Monday, 15 September 2014

Not yet ladies

Another busy weekend in the garden. Two days a week just isn't long enough to do everything I want to do at the moment.
As the weather warms up the winter crops are finishing and it's time to think about planting new vegetables. I can't decide whether to grow one more season of vegetables or just clear the beds and cover them with mulch.


We are still eating lettuce from our vegie patch but it bolts to seed quickly from now on. The ladies will get to eat more than us from now on. They love lettuce. I can still grow lettuce over summer if I cover it with shadecloth but probably won't bother this year. There's too much else to do. The cherry tomatoes have gone a bit wild but will keep growing over the warmer months if I give them a prune.


We had a good crop of broccoli  this year - more than we could eat but they too are going to seed now. You can see this head just starting to turn yellow.

The asparagus is starting to shoot, so we will still have at least one vegie from our patch over Summer. Since asparagus is grown from root stock it is something I may take with us when we move. For now though I'm going to enjoy a few fresh stalks for lunch each day.


The ladies keep watch to see what goodies they will be getting from the vegie patch. They'd love to be set loose and help themselves I'm sure. They dig for worms as well as snack on the vegetables and generally make a huge mess. Once we've harvested everything we can use, we might let them. Until then they vegie patch is out of bounds to the ladies.
(Can you see in the background how tall the bamboo has grown?)


In the shade house most of the cuttings I started a few months back have survived. Now it's time to feed and water them and get them healthy ready for their new home.

 
I had put a few bits of various succulents into potting mix as well (just because I can't bear throwing away the broken bits) and they've started to grow.
 

 
 Continuing with the "short back and sides" pruning - the front hedge has been brought down to about half it's previous height. You can see the original height of the hedge at the rear of this photo. It's next to go. I know it looks like dead stalks now but it will soon bounce back.
Now, when the real estate agents takes photos, you will be able to see the house not just the hedge.
....and John wants to know if the local rubbish tip gives frequent flyer points.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Well it's about time!

I have been blogging since 2007 and this must be one of the longest spells I've ever gone without posting. There were lots of reasons but mainly life has been hectic so the garden and the blog just seemed to slip down my list of priorities.... plus I hate Winter.
With last Monday being the first day of Spring here and a beautiful sunny day, it's about time things got back to normal and that includes blogging.

Magnolias coming into bloom signal Spring is here
Over the last few weeks of Winter the weather was cold and wet every weekend and dark when I'm home during the week (Have I told you how much I hate Winter?) but Winter is well and truly over now. When I woke to see the sunshine Saturday morning I couldn't wait to be out in the garden. We spent the weekend doing what I call mega-pruning. I chopped. John loaded the trailer and took two trailer loads to the dump.  Missy found a shady spot to supervise. John even got out his small chainsaw and "trimmed" a few trees.

Wisteria over the trellis
Each year, once any chance of frost has passed, the garden gets a haircut. This year, because we will be putting the house on the market soon, it's getting a short back and sides. Although I like my garden to look like a tropical jungle I think it may scare off  prospective buyers. I'm hoping it will look like a well maintained resort rather than a jungle by the time we're finished. We've done across the back fence and half way down one side.  Next weekend we'll attack another area with the loppers, pruners and saw. This could take a while.

The frangipani still have no leaves - but soon we'll see them shooting
Spring weather is perfect for this type of gardening. The days are usually fine and sunny but it's cool enough to work for most of the day. The best part is that you are guaranteed that whatever plants are chopped back will quickly send out new growth.
Dendrobium Speciosum - We call it King Orchid


Yes.
Spring is definitely here
and
it's about time.






Monday, 30 June 2014

Flowers that bloom in Winter

Well, Winter is finally here. We had our first below zero morning a few days ago (-2C), and the westerly wind is blowing. Thankfully no sign of any frost damage.
Although the mornings are cold, the temperature rises to the mid-twenties C during the day so we can't complain.


Our Queenslander hibiscus has been flowering all winter. I gave it a severe prune a few months ago and it's never looked better. (even though Queensland lost this year)


Hibiscus are such a bright cheerful flower to warm the cooler months. They flower all year, but are at their best this time of year.

Fatsia japonica is in bloom. We grow it for the foliage rather than flowers, but I noticed something's been munching the leaves

I love these white geraniums. There are three plants in pots tucked in under some other larger plants. I forget about them and they're neglected for most of the year, then burst in to bloom to remind me that they are still there.


The poinsettias certainly brighten the garden. Even though I pruned them back to old wood last spring, they are almost as tall as the golden cane palms.


Just opening up.
This billbergia has formed quite a clump and most of them decided to flower at the same time. I love the colour combination.

A few days later and they are opening more.

They deserve a closer look.
 
I love the endless variety of bromeliads. There is always at least one in flower at any time and there is such a diverse range. It's going to be hard deciding which to keep and which to leave behind when we move.
 
Speaking of taking a closer look.......
 

 
A garden guardian standing watch.

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