Snow in September

Snow in late September? Aargh! This is supposed to be spring-time, when the spring bulbs and blossom are in full bloom. The Peonies are popping up, the Rhododendrons are ready, the Irises are standing by...

Mind you, this year's snow has thawed quickly - everywhere but the most sheltered places (the back lawn, the driveway garden) clear within two days. Today the great Moosey clean-up begins. This is very over-dramatic - there's actually more daffodil damage than tree damage!

 Compete with a sadly abandoned blue coffee mug!
The Patio Table

The Moosey Garden is not designed for snow - at any time of the year. Evergreen trees like Pittosporums take the snow badly - their limbs bend alarmingly and break. Larger trees like Eucalypts and Wattles are extremely brittle, and the weight of wet snow on their leafy branches can simply be unbearable!

A Snowy Spring Surprise

The snowstorm of 2005 (we may get one each winter, rarely more) was surprisingly late - a mid-spring polar blast from neighbouring Antarctica. And right in the middle of the Designated Daffodil Admiring season! Hmm... Soggy flowers, face-down on the grass - poor things! The sturdy little Muscari, however, had no problems, as their strong little stems stayed upright throughout. The Bergenia flowers just took the snow in their stride, and the Rhododendrons and the Irises simply shrugged it off.

 No problems for my irises.
Irises in the Snow

The Moosey animals had fun in the snow - well, Rusty the red border collie and the little cat Tiger did - it was their first snow experience. Puppy did the cross-country slalom course (without poles) through the Hazelnut Orchard - if there is such a thing! Tiger spent the snow-day chasing little feathery snowflakes, and the day after the snow dangerously chasing the large blobs melting and falling off the roof. Mugsy the cat, terrified, hid under the house decking, and was finally coaxed out by the rattling sounds of dried cat-food.

 No colour tricks - this is the real photograph, taken in the Pond Paddock.
Rusty the Puppy in the Snow

Checking the Shrubs

As responsible shrub owners, puppy and I walked around a lot, checking for shrub damage. The Leucadendron Safari Sunset (an evocative name on this particular day!) needed snow removal, and the big Choisya in the Island Bed had fanned itself out in a rather large weeping shape. I knocked the snow off any shrub I could reach (and thus onto myself), and later when it stopped falling tried to help the flaxes. Some of my New Zealand flaxes are naturally weeping, but some are designed to point to the sky - and I'd like to keep them that way!

 With five rose archways in place and five pairs of climbing roses already planted!
The Hazelnut Orchard

Four days later. Of course, in such a basically benign climate, the snow is garden-history. But the snowstorm of spring 2005 has still been faithfully documented. Who knows - researchers in weather patterns (or horticulturists doing theses on reasons for daffodil-droop) may one day look through the humbly written Moosey journals and records and smile...