Unusual lifestyle block uses in NZ – from ducks and chillies to tamarillos!
Completed surveys from the recent Northland Field days revealed some interesting and unusual lifestyle block uses in NZ. The goodGround team were thrilled to receive so many surveys, and we were surprised by what people in Northland are using their lifestyle blocks for.
Most of us who are lucky enough to enjoy a lifestyle block use it for the ubiquitous chooks, home-grown veges and a beast or two for the freezer, but after reading through the surveys, we realised that we’re only limited by our imagination to what we can do with our lifestyle blocks. We thought we’d take a closer look at some of the more unusual uses for lifestyle blocks – who knows, maybe you’ll discover something new!
Ducks – great for eggs and pest control on lifestyle blocks
As already mentioned, keeping chooks is a popular hobby. But have you thought about ducks? Ducks are friendly and hardy creatures, requiring little care. If you have a vege garden or orchard, ducks are invaluable at keeping the grass down and removing pests. They also leave fertiliser! Unlike chooks, they will not scratch up your garden, so they make great garden companions.
Ducks are great layers too, in fact, many breeds are more consistent layers than chooks. You do need to pay careful attention to keeping the eggs dry and clean, as duck eggs are more porous than chicken eggs, and easily become tainted by moisture and dirt.
Did you know – most breeds of domestic duck don’t fly, therefore they only need low fences to keep them contained. We highly recommend keeping them fenced in one area, otherwise they’ll hang around your back door, leaving duck poo everywhere!
Some breeds of duck include Muscovy, Indian Runner, Peking, Cayuga and Khaki Campbell
Got a hotspot in your garden? Grow chillies!
If you love cooking and like hot food, then why not try your hand at growing chillies? These small plants hail from South America, and they do well here in Northland with our warm climate. In a sheltered, hot position, dig in some rich compost and fertiliser to plant your chilli plants in.
Hot tip – Do you like your chillies super-hot? Stop watering your chilli plants once the fruit has set, this will intensify the heat of your chillies!
Tamarilloes – an unusual lifestyle block use packed full of Vitamin C!
Tamarillos are a tree from Bolivia and North West Argentina, and they do well here in Northland’s warm, subtropical climate. At Easter each year, they reward us with large, red, egg-shaped fruit which are packed with Vitamin C, just in time to battle winter bugs. They’re also a versatile fruit as they can be used in all kinds of cooking, from spicy curries to rich desserts.
They retail at a high price per kg, so if you have a sheltered, frost-free site on your lifestyle block, its well-worth planting a few tamarillos.
Lifestyle blocks can be so much fun – get creative with unusual uses for your lifestyle block and you never know what you might discover!
If you have any real estate questions or if you are ready to buy your very own lifestyle block, contact the team at goodGround Real Estate today, we’d love to hear from you.