Getting ready to grow.

About 20 meters behind our main cottage is a strange-looking circular  structure built out of stone.  It looks like a round cottage without windows or a roof.  This is what is commonly called a boma here in South Africa.

A boma used to be built as an enclosure for livestock to keep them safe from the wild animals.  Traditionally it was built out of branches of thorn trees.  Nowadays, most homes in our area have bomas for a completely different purpose – it is an entertainment and braai (BBQ) area closed off from the bush for safety (in area’s with dangerous animals) and protection from the wind.  Our boma is built-in a really peculiar place – its way out behind the house where all my braaing and the pool and entertainment area is in front of the main cottage.  I decided that I would convert it into something else. My first thought was to put a roof on it and use it as a store-room or a cheese factory, however, I have finally decided to use it as an enclosure to protect my veggie garden.

If I planted my veggies in the open they would all be eaten up over night by buck, porcupines, warthogs and baboons, so I need to enclose the patch.  Also, because of the heat here, it’s better to cover your veggie patch with some shade cloth.  Plans are now afoot to get my veggie patch going and the next step is to erect a cage and shade cloth over the roof area

and then lay out and prepare raised beds ready for winter when I will grow most of my veggies.

I am playing around with different layouts right now and have the assistance of a real life veggie farmer who will be helping me.

I have traded a whole pile of old fence posts with this farmer for his help.

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14 thoughts on “Getting ready to grow.

  1. Baboons? You have BABOONS that would get into your vegetable garden? That is SOOOO spooky! That is our problem here! My wife is repeatedly begging me to plant a garden and I have told her over and over that vegetable theft by Baboons is a very real problem with private gardens, yet she will not believe me! I am showing her this post in order to prove my point. Thank you so much Jackie! 🙂

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  2. And I get upset when the deer browse through my lettuce…..will cloth really keep out baboons? Is it simply hidden from their view or can’t they smell the garden? What interesting challenges you have!

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    • I will be putting wire fencing under the cloth and still if the baboons really want to get in they will. Luckily they are not near the cottages that often and prefer staying down at the river.

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  3. oh it sounds like it woul d be a little oassis in there! I love the smell of veggies growin!

    I wonder… Instead of putting a cage (in one of the drawings it seemed you had the shadding cloth supported by the caging) would it be possible to somehow suspend it from a tree branch? Are there any hanging over top bear by? because you could easily use fishing line and a ladder and have a nice little shaded pavilion. Unless ofcoruse the caging is to keep out the baboons… But still, if you suspend the cloth such, you could lay the cagging flat and have more growing area! Hanging pots, or even you could hang garlic, onion and whatever else, bundles of herbs from it in the summer to dry… or once its harvested…

    My grandfather used to hang everyting from the indoor cltohing line he had errected in his garage… it was so funny to see garlic hanging beside socks…

    (sorry my minds ticking now about how wonderful it sounds!)

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