How about some birthday weeders?

It's the Moosey birthday week - the plum tree spring blossom is beautiful, temperatures are warm, there's no wind, and no rain to droop the daffodil patches. Will this be my lucky week - will a truckload of birthday compost magically drive in? How about a hired gang of birthday weeders?

 You beautiful tree! The perfect place for a garden bench...
My Biggest Spring Blossom Tree

Wednesday 7th September

In advance, for tomorrow's important celebrations, I have bought a new two dollar warm weather gardening shirt (quite the country look - gentle duck-egg blue checks) and two pairs of stretch denim two dollar gardening jeans. How odd that it's cheaper to look stylish in one's garden than to buy one new perennial pot from the nursery, or one new rose!

It's magical out there in the early morning garden. Do other gardeners actually say hello to their big flowering cherry trees? Hello, white blossom - hello, pink blossom... There are patches of yellow daffodils at the edge of every garden border, and the purple honesty is flowering. Little things like the primroses and my white polyanthus plants are starting to bloom. And let's not forget the tulips!

'I will purchase new tulip stock next appropriate season.'
-My Official Tulip Pledge

Actually, one has deliberately forgotten the tulips for about the last five years! Consequently the Moosey tulip patches are sadly thinning in quality and quantity. In the front garden by the breakfast chairs a brave quartet of runty orangy reds are all that remain - blast that next-door daylily for being so pushy! When I first sat in those chairs - oh so many years ago (ten, actually!) - the Island Bed was filled with bright red tulip patches. How beautiful they were, amongst the blue Muscari...

 Soon the hostas and ferns will surround my little castle.
Mossy Castle

Thursday 8th September

Yippee! It's my birthday! Humph... I have to go in to work. Never mind - I will drive my colleagues mad by singing 'Happy Birthday to Meeeeee' at every opportunity. The garden weeds can wait. I did a lot of bossy gardening yesterday, after ranting about the tulip performance. I think I gave a Feijoa tree a major trim - now there's more room and light for the big sprawling roses growing above the little castle by the car lay-by (two climbing white Icebergs, a super-sized Ballerina, and an unknown cherry red).

Happy Birthday...

Just a minute - music - some birthday Corelli. Nice! Good morning to Stumpy the grey cat, sitting on my lap trying to smooch my typing hands. Thanks to the London Moosey team who have managed to organise a birthday present with the local rural nursery - a plant credit, but I must purchase one conifer. Hey! When I am a very old lady-gardener my whole garden may get coniferred - they're slow growing, vaguely colourful, no bother, no pruning...

Friday 9th September

Hmm... I had a nice birthday, even if I was at work. And my friends who I call the 'office ladies' (probably very un-PC) all gave me cards with cats and flower pictures. So nice! Who are the most important people in a work system? The 'office ladies' and the caretaker! Today I have to go in to work for the very first hour of the day. Then I will race back (my gardening clothes are actually laid out on the back doorstep) and get back some quality Moosey-time. The fire ban is off. I could do my burning. I could pick some fresh daffodils for the house, then puppy and I might go for a walk, then who knows?

Saturday 10th September

A big oops. Yesterday was a garden write-off - I came home, was tired and sulky (not a good frame of mind - so didn't write anything in my journal), and had an afternoon nap. Then some lovely pink roses (pictures, but oh so beautiful) arrived from my friend in Belgium - little things can have big effects! Instant cheering up - thank you Liza!

 Some of the lovely fence-line daffodils.
Beautiful Spring Daffodils

Picking Daffodils

And this morning I am feeling even more refreshed, and totally positive! Already puppy and I have been out and around the garden collecting the house daffodils. The patches of blue Muscari have taller flowers now, the Magnolia Stellata has a few white flowers, and the big pink rhododendron by Middle Path has tightly packed dark pink buds (the colours will be much lighter when the buds open).

I am allowed to write in this journal for no more than ten minutes. Then I have a sequence of tasks to follow. Some big-scale maintenance is happening today and I must be available to help - a ripper is coming to slice through gum-tree roots around the edge of the Hazelnut Orchard, and the pond is being cleaned out. So I need to finish my weeding, and start my burning earlier. Also there are four bags of horse-poos which have been in my car boot for most of the week - eek! Fragrance in the garden? I think I much prefer my Daphne to Eau de Manure!

Right. Ten minutes is up. Self discipline is required.

Five Gardening Hours Later...

Very impressive! I have dug, weeded, pruned hazelnut trees, planted, mulched, burned, wheeled the wheelbarrow back and forth, and planted things for five hours. I am really tired! Oddly, lots of daffodils are lying flat on the ground - either it's too dry for them, or puppy has been zooming around doing a lot of damage. I suspect the former, and now the pond is full again I can do some major watering. But water makes the daffodils droop as well... hmm... The new Almond trees, though quite small, are also starting to blossom - beautiful!

Sunday 11th September

Spied from the misty morning balcony - one large, presumptuous brown hare, sitting in the upper pond paddock. The might of puppy-fluff was immediately unleashed, but alas - the hare slipped into the fog and was gone. So puppy did some racing circuits around the small paddock (where Tajdog has his ceremonial Almond tree - just a few large flower blossoms). That seemed to be quite symbolic.

Making a Difference in the Garden

Today I have to make a real difference to the weeds in the garden. Slow and steady, with attention to detail. Wheel them away when the wheelbarrow's full. Enjoy the little Muscari, and the daffodils (even if floppy), and the blossom. Peep at the rhododendrons starting to flower.

Camellia :
Some of my very favourite Camellias have pink coloured blooms.

Personally thank the Camellias for being beautiful (putting on the hoses for them would also be appreciated). Be thankful that knees aren't really sore at all, and hands are only a little bit stiff. Water the glass-house survivors, and start some cuttings under plastic. Penstemons? When is the best time for penstemons? Check sensibly in plant propagation reference book.

Ha! This is turning into a disguised list! Finally, there are now two more rose archways welded and ready - time to begin the official ceremonial planting and cutting of the - ribbon? Garden twine would be better! I am off outside to make that difference.


My goodness I am tired again - but again I have worked in the garden for over five hours. I've been weeding, doing edges, and I found a rose (Redcoat) which had missed out on being pruned. Four rose archways are now installed, and the first two have their roses. Sombreuil, Meg, and Ghislaine de Something-or-other - welcome to the Moosey Hazelnut Orchard. Enjoy your new soil - moist, and rich. Enjoy the sun and the clean fresh air! Welcome!