Back to reality...

The phrase 'Back to reality' can have a gloomy edge to it. But for a gardener it's positively nice to relax back into the boring, mundane, everyday tasks - like cleaning up after the tree fellers. Tree fellas? Hee hee...

Monday 26th November

I speak these words of deep, analytical wisdom after having been myself a garden visitor for three days at a nearby rose festival - and then having a 'garden party' of my own, with lots of lovely people wandering around my garden paths.

 Photograph by Son-In-Law.
The Moosey Scarecrow

Either lots of my garden visitors were being exceptionally polite, or they really liked my big gum trees, particularly the one in the middle of the house lawn. Goodness me! It's easy to take an apologetic attitude towards Eucalypts - definitely out of tree-vogue at the moment in many areas of New Zealand.

Reality Gardening

Today my reality has been to let out my rooster and his hens (banished for reasons of visitor safety), and put on my hoses (yesterday neatly coiled and stashed away so visitors didn't trip over them. Then I can start cleaning up after the tree-felling.

 A pretty edging to a summer border.
Peonies and Euphorbias

So I've been working quietly for two hours, and have one trailer-load of smaller branches for the shredder and a pile of larger logs for the chain-saw. My bell-bird is back, chiming again in the house trees. I thought the noisy tree men might have caused him (her? them?) to relocate. Thanks for being so understanding, you beautiful birds...

Thank You Bees

Flowers in the garden are changing as summer settles in. The aquilegias and the irises are now almost finished, while the foxgloves have taken over. I seem to have foxgloves in every sunny and semi-sunny border, in the three main colours (magenta, white, and apricot) and all sorts of interesting shades in-between. Thank you, bees...

 Photograph by Son-In-Law.

More roses are in bloom, though I don't think my roses look nearly as happy as those growing in the Farmstay garden where I stayed. And I learnt something about peonies - some are fragrant, and I never knew!

 Growing in the farmstay garden.
Fragrant Peony

Peony Roses

Our farmstay hostess had a beautiful magenta and white peony which smelt gorgeous. It's probably well-known and totally common, but I'd never seen it before.

And so I keep on learning. Cross fingers there'll always be something new in this gardening life to discover...

But back to the here-and-now. After a short rest I'll return to the Hump to saw and lop some more tree mess. NGP (Non-Gardening Partner) reckons the clean-up will take three months. Eek! I'd love to think perhaps three weeks - all sorted in time for Christmas? Hmm...

A few small Pittosporums and other budget plants have been squashed, with a few bits broken off, but that's not a problem. It's a fair price to pay for more sunlight and air space. And now I will be able to grow more interesting things in here - like huge species roses...

Tuesday 27th November

Yippee - I'm properly back! After poking around and feeling lazy yesterday today I feel fully charged up. I'm ready to be a serious gardener again.

More Pond Reflections

Over breakfast I flicked casually through two gardening library books on ponds, learning new phrases. I want my pond to be a 'reflection pond' - that means at least some spring flowering Azaleas by the water's edge. I've also learnt that 'successful large ponds' have curved bridges in the distance, over the water, painted a restful blue or a tranquil red. Hmm... More likely to be a requirement for 'successful large pond photographs'.

Trees and Flowers

Today's jobs are simple - involving trees and flowers. Three huge piles of tree mess by the fence line will grow steadily. One will contain pine branches for the shredder, the second gum branches and dead wood for burning, the third pieces of tree for firewood. When I need a break from this I'll shift the hoses and pull out the Forget-Me-Nots from the house gardens.

 Cordyline, flax, and roses.
Spikes and Flowers

I could start trimming the Aquilegias, too. My Nicotiana seedlings are ready to plant into gaps. This sounds impressive, but there will be more gaps than plants to fill them!

I promise to work logically, carefully and quietly - and not get grumpy. I will also take some beautiful flowery photographs for the enjoyment of all...