Friday, November 4, 2011

The late afternoon garden..

Late afternoon would have to be one of my favourite times to take a wander through the garden.
It's right up there with early morning and after a rain shower. The wind from the day has usually calmed down, if it's been cloudy often the sun will peep out and the bees are still humming, busy to their tune even after a full days work.

Columbines in front of calendulas and potatoes

The greenhouse is seeding like crazy! Beetroot, snow peas, broccoli and radish..I was really tempted to save some home grown seed for sprouting (from rocket and broccoli), but I'm finding the plants are impossible to keep contained while they do their thing. To yank, or not to yank, that is indeed the question.

I have summer crops to sow, you know!


However, I do enjoy the broccoli flowers. The bees love them too! They are so bright and cheerful even if they do tend to take over every possible inch of space..


The young fruit trees are sporting some serious spring-time fashion. Water bottles tied on string. The middle daughter thought it was to slowly give the tree a drink, which I loved the thought of! It's actually a sneaky technique to lower vertical branches and bring them down to more of a horizontal position, in the hopes of encouraging fruiting action. Do you do this on your fruit trees?

An infant pear tree undergoing the bottle treatment. Note: don't overload bottles with water, young branches can snap while smug gardeners are tucked up in bed asleep. Not a comforting sight to wake up to the following morning!

Cabbages are doing well. The white cabbage moths were sighted today so I think it might be time to break out the Dipel (which I've never been game to use, but I've been assured it's safe and organic).

Aphids are feasting on roses..

..in the presence of this guy..
Does anyone 'buggy' out there know what he is? And does he happen to like munching on aphids? 

Please say yes, please!


We don't seem to have any ladybirds yet. Sob. 

Comfrey is flowering. I'm amazed at how vigorous our various plants are after a dormant winter! Isn't it's flower one of the prettiest you've ever seen?

My old favourite, freckles lettuce, has seeded all through the garden. This one made it to our salad bowl tonight..


And I know I need to trim the sage...but I can't bear to cut it while it's still in flower!
The bees just love it and so do I!



What's happening in your garden, balcony or pots at the moment? And what's your favourite time to inspect the action? 

13 comments:

  1. You've got a Katydid, some just eat plants and some are predatory. Come and steal some of our ladybug larvae or a praying mantis for your aphids. We had freckle lettuce for dinner too, aren't they the best! I yanked out a couple of broccoli plants today, but I do like the idea of saving the seed for sprouts.

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  2. Living in the US (which is now inching towards winter) makes these beautiful pictures even more appealing. My heart is in the summer, and the photos of your garden brightened my morning. Thanks!

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  3. i love your garden christine and i agree with you about late afternoon, early morning and after rain being the best times to be out viewing the garden..

    i've been on beast patrol..hosing off aphids..catching caterpillars hiding in the leaves of my feijoa..resorting to baiting snails because they've multiplied and are out of control..it's a veritable war that i probably won't win..:)

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  4. I'm with you on the Yanking!! I love the flowers at the end of the veg, all my lettuce, rocket and coriander are in flower and so pretty but they are crowding everything else and I just don't know what to do!! I might just get a few of the first seeds then whip em out!
    Your cabbage are looking good, if your after some ideas on how to eat your cabbage, please pop over to my place, I've just been given some fantastic recipes. :)
    http://gooseberryjamman.blogspot.com/2011/11/great-cabbage-harvest.html

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  5. It is so hard to pull things out or trim them when they look so good and are full of bees.

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  6. Ahh, a katydid, you say, Kirsty? Good, I can go and google that now, thankyou!! It would be a bit of fun to sprout with homegrown seeds, wouldn't it!

    Thankyou for your lovely comment, Finicky Farmer. I do love Autumn though, it's my favourite season. Do enjoy those cool evenings and sunny days. :)

    Ugh! What is it with the aphids this year, Jane? They seem to be everywhere!! I went down the snail bait path too this year..the pet/wildlife friendly one is fairly good.

    Thanks, Karen, you've got some winning cabbage ideas over there! I'd love to make a brew of sauerkraut sometime...

    Absolutely, Hazel! Can't bare to disrupt the bees' foraging. :)

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  7. A grey dawn and late afternoon is definitely the best times of the day.
    My healthy mint is looking decidedly munched upon at the moment, there isn't enough to share so I wish the minute caterpillars that are eating it would bug off. My chilli plants refuse to sprout and I'm wondering why oh why? They did last year but are a bit grumpy this year.

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  8. You garden is beautiful, especially the purple sage flowers, I couldn't bear to cut them down yet either. To control aphids try controlling ants around your garden. Some types of ants farm aphids and eat the honeydew the aphids leave behind.

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  9. Ah, another lovely walk in your garden, Christine. I was thinking about you today when I was making soap and added calendula flower petals to the oil. In a comment you recommended I dry some ....and I did !
    I always wondered why gardeners hung bottles in their fruit trees and now I know.
    Your garden looks beautiful.

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  10. Pesky caterpillars, Brydie! Any chance the monkeys could perhaps...'rehome' them? ;)

    Thanks for the tip, Cheryl. I recall hearing about the aphid/ants combination now that you jog my memory ..crafty little creatures!

    Fantastic, Kim! I knew you would.. and it wasn't that hard, was it? I bet you're just itching to use it!

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  11. Our ladybirds are slow to arrive this year too, although I've spotted a couple recently. And we have trouble pulling broccoli flowers out too - the bees love them soooo much!

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  12. This article is so nice. Picture collection is too good. These are really slow living essentials. Interesting information shared here.

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  13. Hello! I'm loving your blog! I'm lovin your garden, too!

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Hi there, so nice of you to stop by! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I love hearing what you are up to. Christine x

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