Saturday, August 18, 2012

Winter has its own delights while Spring is still a promise . . .

Hello my dear e-visitor. You are so welcome.

The wattles are coming into bloom. It must be nearly Spring!
Many members of the narcissus family, like the glorious daffodil above, are now at their best, taking the season seamlessly from late Winter to early Spring. 

As usual, our winter-flowering apricot was spectacular this year. It began to flower right on cue on the long weekend in early June and as usual, visitors to the Heart Garden with traditional mental associations of ‘blossom’ and ‘Spring’, remarked that the blossoms were ‘very early this year’.

What’s so wonderful about prunus mume ‘The Geisha’ is that she’s meant to look warm, pink and cheerful on chilly winter days. She’s now starting to produce her Spring leaves. In the photo above, taken August 1, the blossoms are fading but the King Parrot is looking resplendent! 

To the left is a photo of a King Parrot and a Crimson Rosella, both waiting their turn at the seed tray. Below right is a couple of white cockatoos.

All our Spring flowering blossoms are actually still in bud. I anticipate a burst of flowering pear blossom in the first week of September, along with the arrival of all the flowering plums which turn our driveway into a spectacular pink tunnel.
As always, we notice more birds in the winter garden when food is scarce elsewhere. Word soon gets around when I fill the seed tray and birds arrive en masse. Families of parrots, rosellas, galahs, cockatoos, crested pigeons, plus many honey-eaters, supping from the camellias, and all sorts of birds having baths -they're all welcome here, except for the cockies. Cockatoos are magnificent birds but very destructive. Their place is in the bush or open plains, not suburbia.

There was a wedding in the Heart Garden a couple of weeks ago and the groom’s aunt was loving the garden. She took many photos and showed me one like the photo on the left.

‘What’s this flower?’ she asked. She thought it very beautiful. An unusual camellia perhaps? ‘It’s a cabbage’ I replied and everyone laughed. A more complimentary name is 'Ornamental Kale'.

Camellia reticulata 'Howard Asper'
As always my beautiful garden brings me great joy and freely shares its bounty of beauty with anyone who comes to visit. Plentiful patches of colour from blossoms, polyanthus, violas and ornamental leaves, plus wafts of perfume from sarcococcus, daphne, wintersweet, woodbine and the large narcissus family will gladden the heart and inspire a warm smile of contentment, even on the bleakest wintry days.