The roller coaster that is life at the moment…

1 month since last I wrote…and soooo much has happened! First up Lockdown happened and we had to cancel the Open Day.

The new “tea Bank” extension

Lockdown is obviously a terrible thing for many people. My daughter, for instance, relies on retail therapy and fast food for a sound mind…clearly she has gone a bit crazy!!! Actually she has adapted very well and the bonus of a stay home partner who has even bigger muscles than her has meant many jobs have got done around the farm and of course, gardens. In fact both of us have had some big garden changes happening in the last few weeks.

I am ashamed to say I’ve found lockdown pretty darn good. Going out is not something I aspire to and I have my entire immediate family in my bubble so am very lucky. Lots of help from husband Graham, who is still operating and managing ten or so farms, but with no stock sales etc, there’s a lot more “hometime” for jobs on our own 2 small farms. The pay off for all this extra help is catering, I set myself up as Lockdown Cook and have had to perform much culinary labour !

The grass is green and the trees are colourful!

The other big recent change has involved the water falling from the sky scenario. We have been generously given 55mil in the last week or so and whilst the soil moisture deficit is still insane, the top of the ground got wet and the plants (and weeds) all got very happy. Too late for some, but others that have struggled on are looking like they’re going to make it after all. The drought has worked its magic on deciduous trees which are currently putting on a magnificent display! Right up there with South Island standards.

The other big problem we’ve been experiencing, presumably due to the drought, is a possum explosion. They’re always a  problem in our area and my orchard is a big draw card, but for the last few months they are in plague proportions. My daughter’s partner, besides having big muscles, also has a rifle and a good eye. Under normal conditions he goes out once a week or so and shoots invaders, but for the last couple of months he goes out at least every second or third night and often shoots 20 or more just in the area of our 2 gardens. Drought tally is currently about 300 and they just keep coming…sad for my David Austin collection which is right beside the orchard and gets grazed nightly on the way to and from apple dinner. Only the Granny Smith still has fruit left, when they’re gone the roses will cop it even more.  The local council spent millions baiting them in the Hunuas across the road last year, one can’t help but think they didn’t do such a great job…

Moving on and Level 3 is a week away. I will then be able to post some back log orders and we have devised a “click and collect” scenario for locals who want to pick up roses and/or perennials. The nursery is bursting at the seams with big flowering perennials, most, probably too big to sensibly post. We have made list of what perennials we have available in reasonable numbers and will also post it on the website and the facebook page. The roses will still be available according to the website catalogue.

If you can ge here you can email us an order and pay online and organise a time to come and pick them up from the nursery with no contact.

In the meantime, in my pitifully slow – gradually healing from ankle surgery – way, I continue to amend and plant in the garden and look forward to a time when my local lady and various friends can return and help with the weeding etc and we can advertise a proper open day again. There are lots of new roses waiting to be potted up and more cuttings getting put in daily, so come Level 2 we should be ready for business as usual…