about this blog



I started this blog in 2008. It started mainly as a way of tracking the evolution of my dry garden, and that led to an interest in photography and in the creatures that live in the garden. It's still about the garden and wildlife, but now my passion is thinking about how we humans can learn to co-exist with wild animals and plants, especially in urban areas.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

spring garden, and musing about possible future dilemma



Spring has returned to the garden, restoring the lush colourful wildness I missed for months. In the warm sunshine creatures fly, creep, crawl, hover, flutter and dart. The warm stone path is a highway for ants, beetles and millipedes.


I even saw a solitary ladybird feasting on the aphids feasting on the roses. Then I didn't see it any more. Maybe it died of indigestion. Too many aphids for one ladybird.



Recently a nearby property was sold for a ridiculously high price, a result of the demand for property in this neighbourhood by cashed up people. We have no immediate plans to sell and leave, but I don't imagine living here till I die. One day we will move. And what then? Probably a developer will buy it, pull down the house and destroy the garden. And he or she will make a killing - in flora, fauna and finances. If we were to develop it, we would make the killing. That would be a terrible, soul-searing dilemma. In the meantime, I continue to protect the patch and the wildlife I share it with, as best I can.


Lately I haven't blogged much, and I've been very unsociable in the blogosphere. To make up for it a bit, I'm linking this post to Carol's popular meme Gardener Blogger's Bloom Day. It's in her blog May Dreams Gardens, and worth checking out to find out what going on in people's gardens all over the world.

30 comments:

  1. Such a gorgeous rambling garden so full of life and colour. I hope someone will want to buy your place one day and maintain what you've started.

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    1. Thanks for the compliment, Mrs B. I hope so too, but I guess when I leave will need to try to disengage emotionally as well as physically.

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  2. I've been missing from blogland - life just keeps getting in my way. A good thing, still I've missed my favorite blogs. Your garden looks wonderful. Good luck with your dilemma.

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    1. thanks Joy - I like the way you put it - life gets in the way. It does seem hard to fit real life and virtual life in. I want to do everything, which is a bit of a challenge ...

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  3. The first picture is very pretty.

    Leaving a home and garden is tough. Maybe it only works well if you move out of the area so you can safely leave it out of sight and mind. And if you plan to move one day, I suppose moving while prices are high in your area to somewhere where they are not would make an early change enticing and practical. (As long as you are free from the kind of commitments which tie you there for a while.) Whatever you choose and whenever you choose it, hope you will find a way to let go.

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    1. Dear Lucy, thanks for the food for thought, I agree, out of sight and mind will be my aim when the time comes. I usually manage to live in the present, it's the best place to live.

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  4. It happens all the time in my neighbourhood. People buy a house and the first thing they do is chop down all shrubs and trees in the garden. I always thought mature planting was the main attraction of an old neighborhood. But other people seem to have different ideas.

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    1. Hi Denise, hopefully it's just a trend, it's heartbreaking and shocking to see mature trees and gardens removed.

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  5. Love the beautiful photos! Is the first one Love-in-a-mist with Californian poppies? I'm just starting to grow both of them this year. Look so lovely! Just enjoy your garden now and don't think too much. If I looked around us (all selling and subdividing), I wouldn't be planting anymore :(

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    1. Hi Karen (?), Thanks for the visit and encouraging comment. yes they're love in the mist and Californian poppies, they come back every spring, and just seem to organize themselves in lovely photogenic drifts. And so un-thirsty too ... got the seeds years ago from Diggers.

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  6. Welcome back! I have the same feelings here, Sue. We've slowly let sections of our property revert back to natural woods and plantings, and I'm adding more native plants over time. But what will the next owner do? This is a suburban community, and the next owners can do whatever they want. In the meantime, I guess we can do our best to get the word out and share the beauty of our nature-based gardens. :)

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    1. We try to get the word out, but when I'm feeling down I think we're only preaching to the converted. On the other hand when I'm feeling upbeat I feel there is a lot of good nature happening. Thanks for the welcome back, I missed you.

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  7. The ephemeral quality of our gardens is one of the things that makes them so dear. Like the performance of a beautiful piece of music, or a kiss from a loved one, our gardens exist in time and then are gone, living only in memory. Gardens seldom outlive their gardeners for not everyone shares our passion. (I don't know why!)

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    1. dear og, so true, I knew gardens were transient, but forgot this important fact. It's self destructive to get too attached ...

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  8. How wonderful to see your garden lush and full of life as ours begin to go dormant. It is sad indeed the lack of understanding for wild spaces that developers seem to have. They see everything with dollar signs only.

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    1. Hi Tammy, it's a very exciting time in the garden here, and your comment and the other comments have helped me appreciate what's here now. Thank you ...

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  9. Catmint - All of your flowers are lovely. I've had trouble making myself blog, too, since about August.

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    1. hi Linda, Real life sometimes takes precedence over our virtual lives, but it's great if we can keep in touch.

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  10. So happy to have you back and in your spring so we can see flowers galore...I am so glad you are still keeping your land lovely and for the critters.

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    1. thanks Donna, it's wonderful to be welcomed back.

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  11. We've been surprised and grateful, to have eventually after a LONG wait found a couple who share our love of birds and indigenous plants. Was hard to see the old apple trees go - but the other 3/4 of the garden that we planted will remain. And that is the bit that matters.

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    1. you and Alistair have set the model for my future transition.

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  12. Hi Catmint, glad you are enjoying the Spring, Winter is just approaching us. Enjoy your garden for as long as you can, just made me wonder how our Aberdeen garden is getting on without us. Och, i'm feeling all nostalgic now.

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    1. I get nostalgic for your old garden too but, to coin a cliche, that's life.

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  13. Hi Catmint! Your garden is lush and pretty now. I like the way you planted shrubs to hide those clothes ;-) My friend used bamboo to do that. She had a row of bamboo planted next to the cloth lines to hide drying clothes. Btw life journeys on and I usually accept the changing times and issues. But one at a time ;-)

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    1. Hi Steph, thanks for the wise words. I quite like seeing the clothesline as long as it is surrounded by plants. But covering it with bamboo must have looked great.

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  14. Hi, Catmint, good to see you again! It is great to see your lovely blooming garden as my own is going dormant. You mention a dilemma that is common in many areas. I am always sad to see a beautiful piece of property succumb to development, though I sometimes can understand the other point of view. Sometimes.

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    1. It's hard to understand such a different point of view, I think. It's like a different culture.

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  15. I'm glad you uploaded big pictures, Catmint! After clicking on them, I could see all the layers and lushness of your garden!
    Sometimes, as you, I think about my garden after me. What I realized is that all my previous gardens (and my mother's and grandmother's gardens) have a place in my heart, and together with my current garden create one MySecretGarden.
    Nice to see you again in a blogosphere!

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    1. Lovely to catch up with you again, Tatyana. And thank you for your wise, interesting words. The only things we can be sure of in the future is what is in our hearts. I didn't understand the meaning of the name of your blog till now.

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