Saturday, 24 August 2013

Shell shocked

Since losing two of our newest chooks to what we presume was a fox, we've been religiously shutting them in the cage each night.  Sadly one of the chooks that was taken was Hopscotch (my favourite our of the new girls).  I miss her cuddles in the morning and have fond memories of her meeting me at the front door, then dorkily running after me back to the pen for breakfast when she was managing to escape from the pen.  She even went clucky at one point on the neighbour's side of the fence nestled in next to a gumtree.  I spent a week or so wondering why the girls had suddenly stopped laying.

Gonzo has recently started laying again after a very long period without a single egg.  Perhaps she was in mourning over winter after losing her friend Wheelie.  Her pure white shells stand out among the stock standard beige of all the others.

Today two of the girls had laid but one of the eggs was not quite right; it's all wrinkled with diverts around the side.  Either it was hard to get out or the shell is very thin.  We often get eggs with wrinkles in them but this one looks almost like a dinosaur or lizard egg!

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Spring surprise

If you're from anywhere in Queensland or northern NSW you would have heard about our unseasonally warm winter and temperatures nearing the 30s.  We've also had our first (very early) thunderstorm for the warm season.  Spring has certainly arrived and we may well march straight on to summer by the feel of it.

The sunny warm weather meant I can't resist being out in the garden at the moment, even if my vegie patch plans have hit a snag.  The clear blue skies and gentle warmth of the sun means that even weeding is an appealing job at the moment.  It also means that the weed are growing fast and will soon go to seed if I don't get onto them.  So the fern garden was receiving its pick-over on the weekend and rewarded me for my efforts with this gorgeous surprise. The pink tints match perfectly with the housebricks and I think I  may have swooned seeing the bracts cascade over the rock wall.  I've recently planted the vanilla vine behind the tree fern in the background so looks like I've picked a good spot for orchids.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013


It was so tantalising watching this iris slowly bud and open into bloom.  It was one of the few plants I was very glad to inherit when we bought this place and I couldn't wait to find out what colour it would be so that I could develop my plans for this shady spot.  I was delighted to find it was purple (my favourite colour) which will fit in nicely with some of the other pretty left-behinds.  I also planted a couple of irises nearby that I divided from a rhizome at our old place.  Unfortunately they have yet to flower so I'll have to wait to find out what colour they are.  In the meantime I'll enjoy this one's delicate and fleeting beauty.

I like to research a little before I post and found out that the humble iris was the flower that was symbolised as the fleur-de-lis many centuries ago.

P.S. After starting this post a week ago I was delighted to find that the iris is flowering again from the same flower spike - I had no idea that irises did this.  Fingers crossed for a third!

Let me know if you have any idea what variety and cultivar it is - I can't seem to find it.