Gardening with kittens...

 A classic annual!
White Petunias

Gardening with kittens - it's important to train them young. Shelter underneath the wheelbarrow by all means, but when it moves off don't run forwards. Keep well clear from the hand digger, and don't - ahem - dig toilet holes where the Head Gardener has just planted her new white Petunias.

Sunday 8th February

Right. So far today I've been clearing a small area of garden near the Laundry Seat (where I have morning and afternoon tea with Minimus the woodshed kitten). The soil slopes downhill and would be much tidier with a little stone wall. I've removed a dreadfully scrappy row of Stachys plants, cut them up for replanting, and have the pieces soaking in a bucket of water. I have weeded and made room for some new Petunias. Nice touch, Moosey!

 Where I sit iwith Minimus the kitten - if it
The Laundry Seat

But I have no time for twittering! Our sky is slightly coloured with blown-over results of the terrible bush fires in Australia. My goodness - our climate is so benign, compared to other countries in the world. Time to give thanks, and shift the hoses. And then give more thanks for the water which flows freely through the Moosey garden, and is going to be thrown on the borders and lawns later tonight - swoosh, swoosh...

 The first flowering year for this giant thistle.
Bee on a Cardoon

First Time Flowering

Which reminds me - the big Cardoons are flowering this year for the very first time. What excitement! Except they need staking, because the big irrigation has flopped them over. Oops. I love them - I am a Cardoon novice, and never knew they did this! I thought my plants were edible artichokes (they may still be, must do some research).

Much, Much Later...

I've gardened well all day, paying lots of attention to details - like fixing up the wee path from the Laundry Seat into the Pond Paddock. But I need more stones!

I've dug out some dwarf Agapanthus which were blocking the way (and never flowering) - they will be replanted underneath the Pond Paddock Cordyline. It's totally the wrong weather to think about planting my variegated violets - nowhere seems cool and moist enough!

Minimus the Kitten :
Minimus the woodshed kitten already has his own web-page. That's pretty quick work!

Then I read my Harry Potter book sitting underneath one of the Oak trees in the Pond Paddock. Minimus the kitten played in the Epimediums, some of the bigger cats sat staring at him, Rusty the dog barked at overhead planes and leapt into the pond after his tennis ball, while Non-Gardening Partner read his book nearby. A lovely family feeling and a great way to end to the day!

Non-Gardening Partner has spent the last couple of days fixing the water supply to the pond (tree roots had winkled their way into a join), and the pump house is finished. It's a real rustic beauty!

Monday 9th February

It's only 8am and already twenty-six degrees. Wow! That's hot for New Zealand in the morning. I'm assembling my thoughts slowly into a quasi-list. Firstly, watering the places where the big irrigation doesn't reach. The hoses need to be shifted every two hours. Some of my recently planted things (like the variegated Buddleia and the deciduous Azaleas) need a little help.

What Plant Am I?

What Plant Am I? Quiz

Yet more plants need to be popped into this silly quiz. There are now over six hundred 'results' and I need to write some more questions. There may be a reader out there who likes to try the quiz each morning, like doing a sudoko or a cryptic crossword, and they'll be getting bored with the same old same old. Hmm... Who am I kidding?

And stones - I use stones for edging paths, and for little retaining walls, and I need to get some more. If I am seriously going to build a stone tower later this year, I need collecting practice!

Right - it's time for action. Minimus the kitten won't miss me too much - I'm off to the gym.

Tuesday 10th February

Ha! Today I went on a Garden Club trip - we visited an amazing environmentally friendly property high up on the Peninsula hills, called (nicely) Cloud Farm. Finally, when we got there, I was inspired!

 Take care!

The Moosey car zoomed bravely up the steep roads, following the Garden Club bus. The Moosey gardener muttered underneath her breath - she was already missing her own garden and Minimus the kitten! Hopeless...

A New Zealand Garden

The garden at Cloud Farm was a real New Zealand garden, with species natives everywhere. And lots of Cordylines! Lovely. I had lots of fun taking photographs of garden seats and little rustic sheds with beds, if you know what I mean. I will show them to Non-Gardening Partner...

 On Cloud Farm... I want one!
Shed with a Bed

Then - aargh! The committee asked if the Garden Club could visit the Moosey Garden in April. I said yes - as long as my water wheel was working. So as soon as I got home I roared out (somewhat desperately) into my own garden, as one does after visiting someone else's, and having said yes to a Garden Club visiting...

I gathered up Minimus the kitten and nanny cat Fluff-Fluff, and started clearing the paths in the lower Wattle Woods. Thank you so much to the large gum trees for dropping such a lot of new rubbish - I cleared your last lot up only two weeks ago. Minimus zoomed around in the undergrowth as I carefully nipped Hebes and trimmed flaxes and thought about the Garden Club's visit. Aargh! Every path will have to be working wonderfully - my garden has lots of groovy little paths (I reckon), and I will have to install a few more evocative seats. Today at Cloud Farm I also took pictures of all the evocative seats I saw.

I love all my cats, and I love my dog, and I hugely love Minimus the woodshed kitten. He sits on my lap and purrs when I practice my choir songs. Now that's some kitten! Tra la la...