Spring has sprung

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In fact, it sprang a few weeks ago and I took loads of photos of pretty blossom and stuff, but then things happened and I didn’t do a blog post and of course nature has moved on.

The most exciting thing for me is that our orange tree is in flower – orange flower is one of my favourites and it is such a lovely, heady scent just outside the back door.

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The bees love it too and we love the sound of all kinds of insect life buzzing around the garden, except for the big bastard hornet we see occasionally. Reading about them, apparently hornets (at least European hornets) are not aggressive but I swear the thing is the size of my thumb and it sounds like a Russian helicopter (so David tells me), so we’ve decided it is best to go and do something in a different part of the garden when it is around. Talking of bees, here is the biggest of our ‘All You Can Eat Bee Buffets’. We have lots of borage in the garden, the blue of the flowers doesn’t show up well in this photo, but it is a really pretty plant. David attacked the grass with the brush cutter about 10 days ago (and yes, it probably needs doing again) but diligently went around every borage plant to leave them for the bees and this one went nuts. He has a bit of a thing about bees, he thinks they talk to him.

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The Lower Pleasure Garden, taken a few days ago. Not a lot in the beds yet (not even soil in some!), but lots of seedlings ready to go in very soon. We put a bee bath on the stump in the middle of the garden because apparently if bees are wiped out, coffee and chocolate will be some of the first foods to disappear. Sounds pretty serious so we are doing what we can to help.

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The salad bed on the right supplied us with our first harvest about 10 days ago – salad leaves & radishes. Someone somewhere cottoned on to a real winner when they realised they could sell ‘baby salad leaves’ for a small fortune. Here they are called ‘the thinnings we eat because Sarah wasn’t very careful when she sowed the seeds and everything is a bit squashed’.

First harvest!

First harvest!

We have lots of unidentified things growing in our garden and although many of them might be considered weeds, we are not removing anything until we know whether it will be useful or even just pretty. We have a heavy clay soil here and our climate seems to have an all-or-nothing approach to rain – in the first three days of April, we had 70mm of rain and have had none in the 17 days since – so we are happy to consider applications from any plant willing to grow here with no assistance from us. Like this beautiful flower, anyone know what it is?

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Our unidentified things include some of the fruit trees. I mean, we know they are fruit trees, we just don’t know what fruit they are going to produce. Although I would hazard a guess that this one might be a pear. We’ll just have to wait and see with the others.

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David has been playing working very hard making a couple of stone steps between the Upper & Lower Pleasure Gardens. I may have offended Aussie Dad during a recent Skype call when I said that we only had a wobbly stone there before, but I must give credit where it is due as it was Aussie Dad who very carefully selected and placed the stone and I’m sure it wasn’t wobbly when he did it. Anyway, David spent a happy couple of hours pootling about in the sun and here is the result;

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There is lots of rain forecast for the next few days so hopefully the raised beds will get a good water and we can plant out some of our seedlings soon. And we still have one rainwater tank that needs filling. Having said that, there was rain forecast for today and so far it has been dry, so who knows? Maybe we’ll get nothing.

3 responses »

  1. And the grass is ris………how exciting watching plants appear ,something [possum ?] has eaten my silver beet …… as long as its not a wild pig !!
    I am more concerned about chocolate than coffee but keep those bees coming anyway .lvmx

  2. That’s a very posh step and puts my wobbly rock to shame. I only bothered with the rock because my knees couldn’t manage the step up without help, wobbly or not. On the bee front, we once were invaded by thirsty bees; the whole hive came and we had to decamp. We had to lure them away from the tent with a bucket of water placed at a distance, so we could pack up. And, as to wasps, if they don’t bite, why do they have that massive scimitar? Aggressive or not – like sharks, they are to be avoided at first glimpse. Jan says “nice geranium”.

  3. I think I recognize chickweed (in my mother tongue ‘vogelmuur’) in the little white flowers next to the lonely purple one. It is edible and can be added to soups, in the wok, or cut up finely and use as a herb through some butter or cream cheese. I love unexpected ‘weeds’!

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