Summer reflections...

I've been having some summer reflections on the state of the Moosey Garden, where everything (when watered) is growing quite nicely! Even on dry blustery days the garden sparkles. I am very lucky!

Wednesday 19th January

This time last year (as a new semi-retired gardener) I thought I'd sweep the house patio and decking each day and always have time to clean fallen leaves out of my house pots. Ha! This time last year I thought I had the stamina and concentration to hand-weed over 700 hazelnut trees. Foolish woman! And I thought I might get bored with the Moosey garden by March! Ridiculous!

 You can see the huge weedy Verbascums and the Nicotiana Sylvestris plants which grow on the edge of the water race.
Middle Bridge in the Middle of Summer

Back to the gardening present - hmm, sounds like a truckload of compost. This reminds me that I have almost used up the two scoops of potting mix which I rashly bought over three months ago. I doubt that slow release fertiliser is quite that slow!

Here is a list of things in my garden that are definitely better (after semi-retirement).

Garden Improvements 2004 - 2005

And there are some things which are naturally better, no thanks to me! Like the shade trees in the Pond Paddock (though I have trimmed off their lower branches), and the red beech tree in the Dog-Path Garden steadily growing, and the very new area behind the pond where flaxes and hebes are quietly getting on with it. My goodness I am very lucky - even if I have seriously run out of money, I haven't seriously run out of anything else!

 He is developing into quite a character.
Raucous Rooster in the Driveway

MVC - Update

The Most Valuable Cat Competition enters its last week. Smoocher the ginger kitten is still ahead - by a whisker! Rusty the puppy and the kittens got points yesterday for being good during their visit to the vet (except Tiger wouldn't stop purring - difficult for the vet to check her heart!). How can you tell a cat off for purring?

Rooster in the Roses

White hen is still doing it for the poultry (i.e. laying eggs). And last night my ridiculous rooster perched on top of the Pond Rose Archway and shrieked for more than half an hour. Ambient sound effects of the Moosey garden at dusk? Can he get valuable MVC points for being absolutely ridiculous?

It's now late afternoon, and I'm back inside to rest and watch a bit of cricket. I am a proud, hard-working, and very elegantly clad gardener - in inky blue flower blouse and khaki intrepid woman-explorer shorts. Earlier today my summer gardening went really well - and I had some nice USA visitors who want to get married in my garden!

I was extremely focussed in my garden work. Firstly I weeded the Dog Kennel garden behind the garage. I shifted in some Libertia (a great little New Zealand native) and planted it at the side of my small rockery - now I need more stones! I weeded, and nipped the old flower-heads off the rhododendrons growing here. The nearby water race burbled and gurgled.

Then I attacked the Frisbee Lawn Garden, dead-heading the white Iceberg roses and pulling out a lot of Lychnis plants (their flowering is almost over). I even cleaned the old flowers off my daylilies - such dedication! All the rubbish is stacked ready to be burnt later this evening when it's cooler.

 This daylily grows near a dark red flax - a stylish combination!
Maroon Daylily in the Frisbee Garden

Homeless Irises

For a garden that was irrigated last night for some hours, the Frisbee Border is desperately dry - hot, hard-baked in the mid-summer sun. I wonder if I could plant some of my spare irises here? I have pots and pots of recently divided irises waiting in the glasshouse.

Tiger the Kitten :
What a little cutie Tiger is. She has the shortest little legs, though.

There's no shame running out of oomph in the middle of a summer gardening afternoon! I am happy. I love my garden and my animals - I even feel Ok about my rooster. The bees have thankfully gone, and cats, kittens and puppy are snoozing in the sun. Yippee for summer!

Thursday 20th January

Right. What shall I do first today? I will put on the hoses to water the Frisbee Border, but that doesn't really count. I should do some amazing digging and clearing somewhere new. For example, the area behind the pond continues up the side fence towards the front paddock and the road. There are odd trees (quite nice ones) and bushes (hebes, mainly) in here, and long messy grass and rubbish underfoot. This is like a self-made shrubbery, and all I would have to do is to clear, trim, dig a bit, and prune. I could lay newspaper and mulch, and organise paths. So simple!

 Rusty the puppy will enjoy this.
A Digging Helper?

The Shrubbery?

Thus I would have a whole huge new garden area which I could call The Shrubbery. It would then need publicity (yippee! lots of photographs and new website pages!), and of course new plants to fill in the gaps! Aargh! I have no spare money!

Hmm... I think I need a cup of hot coffee while I think about this rather major plan. In the meantime, of course, there are many other garden areas in which I could clear, trim, dig a bit, and prune.

Order from Chaos

But just think - I would be creating order from chaos. The area then becomes much more fire-safe - Stephen (a volunteer rural fireman) could then obviously be encouraged to help with the wheelbarrow. I could carry the kittens over there for a major kitten adventure. And Rusty the puppy could 'help' with the digging. Hmm... All the pieces are coming slowly together...

Early Afternoon...

One piece I didn't think about is the tedium of clearing the ground under this proposed shrubbery - pulling out the little broom trees, wheelbarrowing out load after load of dry burnable rubbish which can't be burnt today (it's too windy), and so on. There is no help available. Nor can I persuade any animals to provide any company. I can't even get the chooks, who usually love it when I scratch around in the dirt (funny that). Humph. Back I go. It is hot, dry and dusty work. There is a lovely oak tree in here, though - my first goal is to clear up to it.