APRIL 2003 NEWSLETTER
THE IMPACT OF THE DROUGHT
The lack of rainfall throughout Australia was also evident
at Cape Trib during 2002. The drought looks set to continue for
2003. Our rainfall statistics are less than half the monthly average
for January, February, March and April is not looking good.
||60 yr average
||2003 actual mm
The effects have been major on the orchard, with fruit production
yields declining dramatically as the irrigation system cannot provide
the huge quantities the trees demand. We had not really used our
irrigation system in five years and the whole set up had to be re-located,
and many pieces replaced or unblocked. Several Mangosteen
trees have started to die. With high expectations for 2003, that
we would have a big Mangosteen crop to sell to Sydney, we are brought
down to reality with about 14 trees producing a total of 100 mangosteens.
The Salaks planted on rocky ground have dried out very quickly and
many of these have died. We will not be replanting these
areas with Salaks.
The long term concerns are that the underground water supply has
not had sufficient rainfall to replenish the storage and that water
shortages this year could be far worse. If you want to view the
rainfall statistics for Cape Trib for the last 60 years, go to
where Hans has posted the
A NEW RECIPE FOR BREADFRUIT CHIPS
For the last six years we have been deep frying our Breadfruit
Chips for the tastings, but a chance reading of a tip in a local
magazine in New Zealand in February encouraged us to try a different
recipe using the oven to bake them. The new chips are much easier
to cook and really very tasty, so that they are often named as the
best fruit on the tasting. They are chopped into wedges and then
rolled in olive oil and Cajun spices, and baked at 250C for about
an hour. Because the wedges are thicker you get the soft texture
of the centre as well as the crisp outside. So if you have access
to Breadfruit you should
BED AND BREAKFAST NEWS
Our little B&B cottage continues to grow in popularity.
The Internet is our main marketing tool with half the bookings coming
from overseas – Germany, UK and US. We are finding that people
are adjusting their overseas trip to be able to fit in a stay with
us. April and May are fully booked and June has a few days left,
and July and August are filling up rapidly. The web site tells it
straight and tries to put off people who would not appreciate it.
The guests have been delightful and it is really great to have people
experience so much.
We now have building permits to build a second cottage, which we
plan to locate near the site of our old caravan, about 50 metres
further along the creek edge. This will probably take us at least
12 months to build, but our goal is to have it ready for July 2004.
The Golden Orb Weavers are everywhere at the moment –
the gazebo, the house, the orchard and the B&B verandah. New
guests are very tentative initially but settle in to the idea of
having a huge harmless spider to watch instead of TV. The web filaments
are glowing with gold thread in the afternoon sun and looks spectacular.
Driving through the orchard on the tractor and getting them plastered
across your face is not so romantic, for either the human or the
WHAT'S FRUITING IN APRIL?
We are picking and eating Mangosteens, Rambutans, Abiu,
Breadfruit, Matisia, Soursop and the last of the Jakfruit, but quantities