The Reign of the Roses

Roses, roses, roses!!! Their season has finally arrived! And this is just their first year!!! I always remember finding it incredibly difficult to take holidays in November, as this is prime rose flowering time!!! It is so exciting discovering each new bloom every day! The Soho Bed smells divine at the moment and looks fantastic. It has come a long way from its beginnings at the start of this year!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.16.13BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2953BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3035Among the new blooms are :

Hybrid Teas: The Children’s Rose (pink); Lolita (orange-pink).Ice Girl (white) and Mr. Lincoln (deep red and super fragrant);BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.16.21BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.16.55BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2954BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.37.48And David Austins: Fair Bianca (white); Eglantyne (light pink); L D Braithwaite (deep red) and Alnwick (warm pink).BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2959BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3033BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.45.00BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.44.55BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2998BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-27 08.40.01The Moon Bed is following suit with David Austins: Troilus (cream) and Golden Celebration (gold).BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.37.21BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.17.23BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3031BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.37.05The Old-fashioned Rose Bed by the shed sports : Viridiflora; Archiduc Joseph; Countess Bertha and Maigold.BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.45.17BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3010BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2949BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2976The climbing Noisette rose over the path beyond the Soho Bed, Alister Stella Gray, will be pushing for a supportive arch before we know it!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.16.06BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2999Here is the promised photo of Lamarque, the Noisette climber against the house, and I cannot resist adding one more photo of the Paul’s Himalayan Musk on the other side of the house.BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.33.27BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2991And the rose hedges are in full swing :

White Hybrid Musks : Autumn Delight (Photo 1); Penelope (photo 2) and  Kathleen (photos 3 and 4);BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 13.53.37BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 07.52.28BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 07.52.52BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2966Pink Hedge : Hybrid Musk roses : Cornelia (photos 1 and 2) and Felicia (photo 3); and China rose : Mutabilis (photos 4 to 6), whose single fragile blooms of variable colour always remind me of a flight of butterflies!BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2967BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2969BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-27 08.40.43BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-27 08.41.19BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 15.13.38BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 15.13.25The rugosa hedge : Frau Dagmar Hastrup (pale pink) and Roseraie de l’Hay ( deep purple pink).BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-21 14.15.29BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 15.13.14The cutting garden is still resplendent with outrageous colour from the Dutch Iris, Cornflowers, Ranunculas and Iceland Poppies and now the Calendula (last photo).BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2941BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2987BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.40.55BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.40.41BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2963BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.40.33BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.40.24BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.38.35The Dutch Cream potatoes are up in the vegie garden and the heritage tomato plants are powering along, as are the rhubarb, raspberry canes and  black currant bush. The blueberries, miniscule as they are, are covered in full berry and the citrus are equally well-festooned with sweetly scented flowers. The red bottlebrush (Callistemon) has its first flower and has plenty of buds, so will be quite a show!BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3003BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.47.17BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.53.05BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.48.08I was momentarily excited when I discovered that the fruit on our White Mulberry tree was reddening up, thinking that maybe we had been given a false identification and had after all my favourite Black Mulberry instead, but on further investigation, found that White Mulberry fruit can be white, red or black and from looking at the leaves, I’m pretty sure that it is a White Mulberry unfortunately! But they are the favourite food of silkworms and you can still eat the fruit- it is just a slightly different taste to that of Black Mulberries! And I discovered that we have tree-climbing snails! I am not sure if they are after the new apples or the mulberries!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.33.51BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.33.56I love the blue border (Convovulus mauritanicus) of the maple bed and my Rosalie Geranium has been encouraged to join suit! I still find the bromeliads very exotic and worthy of a Dr. Who set!BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2993BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2983The Acanthus mollis spires and lilies are multiplying every day and the hydrangeas and buddleias are becoming quite large, the former almost overpowering the Green Goddess calla lilies.BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3022BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3039

The snowball tree is still in full bloom and creating a white carpet of snowfall below and the red rhododendron provides a small splash of colour in the shade.BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 14.44.50BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_2944The Virginalis philadelphus has tripled in size and sports beautifully scented white blooms and the Carolina Allspice, which was so slow to regain its foliage, is expanding rapidly and even has a small bud, which is very exciting!!! We also discovered some purple bearded iris hiding under the cumquats! Once they have finished flowering, we will move them to the border of the Moon Bed to multiply and receive the recognition they deserve!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 15.14.55BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3012Garden tasks this week have mainly focused on weeding, mulching and watering, though the pergola supporting the Banksia rose is almost finished with all the cross pieces mortised in and fastened to the fence for extra strength.BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.39.04BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-25 16.39.17We had a visit from this cute little lost dog late Friday afternoon, so spent the evening searching for her owner, before boarding her with a friend for the weekend. We put up notices all round town, but the next day she was back! She obviously likes the place and made herself a bed in the mondo grass and nerines at the base of the Paul’s Himalayan Musk rose. We gave her a meal of premium nonfat mince, raw egg and bread and she spent the night in her spot. Fortunately, her owner turned up. He was visiting his mother, who lives nearby, and his pet had escaped through an open gate. We were amazed to find out that her name is Scamp and she is 15 years old, the age and name of our old dog, who died in July!!!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 16.56.08BlogReignroses20%ReszdIMG_3028BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 16.56.04BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-24 15.17.12Next door has a new sheep- this very cute black lamb! And finally the ever-fascinating backdrop to our little piece of Heaven!BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 17.37.19BlogReignroses20%Reszd2015-10-26 17.36.43

 

Birthday Blessings

This is why I am NOT a millionaire! I NEVER win my bets!!! Amongst the known contenders for the Candelo Rose Cup, Stanwell Perpetual won by two lengths, followed by Heaven Scent, then Lolita. But the two dark horses were the unidentified (still!) rose on the lane side of the house (front/back wall!) and a very sneaky Alnwick in the Soho Bed, right under our noses!!! I think we decided in the end that the winning trio were : Stanwell Perpetual (photos below) , Alnwick , then the unidentified climber !BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.23.22BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-07 17.03.02I love Stanwell Perpetual! She is so modest and unassuming, yet so generous with her blooms. She is often the first and last rose to bloom in the season and she has a divine fragrance! The following photos show : Heaven Scent; Lolita and our two dark horses: our unidentified climber and Alnwick.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-08 13.35.33BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 07.56.22BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-08 14.26.19BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.10.47We visited Canberra on the hot Tuesday and caught up with old friends, who both work at the Australian National Botanic Gardens. The gardens are a real show at the moment and so impressive! There has been so much growth and development since our last visit 10 years ago.BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-06 11.31.16BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-06 10.29.43Afterwards, we called in to the lovely Heritage Nursery at Yarralumla (http://heritagenursery.com.au/), where I found a scented rhododendron at long last. Rhododendron ‘Daviesii’ has a lovely warm spicy fragrance and will be perfect to hide the compost bay.

I  discovered and bought my long-desired crabapple , Malus ‘Golden Hornet’, but because it was a bare-rooted tree, which has been potted, we will have to wait till Christmas to plant it out, so that we don’t damage its fragile new roots. We also bought a French Tarragon and a Sprekelia bulb (Jacobean Lily).BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.24.45BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-08 13.37.29We arrived home to discover that the blue Dutch Iris and ranunculas had finally opened.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.21.07BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 16.28.51The poppies are a real show of happiness!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.25.01BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.16.59The ranunculas always remind me of Can Can girls, with their frilly skirts and rich exotic colours!

BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.30.03BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.16.45BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.20.06BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.19.52‘Madame Lemoine’ (white Lilac) and  the ‘White Caviar’ (Magnolia below) are still flowering, but the bluebells and  ‘The Bride’ have bowed out. It looks like we could get a bumper crop of navel oranges!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-07 17.05.35BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 14.25.25A few more unexpected discoveries :

‘Little Red Riding Hood’ has her first flower and I just discovered the first of the highly scented old-fashioned Grandma’s freesias!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 09.03.28BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.16.14The anemones continue their amazing display!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-08 13.36.51BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.18.08BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.18.23BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.17.54This is the last of the tulips, as well as the first blooms of a Scented Geranium.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.15.19BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 08.05.42The Banksia and Fortuneana roses are throwing plenty of blooms and our daisies are looking very happy!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 08.06.01BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.01.17‘Green Goddess’ has been joined by this exotic bromeliad bloom.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 08.04.29BlogBdayblessgs40%Reszd2015-10-10 16.59.10 - CopyLots of garden tasks this week!

We planted out the new Rhododendron in front of the compost bays behind the red Azalea, the new Lemon next to the Cumquats and the Black Passionfruit vine on our neighbour’s fence, about which she is delighted!!!BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-09 09.03.47BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-08 14.00.43We transplanted the herbs to new pots and replaced the Russian Tarragon with the tastier French Tarragon, banishing the former to the vegie garden. We planted out the Heritage tomatoes, the lettuces, the red cabbages and the mixed capsicums and sowed sunflower and carrot seed.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.21.14BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.21.32BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.37.58We planted the Jacobean Lily at the bottom of the steps, where its red blooms will be a real eye catcher. And we tied back the climber Clos de Vougeot, which is covered in blooms and found a home for my 3 metal fairies in the shady reading nook.BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-26 16.29.01Ross found a perfect spot for his Pink Rock Orchid in a natural depression in the trunk of the Pepperina tree, where it can be seen from all angles of the garden.BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.03.48BlogBirthday blessings20%Reszd2015-10-09 14.04.23And we celebrated Ross’s birthday at the end of the week. Finally, I can show you a photo of the gift I made him – a cushion covered in his favourite rain forest birds! It was so difficult finding Ross-free time to make it and I was almost caught out a number of times towards the end! He loved it !!!

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We had a great birthday dinner with friends and dear Katrina made him a spectacular chocolate cake, decorated with mixed berries, apple blossom and purple Bouganvillea and a cute little wheelbarrow, which she found in the toy shop! A great addition to the collection, though a trifle small!!!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 19.36.00BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-09 19.37.22BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 07.54.12BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 07.54.53A pod of 8 Humpback Whales even made it to the party (though a day late!). We were so thrilled to finally see some and they were so close into the shore. The adults and their babies are heading back down south for the Antarctic Summer!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 10.59.20BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 11.10.32BlogBdayblessgs40%Reszd2015-10-10 11.31.50 - Copy (3)BlogBdayblessgs30%Reszd2015-10-10 11.15.48 - CopyOn our way home, we took some photos of the beautiful Spring wild flowers in bloom.BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 10.07.02BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 10.18.16BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 10.08.24BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-10 10.08.42But the best birthday treat of all was a surprise visit by our youngest daughter and friend on Saturday night! So it was back to Tathra the following afternoon! Alas, no whales this time, but we did find this little fellow moseying along the footpath!BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-11 12.13.09BlogBdayblessgs20%Reszd2015-10-11 12.12.43

My daughter was slightly concerned that the echidna might try to cross the road, but when she tried to divert him, he just dived into his ball and dug his toes in, so firmly that he wouldn’t budge! We waited and watched him as he approached the gutter, but I suspect he may have been pretty street-wise, as he veered away from making the leap down onto the road! They are such cute creatures and great survivors, being one of only two Monotremes (egg-laying mammals) in the world. It is thought that they originated over 200 Million years ago. When both whales and such primitive mammals turn up for your birthday weekend, you know it has been a pretty special one!!!             Happy Birthday Ross!!!