Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Bees and other beautiful things

I read recently, that sadly, the Clarence River area has been affected by the virus Varroa that kills off bees. How sad that is, the best honey in NZ comes from our back country. Life as we know it pales without the bees!. Of course we need bees for pollination, and it is Natures way of doing its best to maintain balance around us.
... Today, right here in the city, I watched my borage, comfrey and lavender plants, as the bees hummed  around the flowers, bouncing in, doing their business, then moving on. It wasnt a lot of bees at all, just a handful, and the odd darling bumblebee. I love watching them. I enjoy their happy humming.  Long live the bees. I hope.

There are flower buds smothering the plants here, from the citrus right through to the strawberries and the broad beans. Not a lot of pollination going on yet though. My companion plants are a bit slower to flower this year, but theyre getting there. A lot of them have been self sown, and are just starting to stretch their heads up, buds unfurling. Theres Red opium poppy, some soldier poppies, beautiful blue borage and a handful of others. New ones this year include Nigella, Snapdragon, more Granny Bonnets, and Delphinium and the gorgeous Cleome. Foxgloves have finally set their flowers free from the tall flower spikes, and Im loving their speckled throats.  The sunflowers we sprinkled in a few spots are shooting upward, Im hoping they will cope with the wind, given one of the new locations is quite exposed. At worst, I can tie them to some bamboo til they gain strength...

We have seeds setting on some Swedes, some black Kale, Leeks, Walking Onions, St Valery Carrot, and some mesculun varieties. Im loving the new Valerian and pretty Pineapple sage. Even the echinacea is poking its wee head up from the soil. We have red, white and black currants on the bushes, just waiting for more sun... I love this time of year... and blueberries... we have them growing too! (Not nearly enough to satisfy this lot, but I have plans for more bushes!)

Eating out the garden has commenced, we have a few culinary herbs that are helping things along, and of course plenty of lettuce... which I am giving away whereever I can because there is no way we can eat them all... Plenty of potatoes which along with the yams are doing their thing. The early potatoes are just beginning to develop their flowers, and I cant wait to see

So there we go, no photos this time, life has just gotten quite busy and Im finding time in the garden to be really scarce but most enjoyable. I still cant believe some of the things Ive found to be growing successfully. This gardening thing is really cool :-)

Love to All

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