It has been quite a while since I have posted; I wish I could say that it is because I have been too busy in the garden, but I have spent so little time there either that I ended up feeling alienated from it. The few hours at home I had would be spent hiding in my cave watching Seinfeld. Fortunately I have rectified the situation and have even continued a stone wall I hadn’t touched for a year.
That’s me building that wall.
Earlier this month we had over a week of severe frosts, the worst frosts since June 2006, and some round here say in living memory as the timing was not good for the crops.
Looks like Elsa the snow queen has been by.
All of the things in my ‘frost free’ places were hit hard, but some lovely colours came out of it, before the leaves curled up.
Frost damage – the good
And as for the lovely rain of autumn, that seems to have dried up, and it’s back to watching the forecasts and the clouds and hoping.
Frost damage – the ugly
The house was kind of empty after Leyla died, and Patches seemed to be at a loose end, so before the month of June was over, we found ourselves adopting Lola from Port Augusta Veterinary Services.
Lola on her favourite couch
Well! Patches was not very happy about that, and spent several days on top of the kitchen cupboard, ‘sulking’, and when not sulking she was practising her death stare, something which Leyla was very good at.
Practising her death stare.
Then something magical happened one morning when I was at the computer ‘checking my stuff'; I realized that the noises I could hear were of two cats having fun chasing each other, with not a growl or a hiss to be heard. They are now great mates, and enjoy being togther, although Patches still retreats somewhere up high if Lola is getting too silly.
Actually, we did get some nice autumn days in the end. It was mild and still, so still it seemed the wind would never blow again. Moths were thick around the house at night.
Golden rain tree – pride of China
I even had a few autumn leaves. This golden rain tree has been in five years and is still only knee high (sigh). What I’m wanting is this:
Golden rain trees at Stone Hut.
On May the fourth, 2009, a couple of years before all the Star Wars stuff started appearing on that date, I began a garden. I finished clearing the last of the junk away in the area facing my kitchen window, and the first things went in.
On May the fourth
Two days later, when my husband died, the area became Edi’s garden.
On my first morning as a widow.
For three weeks, every morning I would get up at dawn and sit out there on those little plastic chairs and a have a cup of tea. I’d be out there for the half an hour before it was time to get the kids off to school. This little ritual made it possible to get through those early days before the real grief set in. Then winter came and it was too cold and dark to go out there.
Edi’s garden after 1 month.
It is five years today that he died, and in that time the garden has come a long way. I wish I could say it was finished but there is a little stone wall that isn’t quite done yet.
Five years later (now).
It is now somewhere really worth sitting on those early mornings at this reflective time of the year.
Will just throw in a before and after shot of my kitchen window view:
Before – May 4th 2009
After – May 6th 2014
Anyway, better go. Seeya.
Last day of April
We seem to have gone almost straight from summer to winter, as there have only been a few weeks of autumn weather in between. Just like Alice Springs.
The super hot summer meant we have had a good wet start to the sowing season here, and three days after a decent 18mm it is raining again! I am thinking about the lovely wood I was lucky to be given which is out there and wondering why I did not bring some in.
About half the time the block is still dry this time of year and doesn’t green up until June. This time last year my tanks were almost empty and I was praying daily that the water would last until the rains came again. And I was still watering my desperate garden.
12 months ago.
One thing about tough years is that the good memories stand out, and one of the highlights of 2013 was when my mother borrowed the Monty Don’s Italian Gardens DVD from the library.
Over the months that followed this DVD was one of the things that made life a bit more bearable; there was even an element of hope to it, that one day, as well as all of the shit being behind us, my own garden would be something special.
One of the things which caught my attention were the fountains in the different gardens shown, which I guess is a direct result of living in a mostly dry place. Towards the end of the year I hunted high and low until I found a little solar powered water feature, and after clearing out the pond early this month it is now in place. Gone is the swampy frog sanctuary – oh, Monty Don, what have you done?
The pond, after
Goldfish and a bit of weed has been added back, and that seems to be all it wants.
I now see that my Edna-Walling-inspired brick pond was not really the right place for all the other pond plants, frog log etc… looks like I might be needing another pond!