mason jar fun

Mason jars get used for all sorts of things around here. Science experiments, sun teas, food storage, paint mixing…they are on high rotation. I came across a blog post about salads-in-a-jar by Cassie of the back to her roots blog … Read More

the garden of abundance

My garden is a riot of self sown and planted beauty. Spike, the hedgehog we released for the rescue centre has done a stellar job of keeping slugs out of the garden edibles and medicinal plants. It may look like … Read More


Jed bought me this artichoke plant last summer. It’s taller than I am now and we counted 12 artichokes growing. I love the grey sculptural leaves and the produce. The cats and Spike the hedgehog likes the shady cave around … Read More

More mushroom magic

Exploring a remote area enroute to an open home recently, we found amanita mushrooms. The whole area smelt very mushroomy and we spotted about 6 different kinds. Borrowing a mushroom indentification book from the library was a good idea. We’ve … Read More

Steiner school apple harvest picnic

We drove up a a long forgotten driveway to find a magically unkempt apple orchard of old varieties this morning. The rain stayed away long enough for our local Steiner school kindergarten classes to gather and wander the vast orchard … Read More

fruit flowers

Did you know there is a five petalled flower inside every apple? Slice it sideways…and there it is. And a four petalled flower inside feijoa’s. Slice a red cabbage in half lengthways and it looks like a tree.  This sort … Read More

grounding grumpsters

The definition of the word ‘grounding’ is different in our household now than the one I knew growing up. Grounding then, meant the punishment for some offence. Probably coming home after curfew as a teenager. Mostly a threat, rather than … Read More

natural pest control

We have had the pleasure of watering a neighbour’s garden while they were away. They are truly great folks and their garden and land reflects that. It’s been a delight to look after it for them.  Jed has been clearing … Read More

tomato relish and east west organics

This summer has been a stonker. So little rain, the grass is brown and the birds are lining up for a splash in the water we put out for them. We made the hard decision to stop watering the garden … Read More

Local Goodness: POD Gardening

Local Goodness. It’s a new series here at GrowMama.I’ll be profiling or taking a peek into various cool businesses, products and places aroundabout here. We’re talking eco-minded, progressive smaller endeavours, with a definite more’ish quality.How to define the boundaries of what … Read More

wilderland and reStore

 I brought home a jar of this. Raw manuka honey from Wilderland Community in the Coromandel.  Jed and i stumbled across their stall in the wee Whitianga market place. Beautiful fresh organic produce.  It’s a good feeling to buy delicious organic … Read More

garden woes and plant medicine workshop -spaces left!

                                          Borage flowers and seeds. The garden has been a bit neglected of late. It is always like this. I … Read More

flowers in the vegetable patch

The vegetable garden is a joint project. This year Jed insisted on planting some flowers as well as vegetables. I grow herbs for medicinal and culinary use but haven’t grown any flowers for the pure joy of it since I … Read More

the first day of summer

I hereby proclaim today the first day of summer. The sun shone, the kids were swimming in the stream and a beer may have been imbibed on the deck before the dishes got done this evening. The first beautiful warm … Read More

heart and soul gardening

These past few years we’ve been sitting on the fence. About whether to stay in our glorious wee corner of the world, or move on. And so, i haven’t thrown myself heart and soul into the garden here. We always … Read More

this moment

{this moment} – A friday ritual. A single photo- no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment i want to pause, savour, and remember. Inspired by Amanda Soule. Go HERE to see her … Read More

bits in the sun

 The sun has been shining. And i mean unencumbered by clouds. Those sentences have not been uttered much this summer. But the weather over the Easter weekend has been stupendously perfect. Swims were had.  Picnics sneaked in whenever possible.  Crafting was … Read More

the autumn garden

 I love a garden that can keep producing food even with severe neglect. Go permaculture i say. Beans for dinner… … with fresh pesto. Plus some to pop into the freezer to cheer a winter night with the taste of summer. … Read More

kereru carousing

 For those of you not familiar with New Zealand native birds…this one is like a bus in flight. You can hear them flying from ages off. They are big and used to be much prized in the pot. Hence their … Read More

the corn that Jed grew

Most years i have a hard time supplying corn with enough water to grow well. Not this year, it’s been a particularly soggy (and chilly) summer so far. This has it’s advantages. The sweetcorn Jed planted has been a stonker … Read More

mama in garden. by jed

Every now and then Jed picks up my camera (it’s usually around) and takes a few pictures. Mostly unbeknownst to me. I like the peeks into his perspective his photos offer. Much of the morning was spent wrestling the garden … Read More


Landing. Thats what i call the process of coming home after being away. Thats what we’re doing at the moment. Landing: a process of re-discovering home.It involves:1) eating wild greens straight from the garden. It’s been so cloudy and generally … Read More

festive fragments

This is my solution to the waste of buying gift wrapping only to throw it away. I bought a bunch of green and red cotton jersey awhile back and have cut various shapes and ribbons out to use as wrapping … Read More

gecko and friends

Children see the world so differently. Try as i might, i don’t see as much as them. Jed found this gecko over the edge of our deck a few days ago. It’s been greatly exciting to see him/her come and … Read More


Keep it simple, keep it simple is sort of my mantra at the moment. Especially as we heal from this icky sickness we had ’round here. So much going on. The garden is no exception. Our strawberries haven’t quite begun … Read More


Rummages (even at speed) in op shops have been rare lately. As Jed gets older and my work from home picks up so does the pace. I make a concerted effort to live fairly simply. Fully, i like to think, … Read More


Jed came running in to tell me about a ‘bee’s nest’ he found being built on our deck. Out came his insect book and another great learning experience unfolded. We talked about the differences between wasps and bees, their nests, … Read More


When in our local organic shop awhile back, i asked Jed if he would like to choose a treat. He chose little violet and pea seedlings. We are enjoying watching his little spring garden grow and blossom in one of … Read More


So, we have had monarch butterfly caterpillars living inside on their swan plants this season. We brought them in as they were getting eaten by something outside. Watching them grow and caring for them has been a job Jed has … Read More

gecko visit

Look at what we found on our deck! We often see or hear skinks running for cover but i have never seen a gecko in all my bushroaming days. They used to be plentiful. Cats, rats and stoatlike critters have … Read More

vintage spring

Freesias will always be the herald of spring to me. The smell takes me back to whole days of freeplay outdoors in my garden as a child. Flowers hand picked by us give me great simple joy. The op shop/ … Read More

snapshots of a wintry day

A handful of vintage button deliciousness from Lets Go Retro. My treat. Dreaming up which project these will adorn. The vastness of beach to ourselves and the wind. I think we are down here as much during the winter as … Read More

Synchronicity and signs

From ‘our’ orchard. Cool tractor and the kind family that runs the orchard (and has done for three generations) is more than happy for J to have a ‘drive’. Happiness. The last few days i have dreamed up a project … Read More

orchard abundance

A snapshot of a corner of my kitchen. The fruit bowl overfloweth. Huge apple cucumbers to save for next year’s seed, dried beans in a jar from the garden, tomato and basil sauce bottled from the garden, fresh parsley, feijoa’s … Read More

snapshots from our night

One snapshot in pictures: our newly discovered garden resident. Monsieur le ‘edge’og.And one snapshot in words: J’s been having trouble getting to sleep lately. I lay with him and read my book a little while. I thought he was asleep … Read More

summer critter antics

The days are heavy with the sound of cicada’s making the most of the summer days. There are hundreds singing out there today. And that’s just in our garden. Little friend piwakawaka here. Or fantail. Native to NZ and just … Read More

summer in a jar

They keep on coming. Caterpillars, vegetable bugs, neighbours and birds are getting their fair share too. I love the continuity and connectedness i feel when i preserve garden goodness at harvest time. I flash back to making strawberry jam for … Read More

magic beanstalks

The wonder and the serious work that these boys put into harvesting the first round of beans was just incredible to behold. We’d been eating the young green beans earlier in the summer but there was something magical about choosing … Read More

seven days of blogging…celebrating the waning of summer

Such yumminess. The chubby hands AND the tomato. I don’t like eating raw tomato. I wish i did. Every year i try. Once i grew eighteen different varieties in search of the one i could love raw. Apparently it was … Read More


Still into stick insects around here. “Awwww, he loves me mama”. “I am going to take him for a ride on my bike”. You know, with all the stick insect fraternising all summer there has not been one fatality . … Read More

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