My garden needs me...

I am definitely a not-rich (and non-famous) gardener, but am wondering why I spend time and energy working at my part-time job. My garden needs me full-time, and this weekend has felt like a giant catch-up. Hmm... I wonder...

Sunday 12th February

Today an important trial - the writing of the day's journal entry has been postponed until my gardening day is over. I am testing out my ability to write in a joyous, inspired way after five hours of toiling in the hot sun.

 A luckier Miscanthus grass, out of kitten reach in the Apple Tree Garden.
Miscanthus Zebrinus

Reporter in Training

This will be good training for my Scary World Garden Tour, when I will be reporting about gardens in Europe, and Canada, while more than likely missing the Moosey flaxes and cordylines terribly. New Zealand gardeners let loose on garden holidays get quite weepy at the sight of a cabbage tree in a mixed English border, or even an Australian Eucalyptus tree. There's one in Rosemoor, Devon, England, in the middle of a lawn - I can't remember any mess underneath it, nor did the lawn seem to have any trouble being very green and healthy. Bah! Memories are fickle.

So, firstly to report on the achievements of this extremely hot day. One load of compost spread on the Dog-Path Garden. A weeding session in the water race (with total immersion) to cool off. Lunch - quiet time on the Stables garden bench in the shade, with good book and cup of coffee. Then into the dilemma which is Middle Garden - that blasted Golden Hop, naturally getting out of hand again, spreading across the ground and into nearby rhododendrons and Pittosporums. Phew - hot work!

Further immersion in the refreshing water race, handy to attack the large phormiums of Middle Garden with my newest secateurs. A peep into the Hazelnut Orchard, after grumping yesterday about the long, messy state of the grass - good, much, much better - the tractor mower has been very busy, and the rose avenue is accorded the ambience it deserves.

Another change of clothes (total immersion means that one is far too drippy to sit inside), and now I am finally allowed to write. The two kittens are stretched out at my feet - they (plus Tiger the big fat kitten) have been scampering, chasing, and playing all day. We have had fun and games - playing Monster Mother's Miscanthus (it's now totally flopped over), Climb the Conifer (Beige Puss has sticky gum all over his pristine white fur), Get the Gunnera (a noisy variation of Hide-And Seek where claws are used to make scary crackling sounds), and an odd cat-version of Water Chicken (where you fall as far as you can towards the water, engage the claws at the last possible minute and then leap nonchalantly back up the bank).

 He is always covered in leaves, or seeds, or dirt and mud.
Fluff-Fluff AKA Scruff-Scruff the Kitten

Looking Forward to Tomorrow...

I am not looking forward to going in to my work tomorrow. Do I really need to do this - even for one hour? My fingernails will need soaking, my hair will need brushing, and I would much rather stay home. Do I need this money? I remind myself not to moan - remembering that I am allowed to spend it all on my World Garden Tour.

Monday 13th February

Do I simply expect too much? It's like this - every morning I expect to wake up full to overflowing with instant garden inspiration. Some mornings, like today, I wake up feeling quite blank. Aargh! Where is the legend of the Moosey garden - that fizzing, frenzied person who wonders what to do first in the garden? I feel quite cheated. And I have to go into work for an hour...

 Beautiful double orange flowers - these daylilies bloom late in summer.
Daylilies underneath the Variegated Elm

Daylilies Near Duck Lawn

But now, later, as I write this, I realise that a successful day can result from a rather blank beginning! I have spent a happy, non-creative, morning pottering by Duck Lawn, trimming flaxes and weeding out sorrel. This is a colourful spot, with nasturtiums and purple pansies like a pot of gardening soup which has spilled all over the soil. Across the water from my weeding position the big double orange species daylilies look magnificent.

Cat Versus Dog

Jerome the cat has been cleverly hiding underneath the big pink rhododendron, invisible, teasing the dog with sotto voce growls. Spooky noises off stage - where is that cat noise coming from? Poor puppy-dog has been charging around, bewildered, in circles. Occasionally he would stop to dig (aargh!), as if the sounds were coming from underneath the earth. Jerome the cat wins!

Tuesday 14th February

Does it count as newsworthy (journal-wise) that I've only done an hour of speed-raking in the Wattle Woods? You bet it does! The Wattle tree seeds have dropped, and together with gum leaves and bark from the last big blow this makes for some pretty burnable garden rubbish! Out in the open it has been trying very hard to rain, and I could hear rumblings of far-away thunder. The Wattle Woods Gardens desperately need more watering - I must organise this tomorrow. I regret having planted any Iris confusa in here - it looks a mess! If I remember rightly, this is the time of year when I get tough and rip swathes of it out!