Micheal Keenan Interviews Jackie O'Reilly fo SA Life!

Destination Flavour - Oreillys Orchard Organic Produce!

O'Reilly's Orchard

O'Reilly's News - September 2005

 This week has seen the giant leap into spring and an action plan that leaves me reeling.  I may now groan on occasion about my “jobs to do” list that holds no hope of being fulfilled, but my passion grows in tune with the plant life.  Each day is exciting and over these next few months I am driven by a real feeling of verve flowing through my bloodstream.

 

Fresh vegetable beds are being tilled with our homemade composts.

 Onion seedlings are being transplanted and seeds of carrot, spring onion, radish, silver beet, lettuces, snow peas and beetroot have been sown directly.  Capsicum, eggfruit and tomato along with various herb seeds have all been started in trays, to be planted out late October / November.  Next week will see zucchini and squash seed, sown direct and towards the end of the month I will risk the first sowing of sweet corn.  The asparagus patch has been weeded and is showing a few early spears and there are some Nicola seed potatoes, with stubby, strong green shoots waiting to be planted out.  We will cover these with a thick layer of wheaten straw to protect them from frost as they emerge.

 

The orchard is ablaze in flower just now and the main focus here at the moment is weed control, fertilising and mulching.  This involves a great deal of forking, shovelling and brush cutting, which I actually quite enjoy and I am careful not to over do myself on any one task, so that I remain strong and healthy for the next day.

 For the last few years I have been planting borders and pockets of native vegetation and there is now another 50 odd mixed plants ready to go out – I am looking forward to growing very old so that I can watch all this work, turn into a jungle.

 

My dairy does have recently kidded and all are settling well into their lactations.  Although I am stripping my milkers out once a day at the moment, I have left the kids to run full time with their mothers as I am planning to sneak off for three days, in order to attend the IFOAM conference in Adelaide in two weeks.  Fortunately David will be home on holidays in order to feed them and generally keep an eye out.

 Disbudding and tattooing of kids has been done and the bucks destined for the freezer will be wethered shortly.  Although I have been handling and tying up the kids being kept, some of them are still fairly frisky little things and it’s amazing how strong and savvy they are.

 

Lastly we have a new doggy addition to the family – a decision not undertaken lightly…a Deerhound pup, whose peers are our impeccably behaved 10yo red kelpie, Missy and 8yo Maremma, Billy Boy.