Let's hear it for brown and green...

Aha! Now am reminded why I, an obsessive gardener, also have a gardening journal. It's because on frosty winter mornings it's far too cold to do anything digitally real. So what to do? I know - nosey through last summer's garden photographs, looking for beautiful scenes to put in the web-site's garden tour pages. Marvel at how colourful everything was (and will be, again, in a few months' time).

 New Zealand natives.
Green and Brown Astelias

Give thanks that no snow fell on my garden, and enjoy the browns and greens. These are beautiful colours too. Let's hear it for brown and green, the subtle colours of nature.

Tuesday 23rd June

I'm sorry, but today, though sunny, has been too cold for real gardening (only five degrees Celsius). But I have taken the dogs for several garden walks. Unfortunately we couldn't go to the dog park. Guess who left her car lights on and flattened the battery? You try explaining that to three dogs, sitting in the car ready to go, go, go...

So it's been web-gardening, I'm afraid, coupled with attempts to take photographs of the dogs (hopeless) and the birds on their bird feeder (less so, but not easy). Don't be fooled by this beautiful strip of garden scenes above - they're pictures from last spring and summer.

Just Passed the Winter Solstice!

I'm not at all happy with the sun de jour. It's too low, weak as dishwater, and slinks behind the trees in the Hump like it's too shy to be seen. But we've just passed the winter solstice. Yeay! That's a good thing. And it's the height of the trees at fault, not the sun, which is doing its very best...

Wednesday 24th June

Blast! Another day whose temperature is just below my 'threshold'. I reckon I am a fully functioning winter gardener at about seven degrees Celsius. Lower, and I head for the house. Even the thought of a winter garden bonfire doesn't cut it. But give me seven or eight degrees and I stop sulking and start making plans.

 Also called Silver-eyes.
Feeding the Wax-Eye Birdies

So it's been a dog-park day, followed by a long time organising the web-roses in the orchard. What a lot of inane drivel I used to write! And those last sentence promises : "I promise that next summer I'll be better'. Over and over again. The story of many a gardener's life, I guess.

Thursday 25th June

Walking the dogs through the Hump forest early this morning I had a brilliant idea. Our 'dog-path' needs to be longer. So I did an exploratory wander, following the lower line of the shelter belt, Scrambling over and ducking under dead pine branches. Perfect! What a good idea. The path needs to cleared, levelled and raked, and I could take the offending pine rubbish to the bonfire and burn it if I need warming up.

 At least there is sun!
Dog in Late Winter Sun

Right. Let the fun begin. We are off to the dog-park. A truth of life : it's hard to take good photographs of three dogs. If two are sitting still, the third has wandered off, bored. Or two are gazing intently at the camera while the third is rudely licking its bottom. 'Dogs, synchro-sit!'


Yeay! I've spent two hours clearing and sawing along the new path. And I am half-way. I didn't attempt to wheel away any of the rubbish. I'm piling it up underneath the shelter belt to pick up later with the trailer. And this is a rather subtle path, without edges, but after three or four walks along it the dogs' noses will know exactly what it is.