I'll write more about those decisions in another post, but it involves staying here for the long term.
In the meantime, we're busy preparing for Sarah's 11th birthday next weekend, and hoping for a big turn-out. The yard has been judiciously prepped by David and his small crew of mowing apparatus. I have been doing a long overdue job too (above) that involved clearing out the debris and weeds dumped after the 2011 floods.
There were long tufts of grass, growing about a metre tall and once I cleared them, I decided to use the space for my potting area. Because it's changed from Summer to Autumn, the sun has now moved away from the original position I had them under the verandah. Moving some of the plants to the Eastern side of the house, ensures they will receive some morning sun at least.
Easily visible now
I had to be careful removing the grass with my mattock, as I had these two utilities to watch out for. One is the "earth" for the electricity in the house, and the other was an overflow pipe for the rainwater pipes. Back in 2011, the black grid was blown off from the force of the water spewing out from the torrential rain. I only discovered this when I went searching for it in the long grass. Now to look at it, you wouldn't think it was any worse for wear.
a blend of old and new
I transplanted some lovely foliage plants, I took cuttings from one of the many parks we have in Toowoomba. I only took small tip cuttings, but they've grown since. The red plant is on the left and the lime-green one is on the right. The other sprawling plant between them, has colonised the bricks under the pot, and was originally a cutting from my mum or one I took from the Brisbane Botanical Gardens (I honestly can't remember). That large terracotta pot, and bricks underneath, has been there pretty much since we moved here.
But those plants should grow well in the semi shaded position they receive behind the large terracotta pot. The sandstone sculpture next to them, was originally carved by David, and has only moved 15 metres from where he took it from the ground. I was glad to find it a permanent home, where we can appreciate it every day. It reminds me of that stubborn sandstone corner we had to dig into, to erect our front retaining wall. But the face has a smile, so its an enduring friend now with it's own story to tell.
Finch nest made with dry grass
I intend to move my ginger into that large terracotta pot, but for now, there's a finch family nesting in the branches of the jade tree which is planted there. That particular plant has been with me since I was a teenager and I'm glad to see it being put to good use. Once the finches abandon the nest however, I will transplant the jade tree into the garden and move my ginger in.
Potting stand on the right, against the brick wall
I've also utilised the potting-stand I purchased recently, which is now full of plants. In-fact there are quite a few things I've put to good use in this new area - like another old wheelbarrow, but I'll wait for the plants to fill them before I start sharing in detail. I haven't had great success with growing in wheelbarrows, so I need to know it will work first.
Here are the two potting areas, side by side. It makes for quite an idyllic walk and has brightened up what was otherwise, a very utilitarian area. You can see our two rubbish bins, gardening hose and the power box attached to the house a little further up. It's been quite a messy area in the past, but we hope to keep the greenery brightening it up into the future. Next summer will be the real test. I have plans for adding shade, should it come to that.
In the meantime, it's back to party planning and egg collecting. That's my next job on the list today, after finishing this post.