Welcome to Moosey's Country Bed-n-Breakfast...

 My friend says this is a Hoya.
Maire Nui Flowering Shrub

Welcome to Moosey's Country Bed-n-Breakfast (new visitors are arriving), and a domestic chores morning, since the temperature is still only two degrees Celsius outside in the garden.

Friday 22nd July

Right. It's time to change the beds, make some bread (hopefully not as flat as the last loaf), and do some housework. Hmm. I'd much rather be gardening. Over coffee I'm going to look back over my tropical Rarotonga photographs, as a sort of mental warm-up.


It is possible to have a brilliant day being a complete non-gardener. I crocheted while TV cycling near the Loire Valley (oh, those chateaux), took Rusty the bored dog for a brisk walk, then revisited Maire Nui Gardens in tropical Rarotonga. I've decided to fill this page with warm photographs taken there!

Minimus :
Little Minimus started life as my woodshed kitten - found in the woodshed, starving and wild.

How could life ever possibly be boring? Even the shaky 5.1 aftershock at 5:30am (on our end of the fault line) couldn't dampen the spirits of my day. Anyway, Minimus didn't even bother jumping off the bed - though when she's in Pond Cottage she always feels really safe. A cat's reaction is usually a good measure of something scary.

Happy Birthday NGP

Happy Birthday to the Moosey Non-Gardening Partner, to whom I've presented a very odd shell stuck fast in a round stone. A fossil? Not sure how old it is - I found it on the beach. I have told NGP that a tree-house in the Willow stump is the perfect return birthday present for me, in a couple of month's time, hee hee... Phew - luckily his birthday chocolate cake is a success.

 Looks warm!
Maire Nui Trees

Rugby and Wine...

Now I'm going to watch the rugby and drink some Sauvignon Blanc (thanks to my last visitors). I hope this is a manly enough drink to watch the All Blacks' first rugby test of the winter. Ah, winter! Perhaps you're not so bad after all.

Saturday 23rd July

Aha! My garden needs me, so I'm going to do some tidying and rationalising in the Wattle Woods. Maybe I can persuade Non-Gardening Partner to do some sawing. The trees are in quite a state, with dead branches sticking out at odd angles. Anyway, I need to get weeding and path-raking, even if NGP won't co-operate.

And to kick me out of any potential TV-watching trances (love that French scenery), snow is forecast as a possibility for tomorrow. So I need to be getting my garden ready for snow? Really? It's only a vague thought, because snow settles on the ground in my garden maybe once every four years. Naturally, being a gardener in touch with her personal weather, snow doesn't really figure much in my garden design...

Much Later...

Oh yes. I have been good. I've trimmed Hebes and raked all sorts of rubbish out from the Wattle Woods. That which could be burnt is burnt. Unfortunately NGP escaped, so my sawing hasn't been done yet. But all my paths are clear, and the foliage underneath the trees looks beautiful. There's a lovely dark wine leafed Pittosporum I particularly like - now that I can see it. And there's space for some roses in the front - that could be tomorrow's first task. I don't believe that snow is coming.

 Still celebrating...
Golden Celebration Rose - Still Flowering!

Sunday 24th July

I've just entered the kitchen to the beautiful smell of freshly baked bread. But I am pondering thus: How come my loaves in the new breadmaker fall as flat as flat, whereas NGP's first attempt rises to the very top of the bread case? An experienced mother, homemaker, and cook versus a delightfully crusty old bachelor. Oops - sorry, NGP, I meant that the bread was delightfully crusty, of course. This is no way to get my Wattle Woods sawing done.

The Morning's Gardening Plan

So here's the morning's gardening plan. I'll be spreading horse manure and mulch in the Wattle Woods, and then I'll run a quick efficient bonfire, with gum debris mixed in with the prunings from the orchard roses. There's more trimming to be done in the Hen House Gardens, too.

 That garden seat looks jolly cold!
Pond Cottage

At least I'll be able to keep warm, trundling back and forth. Not that I believe this snow is coming, mind you. And I have to take some pictures of the winter garden, for journal realism and credibility.

 Still blooming. Silly rose!
John Clare Rose

Five Cold Hours Later...

I've worked really hard, with the wettest, coldest feet. I've planted three of my new pink roses along the edge of the Wattle Woods - Leonardo da Vinci, Kathryn Morley, and Ispahan, in that order, as seen from Pond Cottage. I love pink roses.

I've also done serious mulching around the rhododendrons in the Wattle Woods, and also planted a bagful of donated 'brown' irises (not sure exactly of the state of their brown-ness). My layered bonfire - one barrowful of rose prunings, one of dry rubbish - has involved strenuous raking and some digging up of old grasses.

NGP, having read the Sunday newspaper for as long as possible, finally appeared with his long handled saw and chainsaw. So some of the worst dead branches in the Wattle Woods are down - I've stacked the firewood logs, and burnt the rest. Silly Lilli-Puss has kept me company - she's been in a smoochy mood, needing to be as close as possible. Ouch!

 On Middle Bridge watching the bonfire.

OK, Snow...

OK, snow - I'm ready for you! I'm not doing any more work outside today. I'm going to go cycling in the Pyrenees, and finish the second zig-zag stripe on my crocheted blanket. I notice with some pride that it's only three degrees outside - no wonder I got cold feet!

Hmm... About 4:30pm

All the house cats are inside, and Lilli-Puss is safe in the Stables, her tummy full of fresh pet meat.

Good afternoon to the whooshing wind and the lightest of fluttering snow, which is turning the late afternoon lawns ever-so-slightly white. Please wreak minimal havoc in my garden, and then feel free to go away.