Saturday, July 30, 2011

Cabbage has babies!

With  6-month rule of thumb for cabbage harvest, the four cabbages should be ready for dinner by August. They are not as healthy as the last attempt in Putrajaya. At least it answers the question "Can cabbage be grown in Tanah Merah?" Now they have babies around them, 35 altogether. I may try them on land this time round..... that would be quite a sight. There is a need for netting as well, anything  from cool climate cant grow in the open. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

rooftop gardening - harvest festival!

It is Pesta Menuai in Malay langguage or Tadau Kaamatan in  Kadazan langguage or the more popular  Harvest Festival. So the day finally came to rejoice over 3 months long endurance  with  rooftop gardening.  Dato Sri Mustapha Mohamed came to grace the occasion. Over a thousand turned up to support the colourful event, ranging from kindergarden children, students, mothers, fathers and as Sulong noted even elderly grandmothers.

The first chili harvested.

Dato Sri Mustapha put it in a decorative basket.

As planned, there were colouring contest for kindergarden children, essay competition for secondary school students, photography contest, flower and veggie arrangements for the ladies. So the crowd came in large numbers for the day. Exhibition booths were set for agencies/companies with agriculture interest. If tarian Sumazau is popular in Sabah during Tadau Kaamatan, over here kindergarden children showed something colourful with their steps.

the crowd, mothers, fathers and children

The crowd, front row

a little girl wishing to have clearer view

pa system spaghetti wires..... and the crowd

Front row:  Fauzi, Kamarudin, Shab and Zairon

Dato Rohani was happy with the large turnout

Dato Ikmal came too.

Tanah Merah DO, Dato Ikmal and Hj Md Nor
Nik sharing a joke.

girls from nearby school

The registration going on..

The ladies helping out.

Kakdah was there too, far right, accompanying Pn Normah.

MC..... Radio Kelantan DJ Kak Wan and Rugayah
handling earlier events; 
singing, dancing and nasyid.

boys and girls queuing up for their show.


a different group, a different dance

the smile..., confidence building up.

the children holding hands

another show, nasyid ready to get up the stage



Dikir Barat

Mail Anak Kala,  an icon in Dikir Barat

MC..... ready for the main event.

Kakdah, front row with spectacles and her friends.

Dato Sri Mustapha Mohamed going up to the rooftop.

crowding over TokPa 

Group Photo for the day.

It is about putting rooftop gardening across to the community,
about educating younger generation to be innovative
about saying Thank You God for bountiful harvest.

Rooftop gardening is no more foreign to the community. Everyone who get to the rooftop and briefed about rooftop gardening will get a certificate ~ friends of rooftop gardening. The number should swell to thousands by the end of the year. The team is targeting to be in Malaysian Book Of Record on the biggest number of rooftop gardening visitors!  Now the team is entering into the next phase, that is marketing. They should work out where to sell chili centil. There is a long list of potential buyers. The first harvest is about 80 kilogram, sold the same day!

(Thanks Nik for hundreds of lovely photos)

Earlier posts on rooftop gardening. 

bangchik and kakdah

Thursday, July 21, 2011

pineapple express

We grew pineapples, but so far no fruits. I am not very particular about going all out to get decent harvest. The four plants we have serve well as another landscape element. They are spiky with exotic patterns and very ornamental. They provide slight deviation from otherwise complete green and green all over the garden.

Farmers will take side shoots as seedlings. I took the crown at the top of pineapples as seedlings. Crowns are not the best option for serious pineapple growers. But it's enough to fulfill the intended purpose.... being ornamental. So crowns are not pineapple express...., they will just grow and there is no telling when the fruits will appear.

I read somewhere about pineapple express, which in fact is about  meteorological phenomenon occurring  around Hawaiian Islands extending to any location along the Pacific coast of North America .  Its  actually atmospheric river, water vapour transported over a narrow corridor in the air.

I am waiting for the four pineapple  plants 
to speed up on the express lane for fruits extravaganza!

bangchik and kakdah

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Papaya, all female.

The other day Zali, and Ya were quite surprised to see all four papaya plants in our little garden, female. I tell them a technique  "scoop seeds from a ripe papaya, there should be more females than males. Both sexes differ in colour and size, take the females and germinate them!"

It was Farah our daughter who told me this. She got it from one of her neighbours in Kepala Batas, Kedah. I am not in a position to really confirm the technique, but somehow it worked on me. So it is nice to see all female papaya. And they are showing off little fruits, telling everyone that they really are females and ready for more little fruits.... I thought at seven months, they are rather quick to produce flowers and fruits. The last attempt over in Putrajaya took much longer, almost a year which finally died after a bout of termite attack.

plant no 1, first fruit

plant no 2,  first fruit  

plant no 3,  first fruit 

Earlier posts/pictures on Papaya:

 bangchik and kakdah

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Lettuce against all odds.

I have checked around if  anyone had grown lettuce around here in Tanah Merah. The answer is unanimously NONE. I was discussing with Kakdah if we should try salad and grow as many as we can. I finished the whole packet for germination. I guess it's almost 100% germination!

lettuce in brown plastic pots




The growing media consists of cocopeat, a bit of peatsoil and fertiliser. We apply organic fertiliser and spray foliar fertiliser once a week.

Kakdah had a few cut  for dinner. There is a hint of mild bitterness in them. I googled, and it says about lettuce really a cool weather plant, therefore extra heat will make it bitter,  a signal for them ready to go for flowering... Some studies mentioned about too much nitrogen, thus bitter. I am figuring out the best approach to make it less bitter.

 lettuce in brown plastic pots, and some still in germination tray

Some are still in germination tray... some already in pots. I thought the soft green colour is sweet...  lovely. So, with so many lettuce, I wonder what Kakdah has in mind....

bangchik and kakdah

Friday, July 15, 2011

dancing with stars in the garden

Stars had been displayed in many forms, 
always with joyous mood. 
Structures were
 built  to study stars, the heaven above.
Stars had been central to
the existence of mankind.

Stars in art

Star in art

Star in art


I look around for images of star in the garden.... 
Some are quite close.

Funny because, 
we look up to see stars in the sky 
but we have to look down to see glorious stars in the garden

Like stars in the sky, 
flowers had never been associated with sadness, 
always glorious, joyous and happy.

bangchik and kakdah
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