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An End-Of-Autumn Gardening Weekend in north-east Oz ...The 'Wet&#x2...


By bernieh


Over the last year and a bit, I’ve been trying to create a more colourful garden space in the courtyard by adding lots of potted plants. Unfortunately, after months of rain … whether it be the torrential downpours of late summer or the constant and most unusual autumn showers we’ve been experiencing … the Courtyard Garden was beginning to look like a rather scruffy distant relative. You just know you should love them, but you can’t get past the outward appearance!

So it was time to look critically at my potted plants. Time to move the aged or maimed out of sight for some intensive care … and time to move the terminally ill to the bonfire pile. Because my seedlings had not survived the endless weeks of damp, moist conditions and dull, overcast skies, it was also time to treat myself to some new annual seedlings from the nursery. Definitely time to re-pot any plants that have roots growing out of drainage holes in the bottom of the pot … and if roots have grown down into the paving, it was time to cut them off and raise the pot up on pot feet.

Many plants are now craving some strong sunlight, while others needed some pest management measures. It was definitely time for action. Out I went and started pulling out all the potted plants so I could get a decent look and see just how they were faring!

So what did I find?:

Plants like the Cockscomb really needed some sunshine … we’ve had far too many overcast days over the last three months. I’m going to have to find another spot away from the courtyard for these to get a decent dose of rays.

All my Portulacas … Sun Jewels, as we call them …. also needed a healthy dose of Mr. Sunshine.

My Euphorbia ‘Diamond Frost’ needed a decent haircut …

…. as did a couple of my coleus.

As a matter of fact this whole area outside my kitchen window needs some attention.

The stunning coleus that had been in the large white pot had been attacked by nasty little critters and had given up. The Streptocarpus on the left hand side really suffered because the drip irrigation that waters it had broken and, as I was never home when it was on, I failed to notice anything was wrong until the plant started to look half-dead.

There’s also way too much green in the spot and it definitely needs a lift. It needs other colours!

The area on the other side, outside our bedroom came through well, but needed some colour as well. Both areas need bright colourful plants that survive shady spots.

Hmmmm!! Choices to be made …. more coleus, more cordylines, more begonias … another trip to the nursery will be a priority.

The poor cordylines that were already out in the courtyard suffered horribly from those greedy grasshoppers … not much that can be done about that. They will, of course, grow lovely new leaves … but in the meantime they will look less than their best.

My gorgeous new Salvia … Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’ … had survived the ‘wet’ but had also been attacked by some little muncher! Still it’s now full of blooms so I’m quite happy with it.

Both my Cleome spinosas ‘Senorita Rosalita’ were covered in blooms too, but they were also covered in mealy bugs and needed some TLC.

On a more positive note … the Diffenbachia are thriving.

The Crossandras are flowering so well again …

So are the Salvia splendens ….

The Jacobinia have survived and continue to flourish….

The Bracteantha (also known as Helichrysum) or Paper Daisies, grown from last year’s seeds, are beginning to bloom …

Then there is the forgotten tub that had Amaranthus growing in it. The Amaranthus had died … the pot hidden behind others and never given another thought during all the rain. Well now … there’s new growth!

The little Zinnias have appeared and started blooming.

Added to that … the Gomphrena globosa (Bachelor’s Buttons) are in full swing …

…as are the New Guinea Impatiens.

So there’s some good news from the Courtyard Garden after quite a long ‘wet’ season …

and now the recoup and recover session has begun. I’ve started rearranging the newly potted annual seedlings, the re-potted favourites and the brand new colourful additions to create a far more attractive vista.

But it’s time to get back out there … so the rest of the story will have to wait.

More blog posts by bernieh

Previous post: Today was a special day of remembrance downunder: Anzac Day.

Next post: An early Winter Gardening Weekend Downunder ... the Queen's Birthday Long Weekend!



At least you have some beauitful greenery to look out upon which I love to see 1st picture your plants are lovely. Your garden looks lovey you ve done a great job. Yes sunlight is what plants mainly need

We are getting strange weather too, very cold then rain then dry and overcast then sun but still cold.

16 May, 2010


Sixpence ... yes it's true there is a lot of lush greenery to look at when it's pouring with rain ... but the green fingers were getting really, really itchy!!! Weather patterns seem to be rather different this year in a lot of places ... not much fun for us gardeners.

16 May, 2010


Yes I know the feeling lol Bernieh, yes I know you ve been having weird weather over there in New Zealand too, as Gill has stated on you know where lol.

16 May, 2010


Sixpence ... weird is definitely the word! Both NZ and here is Oz the weather has been decidedly strange ... lots of wet weather up here and apparently lots of dry over there!! Don't know what's going on!

I haven't visited 'you know where' for ages and ages. Must pop in again! I've joined the blogging world and I've just been having so much fun with my blogs, that I haven't been visiting certain gardening sites much at all lately! Not enough hours in the day.

16 May, 2010


lol Bernieh I am pleased you do blogging you get a better look and see more hehe, like a tour which I love.

Well I have heard they spray stuff above the clouds which might be the cause. Russia does simular on Red Square day, in order to guarantee a lovely day prior they use to send a plane up to put cement in the clouds to hold the rain off.

There was a link which in the usa a chap was employed to study the chem trails of holigraphic pictures in the sky, he then noticed shortly after, that the cloud formation changed and down pours of rain followed which he had never seen in all his life. I also find it funny when they had the meetting about global warming and they never commited in brussels usa etc to cut down, Gorden Brown was furious, not too long after this there was flooding in Cumbria.

I do know by RonG on the other site said to me that holographic images were seen in his town and was in the papers, he tired to get copies even going to the news paper office to get a copy of the picture. So it makes me wonder. I could of placed the link on here but I would of got flagged.

16 May, 2010


i need a good clear out to your palms in pots....and your crossandra plants....:-)

17 May, 2010


Hi Sandra ... it's been a good thing, having the clear out! The whole area looks so much better and I feel better as a result!! Those poor palms need to be re-potted soon ... but I'm shuddering to think what I'll have to pay for larger clay pots!!!

17 May, 2010


All looks very nice regardless BH. Some work to do but always nice to see the results after some TLC.

I still love your whole set-up there:0))

17 May, 2010


Thanks Oddbillie ... it's looking a whole lot better now that I've sorted it all out. Just waiting now for all the annual seedlings to bloom ... and it should have quite a bit of colour.

17 May, 2010


Can't wait to see the results!

17 May, 2010


Hiya - I had to smile at this blog after reading your profile - 'the dry tropics' - goodness - all the green is wonderful and I'm not sure there can ever be too much of it LOL - I'm glad to see other people use their outdoor tables as a convenient potting table too - they are always just the right height aren't they - lovely blog - thank you =))

18 May, 2010


Thanks Cate ... yes the long 'wet' we had this year has certainly meant the whole area up here has stayed green for longer than usual. But the showers have stopped now and already the surrounding countryside is starting to dry out ... doesn't take long for the bush to turn brown once more!

Lol ... I use my outdoor table all the time for potting up ... it really is my potting bench cunningly disguised as a piece of outdoor furniture.

18 May, 2010


I am always late with reading blogs and looking at the newest pictures, but it's certainly not too late to tell you how much I enjoyed reading all about your plant-live down under. Fascinating. I love so many of your plants I couldn't say which ones I liked best. Some of the plants are new to me, but then I still have loads to learn. Today in the South of England, it's been a really hot day, the first one so far this year. lets hope it stays a while. Good luck with your weather too and happy gardening

21 May, 2010


Thanks Titchy ... I'm glad you enjoyed the read. The weather has finally turned and we're now getting days of glorious sunshine, much cooler temps. and really low humidity levels ... winter is almost here! So I'm looking forward to being out in the garden every day now. Hope you get lots of sunny days for your summer!

21 May, 2010

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