I Am Pleased….

…. with my efforts! I have finally organised a way to get out into the gardens and work at getting my Roses fed and primed for this coming season. Yes, I realise the new spring seaon has already begun, and I see new growth on my rose bushes, but as I was ailing and hospitalised around this time, last year – my poor rose plants were just left to battle on through that awful drought, without food, without water, on their lonesome-ness!! And for most of this year, I have not had the physical strength to get out in the gardens and battle for them, till these past 5 days! When David & I moved here, it was October, the middle of the season for my roses. In their previous garden, they were all in Full Bloom and gloriously gorgeous, but I wasn’t about to leave them behind, so I had to cut them all back, a coup[le of weeks before moving them here. There were NO gardens dug or prepared on this property, and we couldn’t get in here cause there were builders and stuff all over the yard??? …before we moved in!! I was kind of panic-ed because we were trying to get settled, the animals had to have time to adjust, so the cats were kept inside for a few days; David had to check the yard for things which might have hurt the animals…. there were a stack of building materials left lying about outside with rusty old nails attached, so I just dug holes for my roses, fertilised and watered them, then dropped the plants into situ and left them to get on with new root development! I’d only brought 5 rose plants with me. (Chianti, which is an English rose, bred by David Austin, Veilchenblau, a big strong Rambling/Climbing rose bred in the Netherlands, White Sparrieshoop, which is my Only white rose, since I left Wedding Day rose in Ballance. She was too big to move. Madame Lauriol d’ Barny, obviously a French bred rose. She’s a light cerise pink with silver backed petals, and my Grussy; (Gruss en Aachen), a pale pink full bodied rose, bred in the Netherlands; plus six hills giant Catmint, and my rhubarb! Most of my rose plants and cuttings, I had already given away to friends … I kept these roses because they are more difficult to get a hold of, except Grussy ….. but then, she’s special!) For the last five days, I have spent 2 hours each day, dealing with: cutting back the Flax bush by our back desk. It was pushing us off of the footpath, had taken up so much room that we had to walk around it to get to the back gate. Took me two days, (I only count it as 1 day,) to get it tidy and all the prunings straight! Then I eyed the lemon tree. I have a problem living well, without a lemon tree in the yard, so I got down on the ground and hand clipped the long grass under the branches of the tree, grass-raked all the excess grass out from under: mixed up a cupful of Citrus fertilizer and half a bucket of compost, and with a shovel, spread that out under the Lemon trees branches, so that all the new feeding roots get fed. Then I bucketed water to pour over the compost so that the food goes straight down to those roots. End of Day 2 I spent one day dealing with weeding around Chianti, cutting back all the dead wood, pulling the weeds tangled in her branches: I generally don’t prune her because sometimes, although she IS a once a year bloomer:when the seasons get mixed up as they have been these last 2 years, she will bloom twice before Christmas day, which is the middle of summer, for us. I have hopes of stopping into the new R.D.1 store which has opened in town this morning, and picking up some bags of compost to pour around my plants. There’s very little top soil on this property, so we have to buy in big bags of compost to grow our plants in. I learned to do that when we were out on the farms. To grow a fully producing food and flower garden in 3 months, starting from scratch: the best way is to buy in already rotted down, sterilized compost in 50 litre bags, slash both sides of the bag with a knife, and plant into the slash gaps. The plastic sides hold the soil intact enough so that the growing plants have space to spread and all the food it needs! You can tell that I am sometimes consumed by my love of gardening, can’t you??   Enough!

Emmi

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