A first February 'Good Morning' to the following: Son-in-Law (Ha! Australian humour reinvades the Moosey kitchen), Non-Gardening Partner (the waterwheel sits by the garage, ready for repairs), Rusty the dog (getting furrier every day), and the cats - Jerome, Tiger and Fluff-Fluff, little Musgy, Percy, Histeria and the elusive Lilli-Puss, and Minimus the woodshed kitten.
Sunday 1st February
To the Moosey garden - good luck and all the best for February. Please try and look your best, even when the hot dry winds are swirling over you and gum tree leaves and bark are dropping on you.
Summer Garden View
I promise I will keep trying my very best - trimming and weeding you, watering and feeding you, and keeping your paths clear of greenery. Just so you aren't bored, I promise there will be a few changes - the curve of a border re-dug here, a new batch of bargains planted there, and so on.
Today I am starting with the roses in the orchard. They are to be weeded and tidied up. I've been watering their bases, so my job should be easy. New roses shifted in last winter (Bantry Bay and Reine des Violettes) are thriving, and a lot of the other roses are repeat flowering. And NGP has kindly offered me his secateurs, since mine are lost in the mulch somewhere.
- 'Things don't take long the more you do them.'
- -Moosey Words of Wisdom.
It's just lunchtime and all the archway roses are done. Comment, stating the obvious - things (like weeding the orchard roses) don't take long the more you do them. Some day soon I will have to look back over all my records and get the names of the orchard roses right, though. There has been much movement. I'm off to photograph some of their beautiful flowers now.
Apres-gardening in white shirt, I'm going to do some web-work inside. I'm adding more plant pictures into the Moosey What Plant Am I? Competition, trying for more humour amidst all those seriously wondrous flowery plants. I do hope that anyone silly enough to play it won't mind being:
- A cactus.
- A garden gnome.
- A salad vegetable.
Oops. I'm bound to insult somebody...
Tuesday 3rd February
I am back after a full day working at my old school. Aargh! Where would I rather be - wandering around the Moosey paths, sitting in the woodshed having morning tea with Minimus the kitten, cycling off down the road with my dog, doing the garden... Or being a Mathematics teacher, in a sterile classroom, or a library full of teenage books with desperately colourful covers? Hmm... There's no contest, and I am lucky that I can make the choice. Phew!
Cherry Red Dahlias
Mind you, I did borrow the last Harry Potter book from that library for some light reading - apres-gardening of course.
Wednesday 4th February
Aargh! Yesterday I poked around in the garden doing my kitten-mother duty, calling Minimus to follow me around the gardens at the back of the house. Success - we sat together on the laundry seat, he purred, explored, lay down and wriggled on the stone path, and hissed quietly at Rusty the nosy dog. Then half-blind Mugsy wobbled up to us, and jumped onto the kitten by mistake. Oops.
- Minimus the kitten:
- This is Minimus's first official photograph.
Today it's drizzling, and all I've done outside is - oops again - play with Minimus the kitten. All the other cats get extra attention to make up for this, so I have had a totally catty (and doggy) morning. I have sliced up their pet-food fish (Tiger loves it), and made a little nest with a maroon woollen blanket on the top of Minimus's woodshed pile. Hopefully he will learn to sleep in it rather than on the rooftop in the mess of the rambling rose.
Thanks, Percy (I presume), for the dead rat at the bottom of the stairs, with a tail nearly as long as yours - my, that certainly woke me up. And would the risk-taking cat who piddled on the hot-plates on the oven top please desist - I can imagine a rather nasty surprise if they were switched on. The culprit is bound to be Tiger, who has 'form' for such kitchen misdemeanours. Readers will be despairing of the state of the Moosey kitchen hygiene...
Congratulations to the following plants for 'making it' in the big world out there. The Moosey lavender is illustrating a thesis publication in Gothenburg University, Sweden. And a Moosey Delphinium with a rather large bee (of the bumble variety!) is this month's flower on my Niagara friend's website. He says that every flower has a song - and he's right!
Thursday 5th February
Another great day where I've spent quality time with Minimus the kitten - today we two did some serious gardening in the middle of the Apple Tree Border. I chopped and nipped and cleared out dead bits of rose and rogue Elderberries, while the kitten played. Fluff-Fluff has become a nanny-cat - silly thing!
I put Minimus 'to bed' in his maroon blanket for an afternoon snooze, and sure enough - he was still there an hour later. Dear me - I've never before had a kitten who behaved like this. I feel very humble.
The hoses have been on all day, and as well as the orchard roses my deciduous Azaleas have had a good soaking. They're new plants, and their root systems will not be good enough to survive our measly rainfall. When Rusty and I went for our cycle ride I noticed the neighbouring paddocks and grass verges were tinder dry, the colour of pale straw...