garden quite quickly so I made a larger square one which is brimming with water loving plants – bananas, taro, kangkong, tropical spinach, gingers etc.. Everything has easily doubled in size in the garden since the wet season began, such a pleasure to see all the edible plants overgrown, flowering & fruiting.  It won’t be long before the pawpaw and bananas are fruiting also, can’t wait !!IMG_1490772584571.jpg

My basic solar system started deteriorating in the amount of charge the batteries were holding, turns out the batteries are past it so I’ll need to invest in new ones.  At the same time I bought three decent solar panels , 240volt each so will upgrade my invertor and have a decent solar system which should give me lighting at night even, wow, what a treat – might even be able to run a washing machine !!

IMG20170418081053.jpgThe nature around us is constantly changing, at the moment we have alot of spiders, especially the large golden orbs which the girls feed march flies to, also lots of butterflies, especially Ulysses & Cairns Birdwing, microbats flitting in & out of the house at night (even in the tent), fireflys and the usual array of birds (seeing alot more Noisy Pittas at the moment jumping around the place) as well as the usual array of other birds, bees & bugs.  This is also termite season, so we’ve had gazillions of them some nights we had to turn our headtorches off because there were too many !! The girls found that canetoads eat termites, great a good use for canetoads, finally !! This photo is a bio-luminiscent mushroom that grows here …. yes it GLOWS in the dark !!!

IMG20170328163745.jpgI found out recently that the farmer who I get my straw from in the Tablelands is growing Hemp, he thinks I should be able to start purchasing large bales of it in a few months time for my cobbing mixture which is really exciting. IMG20170328163927.jpgHemp is definately a superior product to the Rhodes Grass for cobbing as it is more termite and fungus resistant and not as appealing to rodents.  Looking forward to seeing my locally grown hemp cob house evolve … watch this space !!!

Through the heat of the summer we have spent most afternoons down at the local river, nothing better than a cool dip at the end of the day, bliss !!!

 

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