Friday, 11 November 2011

Springtime Garden

Further to my post in September "View from the Street", here's some pictures of what the front yard currently looks like:
(click to enlarge)

This is taken more or less from where the Google Street View camera was.  Where the ladder was is now obscured by the black wattle Doortje planted on the nature strip.

Taken from nearer to the driveway.  There is no bare ground in the front yard and the nature strip is on the way to being covered.

There is a flowering gum and bottlebrushes in flower, and white flowers on the ground cover round the letterbox.

Walking up the driveway, you can see that the "jungle" is almost impenetrable.

The courtyard is now dominated by the camellia against the carport and the white-flowered vine (whose name escapes me) against the brush fence.  The red cordyline will be swamped soon.

In the backyard are more than a dozen new fruit trees that are starting to develop.  In this photo are a fig tree, apple, lemon, a large cumquat that is not new and obscured behind it an apricot.

In this foreground are horseradish and rosemary, then rhubarb and grapevines (4 varieties).  Further back are a lime and peach tree, pepinos with purple flowers and against the fence is comfrey.

This shot shows some of the vegetable beds which contain silver beet, tomatoes, lettuce, garlic, comfrey,  and potatoes have just been planted in the foreground.  The chookyard gate partly conceals a new nectarine tree and against the side fence are an olive tree and fennel.
We replaced the cracked rain gauge with a new one and within an hour it started raining.  We had 48mm that night - great for the garden!

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Blue Gums

  On the Melbourne Cup long weekend (?) ten of the family headed off with assorted tents to the Blue Gums Caravan Park on the Goulburn River at Eildon.  We arrived on Saturday 29 October and stayed three nights.  The park was great, with river frontage and hugely popular.  Even though the park was chokka, the campsites were very generously sized (and delineated with a chalk line marker!).  This was pretty much the only place that Monika could get us into, so we were very lucky!

  (click to enlarge)

   Helmy and Perran had vehicle trouble on the way and so they had the Toyota towed all the way back to Glen Waverley, piled into the little Honda with minimal gear and still got set up before dark on Saturday!

  This photo was just prior to an whopping brunch of bacon, eggs, sausages and fried tomato.  The fireplace can be seen in the foreground.  All the ten campers are in the photo except me.  Daniel, Mason and Helmy are in the kitchen/dining room.  Mason came with Dan and Mon - Jac and Pat came with their other three for the day on Monday.

  The cooking was shared around.  Mason and Ronja prepared one very healthy evening meal - here they are busy chopping vegetables, watched by Theo.

There was plenty of relaxation happening.  Daniel and Theo share a story.

  On Monday afternoon, we all went to Snob's Creek Falls, a few kilometres from Eildon.  We'd been to Snob's Creek winery the day before (the 2004 pinot was beaut) and were told the falls were in full flight. So we were lucky to see plenty of water, and the view was spectacular.  Eildon Dam looked to be full, too, with water over the spillway, after some good winter and spring rains.

  The kids enjoyed the privacy of a "secret" place, and were often nowhere to be found.  Eventually, we adults were let in on the secret.  Here Milly and Theo enjoy the tranquility.

  Another essential activity for the kids was lighting the fire and then toasting marshmallows.  Harvey, Mason and Ronja were right into it.

  The canoe and kayak went into the water a few times.  Pat, Daniel, Ronja and Mason went up to the Eildon Pondage weir and came back on the Goulburn in fine style.

It was a great weekend and we should do it more often.  There's something about setting up a little spot and relaxing in a camp chair with no thought of doing anything.  I didn't even do much reading - it was enough to soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the company. (Bike riding was limited to going to the dunny or swimming pool on internal roads).

  The full set of photos are on my Flickr site (link is on the right) - click on "Eildon Interlude".