What to do first?

 Such a useful shrub-tree.
Variegated Pittorposum

Aha! I have Pittosporums and a large bag of red-skinned seed potatoes to plant. And Non-Gardening Partner has to be encouraged to finish some chain-sawing for me. So what to do first? NGP - where exactly are you scurrying off to? The sheep's bottoms need cleaning again? You did that last weekend...

Saturday 23rd November

It's been dusty work, but seven of the Pittosporums are planted and watered. They're forming a privacy screen along the side driveway. Then nobody will see me doing anything mildly disgraceful in my garden (no details are required). I'm also getting a bit sick of seeing next-door's tree mess. I'd love it to be hidden from view.

Last autumn I made NGP drive about 100 kilometres to dig out someone else's rose bushes. Well, many are now flowering. They came from a traditional 'old lady's garden', and thus I can guess what varieties they are (mainly the popular hybrid teas of the old-style suburban garden).

 Hopefully this ID is correct.
Whisky Mac Rose and Rosebud

So far I've recognised Margaret Merril, a Raspberry (or Strawberry) Ice, and I think a Whisky Mac. Many of the smaller patio roses (whose names I'll never know) are flowering, too. And all the roses are so much healthier than many I've purchased from the nursery.

 Please ignore the aphids.
Sally Holmes Rose

Aphid Alert!

Shock, horror! There I was, poking my camera into the row of Sally Holmes roses along the side of the garage, when I noticed all the buds and stems were absolutely covered with aphids. So I've blasted them with an evil smelling organic concoction (garlic, chilli and pyrethrum) and left the little sucking critters writhing in distress.

Oh, sorry - that sounds rather bloodthirsty! I'm usually such a gentle gardener...


A small thought on peonies : their blooms don't last very long in my garden, particularly if there's any wind or rain. One day there's a bud, the next day it opens, then on the third day it flops down. By the fourth the petals are so loose they're coming off. I still love peonies, but one has to be very much on one's game to appreciate them. I've picked the floppies for the house.

 Beautifully floppy.
Pink Peony

And a thought on colour - I forget how many different flower colours there are at this time of the year. And how beautiful the white roses are, the way they seem to link everything together. They make every colour look great against every other. And now pretty the pastel colours are. Old-lady colours, maybe, but they're so beautiful.

Now I'm having a beer and watching the Ashes on TV (a cricket test between England and Australia). Cricket and beers mean summer. Ooh goodie! It's summer!