Garden Weather

 New Dawn
Rose in the Rain

Ask any gardener - their life revolves around the weather. It rains just when they're full of gardening energy. They'll spend months waiting for the warm summer sun, then complain of the heat. I know I do!

Some read the satellite weather maps, others stay deliberately weather-illiterate. Funny how my plans for new garden developments are often formed in impossible weather conditions. Ever tried digging a new border in frosty ground?

My garden's most dramatic weather systems are the cold, southerly fronts. An army of dark grey clouds advances up the back paddock, the biting wind arrives, the big trees swirl noisily, and I just have time to gather my gardening tools up before the rain hits. Brr... Talking about the weather, though, will always help pass the non-gardening time!

The Nor-West WindThe Nor-West Wind...
Good gardeners know their own weather patterns like the back of their gloved gardening hand. The Moosey garden is much affected by Canterbury's classic nor-west wind. It's a noisy nuisance.
Spring BlossomSpring Blossom...
Spring in the country garden - so what would my favourite photographs be of? Fluffy new lambs? Aww... Maybe snowdrops, bluebells, or sunny daffodils? I know - how about spring blossom?
Amazing AutumnAmazing Autumn...
Autumn - you are amazing, as always. It doesn't matter to me if your nights aren't cool enough, or days warm and sunny enough. You're a treasure, and at the moment you're my favourite gardening season (sorry about that, spring and summer).
Facing Facing 'Almost-Winter' Head On...
I've worked it out! 'It' is the melancholic, wistfully gloomy mood I've been in this last week. It's time to stop pretending, get out the thermal underwear, re-commission the heavy-duty gardening boots - and face 'almost-winter' head on.
A Paler Shade of WinterA Paler Shade of Winter...
Hands up - who likes seeing pictures of gardens in winter? I know the English books love their 'frost on seed-heads of huge Miscanthus grasses behind row of shivering box-balls' photographs. Brr... This garden scene has me grabbing an extra rug and sinking further into the TV couch...
Snow Sentiments - June, 2012Snow Sentiments - June, 2012...
Having a snow-covered garden is something I love reminiscing about. Remember the great snow of 2003, when we had to feed out the sheep? What about 2006 when the giant Wattle trees came crashing down? I enjoy peering at my blue-white pictures of frolicking dogs and cautious cats. Snow is so pretty in photographs.
Welcome to Early AutumnWelcome to Early Autumn...
Gardening calendars throughout the world differ as to the actual start of each season. In New Zealand, March 1st is popularly labelled the first day of Autumn. Eek! That seems really far too early to me.
Too Windy to Garden?Too Windy to Garden?...
Too windy to garden? It shouldn't be - my garden has all the approved shelter trees, designed to deflect the nor-west, the nor-easterly, even the cold southerly. All those nasty little wind arrows can curl up and over things without bearing down upon me,
Spring Surprises - 2011Spring Surprises - 2011...
I will never become complacent about spring's little surprises. Each year I get hooked into winter, with its cool blue tints all over the garden's green foliage. I endure minimal colours and flowers, and then - yippee! Spring, just when I least expect it!
Getting the Garden Ready for SnowGetting the Garden Ready for Snow...
Interesting times. We don't get snow very often (once every three or four winters, and it never stays for very long. So, when snow to near sea-level is forecast, my head goes into a garden-spin.
An Open Letter to Autumn 2011An Open Letter to Autumn 2011...
I've got something to say to you, Autumn of 2011, the season of the moment. There's no way you're going to fool me this year. I'm checking up on you every single day. Got it? Every single day. Ha! Not that I wish to sound like a member of the Garden Police - or your mother...
Autumn IndicatorsAutumn Indicators...
When's autumn, exactly? I don't think I have a mid-autumn in my garden, nor an early and late version, but I do know when my personal autumn has arrived properly. In my gardening life there are seven key indicators.
Summer MoaningSummer Moaning...
My attitude to my summer garden is dictated rather by the weather, which is hot (well, hottish) and incredibly dry-windy. But just when I'm moaning and despairing (as well as running the big irrigation) there's hope...
Spring So Far - 2010Spring So Far - 2010...
Spring has come yet again to the Moosey garden. Yet again I'm surprised by all the things I forgot to look forward to. They're little things (the blue striped crocuses) or big things (the huge Wattle trees in flower). The spring garden is full of stars just waiting to be noticed.
Where Are the Winter Garden Pictures?Where Are the Winter Garden Pictures?...
Why don't I take very many garden photographs in winter? I'm lucky - I can keep on gardening, rain and cold weather permitting. I can dig and plant things, frost permitting. It rarely snows seriously. So where are all my photographs?
Autumn RosesAutumn Roses...
Sometimes I only look for the obvious in autumn. I'm attracted by the drama of the dogwoods as they colour, or the languid leaf drop of the golden driveway trees, and so on. I forget that for some shrubs it's business as usual.
MooseyMoosey's Spring Stars for 2009...
Nurseries use the phrase 'Stars of Spring' to introduce brand new, exciting plant arrivals to their shelves and benches. I've got some spring stars in the Moosey garden to share, though they're not exactly at the cutting edge...
The First Spring CamelliasThe First Spring Camellias...
It's early spring and suddenly my first Camellias are flowering. This is a wonderful moment - I love these shy, simple shrubs. Yet again they've taken me by surprise.
Autumn ApologiesAutumn Apologies...
Autumn 2009 - I'm so sorry. Please accept my apologies. I've been rudely insulting your performance this year. You and I haven't communicated properly. But I'm not sure that you've done your bit, either...
Levels of SpringLevels of Spring...
I've made an early spring promise - not to miss one emerging flower, no matter how tall or tiny. This year I'm determined to notice all the spring flowers, at all levels, in my garden.
Spring ThingsSpring Things...
As spring prepares to 'spring' into garden action, lots of forgotten little treasures start popping up in my garden. This is the perfect time for 'stocktaking', after the long colour-free winter weeks.
Preparing for WinterPreparing for Winter...
As an active four-seasons gardener I find the thought of preparing for winter slightly alarming. I don't ever feel like shutting down and hibernating. It's made me think seriously, though, about this coming winter, which is fast approaching.
Autumn Pictures and PoetryAutumn Pictures and Poetry...
Gardeners must make the most of autumn - it can be one of the shortest, smallest garden joys in their year. And all good autumn things must come to an end...
Snow in 2006Snow in 2006...
Welcome to winter! It's nearly the shortest day of 2006, and the head gardener is complaining - she's so bored with the common garden tasks like winter weeding and mulching. I know - how about a really short sharp snow storm?
An Autumn FlopAn Autumn Flop...
This year my garden is full of autumn surprises, but unfortunately not of the falling leaf variety. My autumn trees - like my sun-starved Autumn Joy sedums - have been a total flop. The late April weeks were just not cold enough, and I'm complaining!
Snow in SeptemberSnow in September...
Snow in late September? Aargh! This is supposed to be spring-time, when the spring bulbs and blossom are in full bloom. The Peonies are popping up, the Rhododendrons are ready, the Irises are standing by...
WhereWhere's Spring?...
OK - Where's spring? This is New Zealand, the land of the four seasons gardener - we fully hardy types are not known for huddling in front of log burners in late August.
Too Wet to Garden?Too Wet to Garden?...
In theory it should never be too wet to garden in New Zealand. Water is a part of us all, our gardens need water, and our temperatures are rarely extreme. Rain is positively welcomed in the Moosey garden - or is it?
Enjoying AutumnEnjoying Autumn...
The ambience of the Moosey garden in Autumn is amazing. I'd like to think the reason is fairly deep and meaningful - the warm golden glow of leaves ready to fall, the fiery reds and oranges on the trees, contrasting enigmatically with the cold icy frost below...
Too Hot to Garden?Too Hot to Garden?...
How can summer in New Zealand possibly be too hot for gardening? The climate is temperate - some gardeners are obviously never satisfied.
The Snowfall of 2003The Snowfall of 2003...
In the winter of 2003, for the second year running, it snowed in West Melton. This was real snow, ground-settling snow, garden-covering snow. Snow that really shouldn't have fallen in a busy gardener's winter holiday.
Snow in 2002Snow in 2002...
The first snow at Mooseys came the winter after we moved in. The old Ceanothus which had bloomed brilliantly blue during our first spring cracked with the weight, and had to be removed. I remember the cats were puzzled, and the dog was quite excited...
Weather StatisticsWeather Statistics...
Many gardeners simply feel the weather - experience and instinct tells them exactly what to expect. But unless you live and breathe in a place, the typical weather patterns can come as a surprise. Here are some weather facts about the Moosey garden.
Winter Gardening in 2001Winter Gardening in 2001...
I'd like to make the claim that I garden in winter... all winter. I shift things, I dig out unsuspecting shrubs and drag them around. In winter my sense of imminent growth is supreme...
Autumn Gardening in 2001Autumn Gardening in 2001...
I know what the books say about Autumn - they mention the changes in leaf colour, the gradual dying down of the garden, the cooler days, bonfires and so on. These aren't the things I remember about Autumn at all...
Summer Gardening in 2001Summer Gardening in 2001...
Summer means lots of different things to me - greenness, growth, roses, hot winds, books, sneaky watering, cushions in the shade of the big gum tree...
Spring Gardening in 2001Spring Gardening in 2001...
Spring starts to make its demands four weeks before my October holidays. It starts with the daffodils of course, when I tell myself it's worth having to drive away from home, in order to fully enjoy their welcome at the gate upon returning.
Garden WaterGarden Water...
To garden successfully in rural Canterbury, you need water, lots of it. Moosey's Country Garden is lucky, we have a main county water race running right through the garden and an irrigation right to draw water from the race...
Garden IrrigationGarden Irrigation...
Moosey's Country Garden only receives about 650 mm of rain per year. Due to the erratic distribution of this rainfall throughout the year this is much too little for adequate plant growth.