Saturday, October 3, 2015

What's On Show This Weekend ... October 3-4, 2015 ... mid-Spring.

Here we are in our mid-Spring month and about six months into our dry season.  If you've read the latest post in my other blog (see the sidebar), you'll know that this year's dry has been harsh.  I don't want to repeat myself but let's just say that a failed wet, long dry and starving wallabies have left my garden in tatters.

Thankfully there's still a few lovely things left to me to enjoy as I wander around. Otherwise I would be in the deepest of doldrums.  Out in the garden beds ...

This Kalanchoe has a few tall flowering heads.  I really adore these little bells.

The dwarf variegated Bougainvillea has it fabulous crimson pink bracts and tiny white flowers on show.

The Hippies have started popping up.

This Alpinia is always flowering and providing a little colour even during these every so dry conditions.

In the courtyard garden ...

I really love the effect of the setting sun on this fabulous Alocasia in the late afternoon.  It's a delight.

Well it seems the Cycas revoluta will be doing its thing in the springtime no matter what the conditions are like.  Spring is always the time for the 'breaks' to appear and it's happening on one of the Cycas right now.  It's always such fun watching these whorls pop up and then watch how quickly they get taller and taller.

Sitting atop the table in the courtyard, away from the marauding wallabies,

double Osteospermum and

double Petunias.

Elsewhere around the courtyard,

the Clerodendrum ugandense has recovered from it rather severe hair cut following the mauling by the wallabies,

while the pot of Impatiens and

the potted Azalea have escaped the great devouring.

There have been quite a few birds to be seen lately too, looking for food in and around the dry bushland.  I think this one is a Wedge-tailed Eagle.  It soared around for ages in the thermals, hanging on to the catch in its beak.  Maybe it was just enjoying the gliding so much it decided to wait for the snack.

I'm not entirely sure what bird this is, but it was certainly enjoying the fruits from the native Olive tree.  It was guzzling them down almost whole.

This gorgeous Forest Kingfisher was just sitting atop a branch looking out eagerly for something to snack on.  It didn't have much luck though and eventually flew off.

Out in the shadehouse ...

my old Impatiens walleriana have all been re-potted and are blooming nicely,

as are the baskets of Dragonwing Begonias.

That's all for this weekend.  I'm joining Today's Flowers

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Wildlife on Wednesday ... My Dry Season Visitors

Our dry season is in full swing now.  It's been a long time since we received decent heavy ground-soaking rain.  January saw some heavy rain fall from the skies above, but that was pretty much the end of our wet season.  It's supposed to last for around three months.  It didn't, and so the dry is far more pronounced this year.

We've had next to no rain fall since the end of April, and the last couple of months has seen a constant flow of winged visitors coming to the garden in search of water, nectar and seeds.  I've tried to capture as many of these visitors as possible since the beginning of our wintertime, which is mid-dry season for us.

I've seen loads of the honeyeater family of birds dropping by for a quick drink in our pond.

White-throated Honeyeater

Brown-backed Honeyeater

The Honeyeaters have also been enjoying the nectar of some of their favourite flowers, when they can find them.

Male Sunbird

Female Sunbird

Female Sunbird

Another female Sunbird

Yellow Honeyeater

The native Sterculia quadrifida, commonly known as the Peanut Tree, has been covered in seed pods and many birds are coming in to feast on the seeds inside.

male Figbird

female Figbird

Male and female looking for the best seeds.

The Figbirds have also been feasting on the fig fruit of our native Sandpaper Fig Tree,

but I've only managed to capture a shot of the Great Bower Bird feasting on the fig tree fruit.

The two Cadaghi Gum trees have been in bloom and attracting lots of birds including,

Helmeted Friarbirds

and Rainbow Lorikeets.

Right now though, blooms are light on thanks to the marauding mob of wallabies that have made our place their favourite restaurant in the last few weeks.  (For more on this, pop over to my other blog to see the latest post)  I'm seeing less and less of our visitors as it seems they've moved on in search of better pickings.

Even the regulars, such as the Kookaburras which are usually seen, and heard, on a daily basis are suddenly few and far between.  This fellow, seen after taking a quick shower under the sprinkler, is the only Kookaburra I've seen around here for ages.  The usual deafening din of the ealry morning Kookaburra wake-up call has become rather quiet of late, as it seems the large family has moved on for a while.

Monday, August 31, 2015

What's On Show This Weekend ... August 29-30, 2015 ... end of Winter.

Our wintertime is well and truly ended.  It's been one of the warmest winters I can recall for quite some time, and given that tropical winters are usually very, very mild anyway, you could be forgiven for thinking we hadn't had a winter at all.  Officially the last day of winter is tomorrow, August 31st, but the high-20C temps. over the last few weeks has meant it was over ages ago.

The long period of very warm winter temps., added to the failure of the wet season at the beginning of the year, has meant a seemingly intensified dry season.  My place is quite simply bone dry!  I've been working hard at keeping the new garden beds going and I've had to resort to using the sprinkler at least every second day.  Right now there are watering restrictions in place across our city council zone, so I will only be able to use the sprinkler twice a week from now on. 

There are little bursts of colour here and there around our place that provide a break from the dryness as you wander around.   Thankfully, many of the potted plants sitting out in the courtyard are in bloom right now.

Crossandra, Plectranthus and Spathoglottis.

Spathiphyllum, Azalea and Impatiens.


Salvia splendens.

Begonia semperflorens.

Double Petunias.


Down the driveway, my Tabebuia impetignosa has been covered in blooms and the cheery purple flowers greet me as I arrive home after work every day.  It's a delight to spot them as I get closer to home.

Tabebuia impetiginosa.

There's also white and purple Bauhinia flowers to be spotted as I travel down the long driveway in the afternoons.

The few blooms, seeds and berries around the place have been attracting quite a bit of birdlife as they seize upon any available source of food.

Male sunbird feasting on Hibiscus nectar.

Female Sunbird drinking the nectar from the Duranta flowers.

Male Sunbird enjoying the nectar of Russelia.

Spring officially begins tomorrow
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