Sunday, February 4, 2018

February...a walk around the garden in 28 days...


February has never been my favoured month. To me it is sort of not here nor there. Summer is on its way out and autumn winks, yet there is not that much difference in the weather, it might still be hot, thunderstorms hopefully, and another sprint of flowers from summer plants. The long waited for rain has arrived and revived the garden.

Some of the daylilies are making another appearance. This is the lovely "Pure Indulgence" a strong and floriferous daylily.

Today, enjoying a coffee sitting quietly at the edge of the pond and watching all the small visitors around. Many butterflies flitting past, lovely colours, blue, yellow, some dark with white spots. Dragon flies like ballerinas dancing over the water.  Insects, bees are busy and it seems this is a place where one can hear the silence. To have the capacity to enjoy solitude is an inner force. Just now I see my little bar-shouldered dove sitting on the rim of the food bowl, enjoying the sun, lifting her wings. Small momentary observations are precious.

Little Corellas are sweet birds, welcome to the food bowl.

New leaves on cycad. Cycadophyta/Cycads, plants with a long fossil history, dinosaurs of the plant world. They typically have a stout and woody trunk with a crown of large, hard and stiff, evergreen leaves. 

February is the Month to harvest Mangoes; making Mango chutney and Mango jam for family, friends and myself.๐Ÿ˜‰

Mango sorbet.

Bromeliads are a good choice for the subtropical garden, if you do not have a lot of time or do not enjoy a lot of gardening. They are nearly self sufficient. Especially the species which do not grow to fast.


A glimpse into the garden, after rain nice and fresh again.

Daylily Daisy Broussard tricked by the rain to flower again.

Bougainvillea, pretty with variegation.

Yesterday it was windy to make the big palm leaves sway and rustle.

China rose "Old blush"  still pretty  past the prime.

This early morning I was in the kitchen garden; I have sown
 a row of sugar peas
a row of  beetroot and planted spring onions.

Cucumbers, Zucchii and Aubergines  are already growing. Most of the summer crop is finished, the last the pumpkins to go.

That's it for today see you around next time.๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ I have a Python in the veg garden.



It was a very hot week. the beans were growing nicely but have succumbed to the heat, a few are still standing.

I am harvesting Soursop. they are big between 1-2 kg each, some are a bit smaller. It is not a big tree and I won't let it get to big.

Tree in my garden.

the fruit is fibrous, delicious and very healthy.

Soursop Ice cream a tropical delight.

I use the Thermomix reverse cycle to get the seed out as they  are enclosed in small fibrous pockets  and quite tedious to get out. With the Thermomix it works  well.

A few excerpts from

While the flavor is enough to make this a popular fruit, the rich vitamin and nutrient content of the fruit includes vitamin Cvitamin B, and a number of antioxidant compounds. The juice from soursop has been used topically, while pulverized seeds and decoctions made of leaves are also popular forms of natural remedies. You can also use the leaves and pulverized seeds to brew a powerful tea, which also has a number of impressive effects on the human body.

The anti-parasitic nature of soursop has made it a popular treatment in many of the rural areas of Latin and South America, particularly in areas where parasitic infections are more common. By brewing a tea from the leaves of the fruit, you can cleanse your gut and ensure that your gastrointestinal system is running smoothly...and so much more. 
If you are interested


My favourite time of the day when the early morning sun hits the garden.

Sorry, I can not reply to comments. I have alerted Google but I guess I wait in vain, nothing has been  done despite sending feedback a few times. I have tried again the replies disappear. I have seen many other bloggers have the same problem.

©Photos my garden, Text Ts Lavender&Vanilla

Monday, January 1, 2018

A new year, a new beginning...the January garden.

January 2018  Happy New Year

Welcome to a new year in the garden

Some of the birds visiting every day; there are many more, some are seasonal.

I do not like birds to be caged. I think it is very sad for a bird to be caged. Think, to be able to fly and be caught behind bars. It is very cruel. If…I would ban to cage birds all over the world.

Water bowl for bees.

China Rose, Old Blush, also called Parson's Pink. Bees love them, always swarming with bees. This rose is flowering through summer, winter, spring and autumn. It is a simple rose but amazing, very beautiful. The first rose from China introduced to Europe to create Tea-roses. Probably cultivated in China before the 10th century. 
I prune the spend flowers and on goes the flowering. 
Food and water is paramount for roses.

January, summer, heat, clouds, storms, thunder and lightening...


Slowly moving and getting used to a new year. As usual this time of year it is hot and humid around 34 - 35 C

The kitchen garden produces now Melons and Pumpkins, later also sweet potatoes. Early mornings are reserved for the kitchen garden to keep it tidy and watered.

That's I there wading through the pumpkin leaves.

Pumpkins are classified as fruit not as vegetable.  Aren't they just absolutely marvellous?

Looking over to the neighbour's property, beautiful native tree flowering now. I think this is Buckinghamia celsissima, commonly known as the ivory curl. A species of trees, constituting part of the plant family Proteaceae. They grow naturally only in the wet tropics rainforests areas of north eastern Queensland, Australia. 

Dwarf Dahlia are flowering now on the upper Terrace gardens where the Kitchen garden is located.

Catharantus  are pretty toughies, they do not need special coaxing to look so friendly and pink

The pretty old rose Amelia Anderson. A Bishop's Lodge Rose. The old roses are making buds again now. As small vases I use empty perfume bottles. Generally they are so pretty and well made that it  is a shame just to discard them. I take off  the spray thingy which sometimes can be a pain in the butt to do, as it generally does not come off easily.

Here is another one;


Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, 
Whispering 'it will be happier'...” 
― Alfred Tennyson

It seems it was a long month, hot and dry;

The garden looks fairly dry, looking forward to some rain. A few spits today.

Waterlilies are flowering well now.

Mussaenda has no problem with dryness.

Grevillias do not mind it either, Australian natives are used to dryness.

Even the bog garden dried out and I had to water the water hungry, liefy plants.

Daisy kind of flowers, as the name suggests pretty, straight forward no glam. great for the dry garden, no fuss no drama with these plants from South Africa.

The  first page of the new year has already some scribbles, little notes of another beginning, still shrouded in cobwebs sticky and opaque, waiting for the time to move forward, today, tomorrow...Ts


Every day this lizard makes a visit from  the wild garden. Goes for a swim in the pond.

I do enjoy the Dahlias, they have suffered in the hot and dry. Now after some rain they are fine again.

Good bye Lulu, you were a favourite visitor. Lulu has joined her friends over the rainbow and rests in the garden. She was 13 Years old.


The sentence is spoken there is no  return 31 days  have flown the roost, good, bad or wonderful it does not matter anymore. The first 31 days of the  new year are gone, have already become part of that little piece of sky you may see from a quick, backward glance.. ..

Maybe I see you around  in February.

©Photos/ Texts etc.  Ts Lavender and Vanilla.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Hooray, Summer, Christmas is nigh...


Summer, sun, storms and heat, bursts of growth settle for quiet, hot, sleepy days.  Mornings bursting with colour and heat, evenings  coolness lingers with sun faded colours around a stormy sky. Ts

Christmas decorations are appearing in house and garden.

Vibrant 'Reds' for Christmas; 
photos 02/12/2017

Daylily 'Roses in Summer'

Daylily 'Double Bourbon'

Daylily 'Lois Hall'

Daylily 'Pure Indulgence'

Rose 'General Gallieni  Tea rose bred in France 1899. 

Did I mention that I adore old roses? Ts

4/12/ 2017

and it is raining, raining, raining...

Days hugged in rain and clouds are wonderful. A gift from the heavens to make me not feel guilty,  when I  am just lazy, looking and dreaming into a wet, grey landscape.

I feel sorry for the birds flying towards the feeding bowls which have become pools with the seeds washed to the bottom. 

My little bare shouldered dove arrived, trying to fish out some of the seed, she left disappointed, sorry little dove. Hopefully she might find some scattered seed in the grass.

Cicadas do not sing on a rainy wet day; it’s only the monotonous sound of grey, washing  and gurgling in little streams down the hill.

Roses look so festive when festooned with diamonds.

...hundreds or thousands ore more drops ...I have never counted them... adorn the petals for now...

The famous 'Christmas' plant Poinsettia grows here to a big shrub and flowers in Winter. It it is very showy with its red leaves which are not the actual flowers. The small flowers are just visible in the middle of the colourful leaves.

Mine need to be pruned now. They could be left to grow as a small tree, but may look sometimes a bit straggly. 

Like this one.

Here you can see the small flowers in the middle.


An Aussi Christmas by John Smith Williams

A little bit of Okker Humour. 

Christmas in Australia is different to what you know , 
We don't see any reindeer and for sure there is no snow, 
No steaming Christmas pudding, or eggnog by the fire. , 
Too much of that there hot stuff, makes us all perspire. 

The sun is brightly shining. The sky is blue and bright , 
The waves are breaking on the beach, the tide is just in right , 
I've got my great new surfboard, the barbie's on the beach, 
The chops are cooking nicely, the snags are lined up neat, 

The temp is in the 40s, the sand is fine and white, 
There's coldies in the esky, all has turned out right 
Who needs the snow and iced up roads, Santa and his sleigh, 
We'll have a red hot Christmas that's the Aussie way. 

Sunset 08/12/2017 around 7.00 PM


The Tropical's

Alamanda Caramel. I love this delicious colour.

I am a Ginger there anything more exotic, tropical than the Kahili Ginger all the way from India. 
With fragrant towers of flowers and bold foliage, Kahili ginger, Hedychium gardnerianum, is a dramatic tropical plant. Native to moist tropical forests of the eastern Himalayas in northern India, Nepal and Bhutan. and is a popular landscape ornamental throughout the world in tropical and subtropical area.  It is a declared a weed in Queensland so I must watch it that it does not let itself out of the garden๐Ÿ˜”

Big and wonderful, flowers of the edible cacti fruit Pitaya, growing along the fence in the kitchen garden.

Butternut Pumpkin flowers and  fruit soon ready for harvest.

I must say I love the flowers as much as the fruit. (Pumpkin is classified as a fruit not a vegetable.)


...the leafy and shady garden.

Strelitzia nicolai, commonly known as the giant white bird of paradise or wild banana,  reaching a height of 6 m and the clumps formed can spread as far as 3.5 m 

I love the patterns of sun and shade. Behind the fence is the leafy garden where  lizards  and other wildlife have a save heaven. 

Hopefully see you tomorrow...maybe..


 To all,  enjoy a wonderful Christmas.

Last December days in the garden 30/12/2017

Rose Marie van Houtte

A valuable rose parent, Marie van Houtte is described as having large, globular flowers of lemon yellow, deeper in the centre, with pinkish lilac suffusing the tips of the petals. Its dark, shiny and occasionally evergreen foliage is a good foil to the light flowers. 

This one needs to be in check as it is a substantial seeder. 

Caesalpinia pulcherima, dwarf Poinciana, a fine summer plant for the hot climate. It needs frequent removal of the spend  flowers to keep it flowering and compact.

Front borders along the drive way are blooming now with Rainlillies. I remove the seed heads as they are seeders as well.

The lovely Rose Perle d'or. 

Pentas in different colours always favourites in the hot summer garden.

Tropical Heliconia a summer garden's fave. Also used as good cut flowers.

Iceberg Rose contrasts against the behind the fence darker foliage and wildlife garden.

Bobby's Help is always around to dismantle large palm leaf fronds.

This now is the last entry for this year.


a rainbow this morning; 31/12/2017

I just collected the pot of gold!

I hope you enjoyed the garden over the 12 month of 2017.

My next entries will be in the New Year.

My best wishes for a Happy 2018.

©Photos my garden; Text Ts Lavender & Vanilla