Elastic hours...

Tiger in the garden

Sometimes gardening time goes all stretchy, full of elastic hours, with no definite scale or measure. Suddenly, after what feels like a gentle pottering session, insignificant time-wise, I see that it's five o'clock. Eek! I started work mid-morning...

Glowing with pride...

Of course, one then counts the hours one has been working and glows with pride. Today is one of these lovely days. On my way over to the Hen-House Gardens for some serious clean-up work, I started off trimming Shasta daisies, watched intently by Tiger the cat. Such an honour! Tiger rarely abandons the fridge these days...

And so I worked my way slowly along the water-side border, listening to the cricket, gently pottering. I nipped and I trimmed and I weeded and I dead-headed roses. Whenever little things (like dead Phormium leaves, and overhanging Sorbus tree branches) caught my eye, I stopped and fixed them.

Eventually I reached the Hen-House Gardens, messy with gum tree leaves and bark. I raked one of the paths, and started picking long strips of bark off the Pittosporums. The Hen-House Gardens have been designed (that's the theory, hee hee) to look relaxed and pleasant, even when neglected.


Everything is shrubby-tough, with just a few roses (rugosas). No perennials, nothing fussy. I love it in here. I must visit more often! And the cricket radio dribbled away, and the gardening day stretched on and on. It was getting late and I hadn't even noticed. Nice.

 Great trees for shedding!
Eucalyptus Trees by the Hen House

One of my original water-side paths is overgrown, and needs a decision on its fate. To be or not to be? There's also a lovely seat right by the water which is impossible to a) reach without wading and b) sit on without being pushed over by foliage. Months ago I made a start clearing around it, but didn't finish. Naughty! So here's a list, just to clarify things.

  1. Scoop up mess, dump under hedge.
  2. Dig out low spreading grass around the seat.
  3. Build up level of water-side path with mud, mulch, then stones.

Thursday 9th March

That scary list. Aargh! Avoidance tactic required! So I went to the dog park and then I went swimming. But then I went over to the Hen House Gardens, and again time has played the nicest tricks on me. I've now finished the list, without rushing. Three good hours of work feel like no time at all. Easy peasy!

Friday 10th March

This morning the dogs and I are off to a special dog-park park - it has a proper stream for throwing and chasing sticks, and open farmland for the well-behaved (dog, that is). When we get home I will rake leaves from the Hen-House Gardens. Things were not nearly in such disarray as I'd imagined. Even the Phormiums had been recently neatly trimmed.

Oops. I've just remembered the Astelias on the edge of Duck Lawn. These spiky New Zealand natives get unbelievably scruffy as they age (sounds familiar, hee hee). The dead leaves don't fall off, nor can they easily be pulled out. Yippee for the sharp dressmaking scissors once again. And of course there's the cricket to listen to - the third day of the test match between South Africa and New Zealand - and slightly cooler autumnal day temperatures to enjoy. yeay! My day is already well-organised.

Much Later...

I've spent such an enjoyable afternoon raking and weeding in the Hen-House Gardens. It looks wonderful - that's what I reckon! All the time I've spent in the Hen-House Gardens has just drifted past. Timeless time spent in a very beautiful garden.