One of those days...

 Dear Fluff-Fluff...
Winter Sun on a Fluffy Cat

It's going to be one of those days. I've just given Rusty the dog some grapes, and taken a bite out of his breakfast dog biscuit. Yuk! And Fluff-Fluff the cat has twice walked over my computer and twice prompted it to shut down. Aargh - cancel! How does he know how to do that?

Friday 15th July

I thought I'd have a pretty scratchy day, garden-wise, having very little time to do anything. But no! I got home from my piano playing commitment and zoomed straight into the garden for an hour and a half - doing cosmetic clearing and weeding around the house and patio gardens, sweeping the decking and house paths, and starting the big winter prune of the house roses. I instantly feel better, having had my - gardening fix? for the day.

Now I can enjoy some TV couch-cycling through Normandy, guiltfree. But I am so far behind the real time 'Tour de Francers'. Perhaps a couple of drenching rainy days are needed so I can catch up, hee hee. And my crochet project, to produce a woolly blanket for Pond Cottage, progresses. I'm doing a ripple pattern, in stripes of whatever wool I've got, but mainly bottle green. Hopefully I'll finish it before winter finishes!

Tomorrow I start my new path leading to Pond Cottage. Yippee! So I have a new garden project for winter, one which is very modular in nature and doesn't require bulldozers or chainsaws. I can do this!

 A boy!
2011 Merino Ewe with Early Lamb

Saturday 16th July

To break (the golden rule of garden blogging) or not to break? That is the question... Namely the unwritten law that one should never write up a journal if grumpy, particularly if one has no external reason to be so... Break, I think!

Inspired by a purchase of book on old roses, I've been in the Hazelnut Orchard pruning my archway roses, many of which are older varieties. Humph. Do I know what I'm doing? No. Branches criss-cross each other, huge canes are reaching for the moon (well, more likely the sun), and I've even been dithering about whether to cut off all the old flower-heads or not. I've left all the mess out there on the ground in protest.

And then a second humph. I bought a hoe, thinking it would somehow magically weed my vegetable garden for me - or at least make the activity more efficient. It didn't. I do not like hoeing. So I crawled around pulling out weeds by hand, getting more and more sulky, knees getting more and more muddy. And Fluff-Fluff the cat, having decided he was my faithful gardening companion, kept getting totally in the way.

A final thought - tomorrow I will do better. I promise.

 A bright citrus yellow.
Wattles in Flower

Sunday 17th July

I still promise - I haven't forgotten. Today I am going to be systematic, and patient, and weed slowly. I will pay attention to details. I will rake paths and trim shrubs (if appropriate). If it needs collecting (whatever 'it' is) then I will collect it. There is no more to say.

More Than Five Hours Later...

Ha! How can I possibly get the garden sulks when the pink Camellias below the glass-house are flowering? So is the blue periwinkle by the Shrubbery paths. So are the huge Wattle trees in the Wattle Woods. And really, I've had such a better day, with my improved attitude.

I've cleared up the shady garden behind the house, cutting down that weedy shrub with blue flowers (oops - not sure of the name) and raking leaves and general mess. Everything is burnt, including rose prunings from my second garden session. The new Crepuscule climber is planted by the pergola, and I've taken to the Gerbe rose with the loppers. Broken (by rotting) pieces of the fence are smouldering on the bonfire (the wood is untreated, so that's OK).

Patio Wisteria :
Here are photographs of the Patio Wisteria in flower in spring.

I had lunch on the top patio by the bird feeder watching maybe fifty wax-eye birds flitting around in the Wisteria. They couldn't seem to decide whether or not I was a scary garden feature - and I did have a lot of cat company. Impossible to think of sulking in such a lovely sunny spot, surrounded by creatures. Rusty the dog munched up any fallen seeds and bits of grain - a dog on a Palaeolithic diet? Hmm...

I finished my day dealing to the vegetable garden, which is now roughly weeded, the tiny brick paths realigned, and the ash piles levelled. Walking past will now be a much more pleasant experience. I am so pleased with my long winter's day of good garden work. I am a quiet, hopefully humble, non-sulking legend...

Monday 18th July

Aha! For the second day in a row I am a non-sulking legend. I found a couple of rhododendrons in the Wattle Woods which had dead branches. Wondering if it's just been too dry for them, I've put on the hose (this is unheard of in winter, but I can't think of much else to do). Also the Wattle branches overhead have been stretching ever outward, so I took the loppers to them (perching on a robust step-ladder).

 I love pink in my garden.
Pink Camellias

I chose my gardening afternoon to be colourful, underneath the beautiful yellow wattle flowers, and in sight of the pink Camellias. I've been raking out burnable rubbish, trimming the Toad flaxes, pruning more roses, and clearing paths. A sedum has popped up everywhere along the front of the Wattle Woods Garden, easily building new roots from pieces of itself. I'm thinking of totally moving this plant to a better location - perhaps along the top of the Dog-Path Garden's stone wall where it can flop happily. Not a silly idea...

 A mass of citrus yellow.
Wattle Flowers

Bartok's string quartets have been playing on my Ipod. This music is a bit difficult to listen to, unless one is in a thoughtful, intelligent mood. But apparently this is not a problem for my bellbirds - they've been singing away, whistling their tunes in competition with Bartok's squeaking violins and chugging 'cello. In fact, I've never heard them so noisy. Thoughtful, intelligent birds...