Last Weekend of April
I have far too much to say this autumn! It's the last autumn holiday weekend, and it feels like my last chance to get the garden ready for winter - which, of course, it isn't. There will soon have to be a mad mulching marathon throughout the garden.
Saturday 30th April
I've worked out why I'm noticing the Moosey autumn trees changing colour - the most colourful trees like the scarlet Oaks have grown bigger! They take up much more sky! Maybe not as much sky as the Botanic Gardens Oaks, but we're working on it!
The Water Race
So far autumn has been weather-kind - two almost-frosts on the Frisbee Lawn, cold enough to burn any dahlias growing in open garden space. But many flowers are still recklessly blooming - almost every colour of the rainbow can be found somewhere in the garden. The leaf colours are slow this season - the trees are waiting for a real ground frost. Brr...
Huge Garden Plans
Today I have huge plans - I am totally shifting a path through the interior of the Hump. The path will then divide the hump into cultivated (raked and planted) and uncultivated (messy) areas. There will be trailerfuls of raked-out rubbish to burn, but my interior Hump rationalisation will be an improvement. Every autumn and winter I spend ages clearing the whole of the Hump. This is hopeless. It only looks good in very early spring when the purple honesty is blooming, before the pines and gums have dropped too many leaves.
Golden Autumn Gleditzia
I've done it - well, I've done half of it. Loads of gum tree rubbish are stacked against the row of pine trees. The new Hump path does a stylish wiggle, and then emerges halfway along the beautifully green Driveway Lawn. I will plant and tend to the house-side of the path. The other side is wilderness (relatively speaking) and if I don't rake it, too bad.
- Rusty Puppy :
- Rusty the puppy is really a gentle, well-behaved young dog - just as long as there are no feathery things to chase.
Now I'm really tired and have completely run out of energy. My chook-gang is seriously avoiding me, puppy keeps jumping up uninvited, and the worst thing of all - there's just one gardening day until my part-time work starts again.
Aargh! I'll have to clean my fingernails and brush my hair - and wear silly (normal) shoes. Why can't I just do the decent thing and completely retire? Then I could at least train my animals properly...
Sunday 1st May
One more day of freedom! Aargh! Another lovely autumn weather day! Yippee! I am about to go with puppy for our morning walk - we have already checked out the new Hump path. It works well, from the puppy-perspective, though it looks rather wiggly in the cold (hmm... almost frost-cold) light of the morning after. Now I need twenty or thirty Pittosporums, already half grown, to get some instant 'bouff' in here. Failing that, I could wander around scooping fragile little seedling Pittosporums out of the other gardens - cheaper! Back soon.
Autumn Delphinium Flowers
Five Hours Later...
Five hours work - is that OK? I've been huffing and puffing in the Hump - I filled the trailer completely with rubbish, and burnt it, then I shovelled mulch and manure onto the Hen House Garden (the scene of the most unspectacular garden make-over ever to to limp painfully into the public domain). Finally I sloshed up the water race - telling myself I would pull out some weeds, but actually to splash water over my face and cool off (it didn't take long - the water temperature was rather nippy)...
Visitors are expected this afternoon - I hope we can sit outside without waves of stinky smoke from my fire ruining the ambience. I hope puppy will not jump all over them. Actually, it's very quiet out there. I'd better go and check what puppy is up to - he rather enjoys rolling in mulch and manure.
And thinking about tomorrow - I peeped at my timetable - I only have to go into work for one hour. So my personal grooming could be superficial, and I could race back into the garden before anyone noticed. Hmm... I could hide my fingernails...
My new paths (in the Hump and through the Hen House garden) have been much admired by the garden visitors. They are mad mulchers. Puppy (also much admired) swam in the pond for them, and chased his tennis ball down the water race. The scarlet Oak trees were blazing bright red in the late afternoon sun - I'm so lucky I planted them! What a perfect position!
My fire is finished. My holiday is also finished - well, with sensible organisation (for example, keeping a complete change of gardening clothes in the garage) I should be able to keep up the momentum. Each morning I should wake up, work or no work, and ask that same, simple, comfortable question - What shall I do first in the garden today?