I’m sitting here beside a roaring fire, watching the rain beat against the window, but all is not lost. It has still been a productive day. This afternoon I defrosted the freezer. It isn’t a task one would choose to do on a freezing cold winter day – but it was a bit of a necessity as it had iced over so much is was becoming difficult to shut. I thought it was because the kids were leaving the door ajar and after a stern lecture on shutting the door properly and the purchase and installation of a kiddie lock – not to keep the kids out, but to ensure it shuts with a reassuring click, I soon realised what was going on… Sorry kids for going on at you – but having said that “kids make sure the freezer shuts properly – with a click!”
But it was a good and timely job to do – as it is a preparation project for the summer harvest to come. We will need the space before we know it, so now we can clearly see what we have. I’m a bit of a geek – I roughly organised the veggies in alphabetical order! I couldn’t help myself… well they had to put back into the freezer in some kind of order! I also updated my blackboard letting everyone know what is in the freezer and what shelf it can be found on. We can’t afford to afford to deviate from our golden rule: Something from the garden in every meal!” Time is against us – I need that freezer empty!
But this wasn’t the marvellous thing I was talking about…
The other day we have had another break in the rain and was blessed with a day so blue and sunny, you’d think it was summer – only colder and minus leaves on trees! It was the kind of day you couldn’t help yourself and had to get stuck in. So after whipping around taking care of the small weeds – such a rewarding task as it is so quick to do and looks so good. Keep on top of your weeds while they are small and you will thank yourself later. Having said that I still have some serious weed issues in a couple of beds and so I am still coming to terms with this fundamental basic of the gardening lifestyle!
Anyway there I was, standing on the edge of the garden admiring my efforts when what seemed like a permanent feature caught my eye. The Brussel sprouts. I planted them back in March 2011. They have been in for a year and a half! The seed packet promised maturity in 16 – 20 weeks! I’d never had much luck with them before, but I gave them another go and they didn’t come to anything… no big fat mini cabbages popping out the stalk, so I left them in just in case and then in the last couple of months I read somewhere that you need to nip the tops out to make the buds fatten up so I gave it a go – and it worked! I couldn’t believe it – after such a long time I was actually getting brussel sprouts! This week the time had come to chop them down and harvest the sprouts. The stalks were so thick I had a bit of a job chopping them down – think small tree!
The weather was too nice to sit inside so I set myself up outside to sort out the sprouts. I had about a kilo and was stoked, but we weren’t going to eat them all in one go – they needed to go into the freezer. So I had the most relaxing day peeling off the outer leaves and chopping in half what seemed like a million sprouts. Cutting them in half wasn’t necessary – but they had been hanging around for so long that I wanted to guarantee that there was nobody lurking inside. Not a surprize I want to find on my plate!
While I was sitting there my hyacinths were smelling incredible and the blue anemones were attracting so many bees that I am convinced that there is not a drop of pollen or nectar left on the flowers! The bees weren’t the only visitors to my wee work space. Brandy the Chicken has taught her babies the fine art of escaping the coop and they stopped by to peck at the sprout peels that had fallen at my feet. It was so cute. Then they wandered off and climbed into the bed with the celery in it. I nearly instinctively chased them out, but decided that there was little damage they could do, but they could have their fill of slugs that have been having their fill of my celery.
Once I finished I took all the brussel sprout peeling and stalks to the goats who thought all their Christmas’s had come at once and every time I went near them after that they got all excited with expectation – only to have their hopes dashed! I hope I haven’t given them a taste for the garden. I shall worry if I see them hanging out with Brandy the Chicken!
I also tried to mow today, but the rain beat me to it – however it was a bit of a half-hearted attempt as the ground is still too wet. I need at least seven days of sun and wind to dry things out enough to mow. But I can’t see that happening anytime soon; there is no sunshine on the next ten day forecast. But it is winter after all!
Come again soon – I am of the edge of the most exciting thing in the gardening calendar!
Sarah the Gardener : o )
Well … I’ve been true to my word. The weather has done nothing but shine and I have made the most of it! My promised sunny days came with the bonus of starting a day earlier than predicted. The weather forecast suggests that it may rain on Sunday and continue for the next TEN days and possibly beyond! But instead of moaning, I am pleased with what I have achieved!
I planted my clearance bin rose, although it is in a pot, but it is where I’d like it to go, but it would take more work than I can manage at the moment. So this time next year I will build an amazing garden to house it, but until then it is just a dormant rose bush in a pot, waiting the construction of a frame for it to grow up. Hubby the Un-Gardener made vague promises, so I shall have to pin him down.
I also planted my trees – well most of them. I decided that the coffee plant would flourish better as a potted plant in the office, which has better conditions than some of the extremes our climate would throw at it outside, and the tea plant has a place for it – although I’m not quite ready for it (translate: where I want to put it is a big weedy mess!) So I shall re pot it and hopefully rehome it sooner rather than later.
The rest of the trees were taken down to the orchard and with the help of Hubby the Un-Gardener we set about planting the trees. I placed the trees where I wanted them and he cleared the grass with the weed eater and dug the holes. My orchard is laid out nicely: plums in one row, apples in a row and quince and pears in another and peaches, apricots and nectarines in the far row. There are also two rows of miscellaneous shrubby plants like feijoa and elderberry. The rows haven’t been measured out with a string line and like my veggie patch (no string line used there) the best way to describe my orchard is a probably “rustic!”
So Hubby the Un-Gardener dug the first hole, and it was a good hole, nice and round, the correct depth and he’s even roughed up the sides up so it was easier for the roots to grow into. (Goodness knows where he learnt that trick!) So we planted the first tree – the pine nut and it looked great – until we stood back… I know the trees aren’t perfectly in line but this was way out! Hubby the Un-Gardener was not impressed when I made him dig a new hole a metre over! The rest of the trees went in well, although soil was still quite damp so I think I’ll wait until God does the watering on Sunday – He’s so much better at it than me!
I didn’t mow, and I think I’ll be hard pushed to do it before it begins to rain again as the soil hasn’t dried out enough yet – no surprises there! I haven’t cleared a bed for the peas, but I’ve asked a friend to help out there, but judging by last year when I had to repeatedly resow peas due to rotting in my wet soil, I think I’ll sow some in the greenhouse which should buy me some time to get the bed sorted. The raspberries are still neglected and I still feel bad about that and there is still a blueberry languishing in the mud.
However I have pruned all the trees in the orchard, which I always find nerve racking, but I think I did an OK job. I even took my pruners and loppers apart and gave them a good clean and sharpen before I started and even remembered to wipe the blades in methylated spirits between each tree to prevent spreading disease – not that my trees have disease!
I also potted up enough strawberries to replace a third of the bed next year and wrapped each of the remaining runners in newspaper with a dash of soil tucked inside. These will be handed out by the Strawberry Fairy to deserving new owners. I have purchased a solar powered fountain on an online auction, gathered up almost all the seeds I need for the new season, painted up what feels like a million ice block sticks to use for cool labels and weeded my flower garden (my first attempt at having one of these – wish me luck!)
Hopefully we will be able to squeeze out a bit more time before the rains return and once again surrounds us in a quagmire!
Come again soon – I have started buying seed raising mix soil in anticipation of sowing the first seeds of the new season. It’s coming and I’m soooooo excited!
Sarah the Gardener : o )
Once again I am so annoyed with myself. We had over a week of glorious sunshine. It is the middle of winter – this should not be taken for granted. But I did! I should have been out there every day doing things, making a difference, making things easier for my spring garden. While I did do some things, I didn’t do as much as I wanted to do. There was even a day that I didn’t actually leave the house – not even to poke my head out the front door! And now I look out and I kick myself!
It has been raining… a lot! It hasn’t stopped since Saturday afternoon. A steady heavy rain with solid drops. This is more like the winter weather we are accustomed to. All the more reason why I should have gone outside and done things. At the very least I should have mowed the grass around the veggie garden while the soil was dry enough. That window of opportunity has now closed until the next period of dry that lasts beyond five days – although judging by the amount of water out there now I think I need a month of Sundays to dry it out!
Looking on the bright side the temperatures are about 10 degrees warmer. And I just had a quick look at the long range forecast and the good people at the weather office have promised me sunshine from Wednesday all the way through to Sunday. I hope they aren’t teasing me. I won’t hold out too much hope as they have been wrong before and have moved my sunshines across the forecast like chasing the pot of gold under the rainbow!
So here and now I declare that when the sun comes out again and the ankle deep water on the lawn subsides, I WILL:
The orchard also needs attention as it needs to be pruned and sprayed and don’t get me started on the digging and the weeding… Oh so much to do… why oh why did I waste such lovely weather. Never again! A sunny day is a blessing and should be treated as such, not taken for granted and ignored!
Come again soon – it can’t be floody and muddy forever!
Sarah the Gardener : o )
This morning we woke to a heavy frost and clear blue skies, but strangely it wasn’t at all cold. There didn’t seem to be that chill factor that normally accompanies a frost. It is quite strange, it’s been like it for the last couple of days and according to the weather forecast it is supposed to continue for the next week. That’s another SEVEN days! I shall get out there and make the most of it. I need to work towards getting the garden spring ready as it is rapidly approaching. I should be sowing my pepper and chilli seeds in 3 weeks…
It’s starting to get to that exciting pre-spring stage. The air somehow seems fresher, although I don’t know how much that has to do with Hubby the Un-Gardener mowing the lawns the other day. The garden beds are slowly being sorted out. Every year I say I’ll keep on top of the weeds, but it never happens and so I have to work my way around the patch and sort out each one, and then adding organic material and extra nutrients and goodies to replace what the weeds stole. And things are starting to stir among the plants that live in my garden permanently. Spring is coming.
I decided the day was too good not to share, so I made a wee movie and posted it on YouTube. You can check it out HERE. Its just a short little thing with a bit of fun in it – courtesy of the Joeyosaurus.
The first project I took on was the strawberries. The silly things were starting to flower already. The problem is it is too early for that and then there was the little thing called weeds. You couldn’t see the strawberry plants for the weeds. The up side that it was mainly dock – ordinarily my nemesis, but in my strawberry patch their big leaves had acted like some kind of mulch and suppressed most other weeds, and because the soil was soggy from the weeks of rain we have had then the long dock tap roots slipped out quite easily.
So after two days my 72 strawberry plants had been liberated, although I removed all the flowers I could see so the plants could concentrate on getting ready for the spring and make fatter strawberries when the time comes. I heeled in the runners into seed trays and when the weather packs in again I’ll sit in my wee shed and pot them up. I’m going to keep enough to replace a third of my plants next year as apparently strawberry plants are only at their best for three years. The rest of the runners I’ll give away.
The next task was pulling down the long dead peas and clearing out the bed which will be home to the tomatoes before we know it! An easy job and it’s good to see another bed ready.
By now I had become completely absorbed in taking care of the garden that I moved on to the next task that had actually been causing me concern for months. The Rhubarb. It wasn’t doing well in the summer and lush is hardly the best way to describe the growth. Sickly and pathetic was a more accurate description. I suspected that it was it was too low in the bed and the roots were getting to a certain depth and met the water table and rotted.
So I dug them up – all five of them and confirmed my suspicions. None of the roots went below a certain point and were all soft on the tips. I took the opportunity to thoroughly clear out the weeds – every last trace of undesirable root. Then I loaded the bed with sheep poo pellets, blood and bone, as splash of ash, general fertiliser, compost and numerous loads of soil to raise the level of the bed to something the rhubarb could thrive in and replanted the crowns in their new and improved home. I hope they like it.
Then as I dragged my weary body to the house I noticed the turnips were getting big. We needed to have turnips for tea. So I whipped a few of the larger ones out and headed inside for the day, a bit achy, but ever so pleased with myself.
But there are heaps more sunny days to come, so who knows what I’ll do tomorrow.
Come again soon – I can’t wait to get out there in the fresh air again – it’s so invigorating.
Sarah the Gardener : o )
Don’t forget to check out my movie: SARAH THE GARDENER ON YOUTUBE
It’s been a crazy week weather-wise. We have had more rain than you can shake a stick at – lots of heavy fat rain drops that have turned the place into a bit of a muddy quagmire. We have had really scary electrical storms (I hate them) and strong winds and then all of that abruptly stopped and we had a heavy frost and a kind of sunny day. Not really the blue sky kind that normally accompanies a frost, but a thin cloud cover that lets enough sun through to let you know it was there, but not enough to actually warm you up! But as I could actually see the sun then I will happily label the day as “sunny”!
Despite the icy cold yesterday morning I couldn’t resist leaping out of bed and braving the elements to get a few photos as frost is really quite pretty. I expected the grass to make a crunching noise underfoot as I walked across to the garden, but to hear the mud crackle when I stepped on it was most peculiar.
While I was out there I decided to have a good look around as I had only done a cursory glance since I’d planted the onion and the garlic the other day, as I was so busy inside working on the final touches to my project – which I’m please to say I finished 17 days early, so now I am free to garden – except its school holidays so I’m not really free at all!
Anyway I can’t say my pukeko scaring devices have worked 100% as there was one onion lying on the surface – no damage done. Pukekoes just get curious and go “ooh that’s new, I wonder what it is?” and the pull the plant out, have a good look and decide it’s not that interesting and leaving it lying on the surface of the soil, where under normal circumstances it would dry out and die before being found. However this week it has been so wet and yucky the onion survived and so I just popped it back in and now you wouldn’t know which one had the run in with the pukeko!
My daffodil flowers have come out and now there are three flowers open. One is a little nibbled because I forgot how much slugs and snails like to eat them. But not anymore – I took care of that! Another thing I forgot is how fantastic they smell! If they weren’t planted in a dirty bucket – I’d bring the whole thing inside and inhale the scent all day!
The daffodils are really early. They shouldn’t be out yet. But then there are a whole load of plants in my garden with timing issues, some intentional and some just confused. My greenhouse tomatoes are going great guns and there are heaps of little green fruit all over the place… It won’t be long before we can eat some – can’t wait.
It is in the greenhouse that is found another curio: Passion fruit. I bought them early on in the autumn, under the assumption that they could be planted then, but on looking it up I discovered that they should be planted in the spring, so I popped them in the greenhouse to wait it out and they have flourished and even started to flower, which is unexpected! As everything is so mixed up I have started to leave the greenhouse door open when the wind isn’t blowing in case a bee decides to brave the elements and come and give my flowers a wee tickle!
There are two artichoke globes in the garden which is rather bizarre as they aren’t due until spring, and the strawberries are breaking into flower. This creates a dilemma. Each year I say I’ll mulch the strawberries and keep the weeds down – even when they aren’t pumping out the goods. Sadly this never happens… and the bed seems to have more dock than strawberry plants. So now it is a race against the season – clear out the bed before the strawberries start fruiting. Luckily the dock leaves have acted like a kind of mulch and suppressed most other weeds and the soggy soil is, in this instance, willingly giving up the stubborn roots that are ordinarily impossible to budge!
Come again soon – winter is marching on…
Sarah the Gardener : o )
When I Googled it I got conflicting information: it was either today or tomorrow and the sun was shining today – well kind of – when it wasn’t raining. So there was nothing for it – it was garlic and onion planting day!
This is such a special day anticipated from the day when the weather first started to get cold… from here on its downhill to summer! YAY! It makes the cold, wet days more bearable knowing the days are going to start getting longer and eventually warmer.
Onions and garlic can be planted any time from May to September, but I love the ritual that is getting out there in the dead middle of the year and doing some purposeful gardening. It makes a change from all the pfaffing about that I’m normally doing to make myself feel like I’m gardening. So today I dressed warmly and put my gumboots on and squelched across the garden to the lovingly pre-prepared bed. It was all soft and fluffy, with lime, blood and bone, general fertilizer, sheep poo, and a dash of ash for good measure all dug in and left for all of 3 days to settle in, with 3 days of heavy rain assist in the process.
Then I completely immersed myself in the task of planting out my seedlings and cloves that ended up taking most of the day. Which doesn’t really surprise me as I planted 14 elephant garlic and 90 normal garlic cloves, 144 Pukekohe Longkeeper Onions, 33 Sweet Red Onions, 12 Borettana Onions, 16 shallots I grew from seed this year and 15 shallots I grew from seed last year. They are probably squished in a little closer than recommended, but not half as bad as in previous years.
The last thing I had to take care of was the pest control. I think the biggest risk to my onions are the family of pukekos (birds) that have taken to hanging about. They don’t actually eat seedlings – they just get curious and pull them out to see what they are and then leave the seedling on top of the soil so dry out and die. So I put some bamboo stakes about the bed and tied plastic bags to them. It’s not all that pretty, but it’s worked before.
Then as I stood back to admire my handiwork, my attention was drawn to the big black clouds looming down by the loud crack of thunder, that was too close for comfort. So I raced inside knowing my newly planted plants were getting well watered in.
Come again soon – it will be spring before we know it!
Sarah the Gardener : o )
And it shows.
The last thing I did was dig over the garlic bed two weeks ago! I haven’t even had a chance to check the “to do list” to see what I’ve not been doing. Luckily it’s not as dire as all that as it is winter after all! Two weeks of neglect in spring would be catastrophic.
When I haven’t been head down – bum up working away on my project (which is on track and three quarters finished), it’s been raining and yucky and all wintery so I guess that’s ok. But the hardest thing is the weather all this week has been clear blue skies – that admittedly started with freezing crisp frosts and there was still a bit of a chill in the air all day, although nothing a pair of long johns wouldn’t take care of. So while I was inside, working my fingers to the bone on my keyboard, I had half an eye on the sun drenched garden, and I promised myself if I got to a logical break by the end of the week then I would reward myself with time in the garden.
Then when I woke up today, the day I had been working towards all week, was cold and wet. WET? That wasn’t on the radar… I wouldn’t have been half as motivated if there was a big rain cloud on the weather chart. If there was, then maybe I wouldn’t have worked as hard. The good news is the sun is supposed to come back tomorrow and it’s a weekend so tomorrow it’s all on. I shall sink my hands into soil – no matter how cold and claggy! I shall even get Hubby the Un-Gardener to do some digging. I’m sure he wont mind giving up his weekend to dig in the cold for me…
But amongst the cold bleakness of the day there was a wee ray of sunshine. Brandy the Escape Artist Chicken’s babies hatched. She had been hiding under the hedge with 12 eggs. Today wandering about in the driveway were 6 cheeping egg shaped fluffy bums! I have to say I am a sucker for baby chickens – they are too cute for words.
There were still 6 more eggs in the nest, but the driveway isn’t the safest place for babies to play so a made a nest in a box with hay and moved the eggs in to it. Then I had to try and convince Brandy to bring the babies and follow me to the chicken coop. That didn’t work so I tried to carry the box and the babies and get her to follow the sound of the peeping, but that didn’t work, she just frantically wandered around looking for her babies, so I set the box on the ground in the middle of the driveway and she climbed onto the eggs and the chicks disappeared into her feathers. Then I carefully lifted the box and moved the whole family off to the coop. After a huge feed of chicken food they have all settled in well. A proud Dad and bemused aunts cautiously watched the new arrivals wondering where they all sprung from.
One thing I did manage to do was take my monthly photo. It shows work has been done – but not much. But then that’s winter for you.
Come again so – there’s going to be gardening going on!
Sarah the Gardener : o )
But it’s cold and I can’t seem to focus. Well –it’s not actually that cold – I’m just a bit of a sook today. To give me a tiny bit of credit, there was a frost this morning, but now the sun is out, shining its watery thin light through the clouds onto my desk as I sit here with a warm blanket over my knees and try to work. I’ve done a bit of work but maybe I should wrap up warm and head into the garden – that normally clears my head a little.
But it’s been a funny week weather wise. Even the weather people don’t seem to know what is going on because the three day forecast seems to change several times a day and the bright sunshine I was looking forward to yesterday didn’t happen, and the sunshine icon keeps being shuffled along further into the week. At this point Friday has the sunshine icon – but we will have to wait until Friday to see what actually happens. It’s all a bit crazy.
First there was so much rain that the garden was ankle deep in water, so any weekend gardening was out of the question. Which was fine, because the weekend was pretty full on with non-gardening activities.
Then came the fog. The Joeyosaurus had a rugby game on Saturday morning and as they are still only little chaps, they only play on a third of the field, yet the fog was so bad we couldn’t see across to the other side.
Next came the grey – go nowhere day that is neither warm nor really cold, but the kind of day you just settle down in front of the fire with a bowl of hot soup. This was a good day for the garden – not because I gardened, but because we came into the possession of some unusual trees. Hubby the Un-Gardeners parents arrived bearing gifts of the best kind – green ones! We received a coffee tree, a tea tree, a pine nut tree and a macadamia tree. I should probably spend this restless energy today finding out the best way to plant these to ensure a bountiful harvest when the time comes.
As I don’t really believe the weather report, and it’s not actually raining, and the ground has stopped making that sucking noise it makes as the water drains away, I should get out there and spend an hour or so, because this could be the nicest weather we get all week – who knows? But then again – it is a bit cold. Maybe I’ll just go out and have a quick look…
Ok I admit it. There is nothing like getting out there in the garden to shake the cobwebs out. I should have done it hours ago. Not only am I warmed up, I’m rearing to go. I dug over the old tomato bed – soon to be garlic and onion bed and was encouraged by what I found: Worms! Lots of worms. Which means the soil must be good. Although it was a little wet and claggy so I will need to deal with that, so my cloves don’t rot. But that is something for another day. For now I must get on to the inside task I was struggling with earlier.
Come again soon – my garden always needs something done – regardless of the weather.
Sarah the Gardener : o )
For the last week it has been windy and raining with heaps of scary thunder and lightning. The ground went all soggy and boggy. Then finally the clouds cleared – well enough to create the illusion of an end to it all and we even got a beautiful rainbow to show that it was all over.
So there was one thing for it. It was Saturday; I hadn’t got my hands dirty in ages so on with the gumboots, beanie and gloves. It felt so good, the sun was shining weakly through the clouds, the ground had dried out a little – there was no longer surface water lying about and I was in my element.
The first job was repotting seedlings that I had begun to develop guilt issues over. They had been in their seed trays for so long I was sure they would be root bound. But luckily not – well not too bad anyway. Then the winter tomatoes where planted into their final winter abode – into buckets filled with so many goodies and nutrients that words my mum always said to us when we had lots of sweets sprung to mind and I hope they not eat them all at once!
At this point the tomatoes look very healthy. They even have flowers. The best one is one that self-seeded in the garden in the summer and looked like an ideal candidate for my winter greenhouse tomato undertaking, but I have no idea what it will be as I grew 10 varieties of tomato over the summer, so I shall have to wait and see. I also sowed seed from my favourite summer cherry tomato – strawberry tomato. I grew it in the greenhouse last year and it was really successful and all the sweeter for the slow growing that plants tend to do in the winter.
The problem is I couldn’t help myself and I sowed 6 and they all grew and now they are all strong, with flowers on them. It is not practical space wise in the greenhouse to grow them all so I selected the 3 strongest – more than I originally planned and put them in buckets. But when I looked at the other 3 just sitting there, I just couldn’t allow fate to take its course – I couldn’t let them die on the compost heap, so I potted them up into 10cm pots and will see how they do as a kind of bonsai tomato. Better to die as a result of a misguided experiment that had a remote possibility of working than to just die as waste.
Next I turned my attention to the mesculun tray that was burgeoning with more seedlings than was ideal for its size. The time had come to plant them out into the big old garden. Working in my favour with these salad plants is they actually prefer cooler weather and things grow slower in the winter, so they shouldn’t bolt to seed in a hurry and may even last us all winter. Having said that I have no idea what frost will do to them.
Once all this was done I was knackered. I looked to the sky and it looked like there was a chance it may rain again, so instead of going to the effort of pulling out the hose or lugging heavy watering cans, I figured it would take care of itself. But when I went out this morning to check I found it hadn’t and my seedlings were still lying on their sides waiting for some kind of revival. Then ever so briefly a burst of rain came in thick and fast on an angle with fat raindrops, only to vanish as quickly as it came leaving behind that thin winter sun that we have begun to grow grateful for at this time of year.
Come again soon – who knows what it’ll be like, you just never know where you are with the weather in the autumn.
Sarah the Gardener : o )
A wee pop up from my calendar popped up today: Go and take a photo of the garden. It’s a little something I started last month. I am determined to take a photo of the garden – as it is, warts and all, with no pre photo rushing around and primping and weeding. But I am a bit forgetful so I need to put a reminder in my calendar or I’d completely forget and then the project would have failed before it even started. Except I’m considering calling this Month One, because since last month I have discovered my new camera does panoramic shots and it is sooooo cool! But in the interests of consistency I not only took a really cool panoramic shot, I climbed up onto the post that gave the best view and took two photos in the same place. Then the rain came and I raced inside without getting wet.
The weather forecast doesn’t look good. It’s supposed to be yucky for quite some time. It’s great for my project as it holds me captive inside as nothing else can be done outside. So over the next few days I will expect to achieve an incredible amount of work! But it’s not so good news for the garden as there is heaps to do – there is always heaps to do. I have to re-pot the winter greenhouse tomatoes as they are beginning to flower, I still haven’t sprayed the peaches for peach leaf curl and I need to do that before the leaves change colour and drop off! I have to finish clearing out summer garden beds so I can plant cover crops…. I could go on – the list is endless.
But the weather is a lucky break for Hubby the Un-Gardener! He can’t finish my mother’s day gift! I didn’t ask him for sparkly stuff or chocolate or all that usual mumsy stuff, although I did receive slippers that I’m gratefully wearing. I asked for compost and was excited at the prospect of receiving it! You see – he has been digging a new flower garden for me, and was due to put in the finishing touches this weekend so I could move in what flowers I had in their temporary homes in the vegetable garden.
However instead we took a very long road trip to visit my ailing 94 year old Nana, who turned out wasn’t as ailing as first thought and was delighted to see us. I believe she has it in her to take a helicopter trip on her 100th birthday like she wants – despite what the doctors say! When it was suggested she do it now she said a 95th birthday wasn’t special enough! Bless her!
The trip wasn’t completely without a hint of gardening. I now have a huge burning desire to race out to the nearest nursery and get trees, lots of trees. The autumnal colours on display down the length of the country were a sight to behold. The countryside was lit up with such bright and vibrant reds and yellows. We couldn’t have timed the trip better if we’d planned it so we could see this specular landscape.
I also had the opportunity to pop into a garden centre to pick up a scented gardenia plant for Nana and found this huge box full of elephant garlic cloves. Well I couldn’t not buy any – it wouldn’t be right! So I got heaps! One clove is bigger than one whole bulb I grew last year, and I thought last year’s garlic was a decent size!
But I must get on, my project won’t write itself and the deadline is looming fast.
Come again soon – hopefully the weather will clear and Hubby the Un-Gardener will finish my flower garden and I can have mother’s day all over again!
Sarah the Gardener : o )