Winter solstice

I love it when the winter solstice comes around once more. It means the sun has reached its most northern point in the sky and will start to make its way back into the southern sky. Every day sees a couple of minutes more daylight. It doesn’t mean it will get warmer—there’s still a fair bit of cold weather left to go—but unlike the European calendar, which heralds spring on the first day in September, the Aboriginal calendar for this area welcomes pre-spring in the middle of July. The first wattles will come into flower, as will the native Chocolate Lilies and Sugar Gliders will be giving birth. A colony of gliders lives here on the property in the many tree hollows. They emerge at dusk and spend the night feeding on insects and tree sap. When we first moved here, I used to watch every evening for them the emerge, but I’ve become a bit blase about it now and only watch occasionally. Last time I watched, a few weeks ago, I saw five come out of the one hollow. Must be nice and warm all cuddled up together in there, but I’ve read that they urinate on the leaves they drag into the hollow to mark their territory. Warm but stinky!

So cute:

normal_Z-glideruni-grasshopper

In full flight. Up and at ’em!:

sugarglider

I mentioned in the last post that I’d planted Sebago, Desiree & Kipfler potatoes so far this season. I was in Coles (for overseas readers, one of our big supermarket chains), and saw a variety called Creme Royale for sale. Always keen to try growing new varieties, I bought some and planted them. Not having heard of them before, I Googled and found this site. It seems they’re grown exclusively for Coles so they may have been treated with sprouting inhibitor. Oh well, we’ll see what happens. I bought a couple of extras and had them for dinner, cooked in the microwave. The texture was soft and creamy, flavour not too bad. Hope they grow.

While searching I also found this site which is a useful summary of major potato varieties and their uses.

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3 Responses to “Winter solstice”

  1. Frogdancer Says:

    Every time I see photos of gliders in flight, I’m reminded of the time that David19 and I were at Singapore zoo in a glider enclosure and saw one launch itself… and crash land on the path.
    Once we saw that it was ok it was pretty funny. I swear it had a slightly embarrassed loo
    k on its face as it scurried off.

    Like

    • foodnstuff Says:

      I’ve had one fly straight at me from a great height. I closed my eyes and waited for it to hit my chest. There was a thud and I looked round to see it on the tree trunk beside me. Phew!

      Like

  2. narf77 Says:

    Here in Tassie winter has just begun! We have had 4 rain events since April and the rest has been getting colder…and colder…and colder! I am starting to think that we moved to Antarctica rather than Tasmania. None of those pretty gliders here, just fat grumpy possums hell bent on destroying everything. At least the hungry feral cats are starting to do something about the fat possum population, there are always swings and roundabouts. Love the spud site and am off to bookmark it now. Give the spuds a go anyway, Sarah the gardener in N.Z. grabbed a bag of peanuts in their shells from the supermarket shelves and grew her own peanuts so its worth the gamble sometimes 🙂

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