More About Us:

We live half an hour (by car) inland from Devonport on the way to Cradle Mountain.

Other household members are: Wife: Sue and cat: Globi.

We live on top of this hill with stunning views of Mt. Roland and Cradle Mountain, Mount Emmett and Pelion West in the far distance. Opposite is a strip of the distant Bass Strait with an occasional small white box visible: one of the Spirits Of Tasmania. We also look at Black Bluff, which means that we pay for our views with frequent buffetings from pretty mean Southwesterlies and Southerlies that take a runup from South America via the Antarctic and over Black Bluff...

My main interests in the garden are edible plants and trees and my obsession for about 30 years have been my saffron crocuses (which I call my babies). I first came across saffron during my cook apprenticeship where we had 3 dishes with saffron on the menu (see the recipes under the heading: RECIPES on the web page).

I started with trying to grow them from seed: with no success. I then came across a few small bulbs in a local nursery. I eventually realised that I had them growing in the wrong position, because they hardly had any flowers for years. After I shifted them to the sunniest position on the block and mixed a fair bit of 2mm potting gravel with our red soil they performed really well. Just one year, when we had an unusually wet summer I lost quite a few bulbs and another year when I dug them up and stored them out of the ground (exposed to wind in wire trays) for about 3 months while they were dormant they sulked and didn't flower that year.

I gradually extended the crocus beds over the years and one year I proudly harvested 31g of saffron from 5500 flowers. Subsequent harvests were smaller because I lost a large number of bulbs to fungal attacks during a couple of wet and cold summers (and so did every one else in the State). Also I kept selling most of my flowering size bulbs.

We use the saffron in our cooking and as presents for friends if we have more than we use ourselves.