Nursery sale bargains...

 His own private beach!
New Look for my Beach Gnome

Hee hee. I find myself in that typical autumn garden mood - it's time to visit the local nursery sales and look for bargains. And I'm keeping a serious watch on the changing autumn leaf colours.

Thursday 7th April

Hee hee hee. I got back from yesterday's nursery visit with a Cornus Kousa tree - a bit random, I know, but it had such a pretty shape! I also chose some sensible shrubs for assorted places - Pseudopanax and Choisya for the Shrubbery, and variegated Lonicera for the new koru brick feature. And then I raked the ground ready for the bricks and planted the tree. It did feel good to be back in the garden.

I bought a sea-green plate to cover with beach shells for my bare-tummy shorts-and-sandals garden gnome. At least now he is presented publicly in an appropriate tableau. A bit silly? Garden gnome owners take their responsibilities very seriously, you know, and gnomes in this garden cannot appear by ponds or in forests in a state of summer undress.

Percy :
Percy features in some of my most beautiful cat-photographs.

Now to today in the house and garden. Good morning to smooching Percy, my long ginger cat, supreme indicator of the changing seasons. These autumn mornings are cooler, so I'm wearing a woolly jersey, which immediately makes me a much more comfortable and cosy 'cat-sit'.

How rough a gardener do I want to be today? I'm giving myself a choice for the morning. I could lay mulch at the back of the Welcome Garden - a grubby, scratchy job. Or toddle off to the rose sale buy some rugosa roses for the back of the Shrubbery - a nice drive in the country, a flash of the wallet, a play at being a designer Head Gardener...

 What pretty buds.
Sally Holmes Rose in Autumn

My attitude to enlarging my rose collection has changed. After this summer's disgraceful bouts of rust on Vanguard and Sarah Van Fleet, two decidedly dodgy rugosa ratbags, I'm going back to boring and healthy - like Roseraie de l'Hay, and Agnes (I love Agnes anyway, so that's an easy choice). And I love Roseraie del'Hay, too - she pops up in quite a few places in my garden. Sometimes boring is best...

'Enjoy autumn while thinking of spring.'
-Moosey Words of Wisdom.

The other thing I must, must, must do is plant my mixed daffodil bulbs and my new peonies. They are no use sitting in cardboard boxes in my garage. Enjoy autumn while thinking of spring, I say.

Now it's lunchtime, and there's a really cold wind out there! It's eight degrees Celsius - my first negative gardening temperature report of the season. And here's my first rose buying spree list - not that four roses could ever be called a spree: Abraham Darby, Agnes, Old Master, and a standard Freesia. Right. The log burner is going, I'm off for a brisk walk with my dog, and then lunch, and then I'm planting things.

 Along the water race.
Autumn Phormiums

Late Afternoon...

I've done some speed-weeding in the Birthday Rose Garden, shifted a rose and some daylilies, pulled out some scruffy Lavenders, and planted some daffodils and the standard Freesia rose near the grass path. While I was busy my dog found something very disgusting to roll in. And so he's been in the pond, I've taken to him with the scissors, and washed his neck with soap. Poor dog - he knows I'm cross, but doesn't have a clue what he's done wrong.