Saturday, 23 November 2019

Beanie Babies

Dad took some photos of my beans, after helping me string them up. He painted the planter, which mum got from Leyton, so it's a family affair.

I'm hoping to have a good crop this year. They are climbing butter beans. The packet said they are
Gourmet Range' and  'Melt in your mouth taste'. So I have high hopes.

I found out in my companion book that beans don't like onions or garlic, and I've put shallots and chives in my planter. Oops. I hope they don't fight each other. The mint is also trying to come through. I put applemint in the bottom as a drainage layer. Of course its trying to take over the garden but I figured if its in planter it can't really go anywhere. However coriander might not be too happy with it close by.

Manuka is awash with flowers at the moment. I am loving this season so far. Only took about 5 years to get most of my home planted up but I think I can say I have a real garden now...!

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

From caterpillars to butterflies...

Corinna my business tutor said that was what she pictured us students the beginning, hungry little grubs that ate and ate and ate... scared and afraid of everything, but...eventually we would cocoon ourselves and be totally transformed into amazingly beautiful butterflies free to spread our wings when we graduated from our course.

I am so relieved that I had my final presentation and am already thinking of when the next GARDEN PARTY will be. I had been so busy that all my sweet peas flowered and died and I only picked about three bunches. This weekend is the Flower Show featuring sweet peas and I have no sweet peas to show for it. Alas! There are other categories but perhaps I won't be in the running this year. If I could just remove Christmas from the calendar and move it to June I could have a more relaxing summer, but no, now everybody's asking for secret santa gifts and I just don't know if I can continue playing pass the parcel for another year.

I've already missed several birthdays, but I suppose thats why there's Christmas so that everyone who was too busy to have a birthday gets to have one on the 25th. Which brings me to topic of Christmas Trees. I did once ask, if I could please have a pukeko in a ponga tree for Christmas, but only got one pukeko and no ponga. However, later on in the year, my prayer request was answered when Margaret dug one out for me from her garden, which is only just now starting to show some fronds. I thought it had died from transplant shock but no, it's still alive. So, Santa does not always run on schedule.

How to fit in the garden party with all the other parties scheduled? Am not sure, but I'm sure that's another Garden Planet episode in itself (How to throw a garden party). Must do some research. How does the Queen do it? And who am I going to invite?

This weekend I am finally going to be free, and my to do list isn't that long now the big stuff is out of the way. Now its just small stuff like

Transplant watermelons
Water community garden
Look after Beth's plants (not sure if she will drop them off, but the ongoing saga of her tiny house hasn't quite ended yet)
Get 15% off anything at Kings Plant Barn (thanks Floral Circle)
Sow bees and butterflies mix

Because I am simply going to ignore big stuff like

Organise Eco West Festival garden ramble
Move the pop up fridge library and make a raised garden bed out of the old fridge
Save the entire planet by gardening

Just for the time being. I need some time relaxing in hammock I have yet to acquire with cucumber slices on my eyes from cucumbers I have yet to grow. Next year, instead of a business course, I am going to do a laziness course. Certificate in Laziness and Procrastination Management. After six years of continuous study

1. proofreading
2. english second language
3. horticulture
4. permaculture
5. money management
6. small business

I think I really need to enrol in this. I don't want to fail it by doing too much study and homework.

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Bless you!

I had a wonderful time with the Floral Circle in Te Awamutu but came back with sneezes and a cold?! So I wonder if I'm just not used to all these flowers as everyone else did not need hankies seeemed quite alright. We saw many gardens and I am designated official journalist/reporter for club next club night for those who couldn't make it.
Karyn, who hails from Rosetown herself, declined coming along to visit her hometown but I think she missed out on some fabulous gardens. If you like colour and kitsch, Te Awamutu is your kind of place. Gnomes are not an embarassment, and the more colourful the garden, the better. One lady in her 80s gardened her whole berm and has filled every inch with flowers. Another took over a weedy hillside and gardened the entire bank. Once you start, you can't stop. There must be something in the water? Everywhere we looked there were irises and the town's pride and joy, roses. The Te Awamutu Rose Garden was started by a husband and wife team who were mad on roses and just kept going and going. I have to say they were the biggest roses I've ever seen, really healthy and lush. Not like my spindly looking lot.

Te Awamutu gardeners aren't dictated by the whims of landscape designers they just plant what they like. And if they want to plant a tree church they will - nobody has to commission anyone else to do it. And so on Sunday we stopped by, it was the first church I'd been to that had an actual bell and as it rung we were called to worship. Silence fell over the congregation as we sat in awe, and the birds started singing for us. The cats were lying in the pews and seemed content. There were roses clambering up the walls. Oh St Giles, you don't need to build a bigger church, you could have just grown one! We exited by the birches that are especially scrubbed each week and explored the surrounds, which included a labyrinth, avenues and rounds of maples, and a colourful perennial garden of irises, granny bonnets, and lady's mantle.

On way home I started plotting my own sanctuary. I picked up brachycombe and scabiosa at Payless plants (only $6) and Cenny bought a rose for Jennifer. I think I need to watch out for Cenny. She left her phone at Tall Poppies, she bought her wallet but it had no money in it, and she nearly left behind her wonder weeder. Thankfully her friend Stephanie was there to chaperone too. She's thinking of joining the club.

The sheep are friendly down in Te Awamutu although the cars drive a bit fast. I don't know if they can really handle a busload of Aucklanders in their main street we were kind of standing out like sore thumbs but now I know where Karyn gets her gardening obssesion from. It's not a paddock it's a potential garden!

Kia Ora Te Awamutu!

Floral Art

Sheep eyeing my cardigan
The Tree Church

Let's colour in the garden