Beautiful flowering roses...

Eek! It's the last week of November - so soon! But what a month - full of huge surprises, little treats, and beautiful flowering roses. And lots of good gardening work, done by me, grump-free. And I haven't finished yet!

 The time of the year when I love this euphorbia.
Euphorbia and Irises

Tuesday 22nd November

I am blessed to have such varied days. This morning I'm off to play Bach and Poulenc with my flautist friend. I've also just won an online auction to dig up ten roses for five dollars. Poor, unwanted things! They can come here to the country. There's always space for more roses.

 Hopefully the leaves are not rusty...
Dublin Bay Roses


Then I'm singing in a tiny concert - excerpts from The Sound of Music and My Fair Lady, with the obligatory John Rutter thrown in because it's near Christmas. I'm even ironed my fancy concert shirt.

And then I'm zooming home to work, work, work in my garden. There's flooding upriver, so my water race has been shut off. It's the perfect time to do maintenance on the banks, without cold rushing water up to my knees. Last time I did this the water came on without me noticing, and suddenly my trousers were getting wet and my buckets were merrily floating away downstream. Very funny, but a reminder how dangerous the irrigation canals can potentially be. And not just to buckets!


I finished the Agapanthus planting. The water race, however, was flowing again, the water very silty from all the rain in the mountains. I pulled heaps of forget-me-nots out from the corner Frisbee Lawn garden. Guess who is covered in more biddi-bids - me or Rusty the dog? Hmm... The furrier of the two of us wins that contest.

 And rose-bud.
Compassion Rose

I've picked a mixture of the most fragrant flowers for the house - Othello and Compassion roses, plus Philadelphus (orange blossom) - to celebrate this wonderful day. Now if only Non-Gardening Partner would practice his part in Bach's Trio Sonata from The Musical Offering...

Even Later...

He did! Life is indeed good. Bach has such a great feeling of texture and counterpoint flowing within the confines of bars, phrases, and harmonies. I reckon he'd have really enjoyed knitting.

 By the white garden furniture.

Wednesday 24th November

What shall I do first today in the garden? I've already been swimming, I've filled up my camera with rose photographs, and now the afternoon stretches out before me. I've peeped at the water pumping out of the hose by Rusty's dog kennel. I'm thinking maybe some gentle weeding? Just as a warm up.

Three Hours later...

Aha! Just as I've trundled inside to have a break it's started to rain. Perfect timing, and some great gardening accomplished, although (sniff sniff) I seem to have mislaid my favourite spade. I've pulled out a lot of weeds from the garden on the corner of the Frisbee Lawn. The shrubs (Cordylines, Corokias, Grevillias and a variegated Elderberry) are growing well in here, with minimal fuss and little extra watering.

I've Been Thinking...

I've been thinking about the two water pumps, and wondering whether to harness them in unison by Rooster Bridge so I can have one super-stream. It's not a silly idea.

Cornflower :
Purple Cornflowers are my favourites, though the blues and pinks are more prolific self-seeders.

I've also been thinking about the serious annual weeds which pop up everywhere in the Birthday Rose Garden, an area where I foolishly encourage self-seeders. One of these winters I will have to totally scrape everything out, maybe lose all the cornflowers and pansies, and start again. It's impossible to remove the undesirables at the moment - so much is flowering, including the peonies. The Stables Garden, just next door, doesn't suffer so from weeds...


 At least I think they are.
Prosperity Roses

One of my new rose arches is now in place underneath Buff Beauty. Several of my new recycled roses are now flowering. I may have a Whisky Mac, another Just Joey, possibly another bright yellow Freisia, and some Margaret Merrils. I would expect these varieties, as all are extremely popular in traditional urban gardens. Also there are some cherry red hybrid teas with long stalks and the pointiest buds. Oooh - I might have some Uncle Walters or Deep Secrets!

Wondering what colours and styles might appear is a huge part of the recycled-roses fun. Now, if only I could remember where I stashed my spade, I would be a totally satisfied and happy gardener. Well, that's not strictly true. I'd feel like a more responsible gardener.