An interesting weekend – each one always is however now the Convent is actually mine, it all seems somehow more dramatic.
I’ve started attacking the Church’s property – which is actually my access through their carpark out the back. The Church relies on a few volunteers for cleaning and tidying so I don’t think they will mind me whippersnippering the carpark and pruning the shrubs on my back fence (although my efforts to date are pretty tragic). I’ll post the back wall from the Church photos another time – but there are large Rondaletias and Diosmas – well thought-out and planted at one stage, but like most other things, have not been pruned for decades.
The life of a farmer/producer is not an easy one. I’ve been tweeting friends every week on the progress of some of my new veg, but this week was appalled at my friend’s pet Brussels Sprouts that had been the victim of a merciless attack by white cabbage moth caterpillars. I picked off about 2 dozen green grubs, but Dean who does some handyman work and has been a farmer/market gardener, pointed out that they were covered in eggs and tiny pin prick grubs. My plan for a non-intervention garden suddenly vanished and I succumbed to organic pest spray as they had also hit the broccoli and I am shortly to add mini caulis.
On the ‘plus’ side, I have my first passionfruit flower. The back wall is wired with the intention of covering it with small climbing roses and passionfruit. The neighbours are keeping a close on on the latter – they appear hugely interested in their success!
A magnolia (I love magnolias) was added to the back, still leaving enough grass area to enjoy and allow potentially a marquee to be erected.
I also started ‘permanently’ labelling the plants. I have been warned that for open gardens, keen gardeners like to know the names of plants, particularly the roses. The nursery labels are already coming off and fading within 6 months so, as directed, I am replacing with the copper labels that you ‘engrave’ with biro which are far more permanent. My new discipline is – if you plant, then relabel at the same time.
I’m also clearing out the garage. I love having a country garage – obviously build by local men for them – to house all the garden and building equipment. There’s plenty of room, cupboards, shelving and hooks. I’ve also made a few discoveries with what’s been left behind inside, such as a processional cross, a beautiful brass framed and engraved prayer as well as the original Church sign which will be hung on the outside of the garage.
And the Grotto… Well, I am so pleased with this. It looks amazing and is just so special to the garden. This weekend I added some of my miniature weeping and ground cover camellias from Sydney, as well as bulbs and seeds. I still need to clean out the floor inside, but it has come up so much better than I anticipated and the locals are loving having it back!
All in all – a weekend with more steps forward than back!