Tikorangi Notes: Friday 11 February, 2011

The gecko - a first for us to find a live one in our garden

The gecko - a first for us to find a live one in our garden

LATEST POSTS: Friday 11 February, 2011

1) Gecko (singular but rare), many kereru and a mass of monarch butterflies in Abbie’s column this week. I admit that the photograph of the kereru was staged. It is not easy to get close enough to them and I had lost my one good image. In desperation we got one out of the freezer where Mark stores dead native birds he finds (all from natural causes) to pass on to a local kuia to pluck for use in making korowai or Maori feather cloaks. We had to partially defrost it to mould it, hold it in position and then hastily refreeze it as it was starting to smell rather high.

2) Amaryllis belladonna – often seen as rather coarse and common roadside flowers in this country but worth a second look. Plant Collector.

3) Garden tasks for this week though there is not a whole lot one can do at this time of the year beyond dividing bearded irises, daffodils and bluebells.

4) Not your ordinary everlasting flower – Helichrysum Silver Cushion in Plant Collector last week.

5) A little after the event now – garden tasks for the first week of February in an antipodean summer.

6) The second in our Outdoor Classroom series on making compost – step by step hot compost mixes with an impressive shot of our compost heap resembling an attraction at a thermal reserve.


Worsleya rayneri in the garden, just starting to open its blooms

Worsleya rayneri in the garden, just starting to open its blooms

TIKORANGI NOTES: Friday 11 February, 2011There weren’t any Tikorangi Notes last week. I think I was feeling uninspired and having a great deal of trouble focussing my eyes on the computer screen – the result of not seeking help earlier for what turned out to be part of a seed head embedded in one eye. Such are the dangers of gardening. But this week was marked by two events – finding that we have a resident gecko in the garden (the gecko being a rarely sighted native lizard) – written about in Latest Posts 1, and the opening of not one but two Worsleya rayneri blooms in different locations in the garden. The worsleya flowering is not quite as rare as the sighting of a live gecko – it has happened twice before – but to manage this feat with bulbs planted out in the garden rather than kept in controlled conditions in a container is a reasonably significant triumph.