During Autumn this year I established a small garden bed using a very rich soil mix that I bought from a local garden-soil maker. This company mixes horse and fowl manure with mushroom mulch to make a compost that is like potting mix. 

The natural soil of our garden is fine sand, which is hydrophobic (water repellent) and so does not hold moisture, this is a big problem during our hot dry summer. The sand layer sits above very dense clay, tolerable for indigenous plants but a major challenge for most exotic plants.

What has surprised me is the ease of growing these bedding plants in the photo above when the soil is improved.

This small artichoke is growing just to the left of the plants shown above.

Also flourishing this year are some roses, these ones climbing along a wire fence...

...and the Cecile Brunner which has responded to a hard pruning with vigorous growth.

Today I removed two full buckets of spent flowers. The fragrance of the flowers fills the air around our terrace.

At a recent class my teacher, Elizabeth, set a combined exercise: 'using two vessels' and 'incorporating the area around the vessel'

I have used three coastal sword-sedge * leaves (lepidosperma gladiatum), some very small succulent flowers and begonia flowers and leaves. The sedge was left over from the Ikebana International exhibition in September. I was delighted with the warm colour that had developed on the longest of the leaves. In researching this indigenous plant I was intrigued to find a photo of a beautiful basket made from the leaves by a aboriginal fibre artist, Audrey Frost * .  

This photo from above shows how the leaves stretch to the sides of the vessels, which are two shino-glazed soup bowls from the Qdos Gallery Studio * .

Greetings from Christopher
30th October 2016

* Click on the blue text for further information.

No comments:

Post a Comment