Sheep shearing day...
It's sheep shearing day, so there's been much coming and going and bleating and baa-ing. This morning I drove (in the sheepish sense of the word) Fred my ex-pet lamb and his friends down the driveway, and oh boy! What a large fleece (and a large bottom) he has.
Sunday 24th October
Remembering Fred's lamby misdemeanours (like gate-crashing the neighbours' barbecue) has been really funny. Stu lamb, my 2010 model, is so much nicer to look after!
So no gardening has happened as yet, but I've been shoving sheep onto the trailer and then off in town singing in a lunchtime concert. Now off must come the black singing pants and on must go the good gardening jeans. My mission is threefold:
- 1. To collect a barrowful of weeds, using correct gardening posture.
- 2. To finish the hedge edge.
- 3. To sneak up on the pheasant and take his photograph.
Right. I accept the above challenges, and will not accept failure, except in the case of the pheasant - he has proved pretty elusive in the past. I don't blame him, since many of his ancestor brothers have had their tail feathers plastered onto hats. Softly, softly...
Fluff-Fluff the Cat
First rule of pheasant photography - clear shots are only possibly when camera batteries need recharging. But the hedge is done. Then I went down the road to help finish off the shearing. I watched super-sheep Fred having his fleece shorn - it is huge. And the sheep underneath is huge, too. The shearer was making rude jokes about fatty sausages and Fred's big bottom... Ahem! Fred is a family pet-sheep!
The two mother ewes are back home with their paddock lambs. Tomorrow everyone else (everyone ovine, that is) comes home and gets their lice treatment, including Stu the pet lamb. It's an insect growth regulator and stops the lice from shedding their coats (something lice have to do, apparently, to stay alive).
I'm really tired. Really tired. Nicely, really, nicely tired.
Monday 25th October
Yesterday I had my evening meal on the pond decking, and then sat for ages and stared around. The Pond Paddock was looking absolutely beautiful, breathtaking, so amazingly beautiful... And not just because all the lawns were freshly mowed, either - credit is due to the Head Gardener!
Pond Decking Garden Furniture - Spring 2010
I drank my wine and fruit juice mixture and gushed away to Lilli-Puss my grey cat. A new cherry red rhododendron (Ross Maud) has been planted in just the right place (good for me) and the Cream Delight Phormiums in the far borders were splendid. I quickly ran out of adjectives - it's probably just as well that I only had cat-company (all human companions were inside watching the TV news).
Rhododendron Ross Maud
So yesterday was a great day, but today will be even better. Hee hee. It's a public holiday, and so I have Non-Gardening Partner home, and I can't have him slouching in the TV couch watching reruns of Grand Designs, can I? So I have made him a short list.
List for Non-Gardening Partner
- Chainsaw dead branch of apricot tree which is squashing the Fruhlingsgold rose.
- Mix up more weed-killer so I can clear the back of the Welcome Garden.
- Fix two watering hoses - maybe buy new connectors.
- Work on Pond Cottage's interior walls.
Well, NGP has made superb progress on his list, without needing to see it in writing. He is complaining about the work needed to line the interior walls of Pond Cottage, though. But he doesn't want me to help, so I've come inside for a short break, to get out of the warm sun.
I've cleaned up along from Rooster Bridge and shifted an old garden bench into the shade by the water's edge. I've always wanted a seat here, and in younger more flexible days I thought about hanging a hammock between the gum trees - I still might. Hmmm... Older lady gardener stuck fast in hammock for two days, her feeble cries unnoticed. 'I thought it was the bellbird singing' said her distracted Non-Gardening Partner.
Stu the Blue Lamb
I've built a tiny new path to the seat, planted the Renga Renga along the edge, and cleaned up heaps of gum tree rubbish. It's now time to enjoy the warmth and calm beauty of late spring.
And regarding those pesky aftershocks - just two or three a day now, the occasional noticeable one, annoying the pheasant who honks and hoots. But the earth still isn't settled. No wonder the people who live on it are unsettled, I reckon.
Stu is Blue!
Oh dear. I've just fed Stu lamb, who is a blue lamb (the lice treatment). I couldn't resist taking some pictures of him. He is definitely not to be cuddled at the moment! Dear Stu - he's such a nice lamb to be looking after.