There has been some ‘argy-bargy’ on our local Facebook gardening group about controlling what some people see as ‘pests’, not so much snails and slugs, but hungry possums, bandicoots and birds etc. Increasingly, others say we should not impose ourselves on the natural world, especially here in the beautiful Blue Mountains. Well I suppose they have a point, because we just moved in on these dear creatures without so much as a by-your-leave. But it’s not always easy to live in harmony The urge to grow gorgeous flowers and fruits is very powerful.


Editor Des
The Author….me!

  People who know me may remember I  once had ideas of becoming a barista, to supplement my meagre editor’s wages. This didn’t work out well, because I couldn’t get the crema right. Anyway, after my guardian Pauline  Conolly  accidentally grew a potato in the compost I decided to plant a  vegie garden instead,

The  plan was to sell my produce at the Blackheath Farmers’ Market.

My  dear friend Mr Bob built a garden for me out by the wood stacks.

VegiegardenDesPackingRhodos 012

OK, time for planting. I found a clever way to outwit those pests….. I mean local wildlife. Only grow underground stuff like spuds and carrots . Fortunately potato tops are not enjoyed by bird or beast in my experience, so that’s alright. Yes, yes, I know carrot shoots are tempting. I kept watch over my potted seeds night and day until they came up. If a swamp wallaby had appeared I’d have told him to hop it.

On nightwatch in case of wildlife pests.

I would like to  thank the talented  Birmingham author Jackie Sayle for writing this little song especially for me and my garden.  Well, it’s specifically  for my carrots. If you want to sing it, the tune is the same as  the Christmas carol, ‘When a Child is Born.’  Here we go (apologies to the baby in the manger), three, two, one……

A spark of joy flickers in my heart,

My carrot seed, it has made a start.

There’s a green shoot on this brand new morn,

This comes to pass when a carrot’s born.

They came up eventually.
I transferred the pot of carrots to my kitchen garden.


We call our village Bleakheath, because we get a lot of challenging weather. It even snows here sometimes. I was ever so worried about my growing plants, even the tough old spuds.

The biggest pests in Des's garden are weather related....hail and snow/
Good grief!

They did survive after I brushed them free of snow and gave them a tonic. And do you know what? They rewarded me quite handsomely. Off to market we go.

By the way, the reason my wages are low is because my employer Pauline Conolly has not been writing enough!   She spends her time on Facebook and watching the cricket, so I have nothing to edit. In my opinion this is rather selfish….. just saying. If you think my prices seem high, well now you know why!

Ready for the village market having avoided all pests.
Ready for the village market. The herbs are  for free.

But I digress….sorry. I love the village  market. The people there are always kind and friendly. I don’t think they would be in Facebook groups, but if they were they would always be kind and respectful.

I might share a stall with this nice lady and her garlic.
I might share a stall with this nice lady and her organic garlic.

My vegies were snapped up. Oh dear, I do love money. Perhaps I shouldn’t admit it, but its true. I’ve made enough to buy my girlfriend Milly a present….or better still, something nice for myself.

I've earned quite a lot so far.

Here is a photo of my garden in its infancy.

No pests here due to clever vegie choice.

If you would actually like to attract wildlife (like we do), here is some advice from WIRES.

In conclusion; I wrote another story about Pauline’s Garden. She has never quite forgiven me, but I was only being honest. She says I am one of biggest pests she knows 😆


  1. Well done on your sales

    • Pauline

      Thank you Miss Heather, you are very kind. xxx Editor Des.

  2. A lovely story.

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