The most wonderful gardening month!

 Fluff-Fluff airing his tummy.
Ginger Cat Stretch

November (in New Zealand) is the most wonderful gardening month to be a retired lady-gardener of slim but suitable means. So flowery and colourful, such freshness in the garden borders - long may it all last!

Wednesday 26th November

After a rocky start to the gardening week (giving thanks for good health) I've made a spectacular comeback. Daughter of Moosey is here, briefly, and has been making me wonderful snacks and proper cups of tea from a teapot.

And good poultry news - my favourite striped hen seems to be better. She's back toddling along with the others, eating and fossicking in the orchard, behaving like a normal hen again.

No Bird Feathers...

I haven't needed to vacuum up any bird feathers for three whole days - thanks, cats. And thanks to the three faithful felines (Fluff-Fluff, Percy, and Histeria) who suddenly popped out of the garden greenery yesterday and stayed with me all afternoon. Naturally my dog was already on gardening duty...

 A view of the back lawn from Middle Bridge.
Lupins Along the Water Race

Today I'm going to finish the weeding and tidying of the gardens over the water race. I'll put the hoses on in the Hump only - there's one particular garden space which the big irrigation doesn't reach. Last night it rained nicely, but if we get more of those drying nor-west winds all nature's good work is immediately undone - by nature herself.

 The common name is periwinkle.

Tough Ground Covers

My friend is bringing me some Lily-of-the-Valley clumps, which I will plant in the Shrubbery where they can be the perfect tough ground-cover, and not get into too much trouble for being invasive.

As another ground-cover I grow Vinca in here, which many gardeners would shriek at. But for me such plants have their place in the dry tough places, and Vinca has the most charming little flowers in spring.

Daisy Cuttings

I'm also going to collect and pot up seedling Renga Rengas (rock lilies) - part of the Moosey-Thinks-Ahead garden programme. Pelargonium cuttings in the glass-house should have rooted by now - they need to be potted too. Hopefully my daisy cuttings will also be ready. I never have enough daisy plants for summer spaces, and I find the ready-made nursery plants rather excpensive. All Moosey daisies have to be wintered over in the glass-house anyway.

Pink Peony :
I think my favourite peonies are pink. They have such depth and shading in their petals.

And a quick word (impossible in a dithering gardener's morning journal-writing session) about the peonies. I am so glad that I've a) met a peony, b) purchased some peonies at reasonable expense (well, they weren't two dollars), and c) been able to provide a garden and a climate in which they thrive. No summer humidity, nice frosty winters, etc. A huge thank you to the huge clumps of Moosey peonies.

Right. Enough dither and blither. Time to head outside for the first gardening session of the day. November - I love you!

Much, Much Later...

November - I still love you! In fact, I loooooooove you! I've spent the whole day weeding, planting out annuals, potting up cuttings, watering, burning the dry rubbish, cutting back the Aquilegias with the kitchen scissors, and just enjoying a timeless summer gardening day. There are roses everywhere, and every garden view is dominated by the vertical spiky foxgloves and lupins.

 Shining in the afternoon sun.
Blue Lupin Quartet

Positive Rose ID

Exciting news - I have a positive identification on the rose which climbs up one of the Apple trees. Looks like it is Lavender Lassie! One anonymous rose down, ninety-nine to go...

Thursday 27th November

Aargh! November is flying by. The roses will soon need dead-heading - what an exciting super-speedy time to be alive. Roaring down the gardening fast-lane... Except that today I'm driving sedately into town for a touch of op-shopping with a friend.

Best Blue Iris :
Blue is my favourite clothes colour - and the colour of my favourite big bearded iris for 2008.

Is there a limit to the number of blue summer gardening shirts one can have? Nope! One can make two or three changes a day, and when a shirt gets too sticky with bidibids just throw it out! And think of all the different blues there are - there's even one called 'periwinkle', like the Vinca flowers.


Oh well - I only did an hour of gardening, but I was exceptionally focused. The Banksia Lutea rose, which was almost completely smothering my washing line, had a major prune. Not only have I trimmed it at the right time of the year (immediately after flowering) but I've chopped down a robust two meter seedling plum tree (oops). My Kiwi fruit vine is reaching high up and over the woodshed (no fruit, since it needs a plant mate). Tomorrow I'll weed and tidy underneath where the rose was.