Monday, January 27, 2014

January 2014 Garden News

Since my November post things turned really bad, so much heat, I think every day was 30c to even 42 c degrees and no real rain except for one small shower.
I made a decision not to post in December as I was getting too depressed with the rotten weather.
It’s really draining on your morale when you see your garden burning up and the rainwater tanks empty.
I often think what if we opened our garden in February, well if we had decided to do it this year it would have been an unmitigated disaster as everything in the garden is burnt and dry.
The Caladium's have just about finished and I have lost count of the Day Lily’s we have lost.
How lucky we were to get that bit of rain just prior to our November opening.
Since mid July it has rained three times, this seems to be the pattern these days.
The big fish pond was starting to lose some water so drained it and found to my horror that the liner had perished, this was quite a shock as the liner went under the waterfall, rocks and sleepers. I had no idea how to fix it.
I went to a pond shop and they recommended a product made by Sikka, a marine sealant, so $300 for the liner and another $200 for the sealer.
A very fiddly job as I had to stick the liner onto the rocks ect, I used much more sealer than I thought as I had to make it watertight.
Hell of a job but it worked and I was able to put the fish and plants back and the pond is back to normal.
Moral of the story is do not use a vinyl liner, spend the extra of rubber instead.

On the 23 January at last we had 56 mills of most welcome wonderful rain; I was getting sick of forever watering the garden with a hose.
I suppose on a good note that with the dry spring and summer means a great Mango crop and that’s exactly what we have had. Judy is busy freezing the fruit and our Grandchildren absolutely love Mango.

 These lights stop the Flying Foxs eating MY Mango crop.

It’s been too hot and dry for the Longan and Lychee’s and we have had no fruit this year.
The Dragon Fruit are good this year as they are a Cactus and can take the dry weather.

Just because it’s been dry has not meant we have stopped work on the garden, there’s always a lot to do and I have a truckload of soil to shift and gardens to refurbish and a lot of compost to go on the garden.

We intend to open our garden this year through ‘Open Gardens Australia’, dates will be 22 and 23 November 2014.
We feel we did our bit for the Lions Club in 2013 having raised $5500 for charity. The Lions have said they will still do the catering and raffle for this year’s Open Garden.

My Amorphophallus collection is coming along well with some very healthy growth; I find that these plants love the activated ‘NatraKelp’, same as my Orchids.
The tropical plants are flowering and I have a good selection of Beehive Gingers in flower at the moment.

Below are a selection of Tacca's or 'Bat Plants. The cake cover is to collect the seeds off the "Giant Madagascar Bat plant'.

February will see the Garden Club presentations start again, with a few already booked, I am starting to get my fourth presentation ready, entitled ‘A Gardening Journey’, and it will follow the path that led us to what our garden is today.