A (Mostly) Sunny Sunday – Day 27 2016

After the brooding gloominess of yesterday, today was mostly sunny and warm – so back to the garden I went!

As I’ve complained in lots of posts, all the rain has meant a bumper crop of weeds this spring and it was getting a bit out of hand. So I dragged out the brushcutter a few days ago and got it running today (with a little coaxing). In my experience, small engines don’t fare so well if they’re locked up in a shed too long and I generally only use this once or twice a year, so it’s no wonder I need to take it in for servicing now!

Bernard Black Bunny was not impressed at all! And even after I’d finished an hour he still wouldn’t come near me for a pat, let along a cuddle! On the other hand, my doe rabbits, Bella and Boudica, stretched out and snoozed like it was all perfectly normal. The chickens kept their distance but were watching me from the safety of their coup, waiting for food as always.

Along the back of the chicken coup and the south facing fence, it’s mostly too shady for vegetables, so I’ve planted some aromatic plants that like the conditions and attract bees and native birds. In particular, I’ve got quite a few Australian native mint bushes (Prostanthera sp) which are long time favourites of mine.

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As you can see from the shape of the flowers, these little beauties are certainly in the global mint family (Lamiaceae), which makes them cousins of thyme, sage and rosemary. This is Prostanthera “Poorinda David” a common cultivar, which flowers profusely in spring. The aroma of the crushed leaves of most species is far more subtle and complex than the more commonly grown culinary mint, and I like them far better. As a backdrop, I’ve planted another lamiaceae plant, Balm of Gilead (Cedronella canariensis), another old favourite of mine, that grows to 2.5 m and will sprawl every which way if left to its own devices. I cut it back today and will do it again in autumn. The heady scent is like a blend of camphor and eucalyptus, and it blends surprisingly well with the subtle notes of the Australian mint bushes. Consequently, it’s a lovely spot to walk through, from the rabbits to go and see the chickens. 🙂

Behind the chicken hutch I planted a couple of quite low-growing Australina native tea trees last autumn, a Grampians Tea Tree (Leptospermum turbinatum) and a cultivar Leptospermum “Riot”. 

I first saw L. turbinatum many years ago when bushwalking in the Grampians in Victoria and it’s a delightful spreading shrub, with shiny, deep green leaves and classic tea tree flowers.

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On the other hand, L. “Riot” is a mass of vibrant, cerise pink flowers that cover the plant and are incredibly attractive for me as well as bees, other desirable insects and native birds!

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I’m thrilled these two have taken so well to this otherwise difficult spot. And I love anything that helps the bees ❤

Meanwhile, I’m having an early night. It’s been a long and energetic day and I start a new unit for university, Writing Poetry as well as work at Oak tomorrow. Also, it’s the start of my birthday week – I figure when you get to my age, you can fully expect to celebrate it for a week rather than just a day 😀

Take care and I’ll see you tomorrow!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Alana Mautone (@RamblinGarden)
    Nov 28, 2016 @ 02:54:33

    It is a wonderful thing to be able to see flowers in bloom. None for us outdoors until April. You will have to keep us going…

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

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