S stands for Spring...

 The first wee flowers.

Yippee! It's September, where S stands for Spring, and Sunshine, and Serenity. No Shaky Stuff (earthquakes), please, like last year. Sulking is banned during September this year. As is Snow (oops - they both start with the letter 'S' too).

Thursday 1st September

I've been a bit laid back today, because I have a suspected bee sting right at the base of my shin, and my whole foot gets oh so sore walking. And let me not exaggerate - a country gardener walks miles, kilometres even, in just a few days. Ouch, ouch, ouch!

Anyway I've barrowed the whole of my compost load onto various places in the garden, realising that composting the plywood bottom of the trailer is rather foolish. I tried to take it into gardens recently cleared, whose soil I've promised to replenish. Alas - the Hen House Gardens missed out, but I can get a new load this weekend and fulfil that promise. It's important to keep faith with one's garden, hee hee.

 That's the cleared garden where the conifer used to be.
Rusty the Dog in My Garden

Hurray for the spring garden, with new surprises each day now. The latest one - the petite Camellia Cinnamon Candy, flowering in the driveway garden, and the very first blue forget-me-not flowers. Of course there are more and more daffodils - the new patches of my recycled bulbs seem to all be yellows, but they're graceful, not too tall, and should stay upright in wind and/or rain. Aargh! Not too much of either, please...

More Colour

There's much more colour at every garden level. Even my garden gnomes by the back of the pond look brighter. I have to stay alert, garden eyes wide open - I don't want to miss anything magnificent. It could be the tiniest treasure at ground level, or a big prunus covered in blossom.

 Morning reflections...
Garden Gnomes By the Pond

For the record, I limped around for two and a half hours, and also spread eight bags of horse manure. Thanks to cats Lilli-Puss and Percy for walking every single trip with me today, faithfully following that green wheelbarrow. And to young Minimus for appearing in the Appletree Border, climbing up the apple tree and smooching my face. Love you back, Minimus!

 I took some brown spots off the petals with Photoshop, hee hee.
Pretty Pink Camellia

Friday 2nd September

How clever am I? If pride ever came before a fall in my world I'd be permanently splattered at ground level. Yesterday I spent ages spreading compost on the garden. Then it rained nicely for most of the night.

Now, early morning, it is crisp and sunny. What a wonderful world! And so clever, me, really, such timing... Today I intend to garden, but am waiting for a tiny time, until the crispness mellows.

Cat Thoughts

Fluff-Fluff, my pale ginger fluffy gardening cat, is so huge. I don't really notice this until he tries to sit up close and personal by my computer. He simply doesn't fit, but he's sooooooo furry and cuddly.

And he will insist on leaving cryptic typed messages behind, like '66666666666666666667uyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy8'... I think it might mean 'I love you - feed me!'

A Bit Later...

This is really exciting. I've been crocheting my woolly blanket for Pond Cottage while watching the World Athletics Championships in Korea, and now I'm fully re-energised. The day is warmer, and I'm off to do some sit-down weeding, and maybe a women's 3000m steeplechase (with wheelbarrow), hurdling hebes and water-jumping my stream, hee hee...


Oh yes. Oh yes! I can't ever remember weeding so well this early in the spring season, before the forget-me-nots were properly flowering. I've been extremely attentive to weeds in the perennials garden by the pergola, lovingly (?) extracting every dandelion root I could find. I've also divided and replanted Stachys, and managed not to tread on the sprouting Alliums. Phew - it was close at times!

Purple Cornflowers :
I first saw these beautiful annials growing in Hestercombe, a Somerset garden I visited on one of my garden tour holidays. Memories...

But my day didn't stop there - oh no. I did not trudge into the house when it started to get a bit cold. No, no! I strode purposefully to the glass-house to pot up basal lupin cuttings and rooted daisy and pelargonium cuttings. Then I repotted succulents - are they sedums? Eek, I'm never sure, maybe sempervivums. I watered all the wintering-over pots, sowed some purple cornflower seeds, and made a serious promise.

'S' is for September, and a lot of other words. But it also stands for Seed Sowing. I'm going to do this early this year, in September, in my glass-house. I have some amazing heirloom tomato seeds, plus lots of flower seeds I've collected. I am going to be a proper nurturing seed parent, too.

 Just about to go brown...
White Camellias

Saturday 3rd September

I've been quiet on the garden gnome front for a while now. But I've found a gnome mould selling for $30. Thirty dollars, hundreds of cloned gnomes. Applying the fish versus fishing rod dictum to gnomes, I come up with the following:

Buy a gardener a gnome and spent up to $30. Buy her a $30 garden gnome mould and...

Hmm.... It doesn't quite have the fishy ring of truth and deep seriousness, does it? Hmm...

 Out, out,, damned stump!
Pseudopanax Stump

S is for Sunshine...

Guess what else the 'S' in September also stands for? Sunblock (or sunscreen) - in other words, to be applied because there is lots and lots of superb sunshine. Right. It's late morning, we are back from swimming, and I've just asked Non-Gardening Partner to tell me when he wants to do my chain-sawing. His reply cannot be recorded in this family friendly journal. Well, I'm off to do some weeding. I can wait - and I'm getting a load of compost, later. How exciting!

Much, Much Later...

Aha! 'S' is also for Saw Down theStump! Everything is accomplished, and the Pseudopanax stumps in the Appletree Border are now felled at ground-level. I planted three of these slow-acheivers in my very earliest days of gardening. Over twelve years later, with several ineffectual prunings, they had just got too big. I used to think that borders had to be filled to block any through-views. Well, this isn't so. Now I can peep at Pond Cottage through the apple tree, and the Miscanthus Zebrinus will have lots of space. I've trimmed it and new spring shoots are just appearing.