|The trellis border: rosella ready to bloom as it cascades |
Now that the Summer is passing here on the shores of Deception Bay, the garden is recovering from its blight. It was wet wet wet...
Assuming the deluges have passed...
Assuming that -- I can make the best of what I've got growing.
So April is a new beginning,outside and outback.
A world away in another time, Geoffrey Chaucer captured April as a medieval Spring which nonetheless touches on my very own here and now:
WHEN that Aprilis, with his showers swoot, sweetMy pilgrimage is a walk along the pathways and below the trellis near where "smalle fowles make melody".
The drought of March hath pierced to the root,
And bathed every vein in such licour,
Of which virtue engender'd is the flower;
When Zephyrus eke with his swoote breath
Inspired hath in every holt and heath grove, forest
The tender croppes and the younge sun twigs, boughs
Hath in the Ram his halfe course y-run,
And smalle fowles make melody,
That sleepen all the night with open eye,
(So pricketh them nature in their corages); hearts, inclinations
Then longe folk to go on pilgrimages,
And palmers for to seeke strange strands,
To ferne hallows couth in sundry lands;distant saints known
And specially, from every shire's end
Of Engleland, to Canterbury they wend...
Choko beginning to fruit on the trellisThe excitement of the rush of Choko fruits is cause for a daily scrutiny so that I can harvest at golf ball size. You'd never go back to Zucchini again. Among it all the beans seldom make it into the house because they are consumed in situ: under the trellis, pilgrimaging.
I had grown New Guinea bean over the tellis but it was so vigorous and with the overcast skies and frequent rain my salad vegetables weren't getting enough sunshine over Summer. Choko is much more controllable, just a trim here and there. Chokoes taste better too. On trellises, Choko fruit is easier to spot and harvest.
Madagascar bean stems cut back and laid
along the paths as trench mulch.
Trellis now being covered with choko and snake beans
shade salad garden underneathThe way the trellis works is that by using 'snakes' -- knotted rags I drop from the cross beams -- I can grow climbing beans on the trellis from anywhere in the garden beds.These beds are mainly growing salad greens and herbs: rocket, chicory, oakleaf lettuce, endive, mint andparsley
Layering of paper and cuttings to trench
mulch pathways Nearby: sweet potato vines.By layering the garden paths with plenty of newspaper, cardboard and brush cuttings I'm building up a trench of mulch which is shredded by traffic along the path. I find it is a simple matter of throwing what comes to hand on the path and if necessary throwing some grass clippings atop any newspaper so that it doesn't blow away.
Front gate arched by driftwood structure and jasmineOn the beach is so much dead wood -- a Moreton Bay standard as coastal vegetation on the sandy islands and sand spits, like ours, are undermined by shifting currents and storms. The dead wood -- mainly Mangrove branches and Sheoaks with some Malaleuca -- make intricate shapes, often patterned by the decoration of sea worms and shell creatures. I love using the wood for garden decoration and structures. It gives the garden a true sense of place.
No mowing: gravel garden among the greenery. Also very
unfriendly to cane toads
Putting down gravel over sand was a wonderful event. The Mediterranean 'feel' merges so well with native plants and selected exotics -- in this picture Frangipani and Lavender among indigenous. Since the birdlife is pro active and various the garden back and front is always alive with flying colours and chirps. At night the ponds -- four outback and away from bedroom windows -- are home to a chorus for Striped Marsh frogs.