Fire ground


We were sitting around Jack's campfire last week getting warm and watching the bushman's TV, and I wondered why we didn't do this more often? How does a dancing fire keep our attention like it does? Why does the conversation and the camaraderie seem richer? Why does looking into a campfire make one reflective?

These questions may be for the esotericists amongst us, but a very practical use of fire in the garden is a flame weeder. The flame weeder is a five torch, gas burning, weed scorching wonder machine that saves us a lot of hand weeding in direct seeded crops like carrots, radish, etc.

We prepare a new garden bed by broadforking and working fertiliser into the top few inches, then we water it and let it sit for a week or two before we direct seed our crop into it. This gives any weed seeds close to the surface time to germinate. Then just before our crop emerges from the soil, we run the flame weeder over the bed to scorch off all the the tiny weeds. Fantastic!

But timing is critical - leave it a day late and we burn a percentage of our crop off.  We can use indicator seeds to tell us when to flame - for example, if we are sowing carrots, we can throw a few beet seeds in - the beets will emerge about a day before the carrots, telling us "flameweed today!"

Not sure about you, but I have lost some seriously good opportunities in life  because  I ignored the signs and delayed just a bit too long. There are times when caution and great deliberation are necessary - when rashness would be folly - but much can be lost by hesitating. Sometimes caution has proven more disastrous than a failure through rashness. Victories are frequently lost through delays. Better to flame weed a day early than a day late!

We need to be on the lookout for the slightest indications of a matter, and then make our decision, NOW - this is the golden moment. I believe it is often better to make a wrong decision than to be continually in a wavering position; to be hesitating, sometimes inclined in one direction, then in another. More perplexity and wretchedness may result from hesitating and doubting than from  moving too hastily. Many of the greatest victories and the most fearful defeats in both war and life have been on the turn of minutes. Sometimes we need to put a fire under ourselves and get on with it!