Gardening goals...

I wonder if this might be a good week to write down some gardening goals, since spring is progressing so quickly. For example, I could try to finish at least three important things. Hmm... Suspect that goals need to be a little more specific.

 Charles the ram, mother ewe and twin lambs.
Merino Sheep Family 2011

Monday 19th September

Finally, feeling rather intimidated, I've moved computers. The new birthday laptop is a sparkling silver, clean-hands, clean-fingernails, no-toast-within-one-meter machine. But it does things so much faster, so the time spent in washing my gardening hands is well and truly made up for, hee hee. And it's handy being able to see the letters on the keyboard - might result in less nonsense being written down...

 President Roosevelt.
Wet Rhododendron

Cold Rain

Today may not be such a good outdoors gardening day, though. A southerly storm has arrived, with patchy cold rain. Hope the lambs are OK (I'm sure they will be, with such a good mother).

Anyway, I'm off into the glass-house to sow some more seeds, lay out my seed potatoes (Jersey Benne, Cliff Kidney, and Purple Passion just purchased), and organise more cuttings. This is bare-hands work - it's digital heaven, compared to those insensitive, clumpy normal gardening gloves usually worn.


Aha! The first test of the new laptop has been passed - I've spent a couple of hours working in the glass-house, and here I am, with clean hands, busy shifting photo files. The rain is pouring down, and that's so good for my garden, as it's been freshly spread with compost.

Purple Passion Penstemon :
This penstemon is a rich dark blue colour. It's rather lovely.

Details - I took some penstemon cuttings (also called Purple Passion, like my spuds), to see if they'll strike. This evocative name seems to suit a flower more than a potato!

I also took lots of heel cuttings from the pink spiky daisy wintering over in the glass-house. There's still no sign of those fancy tomato seeds germinating, though. C'mon, you heirlooms...

Tuesday 20th September

Hmm... I am feeling a little subdued, having spent the whole morning at the dentist. But my new dentist is groovy, and we have a decent long distance plan for the Moosey teeth. The plan now is to do some weeding - maybe finish off the vegetable garden. Now there's an idea! Then I can retrospectively claim it as a goal and get a huge tick, hee hee...

 Outdoors! Amazing...
Tiger the Cat

Later, Even More Subdued...

Aargh! Apres-dentist gardening has its drawbacks. My mouth got achier and I got gloomier. But the weeding of the vegetable garden (first draft) is finished. I've also scooped up self-sown lettuce seedlings and planted them in a row by the path, which is raked. Not exactly earth-shattering gardening, granted, but three hours' worth - good on me, I say. Now I have a choice - a snooze, painkillers, or a beer? In honour of tonight's rugby match I choose the beer, and I'll save it for later.

Wednesday 21st September

This morning's personal treat is a doctor's visit for the face and hands check - liquid nitrogen, aargh! Still, these little things contribute greatly to the general health of a good and busy gardener (me). So when I get home - what to do first? Or, to be slightly more brutal, what needs doing first? Aargh!

Ha! I'm back, with a bagful of assorted gardening goodies from the local all-sorts store. Allow me to present not one but two spray bottles for watering my seeds, two hand scrapers and a fork for weeding, vegetable seeds (French beans, courgettes, sugar snap peas, parsnips, spinach), and the softest uber-flexible gloves for my slightly sore hands.

 The flowering cherry in the Driveway Lawn.
Camellia and Blossom

Blossom, Bellbirds...

I don't like to brag, but... What nonsense - of course I do! New bread will be ready in three hours, and this evening's casserole is gurgling nicely in the slow cooker. Around my house the spring blossom is beautiful, the bellbirds are making their delightful kissing noises in the trees, it's warm and gently sunny, I have new seed raising mix, and I feel rather virtuous. Better get gardening at once. Even Tiger the cat is outside.

Three Hours Later...

Have transformed from self-sorry dentist's and doctor's victim into a gushing, thankful person. I am so lucky! And it's taken three hours of medium tempo weeding in the house borders to come to this conclusion? Gardeners are weird.

Have also transformed into a nurturing seed-parent, after puffing water onto the seeds in the glass-house with my new fine mist sprayers. Am feeling soooooooo good about this, also. Gardeners are really simple-minded...

I've chopped out some basal cuttings of the big Choisya in the Island Bed, trimmed and potted them. Hope they survive. It's high time to prune old wood off the old-fashioned roses on the edge the Shrubbery, and contemplate their future. Some didn't flower at all last summer. I suspect the sheep - when they're in the ram paddock those rose shoots are just too tempting.

 Cherry trees in the Driveway Garden.
Pink Spring Blossom

Two Hours Later...

Two more gardening hours, during which time I've been dutifully weeding in the Stumpy (AKA Willow Tree) Garden along the paths. One thing about having a large garden - there's always a new spot to work in. This is a good thing? Oh yes, at the moment it is. The spring garden is always surprising me - new Bergenias in flower, new green growth on the waterside Gunnera. Oooo - I am so looking forward to the Willow Stump's tree house, which is soon to be constructed.

What a responsible day I've had. And there's another rugby game to watch later tonight. I love this World Cup!