A pinch and a punch...

 With raindrops...
Phormium Yellow Wave

A pinch and a punch for the first of the month - seems rather physical and aggressive. Which is exactly the tone I need to set as I weed and trim and spread compost throughout the winter garden.

Wednesday July 1st

Today, with the internet world as my witness, I promise faithfully to spread lots and lots of compost. This gardening gold is no use enriching the trailer's wooden bottom. And I also promise to sort out some stones for my stone wall. I promise to garden all day - lucky Rusty dog! There are some things I need to organise - my two standard Brides need proper containers, as befits their ethereal, romantic status. Last spring the Moosey Brides tried to look magnificent on the house patio - in a pair of bright orange plastic pots. Eek!

Breakfast Gardening

My breakfast reading is a book on Garden Design, full of topiary box and woven willow fences. Lots of the pictures come from the Chelsea Flower Show - which may be at the cutting edge of Flower Shows, but doesn't occupy a similar position in good garden design, in my rather haughty opinion! But there is one great idea which I must, must, must copy. The old dog kennel roof slopes gently downwards and would be THE perfect place for sedums. Old hat? Should have done it ages ago? You bet!

 This is the view from my reading chairs in the house.
Winter Garden View

Right. It's only 9am and 3 degrees (Celsius) and I'm ready. I am going outside - I may be gone for some time...

Later - Not One, Not Two, Not Three, Not Four, Not Five, But SIX Hours Later...

Six hours! What more can I say? I've had a brilliant day. First I fiddled around laying stones behind the pond, finished the pond path, raked up rubbish, and spread compost. Then I pruned trees. I planted Phormiums and pieces of Renga Renga. I raked up leaves off the lawns by the glass-house, and dug out offending grasses from the Glass-House Garden. I've burnt all my mess, much of which was gum tree rubbish and Cordyline leaves...

And then in a flash I leapt into the shower to erase all smoky smells, put on my black'n'bling outfit, brushed my hair (first time in days, oops), quickly whipped myself into singing shape, and performed in a concert. Tra-la-la! What a legend.

Best Friends :
You can meet these best friends of mine in the Moosey pets pages.

Rusty chased twelve aeroplanes and twenty-five assorted birds off the premises. He rolled in duck-poos, barked a lot (poor neighbours) and generally had fun doing what dogs do. Minimus the kitten played in the undergrowth, cats Percy and Fluff-Fluff climbed trees. We were a group of best friends having a great big day out.

Thursday 2nd July

Hmm... Not quite as energetic today, I fear. However the weather has been drizzly and grey, perfect for sitting on the cat couch with my library books. I have peeped out the windows at the garden, though - what great views!

Piano Problems

And I've been playing the piano. Today I think that Albeniz's piano music is too difficult for me ever to play properly. There are no thundering bulls and twirling matadors in my Albeniz renditions - rather a bunch of sedate Spanish grandmothers and matrons hobbling around and tripping over the cobblestones. Ah well... Tomorrow I will try again, with lots of practice. And I will do lots of gardening. I promise!

 Hee hee - what great bargains.
My Two Dollar Garden Tools

Friday 3rd July

Right - I'm going swimming, and I will return with pots for the Brides. Today I will garden away my Albeniz blues. This I can do. Being comfortable in ones own musical skin is obviously desirable, but energetic compost spreading will be a pleasant (?) diversion. I now have pencil marks scribbled all over THE most difficult pages, to help the aging mind. If I have a really good day I am allowed to drink wine and watch 'The Bachelor' on TV. Hmm...

Much Later...

Some random good fortune - I stopped at an Op Shop on the way home from swimming and bought a clutch of old two-dollar gardening tools - edge clippers, rakes, shovels, forks, and a scary sort of rake with three curved barb-shaped prongs. Eek! I wandered out of the shop looking like part of a rabble peasant army. Tools I don't use will be given to Non-Gardening Partner to make into bird sculptures. I saw some beautiful examples of garden bird art on my recent holiday into Ontario, Canada.

And then I weeded the Island Bed, shifting a white Iceberg rose into the sun, and sawing off old canes of the Sally Holmes roses. All dead dahlia stalks got trimmed, and I completely emptied the trailer of compost. And I found a pair of largish pots by the pond which could easily house the Brides. I'll pot them up tomorrow.

 Busy in the rockery...
A Shovelbird

'The Bachelor' here I come - only because the last episodes were shot in New Zealand, you understand... None of my intelligent semi-feminist friends will admit to watching this rubbishy TV programme. So how come they know all the names of the bachelorettes and have opinions on which one Jason should choose? Hmm...

Saturday 4th July

Ha! Sun! An empty trailer! A weekend with a Non-Gardening Partner to organise! No time to waste - I'm off.

Four Hours Later...

Brr... Sound the retreat. Warm clothes, warm coffee, warm fingers... I've re-dug the top curve of the Island Bed - less grass to mow, more garden to weed, that sort of thing. I've planted some spare roses on the new sunny edge, trimmed and shifted the red penstemons, trimmed a huge Yellow Wave Phormium (which took ages), and shovelled heaps of compost around.

 Still trying to flower.
Silly John Clare Rose

This 'soil' is so sandy - it desperately needs bulking up. It's the crest of an old sand dune on the river flood plain. Now I just have a couple of dodgy Queen Elizabeth roses to rescue and replant, and then the whole of the bed will be finished.

Cat Scampering

Earlier I'd taken my four cat-company stalwarts (Percy, Fluff-Fluff, Histeria and Minimus the kitten) for a 'scamper' over behind the pond. These cats all get on well, and love going for walks. There was much zooming around, and at one stage all four ended up in the same gum tree. Eek! Histeria the tabby leapt down from branch to branch through the air like a monkey. And fearless little Minimus was way up there, the highest cat of them all! So I couldn't watch, and my feet felt horribly tingly.

 Time to go inside...
Aargh! Grey Skies!

Excellent Mid-Winter Gardening

There are many other things I should have done (like pot the Brides) but I didn't. The day (weather-wise) suddenly went all whooshy and dark grey, and, after all, four hours work in the cold is pretty good. In fact, it is excellent mid-winter gardening! Go Moosey, you brave, intrepid gardener...


Things I must do tomorrow include the following: planting a patio pot with lettuces, getting NGP to chain-saw down much of an old, disappointing apple tree, getting NGP to help with spreading more compost... Yippee! I am making great winter gardening progress.