What a week!
What a week! It started with a major snow-sulk, downgraded to a semi-sulk by Wednesday, and now the Moosey mood is back to normal - just because the Moosey body can go gardening again. A good mood for the simplest of reasons, hee hee...
Friday 19th August
Today I am quite determined to do a decent morning's gardening. It will be wet and grubby, but I am determined. Oh - I already said that. I've just been for a preparatory walk and what's needed is obvious. Remaining snow needs to be flicked deftly off Hebes and Anemanthele grasses, so the idea is to start at the beginning of the driveway, as per a visitor, and just do what's needed. It's drizzling lightly.
Driveway and Melting Snow
Mind you, I predict a ten percent chance of a drizzle-sulk later this morning, but I am armed and ready with a packet of mallowpuffs (naughty!) for morning tea. Mustn't let myself go to seed, either - need to find Rusty the dog's brush so I can do a spot of personal grooming. Right. Am off outside.
Lilli-Puss my grey Cat
Two Dripping Hours Later...
Incredibly distracted by thoughts of mallowpuffs with my morning coffee (I should have had them for breakfast?) I have, however, gardened for nearly two hours at the driveway end of the garden I call the Hump. All I've done seems minor, but I have made progress. The damage to native shrubs (particularly Pseudopanax and Olearia) isn't too bad, and it's a good excuse to generally clean up this wilderness area. I'm relieved the Kowhai trees came through without any trouble.
Watched by my squeaking grey cat Lilli-Puss I dug out two red-currant bushes, which I honestly thought were Philadelphus and thus planted in spring-sun summer-shade. Hey! I bought them for fifty cents each, and they were dormant at the time. Then big Fluff-Fluff leapt out of the Pittosporums, saw Lilli and chased her down the drive. Rusty chased both cats, and I set off after Rusty, roaring Fluff-Fluff's name and flapping a rake at them all. Now, three mallowpuffs later, I have calmed down and warmed up considerably.
Fluff-Fluff the Cat
Fluff-Fluff (naughty cat) is sitting on my computer keyboard, purring loudly in my personal space - he's done nothing wrong! He's got his cat-mojo back now the snow is over - it frightens him, big girl's blouse!
I've done another two hours trimming and dragging branches off the lawn into piles, working my way along the Hump. Come home, Non-Gardening Partner, your chain-saw is needed. Come home! The Ake Akes have fared poorly, and a couple of rather large pine branches are down (I never heard them crashing down). Phew - my vintage gnomes in the Shrubbery were fine and dandy - I'd totally forgotten to check them in the snow. So all garden gnomes are now present and accounted for.
Go the All Blacks
Then Rusty the dog and I walked briskly down the road, and, inspired by national pride, we zoomed off in the car to buy some All Blacks car flags - the ones with the beloved silver fern symbol. It's high time we started our personal woman-and-dog build-up to the Rugby World Cup, hee hee... And so I bought eight car flags (eight? I do not have four cars, by the way) and an ordinary flag.
And then - gardening shock, gardening horror! Some standard roses were stuck in plastic bags in a bargain bin, and desperately needed rescuing. So I took four of them (two Just Joeys, Sunny Smiles, and La Marseillaise) plus potting mix, and I've potted and pruned them. Poor things - rescued in the nick of time...
Saturday 20th August
Normality! Sunshine, a tiny frost, and I'm going swimming. The garden looks green again - what a beautiful colour green is, not to be sniffed at or taken for granted. And I'm sure all snow-flattened Phormiums will perk up with the warmth. I'm not cutting or removing anything that's flat for at least two weeks. Let nature heal herself, I say!
Only three hours gardening work, but under the most beautiful blue sky. I cleared out a hopelessly flattened Phormium from the middle of the Jelly-Bean Border, and continued the trim of broken branches. Then I sat in the sun and crocheted two stripes of my blanket and thought about me and weather and what winter gardening means to me.
I love a busy day outdoors, then coming inside late afternoon to shower, get warm, and light the log-burner. That's the sort of winter's day that makes me smile.
Sunday 21st August
Joy - another three hours gardening, under an even bluer and more beautiful winter sky than yesterday - I've been clearing and trimming in the sunny Wattle Woods. This is young Minimus's patch, and, sure enough, she popped out of the greenery to join in the fun. Fun? Oh yes. Any gardening after my snow-enforced hibernation is BIG FUN! It's even fun sawing down things with my little bow saw, which takes ages and ages...
Pseudopanax - Five Finger
Some of the high overhead Wattle tree branches have cracked. That rhododendron that died - well, I just wobbled its stem and pulled it out. It seemed to be almost totally rootless. Again the Pseudopanax and the Olearia have some small damage, but these shrubs will resprout. I pulled apart an edging of Rock Lilies (Renga Renga) which I'll replant tomorrow with compost. The pieces are in buckets of water, and the path is wider.
Apres-gardening I've done a row of crocheting in the afternoon sun, and Rusty the dog and I have been for an energetic cycle ride around the small block. It's such a simple life I lead when Non-Gardening Partner isn't here to be organised, hee hee... And, my goodness, when he returns I have a chain-sawing list which will keep him away from the ski-fields for many weekends to come. Do come back, NGP! Now what shall I cook for my evening meal - fillet steak? Or a piece of salmon? My own patio lettuces, planted in early autumn, survived the snow and are ready to eat. Yum.