Tikorangi Notes: May 14, 2010

Maybe best not to follow Mark's example
Latest posts:
1) May 14, 2010: The lovely blue of autumn flowering Moraea polystachya keep continuing over a long period.

2)May 14, 2010: Outdoor Classroom – our fortnightly step by step guide. This time it is pruning a rampant climbing jasmine which is blocking most light in a window as well as threatening the downpipe, roof spouting and even the roof tiles. We used to have a member of staff who refused to use any of our ladders on the grounds they were unsafe. Mark has no such qualms as can be seen in this photo which we did not dare to use in this Outdoor Classroom instalment which gets published in our local paper. We could see an onslaught of outraged letters to the editor about unsafe practices and that would be from people who didn’t even know that the ladder in question lacks even a bracing cross bar. Mark credits regular yoga for his good sense of balance.

3) May 14, 2010: As our unusually calm, dry and sunny autumn continues, there is plenty to do in the garden this week. Advice on lawn care, harvests, green crops (yet again) and more.

The colours of the autumn flowering oxalis

4) May 14, 2010: After the breathtaking inadequacies of the Tui NZ Fruit Garden, it was a relief this week to be reviewing a NZ publication of merit. Threatened Plants of New Zealand deserves a place on the shelf of anybody interested in our native flora, botany or conservation. Apparently 1 in 13 of our native plants are currently under threat of extinction.

5) May 14, 2010: The first of a new series of notes about plants which are tried and true in our garden – this week the smaller flowered vireya rhododendron hybrids.

6) Camellia Diary instalment number 2. It appears to have been a busy week for me with new posts!

Oxalis purpurea alba - one of the very best garden varieties.

Last week certainly ended on an exciting note with my review of the new Tui NZ Fruit Garden Book by Sally Cameron (published by Penguin) even making the metropolitan daily papers and being picked up by radio as well as other publications. The speed with which the internet disseminates information is amazing, nearly matched by the speed at which Penguin ordered a total recall of a book they had only released days earlier!

This week it is back into the garden. Mark has been continuing his autumn harvesting routines though he had the grace to laugh at his banana harvest which will be revealed in detail in due course. I have to say we are more than marginal for growing bananas and he has to work hard to get a crop from his outdoor plants. In the garden, the ornamental oxalis are making a very pretty picture indeed. I think we must have somewhere around 30 different varieties now across a range of colours. These are surely an under-rated autumn bulb in our New Zealand gardens.