Sunday, 4 November 2012

Home again

My son did an amazing job looking after everything while we were away. He must have kept the water up to the garden as per the schedule we left him because all the plants looked healthy and it was hot and didn't rain while we were away. (36 degrees C on the day we got home)

 The lettuce, bok choy and rocket are ready to start harvesting. This will be the last lot of lettuce until Summer's over but I can grow bok choy and rocket and some salad greens all Summer.

 I let the ladies out for a wander.  They'd stayed in their pen while we were away, and they headed straight for the veggie patch. I don't mind if they eat a few tomatoes. We have more than we can use and the entertainment value of watching them fight over one tomato when there are so many is priceless.
Because the temperatures are heating up at the moment all the tomatoes are ripening at once and the vines are suffering. John made some tomato relish and I'll do some pasta sauce to freeze. We've told the neighbours to come and take what they want and I may even take some to work. I hate seeing any go to waste.

I had to chase the ladies out of the rockmelon (cantaloupe) bed. They are powering ahead and I'm hopeful of getting fruit this year - but not if little brown hens dig them out.

They are setting flowers already. Thanks for your advice Tammy. They are getting lots of food and water and seem to be thriving.

Even the hanging baskets were thriving and they had to be hand watered so I'm very thankful. The T-shirt we bought my son as a thank you gift just doesn't seem adequate.

 We'd planted the garden bed along the side fence with annuals as well as some small shrubs after we cleared it out and added all the compost a while back. I don't usually plant annuals. I find them too fussy and too much work in our climate. In this case though, I wanted something that would fill the bed quickly and look good while the more permanent plants are growing.

 Again, everything was growing well - there's a mixture mainly petunias, verbena, salvia and allysum.
 Oh - and a tomato has self-seeded from the compost. Our compost bins get quite hot but tomato seeds always survive.

Even the justica is starting to flower.

We spent a couple of days working in the garden before I had to return to work. The fernery was a mess - very overgrown with old dead fronds everywhere and weeds in the pathway. We removed quite a few ferns and have planted them elsewhere and trimmed and tidied what was left. It looks much better. As long as we can keep the water up to them I think they'll survive in the garden (in full shade of course).

All the paths need weeding.

I trimmed back branches on one of the callistemons along our fenceline and found the bromeliad I attached to it a couple of years ago had multiplied. This plant proves broms are easy care. It has had no attention.
I meant to prune the golden candles shrubs before we went away. They still need to be trimmed but I hate cutting off all the flowers. The best thing about pruning is that I will take some cuttings and with any luck will makemore plants.

Speaking of making more plants.
I need to take the pups of these. Not sure whether to just leave tham as a giant clump or plant a few in other parts of the garden. At this time of the year I would rather be working in the garden than anything else I can think of.


  1. What a great job your son did! Your veges and flowers look great!Can't wait to have a garden again! We have lights and fans and a front door on our house now! It is very exciting! It is meant to be finished Nov 21st. We found 2 cane toads in our garden here- I was completely grossed out Lol! What is your method of disposing of them?

    1. Robyn, Cane toads are the most disgusting creature on earth. I scoop them into a plastic bag, put it into a second bag and tie firmly - then put it in the freezer until rubbish collection day. If you want a quicker solution you can kill them with a spray of pure Dettol (not the imitation brands) but it's a bit cruel even for cane toads. I prefer the freezer method.

  2. The garden is looking great, and well done to your son as he's done a sterling job looking after the garden :)

  3. Seems as if your son did an excellent job looking after the garden and the ladies while you were away. I do believe another tee shirt may be in The garden looks lovely....job well done.
    I'm sure Missy was overseeing everything, so there was no way he could shirk his duties with her around.
    Glad you're back home to start gardening again.
    We have got some ugly toads here, they may be cane toads, I have no idea, but I could never think of putting them in the freezer with my other food stuff. They are disposed of with a black disinfectant called Jeyes like a charm. They are very poisonous to dogs, so be careful.

  4. Nicely spaced out veggies in the first picture... I always have them congested.

  5. Ours are poisonous as well. The scientific name is Bufo marinus. They were introduced to get rid of cane beetles and are the worst pest we have in Australia.

  6. Oh don't get me started on cane toads.... Your garden is looking lovely, and you seem to be able to grow more than I can up here in the heat.

  7. I so enjoyed the walking tour of your lovely garden. Your son did a phenomenal job in your absence. I love your borders. And look at those tomatoes! Oh, mine did not produce much of anything this past year. We would only get one or two ripe at a time and frustration ruled the day. I love my hens, but boy, can they make a mess of the garden! I love to watch them tussle over a select morsel, too, they are so funny. Right now they are free-ranging all day long and have successfully removed every last bit of mulch from all of the garden beds. Oh, well, I'll just rake it all back in; I'm hoping they're finding pests like slugs and other bugs in their forays.

    I read up about the cane toads....oh, MY! What a disaster, and so sad they were introduced to fight a pest only to become a bigger headache than anyone ever suspected. I cannot imagine a toad weighing up to four pounds and four to nine inches in length...good grief, that's Huge! I surely hope something can be done to discourage their pestilential onslaught.

  8. I hope your rockmelons are delicious! I love seeing the Australain gardens bursting with color while ours are going dormant. What a wonderful son to have watered everything so well. He's a good egg. :o)

  9. Your son probably started enjoying the garden too, so he didn't miss any watering. Your garden looks beautiful still even without the rains. And those tomatoes, i can relate to the joy of handpicking them one by one!

  10. Hi Missy,

    My name is Tina, the community manager for a new blogger community called Garden Gab ( This community will focus on tips, advice and personal stories on the subject. I want this Garden Gab community to be a place where expert advice and tips are consolidated in one place for beginner (like myself) and experienced gardeners.

    I’m currently looking for bloggers to contribute their relevant, existing content to the community, and your blog has caught my attention. I like the way you write about gardening, and how easy and approachable the experience is.

    If you decide to join, Garden Gab will publish the title of your blog posts and the first few sentences of each post. If readers want to read the full story, they’ll be pushed to your blog and give you traffic. These readers will be people who share the same passion and interests as you, which is the sole purpose of the community.

    If you’re interested in joining our community, please e-mail me back at tinajin @ with “Gardening” in the subject line. If you have any questions, I would be more than happy to answer them.

    Community Manager

    P.S. I love your hen!

  11. Form the look of your garden after your hiatus, I can safely say that your son can be entrusted to do the job again and for an even longer period. Even the ladies are well and good. Do give your son a few pats on the back. Btw how old is he?

  12. Your son has proven himself to be a reliable, trusted partner in gardening! My children don't know or don't care what I am growing in my garden :(


I would love to know what you think and appreciate your comments.


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