Top ten list of garden plants

  • Abutilons of all kinds
  • Buddlejas old and new
  • Epiphytic orchids and ferns
  • Gordonia species
  • Heliotrope, Lemon verbena, Fennel and herbs
  • Michelias of all sorts
  • Perennial Salvias large and small
  • Species Camellias
  • Tea and China Roses
  • Weigela of all types

Montville Rose

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

No excuse

For my birthday Michael gave me the Clive Blazey book, 'There is no excuse for ugliness".I think I feel much the same as the author and really can't understand why most Australian gardens can be so ugly.Councils too have dropped the ball with the rigid landscaping of public spaces and the unexciting planting. Sure there is always a place for a few natives but many places could be improved with a sassy colourful exotic plant - preferably one that provides shade here in Queensland.
There was a time when people were  house proud and maintained the outside of their properties mainly with that shorn piece of lawn and perhaps a flower bed or two.Yet lately I have noticed a distinct lack of care for both domestic spaces and roadside and public areas.

There is a particular spot in Montville on the southern side /coming from Maleny which illustrates this point. It is at the end of Western Avenue so I see it everyday. One side has the Entry statement  on a terraced garden and despite the weeds looks half cared for but the southern side is completely neglected. I used to take a bottle of round up with me when I went walking and attempt to cull some weeds but before long the whole thing is looking shabby again. Is it that people simply do not see it? Is it that we no longer have a "tidy towns' project and people can't be bothered ?
I am sort of convinced that people don't see it as they speed towards the shops.
I am sometimes tempted to take over some public space and plant it up with the  hardy colourful plants I have at hand but it is sure to incite aback lash from people who can't see any plant but natives being used anywhere and would prefer to have weeds.
It is great to see some of the Montville businesses doing up the gardens in town  as it all contributes to making the place look cared for. This morning I worked at the Church garden and it has changed a bit since this photo was taken. I have added a couple of plants from our place  including a Tagetes  which I love for it's sunny yellow flowers and the smell of the foliage  and it is so nice to have people stop to talk or ask about the plants or maybe
they just want to pat the dog!

"I just don't get it,first we have to do the garden at home and next thing she's gardening again"

Monday, January 25, 2016

Things great and small at 'The Shambles' January 2016

Magnolia grandiflora, Grevillea baileyana, Taxodium disticum and Castanospermum (Queensland Bean) form a skyline.
There is a great deal of colour and life at ground level at 'The Shambles' garden, but looking up there is also a lot to see in the skyline with our collection of trees. This is our 24th year here at Montville and some of the young trees we planted in the past are growing to a substantial size. 
Rampant growth has it's drawbacks however. One of them is in the maintenance of our Duranta and Privet hedges , which require truckloads of material be removed each year. The South frontage hedge has taken 2 days to civilize, with 3 guys involved.

Young Araucaria bidwillii, Araucaria cunninghamii and Grevillea robusta North East Corner.
Then with the collection of trees including the Red Cedars, Flame Trees, Bollygums, Exotic pines and Macadamias, to name a few. There are remarkable sights on the small scale. 
             The Grewia occidentalis on the driveway attracts up to 5 different species of native bee at once and solitary Blue banded bees love Salvia guaranitica near my seat on the back verandah. Spiders criss cross our garden paths with webs s soon as we walk past and Kyleigh spotted an interesting leaf insect by chance this morning

Lead insect, or Phasmid (Phylliidae) on Lepachinia salviae in South Rose Garden at 'The Shambles'.

Our Roses and ornamentals and the garden in geberal attracts a great variety of insect and bird life. Lately we have spotted the elusive Richmond Birdwing Butterfly. With birdlife , however there is a dominance of the Noisy Miner, o the detriment of other small birds
Shadow the Border Collie guarding our Roses? Not really.