Happy New Year!

 Non-Gardening Partner and Rusty the dog.
Head Gardener and Friends

Happy New Year! All the very best for this brand new year, and may all your gardening dreams come true. Well, at least fifty percent of your sensible dreams, that is... May your weed population diminish and your treasured plant population soar. And please let's have sensible weather this year.

Friday January 1st

Right. I'm starting the year with my rather scary New Year's Resolution firmly in my mind. 'Look After That What You've Got' is the buzz phrase (?) of the year. It applies to the garden, and the body, mind, and soul of the gardener!

The New Year's Budget

And guess what - as per my new 2010 budget, I've stopped spending money. The sugar snap peas and the potatoes in my vegetable garden are ready, and I'm sure I can create enough varied gourmet dishes out of these until the beans arrive. Oh boy! I've never grown sugar snap peas before, and the raspberry row is ripening...

And guess what else - this is a zero-dollars gardening budget. If I dare lose my hand digger I'm not even allowed to replace it. Serious stuff!

On a positive note, the immediate Moosey household continues its 'Shape Up For Life' campaign. Trousers are slowly getting looser and looser, and Tiger the cat is visibly shrinking. Congratulations to all the willing (well, maybe) participants, including me.

 She is slimmer - honestly she is!
Tiger the Cat

Today's plan is to go for a swim, continue weeding in the water race (I've nearly reached Rooster Bridge), practice some Brahms piano, and generally enjoy the summer garden.

Later, Mid-Afternoon...

I love sloshing around in the water race doing my summer weeding. And this time young Minimus came out with me - though she came perilously close to slipping into the water. And, typically, just as I finish my two hour session I see a whole garden area which needs my attention.

Bee on a Cornflower

My next weeding task is the Hen House Garden underneath the Oak trees, where giant clover plants are flowering so prettily above these cute little ferny feathery weeds with the tiniest yellow flowers, and... I think we get the message...

Saturday 2nd January

Success - the water race weeding is almost finished, and very enjoyable it has been, too. While Non-Gardening Partner humphed and grumped about the heat (only 30 degrees Celsius, no humidity) I splashed and waded happily in the cool water.

 Growing by the water race.
Ferns and Phormiums

I discovered some white flowering Japanese Irises (dollar specials from a nursery sale last year) and some very yellow daylilies, rejected as too big from a friend's urban garden. Both plants obviously like their new home in the country.

Lilli-Puss :
This is Lilli-Puss's latest photograph. Have you seen this cat? Lilli - please come home!

Aargh! My reclusive random upstairs cat Lilli-Puss has been AWOL for two days - again! I've tried twice this morning to go searching and calling for her - I have to sneak out, because Fluff-Fluff loves coming for walks, and I need to be alone. No luck. Because Lilli was a wild kitten, I worry that she will 'go feral'. But when she does come home she smooches and purrs and demands to be stroked, patted, and picked up. This behaviour reassures me - she does enjoy the closeness of humans. Oh dear...

 Such a pretty old rose.
Mutabilis Rose


Right. I'm sure I can find some weeding to do - preferably in the shade. And I've had a brilliant idea. I've got some plastic bags of Christmas (present) Cannas, plain green leaves with yellow flowers, and I could plant them on the bank of the water race - in the sun, of course. The more planting the race edge gets the less room there is for weeds, and the less erosion.

Problems With NGP

I think Non-Gardening Partner is having a pretty cruisy holiday, really. I haven't organised him to go off to a camping ground and sit around for a week getting bored. Nor have I dragged him overseas to experience the middle of winter. He hasn't had to spend any money, and we are not driving madly around the South Island with thousands of others looking at scenery.

So if I ask him to possibly help me wheel some mulch up into the Shrubbery he should be keen and eager? Humph...

Look For One Thing, Find Another...

It's later, but I just can't find Lilli-Puss. It's moderately upsetting, and I don't know what to do and where to look. Histeria the tabby and I have even checked the hay barn. But I finally saw the pond frog - he (or she?) is green! Yippee!

 Sorry about the brown patches - I was tempted to use some photoshop trickery.
The Front Lawn

I found another stretch of water race edge to weed, underneath and around the gunnera by the Willow Tree Stump. Oops - a slight accident - a huge bucket of weeds fell off the bank and whooshed downstream, and my cricket radio and garden tools plopped into the water. Slight malfunction of radio, but all tools retrieved, bucket lost. It's been really hot and noisy-windy, and I've come inside to rest and reapply sunscreen.

Lilli-Puss Is Home!

It's dusk and Lilli-Puss has just nonchalantly sauntered down the driveway in the orchard. There's nothing wrong. She's back, has had a meal, and is now jammed into the upstairs pet bed with brother Percy. I'm so relieved.