19 Degree High

What would the weather scientists label today as? We are in the middle of Winter and its a good 19dC out there. I am not complaining, yet, I am finally having my weekend after working 2 weeks straight. I got really productive.


Due to the still short day length and late sunrise, I still have the luxury of a wee sleep in, but still managed to get out of bed yesterday morning to catch the frost. The weedmat is going to come out soon, probably next week, all rolled up and ready to be used again for its next purpose of a more permanent nature. Footpath for the mandala garden.


The unseasonably warm Winter has brought out the daffodils. And it just reminded me of the lot from the Orchard Cottage that I am still storing in the mushroom box, waiting to be planted.


I spent most of yesterday building this. My first version, which is just like all my other “fences”, got ripped apart by Caesar within a day as he tried to get to his favorite poo spot on the other side of the fence. So, the reinforced version features horizontal battens with the windbreak stapled to it on the other side. He can jump the fence, but he can’t rip it this time.

On the other side of the fence, I have planted the pears which is going to be low trellised along the bamboo stake which you might glimpsed from the photo above. Then a tripple-grafted Nashi (because mum loves Nashi pears), is going to be high pruned. And a Chinese Hawthorn will be high pruned as well. Both will form a nice canopy along the fence.

The purpose of the fence is to separate Caesar from the Forest Garden, where ducks will free range in the near future.


Today I got stuck in to planting. The 3-a-hole are planted 30cm off center with the currants 100cm off center to form a guild. Everything is mulched with a good dose of compost at this stage. I intend to cap it off with rough mulch in a couple of weeks to prevent the compost from getting blown off. The reason for compost is so that the available nutrient will readily leached into the soil below and nourish it while rough mulch still needs to decompose.

Its just a cheat to give the plants a good start without mixing compost into the planting hole. Plus, my planting holes are really small, just enough to fit, I don’t do the “dig a hole twice the size of your planter bag” thing.


There’s some urgency to get planting. Some signs of movement, like this Elderflower. We have got bud burst on both Elderflower Adam and Nova. I didn’t even noticed the bud swelling stage.

The main Forest Garden is mostly planted up now. There’s still the Gooseberry Pax which doesn’t really have a home yet. And the Manukas need to go in round the back. And other fruit trees yet to arrive.

Next weekend I hope to plant out the Summerfruit Lawn. Roll up the weedmat in the Mandala Garden and plant out the grapes. At this stage the weather next weekends looks to be holding up before rain sets in on Sunday. Not to forget to build a short fence for the Persimmon to trellis upon by the Mandala Garden.

Area Plan

That’s how it looks like if you are a bird.

The Mandala Garden will be interesting. Probably bumped me right up the hippie list in Rakaia now that I am already the bamboo man.


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