After a couple of years with terrible weather conditions for gardening, this year has been as good as you could get. That, coupled with the fact that Mick has retired and COVID-19 meaning we spent more time at home, meant that quite a bit has happened in the garden.
As well as building the little potting shed and revamping the front gardens, quite a bit else has been happening in the back yard.
There were some more ratty looking shrubs next to the green house, so most of them were removed as well.
In their place we now have two plum trees, a couple of boysenberries and a couple of fiejoas ,which will be espaliered as they mature.
We don't usually have much in the vege garden over winter, but this year filled it up.
As a result we enjoyed rocket, spring onions, spinach and peas. We planted cabbages, but they didn't do much and we removed them in time to start the spring planting.
It was fun playing in the potting shed during the cooler months and allowed us to get a head start with some plantings.
We even had tomatoes in September. One of our cherry tomato plants was still alive in the greenhouse from last summer and produced this tiny crop before we took out the plant from its pot, ready to plant for this summer's season. We will be picking mini yellow pear shaped tomatoes before long.
Mick had fun starting flower seeds in the potting shed as well, planting love in the mist, or "carrots" as he likes to refer to them, due to their foliage, poppies and statice. He also grew tomato seedlings which were enough for us and also plenty to give to friends and family.
We had some strawberry plants in a wheel barrow and there was also a plant under the shrubbery that had been removed. We must have planted it at some stage and it had sent our plenty of runners. We were delighted when, at the start of spring, it was absolutely covered in flowers and has been providing us with loads of strawberries. This has been a total bonus.
The peas were quite a bonus as well. We planted them in autumn and by the end of winter they hadn't done much and looked really sick.
We were pleasantly surprised with the crop we have been able to pick from our small planting. I had said we wouldn't waste our time with them again, but I think I may have changed my mind.
As we started planting out for our summer veges we felt that we didn't have enough room. There was only one solution.
Mick has now created a further raised bed, which adds to the courtyard feel around the fire pit. We have planted tomatoes, capsicum, parsley and rocket. The plan is, as we start to eat the rocket, we will plant another small patch at the end of the bed so we can have a continuous supply. We'll see how we go.
Here it is today.
On the flower front, we were pleased that we had quite a bit of colour, even during winter.
The white jonquils we bought at the Young Cherry Festival last December flowered beautifully.
Early spring saw lots of bulbs flowering. It is always fun seeing them pop up in various spots around the garden.
The new weeping cherry flowered and looked lovely with the ring of daffodils underneath.
As spring sprung we were treated to wattle, grevillea, bottle brush, wall flower, aqulegia, lavender, valerian, irises and loads and loads of sweet peas.
They don't call them sweet peas for nothing, the fragrance was divine. There were so many other spring flowering plants as well.
I don't think our hellebores have ever flowered so well.
Our rose that we purchased in winter has had its first flowering and looked lovely and cheerful. Our standard peace rose is now flowering and has loads of new growth.
We purchased this little blue wren in a gallery at Hillston our our trip in September. He looks rather cheerful in the garden.
Most of the spring flowers have now finished and we are entering the hot weather of summer. Although today is officially the last day of spring, we experienced our first official heat wave on the weekend, with hot, dry winds. The focus will now be on watering to keep things going. Our local water storage dam is still full, but we continue to be on water restrictions, only being permitted to water for one hour a day on alternate days. This is likely to be the best we are ever allowed to have going forward to ensure there is sufficient water available for our ever growing city.
Thank goodness for our several water tanks.
So, quite a bit has been happening and we are really pleased with how things are progressing. Hopefully, it won't be so long until my next update.