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Monday, 23 January 2017

Xanthe White never replied to my email

However I don't hold it against her she was probably busy writing her book which I am reading now called 'The Good Dirt: Improving soil health for more successful gardening'. According to the expert landscape designer, what goes on beneath the surface is the secret to successful gardening. Thank goodness she has some tips on how to improve the soil as, it will be much better than some airy fairy 'The Secret' book in which you are told to visualise success and think yourself rich, then tell the Universe what you want, so you can attract good gardens into your life.

The book is fully illustrated with gorgeous photographs of soil and plants, I even spotted Ayrlies garden in there. Now Ayrlies is a wonderful garden and the special thing about it is it's not flat. This makes for wonderful display of plants and interesting ponds and waterfalls following the contours of the land, however, for my garden, there can be no such extravagance as its more of a slightly sloping pancake in it's terrain. And while Ayrlies has no straight lines, well, my garden is basically a rectangle with wedgy shaped beds by the house, a semi circular weed zone, and an L-shaped border.
My brothers put in the box hedges which win no prizes for natural selection and they are clipped very sharply with machines that are so noisy you need to wear earmuffs. Nothing natural about them.

So I may have to get creative so that my garden is in harmony with nature but as far as I know nature was stripped when the house was built on former orchard land, which was possibly lowland forest margin in the olden days when moas roamed freely and ate cabbage trees.

This morning I returned a cabbage tree that started growing by the side of the house to centre stage after the ignominious wilting/death of my third ponga tree fern which I have discretely tucked away underneath ponga tree fern number one, in hopes of a revival. So that makes two cabbage trees, one pink and one green, in my attempt to return my garden back to nature. Although I am not sure they had pink cabbage trees in the olden days. Looking at it you might think it had a dye job but I swear to you that is it's natural colour.

After this I may take some photographs, send them into NZ Gardener and beg Xanthe White to do something with my garden. Help! It's boringingly rectangular and suburbanly drear. It has a wonderful vista of next door's driveways. How can I make it a forest margin again?! This morning I found a black and white bunny squatting in the hidey hole under my jade plant. Is my garden supposed to attract this kind of wildlife?  It doesn't seem to be 'in harmony with nature' although I did observe it eating some weeds. Where are the kiwis? If I introduce worms, will more kiwis make themselves at home? I expect Xanthe White to wave her magic wand, talk to my plants, and write exasperatingly in NZ Gardener magazine that trying to garden in Henderson is absolutely hopeless. This lady needs to sell up and move to either Mt Eden or Coatesville, that's where the good soil is.