The camellia season is coming to and end. They have been great this year with lots and lots of blooms. I am not sure if it has been the weather or simply because the plants are now getting more mature. Either way, they have made me very happy.
Just one more day to spring.
Isaiah 61:11 New International Version (NIV)
"For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
and praise spring up before all nations."
There is a new view from the stairwell window. There was a maple tree whose bones I enjoyed each year while it was still sleeping waiting for spring to stir it to life. But each passing season less of it awoke until it's time was gone
Now I am enjoying winter citrus and camellias in the neighbour's garden and the sawn logs await for their turn in the fire.
2 Corinthians 5:17 King James Version (KJV)
'Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
It's blowing a gale outside today, so here's some flowers I picked during the more pleasant weather a few days ago. Going down the back to gather kindling I always find time to dilly dally and pick the violets, then the other day with the fragrance of daphne newly filling the air I picked some of that too. The daffodils came out this week, winter will soon pass.
James 1:2-3New International Version (NIV)
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance."
People have been wondering if the big freeze has reached us and delivered snow. We are just a little too low for snow so while it has been cold we have not seen even sleet here, though of course it may have been falling while we have been asleep in our snug bed.
This camellia grows by the gas furnace which has also been keeping us nice and warm.
Psalm 121:3 New International Version
"He who watches over you will not slumber"
It's chilly out there ... taken from inside my nice warm house where I am happy and rested after the busyness of the last few weeks.
Romans 15:13Living Bible (TLB)
"So I pray for you Gentiles that God who gives you hope will keep you happy and full of peace as you believe in him. I pray that God will help you overflow with hope in him through the Holy Spirit’s power within you."
We are well but life has been busy, cold and bit complicated, hence my ongoing silence in the blogosphere. Hopefully I will get a grip on it all soon and return to normal transmission.
Winter starts tomorrow. The Winter iris have been in flower for quite a few weeks. The rest of the garden is looking quite drab and in need of a good sweep now Autumn is all but done.
Hosea 6:3 New International Version (NIV)
"Let us acknowledge the Lord;
let us press on to acknowledge him.
As surely as the sun rises,
he will appear;
he will come to us like the winter rains,
like the spring rains that water the earth.”
I decided to try planting a rose in a different spot in the garden (I never seem to give up trying to find a sunny enough spot to get then to grow). This one is called Mothers Love and has a simply wonderful fragrance. I saved it up for Mother's Day.
In the few short weeks it was in flower I drew in that beautiful perfume and thought of my Mum.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
"Love is patient; love is kind. Love is not jealous; is not proud; is not conceited; does not act foolishly; is not selfish; is not easily provoked to anger; keeps no record of wrongs; takes no pleasure in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth; love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things."
The begonias are in flower. It was only when I was processing this one I saw the little extra in the shot.
Job 8:13-15 New International Version (NIV)
"Such is the destiny of all who forget God;
so perishes the hope of the godless.
What they trust in is fragile;
what they rely on is a spider’s web.
They lean on the web, but it gives way;
they cling to it, but it does not hold.
Oh no, look at what is hanging in our trees. We were away most of this week and when we came home found that hundreds, probably thousands of bats have moved into our neighbourhood. They are hanging from all the tall trees, making noises day and night and have a pervasive bush animal smell.
Will they move on is the big question we are all asking each other? This has never happened to us before so we aren't quite sure what they will do.
Luke 14:12-14 New International Version (NIV)
"Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
I was trying to show you the progress of the topiary but they are too hard to make out among all the other green so enjoy looking at the tree instead. You can see I am using some of the big mulch pile to lay a new path.
Psalm 119:105New International Version (NIV)
"Your word is a lamp for my feet,
a light on my path."
I have been doing quite a lot of work down the back where I cut out the privet but am not ready to show you the fruit of my labour yet. Down there among the tangle was a tea tree we planted years ago. I have often wondered if it flowered. Now I know.
Luke 15:4-6 New International Version (NIV)
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.
Even though we had an unusual burst of Summer weather today the belladonna lillies are beginning their sinuous dance, letting us know that Autumn is not very far away.
2 Samuel 6:14-15New International Version (NIV)
"Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancing before the Lord with all his might, while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets."
You might remember my new year resolution to transform my garden into a parklike garden instead of a wild garden. Part of the action plan was to go through the weed patch down the back and cut all the privet which over time had turned into ever so many "trees".
This photo was taken a month or more ago. At the left you can see the stump of one of the privets which was too big for my garden loppers to cut so was standing waiting for my husband to go through with the chainsaw.
Since then this stump and all the others I left have sprouted with new leaves. I now have a new idea, to try and turn then into topiary balls -- if I am successful that could add to the park like effect.
Ephesians 2:10 New International Version (NIV)
"For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
We put some water plants into the small pond to dress it up a little. There are also some invisible fish in the pond. Given the high death toll of our fish, we assume from being eaten by birds, we got the bright idea of buying fish that the birds won't see ... but nor do we so it seems rather pointless having them.
Romans 1:20 New International Version (NIV)
"For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse."
I found this guy munching the lime leaves. I wonder what type of butterfly it turns into.
Philippians 3:20-21 New International Version (NIV)
"But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.
A very old tree down the back has fruit on it this year. Just these two. They have an odd shape, what type of fruit are they?
Galatians 5:22-23New International Version (NIV)
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
It's the fruiting season too. These are not edible but I like the red berries on this viburnum.
Luke 6:44-45 New International Version (NIV)
"Each tree is recognised by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of."
Agapanthus are in flower all over the garden at the moment.
Genesis 8:21-22 New International Version (NIV)
The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though[a] every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.
“As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.”
It might not look great to you but let me assure you it is a great sight better than it was.
With a clip, then a tug
tangling vines snake
through the long grass
winding into a pile
grasping anything to take
hold and not give way
Fighting its release
to the end.
A dig of the fork
and hard soil breaks
so grass and buttercups
relax and respond
to a pull.
Lavender and daises
now sway free
in the warm summer
Proverbs 24:30-32 New International Version (NIV)
"I went past the field of a sluggard,
past the vineyard of someone who has no sense;
thorns had come up everywhere,
the ground was covered with weeds,
and the stone wall was in ruins.
I applied my heart to what I observed
and learned a lesson from what I saw."
For some reason I thought flat leaved parsley would be harder to grow than the curly leafed variety. Wrong!
Philippians 4:6-7New International Version (NIV)
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
When we first came back from holidays there were some small zucchini on those burgeoning plants. I picked some and left others to grow a little longer. Just a few days later I found that had not only grown longer but much fatter!! There were plenty of cherry tomatoes to pick too.
Sounds of Summer
on the verandah
chopping a surfeit
of white zucchini.
quick rustle of a
skink in the grass.
away the aftermath
of our big party.
Over the road
and blowing leaves
soft pock pock
tennis players volleying.
Psalm 65:9-13New International Version (NIV)
"You care for the land and water it;
you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
to provide the people with grain,
for so you have ordained it.
You drench its furrows and level its ridges;
you soften it with showers and bless its crops.
You crown the year with your bounty,
and your carts overflow with abundance.
The grasslands of the wilderness overflow;
the hills are clothed with gladness.
The meadows are covered with flocks
and the valleys are mantled with grain;
they shout for joy and sing.
When this little fellow started on the high branch I thought it was a female satin bower bird because of the olive colouring and specked breast. Then when he/she reached the edge of the pool I realised it was too small. Was I seeing a baby bower bird I wondered?
Blue Eyes (part 2)
A little bird follows
down down down
Into the water
flipping and flapping,
A tiny bowerbird?
the beady black eye
So what is this bird? I thought perhaps a regent bowerbird but Birds in Backyard says "The dark patch on the head of the female and immature, and the scalloped pattern of the breast, help to distinguish them from the female or juvenile Figbird, Sphecotheres viridis. The Regent Bowerbird is slightly smaller and more slender than the Satin Bowerbird, Ptilonorhyncus violaceus, which has a blue eye."
No blue eye, no dark patch on the head. So methinks perhaps a Figbird but it isn't right either. This lead me to the Catbird but it isn't green enough, and doesn't have a white bill. It says "The Green Catbird can also resemble the immature or female Satin Bowerbird, which has a distinctly blue eye, a dark bill and a more scalloped patterning on the underbody, while the upper body is a more olive-green."
No blue eye, I am going around in circles.
Can someone help and tell me what this bird is?
Isaiah 49:16 New Living Translation (NLT)
"See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands."
Here another infrequent visitor to our garden that I have been keen to catch in my camera frame for quite some time.
From magnolia canopy
a jewel bright eye
then branch to branch
blue-black bower bird
to the edge of the pond
bending and sipping
Using the same path
a brown cuckoo dove
on a high branch
then lower and lower
to the cool pool,
cool blue eyes
Psalm 37:23-24New International Version (NIV)
"The Lord makes firm the steps
of the one who delights in him;
though he may stumble, he will not fall,
for the Lord upholds him with his hand."
Happy New Year. Summer is in full swing and we have been busily spring cleaning the house and garden. It is all ready for our City Church visiting for lunch tomorrow.
I have great plans for the garden this year (as I resolve to do at this time every year) I am going to strive to transform it from a "wild" garden to a "parklike" garden. Let's see how we go.
There has been a lot going on so I will probably post every day for a while.
John 14:2-3 Living Bible (TLB)
"There are many homes up there where my Father lives, and I am going to prepare them for your coming. When everything is ready, then I will come and get you, so that you can always be with me where I am. If this weren’t so, I would tell you plainly."