‘If I wore beige, nobody would know who I am.’

The portrait above is a beautiful painting of HM Queen Elizabeth II, aged nine years, who was born Princess Elizabeth of York (1926-2022). May she rest in Peace. The artist is Hungarian-British painter Philip Alexius de László, known for his portraits of royals and aristocrats. (1869-1937)Queen Elizabeth II, like others in the Royal family, have … Continue reading ‘If I wore beige, nobody would know who I am.’

“In the garden as in writing, punctuation is needed to clarify structure and meanings. A garden without punctuation is like prose without full stops or music without a beat.”

Spring is in the air and there are signs that the garden is coming together. Over the time I’ve been gardening, the climbing roses have been the trickiest to get right. I initially envisaged an abundance of rose blooms cascading around the front door and verandah posts of the old Australian farmhouse (1910 ) where … Continue reading “In the garden as in writing, punctuation is needed to clarify structure and meanings. A garden without punctuation is like prose without full stops or music without a beat.”

“All the flowers of all the tomorrows are in the seeds of today.”

Today is crisp and beautiful; the sun shines after yesterday’s wet day. Sheep graze in the long grass and the new roses that were ‘heeled in’ are now all planted. The days after rain have an allure all their own that no amount of watering can replicate. It’s like waking up to a promise of … Continue reading “All the flowers of all the tomorrows are in the seeds of today.”

Just remember, during the winter, there’s a seed that with the sun’s love in the spring becomes a rose.

As the light came across the horizon at dawn on several mornings this week, a white landscape of thick frost was revealed, all is motionless, and it’s bitterly cold. Although I noticed yesterday that the surrounding paddocks of canola are coming into flower, a sure sign we are heading towards Spring, and my mind is … Continue reading Just remember, during the winter, there’s a seed that with the sun’s love in the spring becomes a rose.

“The colour of spring is in the flowers; the colour of winter is in the imagination.”

As I walk through the garden now with winter well and truly here, I am surprised to still see beautiful rose blooms opening despite the cold mornings and nights. The tenacity of some of the roses is remarkable, refusing to give up and rest. When my eyes rove across the garden they don’t see what … Continue reading “The colour of spring is in the flowers; the colour of winter is in the imagination.”

“Let no one think that real gardening is a bucolic and meditative occupation. It is an insatiable passion, like everything else to which we a give our heart.”  

Drive, inspiration, enthusiasm, tools and plants at the ready-check. What is missing is fine weather? Incessant rain, cold, bleak and cloudy days mean few moments suitable for gardening, but not to be deterred; these days are perfect for more detailed planning. On days like these, the creative mind can endlessly design the ultimate garden on … Continue reading “Let no one think that real gardening is a bucolic and meditative occupation. It is an insatiable passion, like everything else to which we a give our heart.”  

“Apprentice yourself to nature. Not a day will pass without her opening a new and wondrous world of experience to learn from and enjoy.”

Today was a real treat as I was able to spend three hours this morning involved in a Horticultural Symposium hosted by Michael McCoy, a first for me. Michael had curated a rich and diverse lineup of speakers, including Fergus Garret, Ed Flint, Sophie Thomson, Jimi Blake, Donna Somerville, and Casein Schmidt. To say it … Continue reading “Apprentice yourself to nature. Not a day will pass without her opening a new and wondrous world of experience to learn from and enjoy.”

‘A profusion of pink roses bending ragged in the rain speaks to me of all gentleness and its enduring.’ 

Ironically, the popularity of a dry naturalistic or wild garden is at its peak, just as we are experiencing unprecedented wet conditions from La Nina in Australia. The garden flourishes in this pre-winter stage with no frost and extra moisture. As I contemplate the garden feeling cosy, and warm inside, and view the countryside beyond, … Continue reading ‘A profusion of pink roses bending ragged in the rain speaks to me of all gentleness and its enduring.’ 

“Don’t think the garden loses it’s ectasy in Winter. Its quiet but the roots are down there riotous.”

With only a few days left before winter is officially here, we have tasted days to come. On cloudy days when the sun’s warmth is missed retreating indoors to winter comforts, the fireside, cosy rugs and delicious hot soups are welcome diversions. “There ought to be Gardens for all Months in the year, in which, … Continue reading “Don’t think the garden loses it’s ectasy in Winter. Its quiet but the roots are down there riotous.”

“Who has learned to garden who did not at the same time learn to be patient?”

I spoke too soon last time, and now that drop of rain has continued for days. Not a deluge, thankfully, but enough drizzle, fog and dampness to prevent working outside. The timing of recent rains was perfect because I’d almost finished applying compost and mulch, so the extra water would well and truly have soaked … Continue reading “Who has learned to garden who did not at the same time learn to be patient?”

“Autumn has always been my favourite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.”

Autumn has been gentle this year arriving ever so quietly, bringing days that are sheer perfection; hardly a breath of wind, bright blue skies, crisp morning air with days of such clarity it takes one’s breath away. April has been remarkable leaving me thinking how fortunate we are when nature offers days like these. The … Continue reading “Autumn has always been my favourite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.”

“I’m not a garden expert in any sense of the meaning, only someone who blunders about in the shrubbery.”

If we were playing the dinner party game where you chose people, past or present, that you would like to meet, then one of mine would be Mirabel Osler. From the moment I heard of Dame Mirabel, I was captivated. Her free-spirited approach to life, gardening, and travel hold many truths for me. In her … Continue reading “I’m not a garden expert in any sense of the meaning, only someone who blunders about in the shrubbery.”

“Learn to be an observer in all seasons. Every single day, your garden has something new and wonderful to show you.”

 I love to wander in the garden in the morning doing an inspection of sorts to see if any changes have happened overnight to the roses that need extra attention or I have transplanted recently. At present most of the roses that were on the watch list are back in health and looking far better … Continue reading “Learn to be an observer in all seasons. Every single day, your garden has something new and wonderful to show you.”

“A rose, isn’t quite as beautiful as it once was, when after its thorn pricks you.” 

All rose blooms are beautiful, and some are so stunning they can catch your breath and bring feelings of awe. In contrast, the prickles can be irritating and a menace. When you least expect it, you can get a severe reaction from the mildest contact with particular roses. After a nasty encounter with a rose … Continue reading “A rose, isn’t quite as beautiful as it once was, when after its thorn pricks you.” 

“It is always exciting to open the door and go out into the garden for the first time on any day.” 

Autumn is here, and I could not be happier for the garden loves Autumn in my region. There is a reprieve from the heat and an expectant air of cooler days to come. It is a time full of promise as we fill the gaps with plants after summer pruning, execute our plans for next … Continue reading “It is always exciting to open the door and go out into the garden for the first time on any day.” 

“A late summer garden has a tranquility found no other time of year.”

The weather is humid, and looking around the garden, it is undeniably late Summer. There are a few scorched leaves from the afternoon sun but not too many this year, thousands of spent rose blooms, a few signs of rose hips where I didn’t deadhead quickly enough, plus a variety of salvias dancing in the … Continue reading “A late summer garden has a tranquility found no other time of year.”

“If you go, go in Peace it makes the flowers sweeter along the path”

The Peace Rose has soft yellow flowers that fade to blush-pink at the tips. The blooms are large and double and have a light fragrance. The Peace rose repeat flowers and is disease resistant and very easy to grow to be hardy, vigorous and a brilliant performer. “The Peace Rose is the most Famous and … Continue reading “If you go, go in Peace it makes the flowers sweeter along the path”

“The greatest piece of gardening in the world is a little staircase in the Generalife,”

The gardens of the Generalife, Spain in Arabic are ‘Jinnah al-Arif’ which means ‘Gardens of the Architect’. The gardens are situated in a high area above the Alhambra’s main Palaces in Granada, Spain. The gardens and the Alhambra Palaces have been a UNESCO world heritage site since 1984. These stunning gardens were built in the … Continue reading “The greatest piece of gardening in the world is a little staircase in the Generalife,”