Wow - there's more and more spring colour appearing in my garden. An early red rhododendron, lots more pink and red Camellias, more yellow and cream daffodils, and patches of Pulmonarias flowering blue and pink...
Pretty Polyanthus Flowers
Thursday 21st August
I feel so blessed when I'm in my garden, energy levels on high, thoughts zooming off and around and then back to the weed at hand. yesterday's gardening session, spent underneath the huge yellow-flowering wattle trees, was one of my best this month. Discovering the red buds of the rhododendron breaking open - this is a sure sign that the weeks are racing towards full spring. My goodness - I don't want to miss one small thing, or take one tiny flower for granted. Hello and a warm welcome to the red fragrant wallfowers whose buds are just opening.
Trailer of Mulch
Today my plans are simple - I will mulch the Wattle Woods paths, keep on clearing the scruffy area nearest to the boundary fence, and listen to the Olympics (we won another gold medal 'last night' - big news for a tiny country). I am having the time of my life.
Much, Much Later...
I simply did what I said I'd do. This is rare for me - no random wanderings, no distractions, and no tangents. Rusty the dog chased all the invading planes and pigeons away, while Percy the ginger cat popped up in the greenery from time to time.
Smoke Gets In Your Eyes
I dreamt away the whole afternoon, again finishing up by burning the rubbish, which I don't really enjoy doing. Smoke gets in your - hair, lungs, and undergarments (as well as eyes). Now I'm cooking two nights' evening meals at once, and looking forward to some Olympic TV. Just quietly - I've had yet another great gardening day.
Friday 22nd August
I'm gradually working my way around the different gardens with names - today was the turn of the little Elm Tree Garden. But don't get me started on that dratted tree - it suckers horribly. Oddly, I have another variegated Elm planted in the Stables Garden, and not one single sucker has appeared.
- Stachys Limelight :
- Although Stachys can look messy in a wet winter, this little perennial is a good spring, summer, and autumn performer.
This garden has some typical Moosey edging plants. The Bergenias and Stachys looked OK, but the Scabious and Heuchera were in need of division - this time, knowing that it's going to rain all weekend, I just poked the new pieces back into position. As I toiled I could smell perfumed wafts of air from the nearby Daphne. Nice for the nose!
Red Rhododendron Buds
Then I checked the red rhododendron in the Wattle Woods - yes, more buds were slightly more open (this could lead to some detailed time lapse photography). Finally I remembered to release the bags of ripe horse manure from the back of my little car. Not so nice for the nose...
Aargh! Animal News...
Now I'm inside spres-gardening, and my juvenile cats Percy and Histeria, supported by Fluff-Fluff, are all concentrating hard, staring at the corner cupboard. They've been there for half an hour, a frozen feline tableau out of Madame Tussards.
Aargh! It's probably the same slow brown rat that was inside last week. And a few weeks before that. This will not do...
A Little Later...
Hmm... It was that rat. Past tense. Thanks to the cats who channelled the rat towards Rusty the dog. Thanks to Rusty for - ahem - removing the rat to the garden. No thanks to the Head Gardener (holding a broom) who squeaked - just a little - and jumped into the air.
Saturday 23rd August
Yippee! It's the weekend, and it's a beautiful day. Today I have two lists, each with its own self-explanatory title.
Things To Do Before the Rain Comes...
- 1. Put all path mulch onto paths.
- 2. Complete clearing of the Wattle Woods. Replant Bergenias.
- 3. Pot up basal shoots of Lupins and Delphiniums.
- 4. Spread all horse compost on garden.
- 5. Burn all dry rubbish.
And If It Does Rain Prematurely...
- 1. Sew spring seeds in glass-house.
- 2. Read new Fine Gardening magazine.
There! Now I have a Non-Gardening Partner to organise, before he escapes with Rusty (the official Rat-catcher). Perhaps some chain-sawing - or he could help shovelling the mulch around... Sometimes I think I know why NGP is terrified of retirement. Imagine his daily job sheets if he was available at home!
Well - after eight barrowfuls of dusty leaves, wattle seed-pods, bits of branches, plus a really annoying spreading ground cover - I am inside. I am semi-ready for rain tomorrow. I have my indoors cats, my Schubert piano sonatas, and my gardening magazine.
Early Spring Flowers
Actually, all my cats today have stayed firmly indoors, and I must record my disappointment at their lack of outdoors garden attendance. All except Tiger have snoozed the day away on sunny chairs - and Tiger appeared in my glass-house but briefly. This just isn't good enough - I mean, what do I feed them such yummy things for? Companionship, that's what for!
Sunday 24th August
Right, Tiger the Tortoiseshell cat. There are water bowls just outside, plus a stream should you prefer running water, and a garden pond with easy cat-access if you're thinking on the grand scale. So why do you drink out of the bowl of Camellias on the kitchen bench - after you've fished out all the offending flowers? Which I find strewn around on the carpet...
Back in place, the deep pink and pale pink Camellia flowers look gorgeous. Now for some serious spring gardening, before it rains properly. There's still path mulch to spread, and NGP is sitting captive on the couch. Hmm...
Wet Patio Tiles
The path mulch is on, but the back of the hen house is still waiting to be repaired. The chooks are hunkered down in their shelter, and NGP thinks the hammering might upset them. Fair enough! It's now drizzling quite heavily, so I'm off to the couch to watch the Beijing Men's Olympic Marathon.
Tuesday 26th August
My gardening, like the Olympics, has fizzled out - it's been raining for the last two and a half days. There's a serious kitty-litter box in the kitchen for the old (and lazy) cats. There are large puddles in the driveway, and my dog is very bored. So are my hens - though I wonder if birds have enough brains to be bored.
Later this afternoon I just might put on mud-proof clothing and do some glass-house work. I've bought some seed raising mix, and seed packets of dwarf white cosmos and some cute little whiskered pansies. I have my own motley seed collection in old envelopes, poked into kitchen drawers (and other odd places, too). Bet I haven't labelled anything!