Friday, 9 April 2010

Here is my entry into the Fertilizer Friday prompt for this week.
You can see the other participants flaunting their flowers at our host's site on my side bar. Go over and visit "Tootsie Time" for a sticky beak at the lovely things that other gardeners have to show off in their part of the world as they come into their spring season, while we down here are coming into autumn.
My first flower in the picture above is of an Azalea out in the front yard. Taken less than an hour ago on an afternoon that has become dull and cloudy after a beautiful bright morning. The temperature here today was 23 Celsius. Pretty nice, though starting to cool down now as autumn progresses.
The poplar and birch trees along the parkway below my house are starting to turn golden and their leaves are sparkling in the sun, beautiful. I picked some lovely big mushrooms yesterday but was a bit nervous about them as the tops of them were not quite the right color even though the underneath gills were right and smelt right, so better safe than sorry, I didn't use them. There are fungi of all sorts around at the moment. Including, as we have been warned by the media, the infamous death's cap mushroom. Just one mushroom ingested causes death. There was one in my front yard and more under the oak trees in the parkway just near me.
These two pictures, above and below, are the showpiece of my back yard at the moment, a Callistemon or bottle brush, and a beautiful Australian native. Today it is alive and buzzing with a million busy bees, collecting its sweet nectar. when we moved into this house in October last year this was looking very sickly and had been pruned and shaped to within an inch of it's life, after the rain we have had over the last few months it has come back happily again. It is such a picture at the moment.
Don't look too close though, or you might see part of the problem has been a bad infestation of sooty mildew deep inside her branches. I have been treating it by trying to get rid of the little black ants that spread the mildew, as the little insects that cause the mildew extrude a sweet substance that the ants love, so the ants actually farm them. You can use white oil on the plant to treat it as well, but I haven't done that yet.
Next picture below is what I grew up knowing as Easter daisy. It is one of the many asters, but here in Australia it is the Easter daisy, because it always flowers for Easter. It is one of those things that we keep for sentimental reasons but, indeed, back through the ages it is one of those plants that perform for us, to show us what time of year it is, a seasonal marker.
Here is another of several scroungy looking azalea bushes around the yard. Not at it's best and flowering out of season but tricked by the rain we have had.
Below. A dandelion, a pretty lawn weed. When I was a little kid we would blow on these to make the seeds fly through the air, and see how many puffs it took to empty the seed head. I taught my kids to play the same game with them, when they were toddlers.

The picture above was taken in Sydney on Monday night when I went down to see a concert with James Taylor and Carole King. It was taken from the window of the motel I stayed in. The concert was great, and both of these performers are real legends, not loosing a thing over the years. I hung on ever note and word they played and sung, sometimes not moving and almost holding my breath so that I didn't miss a tiny bit of it, other times singing along and almost dancing in my seat. Great stuff. Been playing the CD I bought and have had the songs going through my head ever since.
A big clutch of orange colored mushrooms in the park here, in the center of Canberra, on Easter Sunday. There are some edible orange colored mushrooms that people talk about around here, called pine mushrooms, these were growing around the base of a cut down radiata pine tree in the park, but I wouldn't touch them unless someone confirmed just what they are.
Also taken in the park on Easter Sunday are these nice specimens of Bonsai. I really liked the one above, for the plants, but also because I like that it has been built up into a scene using a flat plate of granite shell.
The Bonsai are part of "The national Bonsai and Pensing Exhibition", on permanent display there.
I liked this one too. It is a Morten Bay Fig in miniature. An Australian native that is often used as a park tree and grows huge.
O.K. that is about all this week. I will be back on Sunday to participate in the Sunday Scribblings prompt. Creature of habit I am.
Love Linda.


Paula said...

Love your flowers - you have plants growing that we can grow because of the cold. Thanks so much for sharing! Paula from Idaho

Maureen said...

Everything looks wonderful but that bottle brush is superb! Gorgeous!

noel said...


everything looks gorgeous this friday, i love those bottlebrush, they are blooming like crazy for you.... thanks for sharing

Tootsie said...

OMG!!! that bottle brush is gorgeous!!! I can only wish for one of those!!! I just love it!
now..sticky beak is a new one for me...I love that too!!! you are among my favorites to visit and read...I love the different expressions you use and your garden offerings are so great to see!
have a great weekend and thanks for linking in this week

Merle said...

Dear Linda ~~ Thanks for sharing the lovely things in your garden. The
bottlebrush looks wonderful.

I am glad you are happy I post some of the things you send me. Thank you so much for all of them BTW.
Take care, my friend, Love, Merle.