The Moosey autumn garden...

Is it too early to make lists for my Semi-Grand-Global-Garden-Tour? Camera, notebooks, hiking shoes, sunscreen... Hee hee, I've already started to get excited, and I have over four weeks to go! Meanwhile, back to reality - the Moosey Autumn garden...

 Almost finished flowering.
White Dahlia

Saturday 5th May

It would be sensible to make a list of garden tasks needing completion before my trip. Making a list for four weeks - my goodness, it will be the longest list in the history of the gardening world! Four words - 'Clean Up The Garden' - really cover it all!


Humph. Garden clean-ups are boring. I've filled the trailer with burning rubbish, and I've redug the top of the Island bed and cut down all the dahlias. There's now a pile of tree branches ready for the Shredder.

Scotland's Cabbage Trees

I'm going to sit somewhere autumnal (shouldn't be difficult to find) and rest and read my Lonely Planet Guide to Scotland, where apparently New Zealand Cabbage trees grow happily. Ha! In honour of soon meeting some Scottish Cordylines I have cleaned the trunks of my tallest one in the Hump. Their old dry leaves make brilliant fire-starters, tied into bundles.

 What a beautiful shade of blue!
Autumn Garden Seats

Later That Afternoon...

My kitten fostering starts in earnest - I'm quite nervous. Three little rescued kittens have arrived - they're set up here in the Moosey Office, with large cage, food, dirt box, and towels to hide under. Typical - the two boys are silent and scared, the female has her ears flat and is growling and hissing. They are Fluff-Fluff's mother's last ever kittens. If the female doesn't settle down she'll have to be released back into the cat colony - no points for being a feisty female if she's going to become somebody's pet.

Non-Gardening Partner has made an official statement. Next spring the trees in the Hump are going to be cut in half - particularly the older pines and gums. This is great news for the middle six weeks of winter, when the trees block sunlight from streaming into the piano room.

Sunday 6th May

I fear that the kittens might be too wild - they've been trapped and caged for two weeks (not at my friend Judith's), and haven't yet been handled. I've hung up some catnip mouse toys in their cage, and am relying on initially sweet talking them and feeding them. Fluff-Fluff has surprised me - he is sulking halfway up the stairs. So much for Mr Friendly!

Today in the garden - what should a gardener with sore elbows (too much raking), sore hands (too much weed-grabbing), and a slightly sore back (too much silly bending) do first? Stop moaning, that's what, and take Rusty the dog for a long bicycle ride - thereby adding sore knees and bottom to the above. Enough! No more talk about older-lady body parts. I will write a multi-list. Then I'll go outside and complete each section. Simple.

List Part One

Oops. The dog has 'found' the kittens. Their pillow is growling back at him, and he is most puzzled. Time to go.

 Ha! I burnt the rubbish today!
Trailer in the Hump


Being a kitten nanny is not as easy as I thought. I have just had a long conversation with a squirming pillow, underneath which three wild little kittens are hiding. In the garden I've knocked my first list on the head, so to speak. But poor, poor Rusty! You see, the duck shooting season started yesterday, and ducks have this day well marked on their calendar. Today the Moosey skies are full of phalanxes (?) of honking mallards, presumably looking for a safe pond. Aargh!

Rusty has been terribly torn, because he has been on water race duty. At the same time as keeping garden weeds from escaping down the waterway, he must keep the skies clear of flying things. Dogs multi-task even less successfully than blokes - oops.

Beware of This Pond :
A very important warning message for all ducks who are thinking about landing on the still waters of the Moosey pond. Ignore at your peril.

Duck Warning

The Moosey pond may look safe and inviting. You might think you can float here in confidence. Of course, you will definitely not be shot at. But hidden danger lurks beneath the giant Gunnera and the Flax leaves. Aargh! A bird-chasing dog! Flee! That means fly!

Now here's the next part of my list. Hope I'm not too tired when I finish it.

List Part Two

That last item depends on whether the screws fit into the little holes. I bought the budget rose arch while sourcing hen statues for Henworld. It is going in the Birthday Rose Garden - I have a spare sale price Celine Forrestier for rose cover. And just maybe I could try a coloured Clematis for a companion. Hmm... Wind...

 Still flowering, and very fragrant.
Roydon Roses in the Birthday Rose Garden

Right. It's only two thirty, early in the day to go apres-gardening, but I've been working for six hours. No wonder my hands are sore! Now I'm going to take my coffee and my Scotland book outside - my latest resolution is to sit and read on a garden seat every dry day. And before I forget - Happy First Birthday to my blue bicycle. And one more thing - the Dogwood tree by Middle Bridge has suddenly gone bright red - it's covered in those fiery flame colours of autumn. Lovely.

 Autumn is here.
Dogwood Leaves

And I still haven't finished. New Zealand's Mother's Day is next Sunday, and I have pro-actively bought myself a present, towards which close relatives can and ought to make small contributions. Hee hee. It is a set of 'Moosey' personalised plates for my car. I started off not acknowledging my nickname - and now I am embracing it! Hee hee.

Monday 7th May

Today so far I've been swimming, and taken two new trapped cats to the vet to be neutered. It's really, really warm for a May day. My kitten nannying is slightly improving - this morning three kittens came out from their pillow and 'met' Mugsy the cat. Then all four ate in front of me. Such pretty faces, and such a dodgy start in life - I will have to be very patient. I am playing them Bach's Brandenburg Concertos.

As for today in the garden - well, I may be a bit lazy. Reading a book in the super-warm sun is quite appealing. That's one of the reasons for having garden seats, after all - that the actual gardener bothers to sit on them.