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Posts Tagged ‘garden’

Floral Friday

A friend gave me this lovely hanging basket full of petunias (thank you, Jo).  The colours are great because they match many of my other flowers, especially the hollyhocks.    I’ve been watering the basket every morning, and though the petunias have been battered by strong winds, they quickly perk up again.

Petunias are a genus of flowers in the Solanaceae family that originated in South America.  The Solanaceae family also includes tomatoes, chili peppers, and tobacco.  It’s the petunia’s resemblance to tobacco that earned it its name which comes from the native American word petun which means “a tobacco that does not make a good smoke”.  Petunias symbolize the desire to spend time with someone because you find their company soothing and peaceful.

It’s far from being junior
the colourful petunia

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Window Watcher

I like to pick flowers from the garden and bring them inside, but I never pick hollyhocks.  They are more suited to displaying their stately stems outside in the garden.  The wind encouraged one to explore inside our kitchen window.

It looked so good peering in at us, I could hardly bear to nudge it back and close the window.

This hollyhock is welcome to
come inside and enjoy the view.

 

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Gorgeous Gladioli

Two exquisite pale pink gladioli flowers are displayed outside our fence.  Another has been picked and brought inside for us to admire.  I left these two so passersby may enjoy them.

This particular glad came from a bulb given to me by my friend Vonnie over thirty years ago when we left Auckland.  Contact with her has since been lost, but I think of her every summer when these flowers appear.  A beautiful bulb is the ideal gift to give someone moving to a new city, being small to carry and able to wait patiently to be planted.  We have other glads, white ones that came from my Mother’s garden and remind me of her, but these pale pink ones bring a special quality to our garden.

‘When these glads flower so tall and bonny
they bring a memory of Vonnie.’

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A new garden has appeared in Cathedral Square, north of the tram line.  There are five beds, with one in the centre.  The outside ones are labelled for the four directions, something to delight the heart of a ritual-maker (or a bridge player).

The central bed, with a pohutakawa tree  looks almost as though it could be a sundial, especially as it is planted with thyme!  It has the numbers 1-12 in Roman numerals, and a plaque above each gives the number in te reo Maori.

The garden, called Time to Heal, was designed by Avonhead School with support from Katherine Brooker and the idea is that you take time out of your busy day to rest and heal in the garden.  Katherine Booker says it’s a garden for reflection. “It’s about the past and the present and moving forward. It’s for individuals to take a break in but it’s also about the wider community and the city needing time to heal.”  It contains healing plants used in rongoa Maori and other traditional medicines.

‘New beds have popped up in the Square
you could take time out and pause there.’

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The strong southerly was causing this hollyhock to bend over and I worried it might break.  Others had been staked, but this one was on its own.

Windblown hollyhock

I hurried out to place a strong bamboo stake and fasten the plant to it.  That should hold it firmly.

Staked hollyhock

‘I rescued it from a cruel southerly
with tender action, almost motherly.’

 

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Floral Friday

This Dianthus was planted over a year ago.  It’s one of Dr Keith Hammett’s Scent from Heaven Landscape Carnations and has a delightful clove scent.  Called Angel of Desire, it’s supposed to flower almost continually, but in fact had no flowers in winter, so I’m pleased to see it back again.  Carnations are called pinks because their spiky petals look as though they were cut with pinking shears.

‘My scented Angel of Desire
has blooms you cannot help admire.’

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I wanted a good photo of Stephen and me to use on our seasonal greeting card.  We went outside and stood beside the Uetersen climbing rose which is flowering beautifully at present.  I took a couple of selfie snaps, then a women walking by stopped to say how much she admired our cottage and garden.  She was a stranger, but I thought ‘why not’, and asked if she’d mind taking our photo.  (I’m never very confident about selfies.)  She snapped several which show the rose to advantage, but in the end I decided to use one of the selfies, because they are closer and show our faces better.

Photo taken by a passing stranger

I cleverly managed to write a message on the chosen photo (programme available through MS Office), then went to Smith’s City to get some prints.  Their prices are half those of Warehouse Stationery, they’re not nearly as busy, and the woman staff member was most helpful.  When I received the prints, the bottom where I’d written the message had been cropped, which was disappointing.  I pointed this out and they redid them, uncropped, for no extra charge.   They’ll be my photo printers of choice from now on.

‘It’s really not so very hard
to make a special greeting card.’

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