Barbecues, bugs and bush

The weather has been so lovely. Warm, breezy days and lots of sunshine. Even at this time of year the sun can be quite hot. We had visitors for the weekend and we all went for a long walk down to the bottom of our 100 acres where there's a fabulous copse of birch trees all by themselves and an open forest with thick vines the kids loved swinging from. Made a change from all the jobs we'd done in the house this week. Everyone had a go on the quad bike and enjoyed it immensely. Last night the sky was so clear you could actually see the Milky Way among the thousands of spangly stars.

Bugs and plugs
We're still plugging gaps where Portuguese millipedes crawl through into the house. Its a huge job, but we're winning! There is a marked decrease in their numbers. I was vacuuming up 600+ before bed and then another 1000 or so in the mornings. Now there are a few on the carpet, a few in the porch and large quantities in a big, deep hole outside the front verandah where they enter behind the vinyl cladding to feast on rotting wood underneath.
So, the plugging. Here is the equipment needed:
  • Gloves are essential. If you get this stuff on your hands its very difficult to get off. And it dries quickly.
  • Cloth for wiping off excess (chux works well)
  • Water and a bucket to rinse the cloth. 
  • Sealant, of course. This one is brown, to match the wood.
  • Sealant gun.
Run a bead along the gap, then use the wet rag to clean up excess.

 There was a huge gap between the wall panelling and one of the doorframes. I filled it with brown coloured sealant and you can hardly tell there was a gap at all. This is where millipedes often drop from in the night.

We have sprayed all the bug and surface spray we could into the hole in the cladding and now they are falling out in a stinking heap of writhing black squishiness. Yuk!

I filled half a wheelbarrow load the first time from the perimeter of the house. On Friday it was down to half a bucketful. Still disgusting but a lot less so. Then we burn them on the fire. Tough little buggers, their exoskeleton deters every predator and protects them from sprays. We're determined to put a dent in the population! Apparently they were seen en masse marching up the road the other day. Good. Don't come back!

Enough about that. (shudder).

Chocolate Castle!
I drove to Launceston airport today to pick up a dear friend who lives where we just moved from - the Blue Mountains. She left Sydney airport to fly down at the same time I left home by car - 7:10am and we both arrived at Launceston by 8:55.

On the way home we stopped for a late brekky at the Anver Chocolate Castle. We sat in the conservatory, looking out over the garden.

Absolutely scrumptious food! Then onto to home, winding our way along the Bass highway, then south through forest and farmland to our place. Its greening up now and looking fabulous.

Steam Festival
Tomorrow we're off to the Steam Festival at Sheffield and afterwards picking up a trailerload of sheep. Live ones. To add to our flock. Hubby is concerned we aren't putting in enough effort in our farming... This week the 3 tonnes of fertiliser is delivered and not long after the seed for the various paddocks. Enough to do 15 hectares, so roughly 300kg. The tractor is still overheating due to a very decrepit radiator, but we've managed to order a new one for our 30+ year old machine, so it will tow the required equipment without incident. We hope. Today the quad bike decided to pack it in so that's another job for this week - get it to the Suzuki workshop in town.

Sigh. It never ends.