Aha! I'm sitting on the pond decking, immersed in watery thoughts. My pond is like a giant outdoor bath, with a slowly dripping tap and no plug (water trickles in from an intake pipe, and then recharges the aquifers below).
More romantically, it is a deeply peaceful garden haven, green and tranquil, with white Arum lilies, spiky Phormiums, huge Gunnera leaves, and pretty pink Ballerina roses in bloom.
Blackbirds and Gnomes
Extremely fat blackbirds are darting and fossicking in the gardens while eighty-three gnomes dotted around the pond path are going about their daily business (mowing the lawn, fishing, reading books, leaning on shovels). What a picture! Water soothes the feverish summer gardening mind, that's for sure.
The Moosey Pond
There are lots of striped finger-sized fishies in the pond, far too sleek of shape to be tadpoles. Each time I scoop up a bucket of water for Pond Cottage's roses I check to see if I've inadvertently caught any of them. The greatest acts of kindness can be for the littlest things in a garden. Like looking after the ladybugs and worms...
Thursday 6th December
Summer gardening with water is really really delightful. I've spent another day sloshing up and down the water race scraping weeds off the banks and scooping stones onto the little waterside dog-paths. After four enjoyable hours of fairly innocuous weeding things were going so well. Typical - at what should have been the end of a busy watery day I found the worst, biggest, most deeply rooted weeds.
Summer in the Water Race
Let me take a deep breath. One flat section by the water was 'awash' with undesirable greenery - tenacious clover, forget-me-nots, dandelions, cleaver - and at least twelve of the cutest little Gunnera plants (I counted them). I would have to spray? Hmm... Not on your life! I now have fifteen little darlings in a bucket of water, and I've sliced off most of the obvious weeds. I reckon I've been in the water for six hours today. My feet should be super clean!
Friday 7th December
Oh dear. Another early morning scene of the garden and its resident animals. The pond water surface is twinkling with reflections, the pond trees full of noisy chirping birds.
- Charles :
- The paddock above the Pond Paddock is called the Ram Paddock.
A trio of sheep are safely grazing. I can see them from the verandah of Pond Cottage, where I am sitting with my early cup of tea. There's Charles the merino ram, easily spied with his gorgeous curly horns.
But there is drama unfolding in the nearby grass. Ginger Percy (bravest of cats) is fighting a legion of imaginary wind monsters on the lawn, Minimus half-watching, not taking proper notice of the action. A leaf escapes towards the pond. Aha! Charge!
+3 +5Percy the Strong, heavy in his ginger armour, crashes into Minimus, who is tipped neatly into the water. Now I have a drenched grey cat on Pond Cottage's verandah cleaning her fur. This will keep her going all morning! And the sheep munch on, oblivious...
New Dawn Roses
Don't Eat the Roses...
Small, partially connected thought. Charles the ram had better not be eating my roses (he's rather partial to new shoots and flower petals). Bigger, partially connected thought. The roses are really beautiful this year, but that dratted wind will blow lots of petals off, not to mention flip the foxgloves over. Aargh! Stop blowing!
Room for Gunnera?
Large, reasonably serious partially connected thought. Is there room by my pond to plant fifteen new little Gunnera plants? They are so sweet, dear little things, like benign toddlers. But I know what monsters they grow into! Aargh!
Saturday 8th December
Well, the rain pelted down all day yesterday and for most of the night, continuing the somewhat watery theme of this page. I regret that many of my foxgloves are now horizontal, as are the lupins by Pond Cottage.
The water has been too heavy for some roses and peonies. Munstead Wood (a new David Austin) has its beautiful flowers face-down in the dirt.
Munstead Wood Rose
- ‘Quick - enjoy it today! Before it blows down...’
- -Moosey Words of Wisdom.
But - but - the rain is so good for the garden, and so the flattening of my favourites gets a shrug of the gardening shoulders. Such is garden life. Quick - enjoy it today! Before it blows down.
Or gets too wet, or too hot. Or gets eaten by aphids, or ruined by rust, or... Good all-purpose advice for life in general, I reckon.