An Hour Well Spent.

An early morning hour in the front garden stimulates the imagination – and is a whole lot of fun.

A tidy up here and a touch of paint there.

If you don’t have water, create it. I tossed a few packets of lobelia seeds in for good measure.

We bought these two delightful blue mushroom solar lights today at Bunnings and added a little more creativity.

Not fully charged yet, but still looks pretty.

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Looking Up

Autumn is still beautiful on the mid-north coast.

Rear corner of back verandah.

From the garden.

and again from the garden.

Another view of the back corner.

Looks like there will be dozens of blooms this year.

This last photo shows the outdoor kitchen divider in front of the clothes line. Next week, I’ll reveal why.

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Elderberry

If you can find my photos of the elderberry I potted when it just 40 cm high, I would be grateful. It should be somewhere in I’m in the Garden archives but I can’t see it. It’s photographed with my other potted herbs. So late last year we re-potted it and it’s growing beautifully.

Now it’s taller than me and covered in blooms. Very strange because it should flower in early Summer. It’s Autumn here in Australia.

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Where is Autumn?

Although I love the rain and warm summer days the high temperatures on the current between days of rain is not quite the Autumn I’m use to. The Poinciana is still covered in green leaves and the water in the fish pond feels more like a hot tub.

There’s one thing that I do enjoy in this crazy weather and that is the variety of green that is seen from, and in every corner of the garden. The birds too a hanging around longer than usual and as for our vegetables, they just keep growing leaving no room to plant winter crops.

I’m left wondering what I’ll be doing in the garden once the season does change.

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Evening Garden

It’s finally Autumn and it most noticeable in the evening with the warmth of the day fading with the going down of the sun.

When the phone is useless in this beautiful light

that reflects off the colours in the garden.

but it will all fade by the time I find the camera and set it up.

Maybe another evening when I’m more prepared. For now I’ll just relax in the peace of the garden.

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A Striking Lot

A friend is in need of re-thinking her lack of gardening skills. A herb garden is a priority and then a low maintenance rockery around the letter-box out front. While she’s contemplating plans, I’m planting seeds and seedlings as well as striking succulents from cuttings. I’ll update as changes occur.

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A Busy Few Days in the Garden..

With January being the hottest month of the year, it’s often difficult to choose the right day – a cooler day, to mulch the front garden and the garden that runs the length of the carport. Most other seasons don’t work with the front garden and after the Christmas lights a packed away for another year, it really is the best time. For us anyway. We started laying mulch this time from the rear of the drive and worked forward to the front of the house. We did this simply because we always run out of mulch for that far end of the drive when we do the front garden first. However, just as we finished along the drive it began to rain and continued most of the day. Good for the garden but not while gardening. At least it gave us a break and some time to plan how to tackle the front garden.

We started early to avoid the heat of the day and the rain that threatened to change our plans yet again. Overcast but not to hot, not to cold. The rain held off long enough to complete the whole front garden. We even had time to go to Bunnings for a few extra shrubs to fill empty spaces along the white picket fence. I also rehoused the new gnomes we bought on a clearance pallet just after Christmas. I’m quite pleased how it all looks now.

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Open House

Sorry this is blurred. I took the photo from inside the back door with my phone. We put up the Lorikeet box just a few days ago. This pair actually put their head inside but were more interested in eating. We’re hoping a second visit will happen soon but not perhaps one of the many other Lorikeet pairs who visit the garden will find this new house to be so tempting they’ll move in.

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….and I almost missed them

Last night Norm relocated my big screen PC to the dining room table where I am able to maneuver around better in the wheelchair. This morning I looked up from the screen to see between the verandah railings and palm leaves, ….

the bulbs I had planted in previous seasons were blooming. I promptly sent Norm around the garden with the camera to see what else I missed. I’ll look through the photos later today after church.

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Freedom

I upgraded the wheelchair and I have more flexibility and freedom.

It’s so good to be in the garden. No changes needed to the driveway or kitchen-diner.

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Recovery Time

With the next 5 weeks of non-weight-bearing, I thought I might start painting some of the garden ornaments in time for Spring. I’ll begin with the larger items and work down to smaller items like the fairies and smaller gnomes around the pond.

Mother duck held up well this winter but her bill and feet are in need of a touch-up, as too the mushroom stool and larger gnomes in the front garden.

At present this is the only part of the back garden I can see from the wheelchair. I’m hoping with some slight rearrangement of items at the side of the house, I’ll be able to sit in the outdoor kitchen diner but for now I’m content to enjoy the verandah and the recovery of myself and of weather beaten garden favourites.

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Morning Sunshine

I was finally able to visit the front garden. While Norm weeded and dead headed I took a few photos of the late winter flowering lavender, Azalias and Gazanias. Even the Bougainvillea climbing the wall is bursting with colour. A few extra cottage garden plants need to be planted when Spring arrives.

The tub of pansies and zinnia potted daisies needed to be relocated temporarily for the ramp.

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Over the back fence.

We knew about this before we bought our home back in December 2019. It’s finally happening. The noise can be annoying but at least there’s no workers or machinery on the weekends and before 7.30am and after 5pm in the evenings during the week… and when it’s raining.

The photos above were taken while standing on a step ladder on the verandah. Below are the scenes we see at floor level and at the bottom of the steps that descend into the garden. Hopefully the new houses won’t appear above the fence. We’ll just have to wait.

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Who’s goes there?

It’s been a lot easier to sneak up on these adorable birds. They don’t seem to mind the camera either. This pair is one of four pairs that come in for a feed throughout the day. They all have their own colour tones and preferred times to eat. An interesting lot.

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New Skills and Bird Watching

Retirement can be challenging but there’s always something to learn and do, especially when it comes to the garden.

Well done, Norm. You’re never too old to learn new skills. I can’t wait to see what other species of birds will visit the garden.

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Bird Watch

Another sunny afternoon enticed us outside to watch the birds.

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Midday Shadows

According to Google, June 21st 2022 is the shortest day of the year for Australia.

Over the next two weeks, we may just spy the shadows beginning to creep back the other way back to greet the Spring.

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It Had to Happen

Two of our parlour palms brought with us on our move in December 2019 and at less than two foot high, have grown ridiculously on our back verandah where I had created a little tropical atmosphere of sorts. Here’s the photo of one. Both are about same size.

The branches seemed to want to push the roof off.

If you have been following my I’m in the Garden category on Riverside Peace you will know that the garden space is minimal. But we did it. Or, at least I pointed and directed and Norm did it.

With the two big potted palms relocated we then reorganised the verandah plants before enjoying a bottle of 2017 Sangiovese. Two neighbours also joined us with their wine glasses filled with their favourite whites.

we enjoyed a well earn drink and pre-dinner nibbles.

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Fairy Take-Over

My dear neighbour and friend across the road kindly let me have her fairies, toadstools and gnomes that have been out grown by the grandchildren. “The Pond” has been overwhelmed by more fairies, little gnomes and fairy houses. One fairy has now become the centre piece of the birdbath which has inspired me to set aside a quiet day to sit and imagine before placing everything in different places. We have a young blue tongue lizard that roams my garden, and the neighbours, that bumps the poor little fairies into the pond. Some might say I’m a little crazy with my gnomes garden out the front, and now The Fairy Pond, but no one has yet disliked it. I think if I ever do get dementia, I’ll be happy in my garden.

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Just a Bird or Two

Seriously though, we have not witnessed so many birds in our garden since we began creating it in January 2020. We were so engrossed in the birds flocking to the top of the water tank that we didn’t notice the usual three or four on and in the blue bird feeder on the back fence until they flew off leaving the the bird feeder bouncing and shaking. There is one photo that was way to blurred for here that showed at least six birds in on and around the owl bird feeder. Like it was stacks on.

Click on each photo to view entire photo.

These photos were just the ones Norm manage to take on my mobile phone. I’ll check the photos on the Canon EOS 650D while we are on a week’s holiday, starting tomorrow, up the coast. I was busy trying to keep the tablet focused, and without falling off the back steps, so our 9 year-old granddaughter could see them via messenger video call we had been on for ten minutes when the birds came down. She was calling from a very wet and soggy Sydney where her family, like thousands of other families, are still cut off by flooding rivers. Bridges have been under water now for ten days. She’ll be back at school on Monday. Not sure about anyone getting to work on the other side of the river though.

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An Afternoon in the Garden

Spinach seedlings replanted to replace the spinach I planted 2 years ago – originally in polystyrene banana boxes. It’s seems a life time ago now. I’m hoping these will also yield multiple times throughout the next year or two. The seedlings I grew from seed. You may be able to see more seedlings sprouting in the 3rd photo below in a 2nd grey rectangular pot.

Two noisy minor birds perched in the Poinciana to watch me for awhile. Fortunately, the minors move on by 4pm before the Rosella and Crested Pigeons come for their tea.

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Kangaroo Lane

Kangaroo Lane has made progress. Plants are thriving and the grass is green.

Cooler Days

Finally the high temperatures of the past two weeks of 35 plus (Celcius) have dropped to a much more pleasant mid 20s. This evening, a gentle rain cools hot surfaces.

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More Random Photos around the Garden

Click on photos to see total pictures.

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Random Photos Around the Garden

Click on photos to see the complete pictures.

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Poinciana Growing Up

We bought him when he wasn’t much more than a stick. After his growth in Spring and Summer 2020 he grew to big for his pot. We had to re-pot him to his forever home during last winter. We have read on various websites that poincianas flower some time between 5 and 10 years after it’s first Spring.

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Latest Garden Project

If you regularly follow my “I’m in the Garden” posts you would have seen that whatever we put in our front garden it’s usually unsuccessful which is why we resorted to growing gnomes. Since Nemo graduated to the Hilton, Nemo Moves into the Hilton we decided not to waste the pot in which he’s been thriving in for over 12 months.

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Nemo moves into the Hilton

Today is New Years Eve and we’re still not quite completed but the new plants will help fill the gaps fairly quickly I think.

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There’s Shed Projects & There’s Shed Projects

We started the project a month ago with the watering cans. I need more watering cans but today we decided it was time to do more work on our shed project.
I’m not sure about the door. Something will inspire me and Norm will be back to do another shed project. I’ll update once we have decided. It’s sounds like a good January shed project.
Yes, it needs something on the door. Any suggestions appreciated.

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Bird Watching

These two Rosellas have visited the past four evenings. I think they just might be regulars now. I’ve been so looking forward to photographing birds in the garden.

Photos by Norm & Chrissy Siggee.

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Misty, hazy days

Too much rain lately but the heat is still causing growth in all areas of the garden. Pumpkin vines are weaving their long arms around and between the vegetable plots. Yesterday afternoon the air was steamy creating a haze throughout the garden. The new arch is beginning to blend into the back and foregrounds of a lot of the photos.

The Poinciana has finally come out of it’s winter’s rest. It’s branches are thickening up after it’s 2nd year in our garden pots. We won’t be re-potting again. I think this one will be big enough.

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Finally found…

After two years of creating our garden, we finally found the perfect arch.

While taking a photos of the arch something caught my attention.

I have been waiting for a year and a half for birds to come in to the garden. We sometimes had minor birds that we would shoo away but at long last the bird feeder is finally being visited. I’m so happy.

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