Garden weeds are sentient...
Garden weeds are sentient. They just know when the gardener is having a few days off, being a bit summer-lazy. Aargh! This morning I've just finished one of my normal, hard-working three hour sessions. Aargh! The garden has gone to weed - but I'm onto it!
Saturday 6th December
Summer's increased tempo becomes even more apparent - I've started to pull out the foxgloves that have finished flowering, and I've run out of flowering annuals to plant in the created spaces. The garden changes every day, but there's a nice balance.
- The pink once-flowering rose Constance Spry has stopped flowering - the yellow Hypericum shrubs underneath have started.
- Out comes the decaying daffodil foliage - in go the last of my home-made flowering annuals.
- Out come the wintered-over lettuces (munch, munch, munch) - in go the last beans and the silver beet plants.
I'm allowed a short relaxing lunch. I'm also allowed to potter for half an hour with my garden photographs - some early archival prints have been successfully scanned. And after this I just might dress the Christmas tree.
Cherry Rose Rambler
But first, allow me to crow - thanks, rooster, for the noisy demonstration...
List of Morning's Achievements
- The rescued rhododendrons will make it! Phew.
- The basil is happily potted. Phew.
- I'm systematically watering the dry garden areas. No plant should suffer as those poor rhododendrons did.
- I found a rose label - one of my Island Bed standard roses is a Blackberry Nip!
- And the scrambling rose on the netting fence in the middle of the shrubbery is Souvenir de Madame Leonie Viennot. Yippee! Another rose named.
Right. My afternoon session is about to commence. What should I do? I know - how about some weeding? Quelle surprise! Let me grab my sunhat, reapply the sunblock to the English rose complexion (actually, more like an old rose), get my cricket radio (hee hee - the West Indies cricketers are here on tour) and get working.
Two Striped Hens
I'm back, I'm clean, and I'm pleased with my work. Weeding never seems quite as bad afterwards. More foxgloves are out, as are the last of the forget-me-nots. I told myself to 'do one small area at a time' - and of course it worked. The paths which wiggle behind the glass-house are now cleared and passable.
My striped hen is now completely recovered from her problem. I wonder if she may have been attacked by something - maybe a stoat. Chooks make the most dreadful noises at random, but I remember one afternoon hearing some odder than usual squawking. I should have checked.
A flea (eek!) dropped off Percy the ginger cat this morning, so all the Moosey animals will line up at tea time tonight for their flea chemicals. Stumpy the old grey continues to wobble and stagger her way around the house, purring her head off. Will she see Christmas? She's seventeen - that's quite old for a cat.
And Rusty goes to the dog groomer this coming week for a coat-cut - probably a number one! He will come home all roly-poly, and people will laugh at his pink fatness.
Sunday 7th December
Oh dear - more worries about the old Moosey cats. Brainless little Mugsy got lost outside last night. I found her this morning underneath a Hydrangea, wobbly, damp, and confused. That's more confused than usual. Perhaps Mugsy has finally lost her last marble? Ouch.
- Mugsy the Cat:
- Dear little Mugsy - an everlasting cat, like those long-life batteries.
Anyway, now she's sitting on my lap purring, but something's really gone wrong. For a cat who had serious brain damage at six months (hit by a car) to live seventeen years and only get lost a couple of times is pretty amazing. I need to spend more quality time with her - just in case...
Today in the garden I am doing edges and weeding. It doesn't matter that I did those things yesterday. My early morning gardening book read has inspired me, though it did talk a lot about making one's garden inviting for visitors. I decided that the Head Gardener is a kind of visitor - especially during that first morning wander.
Before breakfast I went out on the balcony to admire the stone wall. My Graham Thomas roses and Hypericum shrubs were both being very flowery and yellow. A colour surprise - nice!
Oops. I've been pottering around (those thumbnail pictures are distracting me from the real garden). It's time to get going. Mugsy is a worry - she's lost again. Some Mugsy reflections - a long, happy country life, with the best food, and the company of two kind dogs, and other delightful cats, and people who talk to the animals without embarrassment, all the time, sometimes on really deep philosophical topics...
Mugsy the Cat
Cats can be kinder than people - none of the bully cats at Mooseys (Tiger and Fluff-Fluff) have ever really picked on Mugsy. Mind you, they've been quite subtle at nudging her gently off her food bowl...
I'm sorry, Garden, but the summer sun is just too hot. Please be satisfied with two hours work - edges and weeding, like I promised, and more foxgloves ripped out. Oh - I trimmed the Cream Delight flax on the corner of your Apple Tree Border, too - and put the hoses on in the lower Wattle Woods. Poor thing - it's desperately dry in here, away from the swoosh of the irrigation. Non-Gardening Partner says that we've had no decent rainfall since September. We are warming up (eek!) for yet another Canterbury drought. OK, Garden, that's all for now.