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Urban Garden Update January 2014

We’ve been so busy here at Koanga that I haven’t had a chance to post Kay’s updates about the Urban Garden – we are getting huge amounts of food from it and it looks amazing.  Here’s a summary of what’s been going on in the last few months.

November 2013

We began installing our 200 sq m urban garden over the past 6 months. We planted the 40 sq m Bio intensive vege beds in September, having planted the fruit trees over winter and having already installed the chickens and the rabbits.

We have been focusing on getting animal food planted in every available space including all the paths around the garden and site so we can become sufficient in rabbit and chickens greens asap. We have not yet installed the guinea pig tractor system.

We began harvesting veges from the garden in early November but did not begin collecting data until November 21st! We harvested the following in this 10 days from the garden

50 organic high quality eggs                                            $25

22 Odells lettuces worth $1.50 each                             $33

Welsh Bunching onions each day $1.95 a bunch      $19.50

2 kgs of  courgettes 1 a day @ $7 kg                             $14

That makes a total of $91.50 for the first month  $25 eggs and $66.5 veges


We are harvesting comfrey, chicory, alfalfa and clover/grass from the site for daily chicken greens and rabbit greens, but we are wild harvesting tagasaste to feed the rabbits. (Rabbits can’t live on fresh greens alone, but tagasaste is a complete food for them).

We are still buying in fertiliser to get the minerals in the beds balanced and levels high, so we get high brix food, and we are still feeding the chickens organic sprouted corn, and adding chicken minerals and seaweed to their corn ,until the worm farm and the soldier fly farm are in production and/or the compost heap is full of decomposers


 December 2014

130 organic high quality eggs value                  $65

courgettes  18kgs                                                  $126

Welsh bunching onions 30 small bunches      $58

Odell’s Lettuces  64  @$1.50 each                      $96

Daikon Tokinashi 50kgs    $5 kg                       $250

Kaiapoi bush beans    5.7kgs @  $9kg                $51

Magenta Spreen 6 bunches @$3                         $18

Chives 10 bunches @ $1.95                                  $19.5

Lemons 10 kgs @ $5                                               $50

Total $733!!!!!!! Unbelievable … and there is way more to come……. Watch this space!!!!

This month we are still wild harvesting tagasaste, we are learning that rabbits don’t eat it when it is seeding so it works well to harvest trees as you need the feed then they will all grow at slightly different times meaning new growth all the time.

Still feeding sprouted corn and minerals and seaweed to chickens.

Using our vermiliquid  to feed the fruit trees and comfrey, and harvesting chicken and rabbit greens from the site daily.

The guinea pig tractor track around the garden is now ready to be harvested by guinea pigs but until we have them will need to harvest ourselves for the chickens to compost!

We’ll improve our data collecting systems next month, to maximize info for us all, it’s looking better and better and wilder and wilder as we maximize harvesting sunlight in this 200 sq m model urban garden.


January 2014


We’ve had a super exciting month in the urban garden, with the birth of our kits to Sally who has never had any pellets or industrial grain or food. Sally has been raised on tagasaste and greens only . We are going to keep one of her male kits to be our future buck, as we’re keen to be selecting for rabbits that do well on home grown food. Thanks to Christy who has been a wonderful mother for the rabbits, they are far calmer now.

Our other exciting news is that we now have a guinea pig tractor, thanks to Cody,  on the herbal ley around the 40 sq m vege garden. We have at this stage only 1 female and 1 make so we are still looking for more females if you know of any available.  Once the meat from the rabbits and guinea pigs comes on line the range of nutrients coming in from this garden will increase significantly, as will the value of the produce coming in.


We have had significant growth on many of the fruit trees and vines so Cody helped Christy to espalier them against the wires and across the top of the pergola and chicken pen .

The top bar hive is looking good at this stage too. It was originally a swarm we were given and we had a few problems but Cody and his bee team are working wonders with the bees this season, and we have 5 happy hives ( I in the urban garden) .

We are doing some trials to see which potato cultivars will produce tubers in tall containers, not all do and we want to know which cultivars definately do…

Things are looking great for a 6 month old garden.

We harvested the following from our 40 sq m garden  this month, and we just keep seeing more and more potential.  I can’t wait to get the wicking beds growing but I must be patient!!!!

Eggs                               131                    $65

Corn                     50 cobs @   $1          $50

Basil 2 bunches @ $3                           $6

Magenta spreen  9 bunches @$6      $54

Cucumber 2 @$1.50                              $3

Courgette 20kgs @ $5                           $100

Lettuce 50  [email protected] $1.50                    $75

Welsh bunching onion 20 bunches @ $1.50                    $30

Green beans 2kgs @ $7                        $14

Beetroot  5.5kgs @ $7                           $40

Runner beans 2.4 kgs                            $22

Beet greens 300                                     $5

Total $464

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