“Wandering clouds— Short spells of rain, poetry!”

Is there any sound more lovely than the sound of rain on the roof after a dry spell? Although the coastal areas of Australia have had far too much rain further inland, it is still a welcome treat in most areas. Light rain showers to boost the newly planted crops and a holiday for gardeners… Continue reading “Wandering clouds— Short spells of rain, poetry!”

“A garden isn’t meant to be useful. It’s for joy.”

The garden landscape is taking shape and starting to look more like a "proper garden". Whilst working on mulching and preparing for next season, it is a delight to see the new rose blooms opening, probably for the last time, I suspect, before winter. Although it's not a mass floral display like the abundance of… Continue reading “A garden isn’t meant to be useful. It’s for joy.”

“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.”

“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.” 

“Seek to be the Purple Thread in the Long White Gown”

As I look around the garden this year, my eye is drawn to the mauves, lilacs, purples, lavender, and deep amethyst shades in the roses, underplantings and even weeds along the roadside. I notice the purple at home probably because the colours of roses, Love Potion, Twilight Zone, Dusky Moon, Vol De Nuit, Angel Face… Continue reading “Seek to be the Purple Thread in the Long White Gown”

“All gardening is landscape painting.”

My landscape dream is a charming, romantic, overflowing garden with a wide range of interesting yet not necessarily rare plants. Plants blend happily in the hot, dry, and sometimes frosty climate and impart an impressionistic outlook that softens the harshness of the rural Australian environs. To achieve this goal, in the beginning, I over planted… Continue reading “All gardening is landscape painting.”

“A garden is not a place it’s a journey”

There is nothing like needing space to put plants in to make one get cracking on challenging tasks and with cooler mornings of late, I've made slight inroads into restoring the garden after summer. My strategy has been to tackle the garden accompanied by a range of plants ready to go in the ground. The… Continue reading “A garden is not a place it’s a journey”

“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,”

“Of all flowers, methinks rose is best” 

As summer rolls on, the landscape is unseasonably lush. The lawn is rapidly making the garden beds home. On the one hand, the garden is superb, brilliant green, but also far too moist, humid, and overgrown, so in need of serious attention. It is the complete opposite of a few years back when drought was… Continue reading “Of all flowers, methinks rose is best” 

“Turn off the news and get into the garden!”

“We all have an idealised picture of the garden that we have carried around in our heads from the moment it became ours and which, I guess, is never the same as the growing reality. Over the years that the garden is coming into being that image carries you forward and inspires you, but when… Continue reading “Turn off the news and get into the garden!”

“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller”.

Hamilton Island My love of travel and exploring the world is quite a contradiction to that of growing a rose garden. So how can I bring them together in my life and enjoy both to the fullest? I love my rose garden and want to see all the roses in full bloom and to enjoy… Continue reading “Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller”.

“Colours are the Smiles of Nature”

When I first began growing roses, I was like a child in the lolly shop, unable to decide which ones to choose from all the beautiful colours and styles. My choices were not always suitable, and I could not resist the enticing rose names so I often overplanted. Some didn't survive, but most have flourished,… Continue reading “Colours are the Smiles of Nature”

“You must fail at gardening to master it.”

Nature wins this week in the garden. If ever there was a time one needed some inspiration to garden, this is it. Forget the heat and typical summer weather; the number of mosquitoes since our floods and storms are extreme and make being in the garden almost impossible. I usually head out in summer with… Continue reading “You must fail at gardening to master it.”

Le Pigonnet -A garden where Cezanne wandered…

Le Pigonnet is a beautiful Hotel in Aix en Provence, France, tucked away from the town centre, albeit not far away. Le Pigonnet is from the French word Pigeonniere ( Pigeon House). As you enter along a magnificent tree-lined avenue to view the hotel, you would be surprised by the humble entrance. Le Pigonnet was… Continue reading Le Pigonnet -A garden where Cezanne wandered…

“Gardening is easy. Stick it in the ground the right way up and most plants will grow perfectly well.”

I must admit the garden this season has been a humbling experience with unseasonal weather that gave me a false sense of what a garden can be; lush and green, an array of prolific blooms and loads of growth. It was stunning, some days, I even thought that the garden looked like a 'proper garden'… Continue reading “Gardening is easy. Stick it in the ground the right way up and most plants will grow perfectly well.”

Carla Fineschi Rose Garden, Tuscany

It is time to re-post my story about the Carla Fineschi Rose garden in Arezzo Tuscany because it has been renamed "Gianfranco and Carla Fineschi Botanical Rose Garden Association" according to their website. "The ROSETO BOTANICO GIANFRANCO AND CARLA FINESCHI ASSOCIATION, commonly known as "Roseto Fineschi" since 2015, has replaced the "Roseto Botanico Carla Fineschi… Continue reading Carla Fineschi Rose Garden, Tuscany

“Show me your garden and I shall tell you what you are.”

I have few words left to describe 2021 so instead, I have a collection of my favourite shots of the roses in the garden this Spring and early Summer. The garden has had a fantastic year and the roses are wonderful due to the unseasonal weather. Like the rose and the thorn, life has two… Continue reading “Show me your garden and I shall tell you what you are.”

The Perfumed Garden

Today is about the perfume and scent of roses.... It is a golden maxim to cultivate the garden for the nose, and the eyes will take care of themselves. Robert Louis Stevenson Did you know that rose perfume is at its most intense very early in the morning and the scent will gradually become less… Continue reading The Perfumed Garden

“Flowers don’t tell, they show.”

I'm in awe every day in the garden at the exquisite nature of the roses and the surprising array of rose blooms that at times appear so delicate, soft and angelic and yet some are bold, exotic, and majestic whilst others create an eye-catching display that is charming and elegant. The rose never fails to… Continue reading “Flowers don’t tell, they show.”

“I look upon the pleasure we take in a garden as one of the most innocent delights in human life.”

The early stages of Spring in the garden this year were magnificent. The full flush of blooms I missed though, as I had to be away for several weeks. As expected, I was greeted by thousands of spent rose blooms ready to deadhead and thriving rampant weeds on my return to the garden last week.… Continue reading “I look upon the pleasure we take in a garden as one of the most innocent delights in human life.”

“A flower is not a flower alone; A thousand thoughts invest it”

Flowers are the universal sign of happiness, love, forgiveness and condolence, and a natural way to brighten our decor and mood. They are an integral part of our lives and adored the world over; the perfect table centrepiece, lavish display in a foyer; the wedding bouquet; the remembrance wreath, or admired in beautiful gardens, estates,… Continue reading “A flower is not a flower alone; A thousand thoughts invest it”

The Garden at Billecart-Salmon

Arriving at BilleCart Salmon in the Champagne -Ardenne region of France, I was in awe of the beautiful à la Française Jardin or The French Garden that surrounded the Champagne House. We were early for our appointment to visit the famous vines of Le Clos Saint-Hilaire, the Chais and anticipated Champagne tasting so, we had… Continue reading The Garden at Billecart-Salmon

I have never had so many good ideas day after day as when I work in the garden.

Gardening is a means by which you can attain many valuable hours of solitude without being thought of as unsociable.John Erskine Isn't that the truth? The allure of a quiet reverie and time in solitude to think one's own thoughts uninterrupted is often out of reach. Well, the garden is just the place to enjoy… Continue reading I have never had so many good ideas day after day as when I work in the garden.

The Joy of a Well Designed Garden

Gardens of the Architect

To design gardens that look and feel appealing and are a joy to visit think like an artist and use the basic design elements such as colour, line, texture, form and scale.By using the basic design elements and their combinations will provide the tools to create balance, unity, harmony, transition, repetition, accent and proportion for… Continue reading The Joy of a Well Designed Garden

“To everything there is a season”

The expression ' a watched pot is slow to boil' has been around since Benjamin Franklin first wrote the text in 1785. The quote has come to mind lately as anticipation of Springs first flush grows each day. A few buds are appearing, and the arrival of first blooms, but Spring in the garden seems… Continue reading “To everything there is a season”

“I love being in my garden. I don’t plant a lot of exotic flora, but I do spend a lot of time outside doing manual labour. ”

Spring is on the way and the tell tale signs add vibrancy to the air but unfortunately, this week I've had to do a bit of a cull in the garden. It is necessary and has freed up space and allowed the best of the roses to have a bit more air and circulation around… Continue reading “I love being in my garden. I don’t plant a lot of exotic flora, but I do spend a lot of time outside doing manual labour. ”

“The more I garden the less I know, but the more pleasure I get from it.”

The anticipation of Spring is in the air. Back to basics is the motto of the new season, and as it should be, the roses are at the heart of the garden. Taking one day at a time, I’m preparing whenever I can, and I’m noticing a change in my method this year. The initial… Continue reading “The more I garden the less I know, but the more pleasure I get from it.”

“One who plants a garden plants happiness.”

Today brings a sense of déjà vu, I'm inside again due to more rain. We've only had a few days of fine weather that lasted long enough to be out gardening recently. Surprisingly, at the end of the day last time I was out in the garden, despite the aches and pains after heavy work,… Continue reading “One who plants a garden plants happiness.”

”The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.”

The sun is out like a welcome visitor after heavy fog, cloudy days and rain. Reminiscent of living by the coast, the recurring rain and storms have been a part of almost every day that stands as a stark contrast to, not that long ago, when it never seemed to rain at all. Rain always… Continue reading ”The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.”

“If it’s hot, it’s hot. If it’s dry, it’s dry. If it’s raining, it’s good.”

Happiness reigns because it is raining at last in the garden and the topic on everyone's lips in the country this week will be "How much rain did you get?" Unseasonal rain sounds like music. There's no angst about it because crops are harvested, so it's all about filling water tanks and dams or watering… Continue reading “If it’s hot, it’s hot. If it’s dry, it’s dry. If it’s raining, it’s good.”

“One Rose is Enough for the Dawn.”

Often visitors ask me what my favourite rose is, and I usually can't decide, but in recent weeks and on reflection, I think it is Lady of Shalott. I have written about this rose several times and have at present two in the garden, although in pots. Even though I had shared any information I knew on… Continue reading “One Rose is Enough for the Dawn.”