My Garden by Johanna Phillips.
First of all how would you describe your garden?
The greatest delight around my home is my garden. I live in a small village in the central west area. The climate has perfect weather for flowers and vegetables alike. Summer and Spring time the flowers are at their best and the new life in the trees and shrubs are beyond compare.
How did you get started in gardening?
I was always attracted to gardening from the time I had my first pot with some marigold seeds. These flowers produce such a magnificent show no matter what the season. I still include them in my flower beds each year. The orange and yellow colours stand out amongst the green so well.
What motivates you to get up and garden?
I love to get up into the garden early in the morning with coffee in hand and it is then that I decide what needs doing each day. Whether weeding or planting a plant that the person down the road gave me or I picked up on my travels to town there is always a reason for gardening.
What were some of the unexpected hurdles in your garden? How did you deal with them?
Tulips come up in Spring and Irises as well as succulents with their flowers abound as well as the African daisies and Roses. So many flowers to list. Trail and error is the way to go and if it does not survive another variety will go in its’ place.
The ground was not exactly flower and vegie friendly but I bought heaps of horse and cow manure and after digging this and some home compost in I ended up with a reasonable starting soil. Over the years the soil has become easier to plant in. The onion weed is a never ending job to get rid of. Never give up as you do win in the end – that is my motto!
What were some of the unexpected benefits from gardening?
Planting melaleuca bushes and viburnum shrubs have been so beneficial to attracting the birds to my garden, Rosellas and Superb Parrots abound through the year. Willy Wagtails have their nests in the trees and actually allow me to photograph them throughout the time of eggs to hatchlings. Such a sheer delight to behold. Top notch pigeons nest in my melaleuca bushes. The blue wrens nest in the shrubs close to the house for protection. What more could you wish for.
What has your garden taught you?
Gardening has taught me to have patience as some plants appear quicker than others. Green thumb or not anyone can achieve lots whether it be pots or a specially prepared patch.
If you were a fruit or vegetable, what would you be?
Vegetables are also something I love to grow and especially to pick and eat. ‘Cos’ is an easy to grow lettuce, carrots will always come up as do spring onions. Winter vegetables like cauliflower and Broccoli are great and very beneficial to your health. I think if I had to be a vegetable I think Broccoli, as it has been thought to have anti-cancer properties and with so much of this around us, be sure to have it on your dinner plate occasionally.
What tips would you offer first time gardeners?
My tips to first time gardeners is to have patience and try different types of flowers and shrubs as these are what attracts the birds to your gardens. The reward is never ending.
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