A perfect day in the backyard

10 May 2019
It was a close to a perfect day in the garden yesterday. Temp 26C, low humidity, the brightest of blue skies and so many migrating birds resting on their way to somewhere else, as well as our local birds and many newbies who visit us every winter.  The gang is back in town. It was a good day.

Here is our mini Cavendish. It will grow to about 2 metres tall.

Did I tell you we planted a banana plant a couple of weeks ago? When we first came to live here there were Cavendish bananas growing in the back yard but at that time there was a Dept of Primary Industries ban on moving them or giving the rhizomes to friends to grow.  Our bananas were growing in a very dry part of the garden and in the end the drought killed them off. So you could have blown me over with a feather when I saw a mini Cavendish on sale at Bunnings recently.  Of course I grabbed one, Hanno planted it and now I'm watching it everyday.  Although it's a miniature version of a Cavendish, it will grow 30 kg bunches of bananas but you don't have to harvest the entire bunch, you can cut off a hand or two to ripen in the kitchen.

 This is the Montville Rose.



 This is our little strawberry patch. This year we're growing a nice red flowered berry called Sweetie.

There is a very special feeling outside on a cool Autumn afternoon. There's a lot of fruit growing now and with birds flying overhead and coming into the garden to drink at the bird bath, it's a bit like being in a cool, lush, green and blue paradise. We have a huge native fig tree growing in the chicken yard and about six weeks ago we had some men cut a couple of large branches off it because it was starting to cover one of the lemon trees. Now it's responded by being full of small, golden fruit and all through the day birds are in there feasting.  When figs fall to the ground, the chooks fight over who takes possession of each one. It's such a good backyard tree. It's evergreen, doesn't make much mess and it feeds the local and migrating birds; it does need a large backyard though.



While I was outside in the yard yesterday, shadowed closely by Gracie, I watered the plants, took photos, sat at the garden table, watched the birds and with the cool breeze on my face I remembered back to the harsh summer we had. The weather is so much better now. The shadows are lengthening, leaves are starting to fall on the pecan tree, oranges and lemons are ripening and when I threw fresh lettuce over the fence to the chooks, they ran towards me hoping to get the first prize. There are a few times during the year when it's perfect in our backyard - now is one of them. I wonder if this time of year is so good for others too. Do you have perfect days in your garden?

26 comments

  1. I am a relatively new reader of your blog, after coming across your book in my local library. Thank you so much for everything that you share, your words have added much to my daily life. I have even recently learned to knit as a result of wanting to knit dish cloths!

    I love in Northern NSW and am also thoroughly enjoying the weather at the moment. Such clear blue skies the last few days, air is fresh but still warm. It’s such a beautiful time, and it’s so lovely to be able to spend time in the garden again.

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  2. I read every post of yours, and those posts enrich my life. Thank you! Dianna

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  3. Absolutely perfect at my place too, Rhonda. The Autumn colours are glorious!

    Although the new water restrictions (watering can only before 9 AM) are an inconvenience, on the other hand it allows me much more time out in the garden. I spent 45 minutes watering the veggie garden and some of my fruit trees and am now enjoying a gentle fire and a good book. Life is good!

    Madeleine

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  4. Yes the weather is just lovely here too, Rhonda. The mornings and nights are cold but the days are beautiful. I have a pink flowering strawberry called Pinkie. I didn't realise there was a red flowered one as well. Happy Mother's Day for Sunday.

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  5. I couldn't agree more with you Rhonda, I was just out in the yard this morning picking a very late mulberry hoard and thinking how wonderful this time of year is. Freshly mown grass, noisy lorikeets in the flowering gums and a light cool breeze with the warm sun are just a few reasons why it's a joy to be outside right now.

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  6. Autumn is the best here too. Spring has the lovely not-hot-yet temperatures, but the live oaks are dropping so much pollen then that we have to hide inside as much as possible (allergies). Fall is the best--no longer too hot to work out in the yard, not so humid, and fewer bugs to attack our plants!

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  7. Love reading about your homestead, Rhonda. Here in Dallas TX the summer heat is drawing near and I fear days of being outdoors are numbered, 100 plus degree days will be here soon. My herb garden loves the heat though so there is a plus side, rosemary, oregano, thyme, basil and catnip ~ keeps all the neighborhood cats happy . Your Gracie is adorable :) Have a good day and enjoy your lovely home. Donna in Dallas

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  8. Oh yes, that is how I get through the humid summers, looking forward to this time of year. the veggie garden has been planted, and it is lovely being outside. I thought there was still a ban on growing bananas, but maybe that is only up here where they are grown commercially.

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    1. I think it's changed in Queensland as long as you buy accredited stock from a banana nursery. I found this info: https://backyardbananas.com.au/faqs/

      Enjoy autumn!

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  9. Your day really does sound lovely, perfect. 26C is considered a warm Summers day here, love those days. We have a lot of Swallows here, love the sound they make while darting about the blue sky above.They will be back soon, as we move into Summer. Gracie is so cute, love the look on her bushy little face. Wish you three a lovely weekend. Chopping and stacking the rest of the Winter wood here. My husbands happy-time Pam

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  10. I love reading what you write Rhonda and still pop in often although I'm a bit remiss in the comments section! Your place is looking wonderful, Gracie is looking as mischievous (and adorable) as ever and that's one of the finest flocks of hens I have ever seen. Yes, Autumn is lovely isn't it? Such a lovely time. Much love to you, Hanno and the family from across the ditch, Wendy

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    1. Hi Wendy, it's good knowing you're still hanging around. I hope all is well at your place. xx

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  11. May in the UK is one of the best months ( "Oh to be in England now that spring is here") - the days are much longer and the countryside is such a fresh green. We live alongside bluebell woods which are a haze of colour and the swallows have returned from Africa - a sign that summer is coming. I enjoy the variety of all the seasons here but spring is special.The garden is getting into its stride, veggies are sprouting, the iris are about to flower and the roses have lots of buds, the pond is full of tadpoles and it's warm enough to sit outside with a cuppa. Perfection.

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    1. There is nothing like an English spring. Four years ago I spent my April birthday in England and walking through bluebell woods is still fresh in my memory. Such a lovely time of year.

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  12. Yes Rhonda it was a beautiful day. The Van Morrison song "Days like this" ran through my head all day. I was standing on my back patio and enjoyed looking at the growing pineapples (2 in old concrete laundry tubs) and a near ripe pawpaw. I could see the mandarins starting to hint at beginning to ripen and I had enough Rosellas left on the bush to dry for a fruity tea. I also have a mini Cavendish and hope I beat the flying foxes to them. Yep fantastic day. Cheers Bernie (North Brisbane)

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  13. We've been savoring every cool morning here in North Carolina. The garden is popping and there are so many lovely new blooms to enjoy daily. Spring really is a magical time of year. God does some of His best work during this season! Bee well...

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  14. I wish!!! We have had a very cold spell here in Western Victoria but with it came much needed rain. I do prefer your kind of temperatures at the moment but oh well. Enjoy. Your yard looks magnificent. Gracie, that's a bit of a questioning sideways look. So funny.

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  15. We are at the opposite end of the spectrum from you...it is spring, and beautiful! I just came in from feeding my flock, my mini horses, and giving them all fresh water. I checked in on my new lamb twins who were my birthday present from my daughter. They have been working away at the grass in the dog yard for me. I may be able to sell my small lawn mower soon! I would much rather deal with the cute little lambs than going into town for gas and then polluting the air mowing the lawn!
    It has been absolutely gorgeous here, although too hot in the afternoons for any outdoor activity. I am hoping that soon I will have a new patio off of the back of my house with a lattice "roof" to sit and enjoy the out of doors without the blazing sun directly on me!

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  16. With our move west, we've become owners of quite a lovely back yard. The previous owners kept it very well, it's like a hug every time something new blooms! I only hope to gather enough information about what's planted where to keep it up properly. The past several days, I've been just hanging out in the back, watching the cat trot around the yard. A scrub Jay has taken to watching Chester very closely whenever he's out. I call him Buddy. Lol. We've gotten a picnic table, too, so dinners have been mostly on the back patio as the sun sets. What a truly wonderful time of year!
    Yvette - Oregon

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  17. Your yard/garden looks wonderful! The expression on Gracie's face is priceless. It's spring here and is also lovely. Glad you're well.

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  18. So grateful that you are still sharing about your life! It is similar to mine, but I am in Williamsport, Indiana, USA.

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  19. Hi Rhonda, things are looking lovely at your place. I love your hens, such pretty girls, and dear little Gracie, that look lol. Today (Saturday) is such a lovely day, I'm typing this at the kitchen table and the sun is shining on my shoulder through the window. Slight touch of frost this morning but not too bad and it does make for a nice day to follow most of the time. The yard here is very wet at this time of year and quite nasty to navigate in certain areas, all of the garden beds are raised, quite high, so our plants don't drown. Surprisingly we are still picking jalapenos and capsicum, though I think that will be the last of them as it's getting much to cold. We have an abundance of mixed chard, carrots, onions and a few odds and ends that we are eating, the garlic and broad beans are up and I'm planning for spring. Happy Mothers Day to you for tomorrow, I must return to my baking, my youngest is 19 today, his cake is done and he has ordered home made pizza for his dinner, the rest of us are having gozleme made with last nights leftovers and the cake for my mother in law is now cool enough to decorate. Take care :) Kate (Tassie)

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    1. Thanks Kate, happy mothers day to you too.

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  20. Love your photos, Rhonda. I miss those blue, blue skies of FNQ. We have paler skies here in SA, but the ocean is bluer than blue, so we are blessed in a different way. Our backyard has finally had a lovely rain - over an inch. The grass in the backyard is starting to show through already where before it was parched earth due to no rain since last November. Nature always amazes me how quickly she recovers after a soaking rain. It is quite cold, though, for autumn, reaching only 13 C yesterday. Today we have a heat wave. It is 16 C :) Our chickens are being fed their winter diet of normal rations topped up with rolled oats. They love the oats.
    Wishing you a very happy Mothers and Grandmother's day tomorrow. x

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    1. Hello Gail, happy mothers day to you too. It's good to hear you've had rain. Although I know that grass will always come back after rain, even when it looks as if it's been dead for months, when it does I'm always amazed.

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  21. Wonderful picture of Gracie. She certainly has a knowing look. Glad that the hot weather has slacked off. Must be hard to bear such brutal heat. In Maine, spring, beautiful spring, is here, and everything is green and good.

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