Friday, August 19, 2011

Flower Flaunt Friday ... As The End Of Our Glorious Winter Draws Nearer

Here in the southern hemisphere we're halfway through our last month of Winter.  Whilst that might be cause for rejoicing further south, here in the north we're a little saddened by the thought.  Springtime here is the beginning of the end of the fantastic cool, clear sunny Winter days and the beginning of the plunge into the horrid Summer temperatures and humidity levels.   Ah well, it's time to enjoy every minute of the little Wintertime that's left.

There were just a few little hot spots left burning over the past weekend after the bushfire swept through the hill opposite our property.  Now all spots are dead and gone, so the threat is completely over.

Out in the garden I've been doing quite a bit of hand-watering, as it's our dry season here, and the drying winds have whipped again.  I don't mind spending time watering though.  To me it's the most relaxing time of the day.  Here's a little of what I see while I'm out there.

Scutellaria suffrutescens

 Rhododendron simsii

 Gazania rigens

Pansies 'Super Swiss Giants'

The first double blooms on the Petunia 'Bonanza'

The first blooms on the Rudbeckia 'Tiger Eye'

Unknown variety of Cane Begonia or Tree Begonia

Nasturtium 'Alaska Mix'

The Pentas are blooming once more, after being cut back severely and treated for mealy bug infestation

The Asiatic Lilies are sprouting.

But now ... for some flowers or plants that are suddenly missing from my garden.

Just last week I had noticed there was something wrong with the lowest tier of the rock garden beds.  My patch of Euphorbia 'Diamond Frost' appeared to have been eaten.

Supposedly, the branches of this plant are poisonous if ingested.  The sap is rather nasty.  Well apparently this assumption does not apply to ravenous wallabies who are finding it difficult to locate grass to eat in the dry season.  They literally ate the whole shrub, which was standing at around half a metre in height.

I then started noticing branches missing from the potted Euphorbias up on my courtyard garden.  Well, I couldn't have that, so I barricaded the courtyard.  Or so I thought.  Wallabies should never be underestimated when they hungry and they find something rather delectable to their taste buds.

The shot above shows not only the blooming Rhododendron simsii or Azalea, but you can see the Euphorbia 'Diamond Frost' in its full glory to the left, filling out the pot with my Wrightia.  It was looking fantastic for months!

Well, despite my best efforts to protect this delicious plant over the last few days, this is what I found this morning.

This is what's left of my other Euphorbia 'Diamond Frost' potted up with a Justicia carnea ... which apparently is not all that tasty!!

Then I found my poor Gomphrenas.

Obviously the stems are delicious, but those flowerheads ... yuk, I can keep those!   Wallabies, apparently have discerning tastes!

The Gazania flowers are not good enough either, but the leaves are to-die-for!  I now only have little stumps left of my newly planted Gazanias out in the new rock garden bed.

Yes, you horrors!  Turn away from me and hide your faces.   Don't you dare look me in the eye.  Thieves!  I've been sticking up for you for ages.  Whenever anyone asks whether you are pests in my garden ... destructive little creatures ... I have always said 'NO!'  Well that's all changed now.  Even your friend the Kookaburra is ashamed of you.

Thankfully, there is a little bit of good news from my garden and I can end on a more cheery note.  There's actually a bloom appearing for the very first time on my Callistemon ‘Pink Champagne', which has been in the ground now for almost two years and has done very, very little.   But this is the promise of things to come.

For lots more fabulous flower flaunt post, visit Tootsie's meme Fertilizer Friday / Flaunt Your Flowers


  1. Your blooms are beautiful. I hope the wallabies find somewhere else to eat. I've never seen such a beautiful garden in the winter.

  2. The wallabies are so cute, perhaps one could liken them to deer here who eat many garden and farm plants. Your nasturtiums and rhododendrons are just beautiful. You are an excellent photographer, Bernie!

  3. Oh poor plants! Sorry for your loss...but the Wallbys are cute. I'm sure you'd rather not hear that!! Hoping you find a way to deter them from eating any more.

  4. Sheepishly I blush from complaining about the 'bunnies' in my yard again! I have no skin in the game when my blog buddies have to duke it out with wallabies and deer! :-o

  5. Your rhododendron and gazanias are gorgeous! How could you possibly get mad at the cute little wallabies? Tree begonias? Wow!

  6. Hi Bernie. Beautiful photos. I bought Gazania seeds this year, because I saw yours. Mine are Daybreak Bronze, and you´re absolutely right, the leaves are to die for. Outstanding. I´m also crazy about Begonia Rex, have them in my winter-garden.
    I LOVE the music you have on your blog. Rachel Portman is fantastic.
    Have a nice day,
    Love Iris, Denmark.

  7. Your gardens are beautiful as usual. I use deer repellent around my garden area and it works to keep all the deer, squirrel, rabbits and CATS out. There is a recipe for it on the internet, but whether it would work on wallabies... eh not sure.

  8. Bad bad wallaby's, but I did have a little chuckle when I read they left you the flower heads...sorry! you still have some lovely flowers though the Pentas is gorgeous. Looking forward to seeing the Callistemon in full bloom.
    Have a good weekend hope it's Wallaby free!

  9. I truly love those flowers. Beautifully captured.
    My favorite is the Scutellaria suffrutescens.

    Cassy from Acoustic Guitar Lessons

  10. Bernie, you have the equivalent of our Japanese Beetles, nothing seems to work on them either. However, your blooms are beautiful, great to see lilies coming up and pansies.


  11. How disappointing to lose prized plants to nature's hungry guests. I had a real problem with rabbits in the spring eating plants I've never seen them touch before but maybe the winter was hard for them.
    What you do have blooming is colourful and lush. Fires close by must have been a concern.

  12. Dear Bernie, what a fun and fascinating post! Plants coming and going, and wallabies and the closeup of that wonderful kookaburra. Keep 'em coming. cheers, C.

  13. I am so glad the wild fire did not come close to you.I just love your rhododendron Bernie. The Gazania are beauties.It is hard to believe that your winter is coming to an end.Summer is whizzing by here and I do not know where it went. Have a wonderful weekend.

  14. Makes you feel kind of sorry for the little Wallabies as they are just hungry. I dont have Wallabies but voles are attacking my plants from the underside under the ground. One day you will have a day a hole and the leaves lying in the hole never to see the plant again. Its very disheartening and I know how you feel about yours too. I doubt that it would be a good thing to put food out for the Wallabies?

  15. Oh so nice to see blooms from another country! I love all the different flowers. Wallabies as pests, here we deal with squirrels who dig up our plants. Thanks for sharing your garden!

  16. Your garden is so beautiful in the winter. I can't imagine a winter garden other than snowbanks as far as the eye can see. Your winter garden is prettier than my summer garden. Love all the flowers blooming. Wallabies...oh, they make our deer look like rookies at garden destruction. And I bet they can jump over just about any barrier you put up. I am growing Diamond Frost, too, and hope it doesn't fall victim to a chewing marauder, but all too soon, the frost will put an end to everything here.

    Every visit to your garden is enchanting!

  17. We're having the same feelings but about opposite seasons. I hate the thought of our frigid winter which will be here much too soon, and stay much too long.
    Oh what a shame the naughty wallabies are making such a nuisance of themselves. The certainly are cute, even though such a pest.
    That's a fantastic photo of the handsome Kooka.
    Your blooms are gorgeous! I especially love the colouring of the beautiful Rhododendron simsii. That photo is particularly lovely..reminds me of a graceful ballerina.
    I hope you win the wallaby war!
    I've never heard of Glads being called Dame Edna's blooms. Do you know how they came by that monika?
    I'm having trouble posting my comment again so am going to try 'Anonymous' and see if that works.

  18. Hi Bernie,
    Wow! You have a nice variety of winter flowers. I think the variegated Nasturtiums are my favorite. I'm sorry about the Wallabies. We have squirrels that sometimes go crazy and start eating things not normal for them. My friend in Florida said they got a taste for ginger buds and commenced eating every bud in sight. Mine stay pretty much behaved except for digging in moist flower pots and uprooting the plants!
    Happy Spring.
    David/ Tropical Texana/ Houston :-)

  19. Critters just can't be trusted!


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