Here are some lovely things that have been happening in the garden over the last month…
I bought some saffron bulbs at the Carterton Market several months back and was super surprised one day to find three of them flowering. The plants themselves don’t give any indication that they’re about to flower, it seemingly happens over night! And you’ve got to be onto it because the bloom (and those lovely red stamens) only last for two days before withering.
We don’t have hummingbirds in New Zealand (damn it!) but we do have wax eyes. I spotted about 4 or 5 of them sipping from my red velvet sage, Salvia confertiflora (that’s why the photo isn’t the best, I was shooting through the lounge window not wanting to scare them off!). Salvias are a favourite for hummingbirds whom love the tubular flowers and particularly the ones in the red spectrum~ not that that is useful information for us here in Aotearoa!
Can you picture a wee hummingbird hovering next to these (Salvia elegans) pineapple sage flowers? I would love to see one in real life, I have a pretty good imagination but imagining a bird the size of a bumblebee blows my mind!
This is another salvia flowering at the moment, Salvia farinacea Victoria Blue. The picture really doesn’t do it justice as the flowers are an amazing intense purple.
I was checking my french tarragon and saw these little balls around it, I squished one and seeds came out… So I did a quick google search to see if they’re friend or foe… They are ‘friend’ and they are called Birdsnest mushrooms, they feed on dead plant matter and eventually open up to reveal their seeds! So I had another look and found one that had only just opened…
Pretty cool eh! To get an idea of size, that spiky looking thing underneath it is a calendula seed.
We bought four heritage apple trees for what will be our orchard area. We got them from the delightful Edible Gardens in Ashurst. I chose Priscilla and 20oz for our early-mid season and Belle de Boskoop and Tydemans Late Orange for our late season. A hole diggin’ I go!
Also got a bunch of feijoas that will be part of our shelter for the orchard.
Figs are ripening, for the second time this season, score! I don’t know what type of fig they are, do you?
I found this behind the shed,,, have absolutely no idea what it is and it’s heavy as fck but I’m thinking garden sculpture!
We are now proud owners of 8 chickens; the kids love them, I love them too but I will love them more when they start laying! They’re young and it’s getting cold I know I have to wait til spring. In the meantime they’re getting a lot of affection round these here parts…
And here is quite possibly the most exciting thing that’s happened garden wise in the last month….
Those sticks in the ground give me great joy… attached to them are the daughters of Monkshood Aconitum napellus. I’ve been on the lookout for this plant for quite some time, purely for the fact that it is an antique herb with a fascinating history that is mostly associated with witches. Whilst checking out a friends garden that she had acquired from the previous owner, I saw these stunning tall purple spikes of flowers, slightly suspicious I took a photo and cross checked them with one of my herb books, whoop whoop! Immediately told my friend what they were with the heads up that every single part of it is incredibly poisonous, but not to worry because I will take them off her hands if she’s concerned about kids mucking about with them. They were planted right next to the trampoline so was only too pleased for me to take them away! (Because of what I do my kids are well educated about what plants they can and cannot touch/play with)
Hope life is fabulous and your eyes are clear to the little things~