Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Somewhere over the rainbow

It's wet and wild out there today. I saw my hibiscus had three buds. They look a creamy yellow colour. I wonder what they will be? The plant did not have a tag when I bought it from the Horti centre in New Lynn. It was closing down so I managed to bag some bargains. I even found a wooden letterbox, that my dad painted. He has yet to put it up to replace our rusty metal letterbox.
I kinda wanted it fire engine red like the traditional mail boxes, but Dad painted it the same colour as the back fence, a crimsony brown. I have an idea for love letterboxes, they will be red with hearts on them, because everyone likes receiving love letters. However, my idea isn't catching on.
Maybe someone will one day and I'll see them...if NZ Post does not shut down due to competition with e-mail.
How can it? Where else can we mail order our seeds? And ferns? We can't get those delivered online.

I have been reading Lynda Hallinan's book A year of Country Gardening. Ms Hallinan is editor of NZ Gardener magazine. She snagged a man who had a 20 acre block in the Hunua Ranges, lucky gal. So now she is mum and head gardener there. It is hard to not to go green with envy when she writes about ordering 200 tulip bulbs, just like that. Or planting an entire field of carrots, just for an experiment to see which one does best for NZ Gardener magazine.
She does say she had a farming background, then moved to Auckland to study journalism and attempted to grow a self-sufficient garden on a 1/4 acre section - somewhere near Kings Plant Barn, I gather.

Well I am near a Kings Plant Barn now too, except I've been banned. I have been resisting the urge and the only thing I've bought recently has been silk flowers - gerberas, to decorate indoors. They look real. Plus, I may need some flowers for the funeral as one of my church lady friends has passed away.

She was a character and the one who first encouraged me to try out gardening. I asked for her advice, and she said, buy some veggie mix - at first I had no idea how to go about it, and she was the only one to actually employ me for a spot of gardening at her place, which was nestled on a hilltop ridge overlooking Henderson Valley. Her husband was like the country squire and clipped hedges. She had a small kitchen garden, a cute little plot set in a French style country manor.  It was all gravel and potager type arrangement, she grew herbs and covered them with netting so the possums wouldn't eat them. The herbs were for the gourmet breakfasts she would prepare for her wedding guests, who came to stay at her place.
There was also a little garden pond with goldfish and duckweed, that her husband liked to potter around in. It was all very grand to me. All I had to do was weed the herb patch and tidy it up a bit, nothing back-breaking.

I am a bit sad now she is gone and not around to laugh with me. She was funny. But I guess I may see her again someday, somewhere over the rainbow. I think of her whenever I hear that Monkees song 'Daydream Believer' because her name was Jean.