The Joys (or not) of Winter

Well, it’s here…July and real Winter. It’s cold and wet and muddy, many of the roses have closed down, excepting those that refuse to say die…the Teas and Chinas bloom on, I noticed some Hybrid Perpetuals this evening still making leaves and buds,  as well as a few of the hardest working Austins.

There are projects afoot in the garden while the main garden jobs are in respite. The digger has been here the last week, we now have a large hole in the Hybrid Musk garden, waiting to be lined and filled with goldfish and water lilies still left at Weiti North. Several tractor trailers of dirt have been replaced in The Hunk to try to amend the water retention problem, the last of the trees living in the main border has left the building and the large mountain of tree branches, rose prunings and weeds has been reduced to a small mountain of ash to be spread on the garden in the spring to boost potash levels and encourage flowering.

All this heavy duty activity has made rather a mess of my long suffering lawn, no sooner does it recover from one invasion and the next descends…I’ve promised it (the lawn)that that will be the last, I think all heavy machinery is hereby banned from the garden!

So, back to the Joys…for Winter does indeed provide joys in the garden. From my office window I can see a magnificent Luculia in full song, besides some lovely camellias and a beautiful white Gordonia. The rhodos are starting to flower too and the early spring bulbs (not to mention the late autumn ones) are putting up their cheerful stems. A breath has been sighed that the last of the autumn leaves have finished dropping and their clean up is well underway.

The rose business is still very busy, we have been sending lots of boxes around the country, but numbers in the nursery are definitely getting thinner. In the meantime we continue to make cuttings whenever time allows, there should be a good variety available around Christmas time.

So the wettest winter continues on it’s merry way, sunny days appreciated all the more for the plethora of miserable ones, but the days are perceptibly getting longer by tiny degrees and spring will be here before we know it!