Sorry about the silence. The Moosey house and garden has been internet-free for a few days. But I've still been diligently writing up my journal, and now I'm back in action! Pity there's been minimal gardening action...
Monday 11th May
Ha! It's early, a nippy autumn morning, with a heavy dew. My dog is outside chewing a large bone and the two fat cats (Fluff-Fluff and Tiger), naturally, have taken up their usual kitchen positions. Then there's me, thinking about anything not related to the garden - sewing (I have to), piano-playing, hiking (a three day mountain walk coming up soon), cricket (the T20 World Cup)...
I think we get the picture. So with the sternest of rhetorical voices I ask myself - what should I do today in the garden? Watching Midsommer Murders on the TV couch is not gardening. Nor is reading books about a botanist travelling through the swampy Congo jungle (I do this to scare myself away from adventure travel).
Should Be, Should Be...
I should be getting the pond site ready for the garden shed, and I need to start seriously trimming back other shrubs and perennials. Hopefully this coming weekend the fire ban will be lifted and I'll start burning all my rubbish (not the fallen leaves - those are collected to go back onto the garden). Should be, should be, should be... I should be clearing the vegetable garden, and cutting down the dahlias. Many are totally over flowering now. And raking leaves, and spreading manure, and...
Much, Much Later...
Aargh! My sewing took over four hours, and then I took the costumes into work... But the students' dance-drama performance is finished and looks really good. I can stop prancing around doing dance steps and confusing my dog (not to mention my knees).
Autumn Leaves - Filipendula
Tuesday 11th May
Before I go outside to actually do some gardening, allow me to gush. I am so lucky! Yippee for wives of eldest sons, for as well as knitting the most beautiful blue wrap-scarf in the whole world for their Mother-In-Law, they also get the sons to sign Mothers' Day cards. Oops - the eldest did build the original Moosey website for a Mothers' Day present all those years ago, mustn't forget that.
Yippee for Snail Mail!
And yippee for snail mail! For the last two days the Moosey internet connection has been 'down' - not a problem, but a small nuisance (I was hoping to bid in some Agapanthus online auctions). In one of life's delightful symmetries a real hand-written letter from a gardening friend was there in my mailbox this morning!
- Real Mail! :
- Thank you, thank you, thank you, Bonny from Texas!
So I sat down like a real lady (?) with morning coffee on the patio table and read my 'real' mail. I'd forgotten how much life there is in real handwriting. The words leap and dance off the page, and it was so easy to imagine my friend right there sitting beside me.
I've said all this before - 'lucky' seems too crass a word, and 'blessed' seems extremely serious. But I am very much both. My garden shed arrives soon, and I love my new hiking boots. And I love my garden. I love the fact that it's just me, and I am trying to be organic and natural. I have ten new Cream Delight Phormiums to plant - I love New Zealand Phormiums! And I love that my piano playing is going well, and that my flute friend found the Poulenc piano part for me to practice.
Three Hours Later...
And I love that it doesn't matter if I only garden for three hours, because I will always have achieved something, some little thing! I've trimmed around the Frisbee Border and the house gardens. A silent sob - goodbye to my white floppy dahlias, who have been so beautiful (even if rather too floppy for good taste). See you next year! I've saved some seed - wonder what colours I'll get?
Lucky and Blessed
Then my dog and I zoomed up and down the road (me on my bicycle) and we talked (well, I did the talking) about both of us being lucky and blessed, and what a wonderfully good dog he was. My knees weren't really sore at all - life is good! And now the sun has dropped behind the trees. Suddenly it seems cold, and I am reminded that winter is well and truly on its way. I must make every mild outdoor moment count.
Wednesday 12th May
Blast. I can't go out with my hiking group today - I have to be here for the technician who is 'fixing' our internet connection. But I've got time for some morning swimming, during which I can plan my hugely productive gardening day. I presume I am planting some of the new Phormiums in the Shrubbery? There! An instant decision has been made instantly (as one would expect).
I've only gardened for three hours, but I'm feeling very pleased with myself. I approached the Shrubbery rather tentatively, terribly worried that my mass plantings of some weeks ago (Hebes, Aralias, and Pittosporums) would have all dropped dead through lack of watering. Phew! They're OK.
The Island Bed in Autumn
So I've raked a path to continue through the middle of two straight rows of trees. The pity is that they're Eucalypts and not pleached Hornbeams or white-barked birches... Oh well. I planted four of my Phormiums and dug out some weedy compost.
Cream Delight Phormiums
Thursday 13th May
It's supposed to be raining today, and rain is what I've certainly ordered in - I have webwork to catch up on (the Moosey internet is reconnected, finally, after three days wandering in the cosmic fog). Hmm...
So there's a balmy nor-west wind, it's beautifully sunny, temperature in the mid-twenties (Celsius). No wonder some of my shrubs think it's springtime and are starting to flower. Right. The car is full of Agapanthus - they're going over on the fence-line to complete my mass planting. Gardening clothes on, and out I go.
Only four hours later, but all the Agapanthus are planted, and my raised garden by the fence-line is finally completed. Yippee! I've removed all the random baby Agaves, and for once I have a unified look throughout one whole garden area. Anyone who sniffs at Agapanthus need not look! And all the Cream Delight flaxes are planted, the route of the path at the very back of the Shrubbery is rationalised, and I am ready to replace all the wood logs with stones. My path edges surely will be needed soon for winter firewood...