Dahlia and Sweet Peas
Good morning, Moosey the Gardener, munching a leisurely breakfast, but (most importantly) already wearing gardening clothes, complete with flower blouse. Right. I'm bonfiring first, before the afternoon wind starts up. It's a cool day, perfect, and I'm going to clean up the back of the pond. I do love the tall gum trees, but they shed and drop bark and leaves over absolutely everything. But I love them, honestly!
Friday 31st January
Look, sewing hundreds of little material triangles to make garden bunting is enjoyable, - that's what I've been doing in my spare time for the last few days. But real hard-working rubbish-raking gardening will be even better. There's more fun to be had outdoors. Big Fluff-Fluff my best-friend companion cat agrees. '=pppppppppppppppooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo;p[''''''.,,' is his light-footed response.
+10You see, there is good news regarding his cat-diet. Fluff-Fluff has lost half a kilogram in three weeks, and now weighs in at 7 kg (that's 15.4 lbs). Still super-sized, but we are getting there. And I've never known him to be so smoochy and attentive, hee hee.
I've cleared up a lot of mess, with three good hours of bonfiring and no moaning. The gardens near my burning pile are very floral again, and this keeps me really cheerful. Flower power! I'm enjoying the indigo Sweet Peas, cherry red Dahlias, and the poor woman's answer to fussy, finicky Alliums - leeks that have been allowed to go to seed. They are absolutely beautiful, covered with bees (both bumbles and slimline honey bees) as well as shy brown spotty butterflies.
Leek Seed-Head - not an Allium
In mid-summer, when the sun is fiercely shining, flower colours in my garden look sun-bleached, and don't make an impact. Shady, leafy trees seem more attractive - cool greenery cools down the gardener, I guess.
Saturday 1st January
I love Joachim Turina! He's a flowery Spanish composer, melodic, rhapsodic and old-school, with lovely, swooshy harmonic progressions. I've found lots of his piano pieces, and am about to try one. A bit odd, really, since I have no obvious affiliation to Spain. I just love the guitar influence and the major-minor switching.
Right. What to do first in the garden? It's time I weeded around the Herb Spiral AKA Flower Spiral. I'll do that first, and collect more annual seeds. And what to do with all the Lychnis? My plan is to trim some, leaving the parent plant, while others which look older can be pulled out.
The spiral is still a bit messy, because I'm waiting for the annual Viscaria to set seed. Lots of self-sown deep red nasturtiums have popped up in the circular path - silly things. I've scooped some out and replanted them. Here's something I didn't know. Some herbs (one of the thymes, a marjoram, and the mint in a pot) self-seed on THE most alarming scale. Oops.
Colourful Flowers in the Pergola Garden
I carted a lot more gum bark etc. out from behind the pond. I wasn't planning to burn, but the bonfire heap self-ignited, so I trundled back and forth until my mental energy for bonfiring ran out. Striking while the bonfire's hot, and there's no wind, I guess. So I had lots of time to enjoy the summer phloxes and those beautiful indigo sweet peas, and marvel that most of the white Shasta daisies along the lawn edge are still upright. Photos, please!
Sunday 2nd February
Ooh goody - another overcast day, so again the flowers in the garden look absolutely gorgeous. What to do first? Put on the hoses and water the fence-line Pittosporums, I think, and then perhaps a spot of leisurely hardly-bend-down-at-all weeding? Hmm...
Leisurely weeding is for wimps! I've been ripping armfuls of Alkanet out, ditto Lychnis, mixing it with dry rubbish from behind the pond, and burning the lot. A rather large side branch of a gum tree has crashed down, a long way back from the cottage, but still a reminder of the power of the wind. I've trimmed off what I can, and told Non-Gardening Partner about it. Funny, though - he's now completely disappeared.
As soon as I've had a short break I'm going to clear the gum leaves off Rusty the dog's Lavender Garden, burn them, and then sit back and wait for - yippee - visitors! Rusty has a play-date (Escher the big brown dog is coming). I plan to be super-clean, with smoke-free hair, by then.
+5Actually, Rusty could do with some semi-focussed dog-company. He's in a bored, barking mood - aeroplanes, a helicopter, the bell-birds, a quad-bike zooming up and down next-door's driveway have all been getting the treatment.
I've had a brilliant day. My lovely visitors have been and gone, the dogs have leapt in and out of the pond chasing their tennis balls, and raced around the Frisbee Lawn chasing pine cones (not frisbees, sorry about that).
Queen Annes Lace and Shasta Daisies
Have I mentioned how much I'm enjoying Queen Anne's Lace? Last spring a friend gave me six little plants - my first meeting with this tall, fluffy, seedy annual. This year they've all self-sown, just in the one garden, and they look absolutely gorgeous. It's so nice when later in one's garden life one meets a new plant friend.
Huge thank-yous to all the flowers which have brightened up my gardening work these last few days - and this journal page.