Wednesday, 22 April 2015


My ferns arrived today!
One ponga tree, or silver fern, promptly planted in the corner of Sock's bed by the clivia and spider plant, and several other ferns, mosses and epiphytes.

Ferns, natures' green lace.
What would NZ be without them? Their unfolding fronds, their love of shade where nothing else will grow, their greenery..their distinctive koru unfolding crowns, what's not to love about them?
I had ordered them from a lady who grew them out west somewhere in the Waitakere Ranges. She was selling them on trade-me for $5 each.

I know, didn't I say no more plants? Well, I bought these before the ban.
I'm sure mum won't notice a few ferns in the corner.
Unlike the showier flowery plants.

Sparky looked pretty comfortable lounging in Snowy's bed today. Snowy, our cat, is buried there. He was not really Snowy white, he was more ginger, but he had white socks. I think he would like the white alyssum. I thought about putting in snowdrops, but Auckland climate is a bit too warm for them.

It looks like some bulb shoots are poking up through the soil. I can't wait to see what they will be. If there's anything I learned from gardening, it's patience. Don't force things. Plants will grow in their own time. It's best to let them run with the seasons as nature intended then try to grow them in artificial climates just because you want them early. With seeds, sometimes they need that winter weather for them to hibernate and then shoot forth in spring. Others will grow through the winter and by spring be established enough to put in a healthy show of flowers. That's what I'm banking on anyway. I don't think it's a good idea to take shortcuts.

I remember in my horticulture course trying to grow sweet peas from seed in October. It was far too hot for them. It took ages for them to grow and by the time they flowered in the height of summer the season was over. They also needed a lot of water which they would have got in winter if I'd planted them in Autumn, and would have established themselves better.

So, lesson learned? You bet. Fall means just that, when the leaves and seeds start to fall. Then in winter, it dies down, and in spring, the shoots spring up. And then we can all enjoy a lazy summer relaxing beneath the foliage and forget about all that hard work done and lie in that hammock I will have one day.