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Graham Hyde

Harvest

I have harvested one small rice field and seven sacks of rice (in the husk) are now waiting to be dried. Unfortunately wet weather is forecast for the next few days.




The main field is still a week or so from harvesting.
During the harvesting and threshing I have a labourers role, not supervisory. Humping, caterer and paymaster. Unfortunately, the drying is down to me where I can be seen nervously watching the clouds and praying for dry sunny weather.




I will photograph the harvesting and threshing of this field.
Whilst the camera was out I took some pics of my fruit...

Pineapple...





Native papaya....


Banana...



Now I am quite proud of this...



I felled a good sized tree and cut some planks 6ft by 1.5 inches using a four foot long, petrol driven chain saw. I hope to use the planks as seating in my soon to be completed (sounds of manic laughter here!)
gazebo.
Mistress Rose

How do you dry the rice Graham? Looks an interesting harvest. Many years ago, we wer visiting the glass house in Victoria Park, Portsmouth, and the gardener very proudly showed us a hand (?) of bananas growing there. They didn't show them to everyone as they were afraid of theft, so we were honoured. Most of our bananas come in through Portsmouth so we get the odd incident with odd spiders and other wildlife.

That wood looks good. Son once cut some planks our of a fallen oak with a chainsaw. They weren't perfect, but did very well for table tops at the 17th century village. You can get an attachment for chainsaws, the Alaskan Mill, if you intend to do that very often. Not too expensive and makes cutting a flat plank a lot easier.

Hope the weather is dry enough to deal with your rice.
Graham Hyde

Hi MR.
All low tech here. I have two large tarps' laid on the drive on which I spread two sacks of rice. 50kg a sack. I rake the rice throughout the day which usually takes a day to dry. Showers mean I have to do the Okay Dokay, in out shake it all about. Leaving it damp in the sacks too long causes fungus growth and also sprouting.
The locals use the roads for drying the rice which makes driving interesting.
Once dry I take the rice to a local mill where for 3 peso a kilo (70 peso = one pound) the husk is separated. The milling machine is powered by a belt drive of a floor mounted old diesel truck engine.
I use the husk for feeding the geese, ducks and hens.
I will try to post photos of the process next week.
Mistress Rose

That's interesting Graham. I assumed you used air drying of some sort, either on a mesh or the ground. I can imagine the fun, let alone the drying time if people put their grain out to dry on the roads here. Laughing
Graham Hyde

Some more fruit...
Limes



I'm getting one fruit every 7 to 10 days from this papaya tree...



Now this little feller is just five feet tall and I've already had a couple of fruit off him.....maybe suitable for a UK greenhouse?



The gazebo.....





Work on this has been slow due to other tasks such as a complete rebuild (new cylinder liners, piston rings, main bearing shells, new valves, re skimmed head, etc) of the engine on Mischief, one of our jeepneys (passenger bus). Named after Tilman's favourite.
M, my better half is going to Manila this week for a few days god bothering business so hopefully I can do some work on the domed roof whilst drying the rice. Hopefully.
Graham Hyde

Hi MR.
After using the chain saw I call it a success if I still have all digits and limbs! No safety gear here at all so I won't show photo's.
I have toyed with the idea for a solar drier for fruit but have not had the time yet to start the build.
dpack

Hi MR.
After using the chain saw I call it a success if I still have all digits and limbs! No safety gear here at all so I won't show photo's.
I have toyed with the idea for a solar drier for fruit but have not had the time yet to start the build.



mweep Rolling Eyes i know it can be hot and sticky but so is arterial blood,hat and chaps might be a good investment Wink

i saw a photo of a bloke in indonesia and his bar was about 8 ft long and his safety gear was a pair of man utd away kit shorts.

nice harvest ,do you have to check for "wildlife"when gathering?
Graham Hyde

Hi Dpack.
We have a 3 mtr wall around the house compound and coconut plantation which keeps most large animals out but bats damage about 20 young coconuts a week, rooks will eat the papaya/mango/guava if left ripe on the tree and sea eagles do have the occasional goosling/duckling/chick.
We have large spiders and small scorpions but harvesting in the compound is not so bad. Only 1 snake seen in 7 years (about 2 mtrs long). Largest spider I've seen was about 15 inches across the legs up in the jungle.
The photo showing my large rice field also shows the start of the jungle. Here monkeys are found and a bit further north about 10 years ago was found a new species of monitor lizard. Surprisingly the example was 3 metres long! My water supply is from a spring about 1 km up the hill where I have a sand filter which I need to check weekly.
The most common birds are kingfishers which are well provided for in the rice fields with small lizards and frogs.
dpack

that sounds not too scarey apart from the small scorpions perhaps,with the ones i met(at the zoo when i bred big snails for em) i was told the big ones wrestle and the little ones poison.
Graham Hyde

The scorpions are no larger than an inch long, very dark brown almost black. Perfect copy of what you think of a scorpion, tail and stinger, claws, etc.
Found under rocks or in the tight spaces between the coconut branches and trunk.
I've never studied them, just killed them as quick as possible.
I some times climb the coconut trees to trim some leaves and am worried then that I may find one when I can't evade quickly. Lucky so far.
dpack

from what i just read the local scorpions are painful but not usually fatal,i think the ones i was shown were african and a bit nasty.

still worth being careful i spose .
sueshells

Fascinating to see how things grow in a different climate and to hear how you cope with the crops. I occasionally buy a papaya from the supermarket in the forlorn hope of replicating the best experience of my Jamaican honeymoon 43 years ago - fresh papaya for breakfast! Alas there is no comparison between the mealy, tasteless fruit and the flavour of a tree ripened one.
Graham Hyde

Hi Sueshells.
Yes the papaya are wonderful, we also use green unripe ones in cooking with coconut and chicken.
I grow about 200 pineapples each year, I'm trying for 365, one a day.
The pineapples in the UK are usually from Costa Rica and are a different variety. These here are smaller, softer and sweeter. So soft that one eats the core!
My favourite fruit here though are mangoes, a delicious golden yellow so sweet and juicy. My two trees don't provide much fruit but mangoes can be bought for 50 pence a kilo at the local market.
I do miss the fruit of the UK though, the berries, rasp, black and straw and the true apples.
Graham Hyde

Better weather today has allowed my to start drying the rice.



I bake bread every other day as there are no bread shops here. Unfortunately there is no strong flower or self raising so the loaf doesn't rise as much as it should. I intend to build a clay oven for bread next to the BBQ which is on the end of the gazebo. BBQ is completed and I use it three or four times a week.



I picked a water melon this morning whilst it was still cool to have at lunch time.



No daylight saving here so I tend to be up around 5 o'clock now and all finished and indoors by 6 in the evening. Following the sun.
Mistress Rose

I can understand why you miss the Engish fruit Graham, but you have all the exotics to make up for it. You might be able to grow some things that like it fairly warm, like strawberries, but don't think you stand much hope with apples.

I have never tried papaya or the other exotic fruits. I wouldn't think our coconuts are anything like yours either. We tend to buy just dried coconut these days, although I did enjoy the odd real one from the coconut shy as child.

I assume you use yeast in your bread, but have to do the best you can with ordinary plain flour. If you need a rising agent for cakes, you can get baking powder, which should last quite well between your forays to larger shopping centres if it is kept dry and not too hot.

Thanks for the pictures, and I agree with Dpack about getting a helmet with visor and ear defenders, chaps and boots. Hot I know, but for short periods far safer.
Graham Hyde

Hi MR.
Yes, instant dried yeast for the bread and baking powder for my cakes.
I normally do my cakes in the microwave which increases the rise by about 20% over normal ovens.
One 7 inch cake is about 6 minutes in the microwave, a big energy saving. No eggs required.
Mistress Rose

I don't know about that Graham. We don't have a microwave, and I have only ever used one, under instruction, to heat things up. I got enough microwaves at work and never felt the urge to have one. Will ask son about the cakes, as he has one, but I think he does his cakes in the oven.
Graham Hyde

I posted a photo of a five foot tall papaya plant at the start of this thread. This is a fruit I picked off her this morning as the birds had started to peck. Not in the ideal position as it is shaded by two tall coconut trees.
Harvested a day too early probably but still juicy and sweet.



All my large papaya plants came from seeds I took out of a fruit I bought at a local market. They do not seem to need a male plant to fruit.
I will sow the seeds from this fruit as I do with all my fruit and when established will give away.
Mistress Rose

Looks nice. Perhaps I might try one one day, but if as the others say, they aren't too good in the UK, it might be a disapointrment.
Graham Hyde

I harvested my first peanuts of the year yesterday, washed, shelled and roasted them ready for today.




We don't have white refined sugar here, only two types of brown, a course brown known in the west as muscovado and this brown sugar.
Muscovado is great on porridge but here I use ordinary.

I leave the skins on .I don't add oil just blend the nuts until the oil appears add salt and sugar to taste.
I get about two jarfuls from three plants.



I mentioned earlier that the locals dry the rice on the road....



I'm waiting to see how the weather turns out today before scheduling my work. Clouds over the mountains....see the houses...no glass at the windows....no power.



This is the local village (barangay) Masalongsalong....welcome written in English!

Mistress Rose

Could you post a picture of the peanut tops please Graham. I know a bit about them, and mildly upset someone who thought I would never think of groundnuts growing in his garden in the Congo when I did, but really have no idea what they look like.

Like the other pictures. I am glad to see they dry the rice at least at the side of the road and not in the middle.
gregotyn

Lovely pictures, far to hot for me. You must get the protective chainsaw kit; chainsaws kill given half a chance! If it is not something you do regularly, then even more important. I had a small bite out of a boot I was wearing on my first attempt to saw. Stopped and went out and bought the boots and all in one hat! I now have the trousers as well! keeps me safe!
Graham Hyde

Hi MR

As requested, Peanuts......




And the flower....


Graham Hyde

Hi MR


Rice in the road.....




It's still early, next week it will be continuous rice.
gregotyn

So I'm a bit dense. Is the peanut mix you have in the picture your form of porridge? Or am I nuts?
In the UK we use earth nut as stock feed once the oil has been removed; the pressed being more use to stock as there is some oil left in rather than the extracted oil method, which I am told gets all the oil.
Pilsbury

So I'm a bit dense. Is the peanut mix you have in the picture your form of porridge? Or am I nuts?
In the UK we use earth nut as stock feed once the oil has been removed; the pressed being more use to stock as there is some oil left in rather than the extracted oil method, which I am told gets all the oil.
the peanut mix is peanut butter, to spread on toast but made at home not by sunpat.
I make my own sometimes with a bag of nuts andca blender but i cant manage to grow my own peanuts unfortunatly.
Graham Hyde

Hi Pilsbury. Spot on! I don't know why anyone would buy peanut butter as to make your own without additives and whatnot's is so easy.
I also make honeyed peanuts but they must be sponsored by the dentist association so limit my input.

My fault gregotyn I should have said, sorry.
Graham Hyde

I have half a dozen varieties of bananas and these are delightful.
Small, just two bite fulls and deliciously sweet. If you see them in the UK give them a try.




My favourite variety are the red ones, only three of these trees survived the winds and no fruits yet but I'm hoping.


Mistress Rose

Thanks for the picture of the peanuts Graham. They look like a sort of vetch with very large leaves. Do you know if the nuts fix nitrogen like the nodules on other legumes?

We tend to get the 'standard' bananas in supermarkets in the UK. There are probably other sorts in specialist shops, but we don't have any of them round here as we don't have a very big West Indian community.

It must be quite difficult travelling at any speed along your roads during the rice harvest. Road users of all sorts must be far less common and far more tolerant than in the UK.
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