The story of my gardening life - I'm just getting into the swing of September, starting to enjoy my green lawns and the new emerging spring flowers. I even think I'm doing enough weeding. I relax the tiniest bit - and then check the calendar. Aargh!

 Pebbles and Winnie in the driveway.
Spring Dogs

September has petered out! There are no days left. Daylight saving has even started up. The last of the Camellias are flowering, while the early ones are busy turning unpleasantly brown. And the lawns are being mowed again. I do the edges late in the day, with the dogs lolling nearby, relaxed but attentive (hungry tummies).

 A compact waist-high shrub.
Lemon Rhododendron

So pretty...

The forget-me-nots - soooo pretty! The rhododendrons - yes! And, like magic, the pots of lettuce and spinach I prepared just yesterday are fat with leaves to fill a hundred salads. And I have a hundred photographs of the garden to show and share. And back to those green lawns. There's nothing nicer than lying down on the fresh, dampish grass at the end of the day - to reflect, and think forward to going apres gardening (and sipping a glass of the House Merlot).

Except both my dogs (dear girls) immediately think that something's wrong. Up comes Winnie to lick my face, up comes Pebbles to put a paw gently on my tummy. Dogs! I am not dead! Or sick, or sad... Thank you for caring, though! One day, who knows, I might be...

Right. Photographs, now, to show you what all the lovely fuss is about. No words really needed. The last September gardening days have flown by.

And no need for continuation of the Dog-Blog (new dog Pebbles), with a blow by blow account of progress - no, not the right phrase, because there's absolutely nothing resembling a blow, not even a forceful tap. All I can say is that there is progress. Or I've got my dog-blinkers on.

My Dog Zen book...

My 'Dog Zen' book has arrived, and as I've been reading it I've felt less and less capable as an amateur dog trainer. I don't use a clicker - yet. And I don't have a crate, or clip stations. Some spectacularly executed rugby tackles in the dog park, though - just one needed each morning. Then my stern-voice mantra, repeated over again, as I eyeball my dog who is in a total tizz. 'I AM THE BOSS. SETTLE. I AM THE BOSS. SETTLE. I AM THE BOSS...' A concerned spaniel owner pops over to help, thinking I am a foolish old lady who's fallen over. Oops. And Pebbles still loves me to bits. Hmm... Dog Psychology 101.

My garden is absolutely beautiful, by the way. There are drifts of forget-me-nots in the lawns, drifts of white flowering irises, and tiny beginnings of the Clematis and the Canary Bird rose. The flowering cherry trees in the Pond Paddock are just starting to flower, as is the beautiful red rhododendron I walk past, coming and going to the cottage. Best of all are the swathes of the greenest green lawns (don't look too closely) whose 'green-ness' enhances the other flower colours so much.

 On the way to and from the cottage.
Red rhododendron

Ooh! I forgot. The hostas are starting to unfurl their fresh new leaves. And the huge Camellia Gay Baby (actually there are two of them) is flowering. And all sorts of other treasures - like the tiny Trilliums. And in the time it's taken me to gush these paragraphs lettuce and spinach leaves in my patio pots have grown even bulkier. Yes, garden life is springing into life. It's just THE most amazing time of year.

+5+5And finally, Buster, black as midnight cat, is slowly regaining her new-dog confidence, while Tiger couldn't care less about Pebbles' obsession with cat-staring. Stare away, new dog. Like to watch some cat bottom-licking? Utter disdain. Well done, Tiger the Tortoiseshell.