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Sunday, 15 July 2018 Dereel → Haddon → Ballarat → Dereel Images for 15 July 2018
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Garden supplies and lunch out
Topic: gardening, food and drink, opinion Link here

Finding and planting the Schinus molle (peppercorn tree) over the past couple of days went remarkably smoothly, modulo communication issues. So something had to go wrong: Yvonne found it too small. Just one reason to go shopping for plants: it's also the middle of winter, time to plan for spring. We decided to go to town and take a look at what was to be had, including some things that I had looked at on Thursday, and while we were there to visit the Golden Crown Chinese restaurant, who offer yum cha on Sundays.

As it happened, we went to Avalon Nursery in Haddon first. Yvonne found another Schinus more to her liking:


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Just getting it into the car was enough fun:


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Also a couple of jasmine (Jasminum polyanthum and Trachelospermum jasminoides) for the garden arch for which we still haven't decided on a location. Also some herbs: chives and sage, and another Salvia, which I thought was Salvia microphylla, but which is too polite to mention a species, and simply calls itself Huntington's red. Also a Lamium maculatum “Stormy frost” that caught Yvonne's eye, and which she things will fit somewhere. But I doubt that she notes that it's not suited for full sun.

Then Yvonne wanted to go to the Sunday market, so off there, where she bought various odds and ends from the Dutch stall there. I went looking for the people from whom I bought the bulbs last year, but once again they weren't there. On the way out we found somebody selling flowers for $1 each, so bought a whole lot of pansies:

They include a Viola tricolor with interesting colours:


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Then finally to the Golden Crown:


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A bit of a let down. Yum cha is one of those things that thrives on lots of people, with trolleys going around and offering things that look interesting. Here it seems we were the only people eating, and we were given a sheet of paper with a list of what they had: only dumplings, at surprisingly high prices. And instead of tea, we were given a wine list, and the table setting included spoon and fork but no chopsticks. No Chinese people there, but then there were only 3 or 4 other people there at all. In addition, it was very cold. I can't say that the food was bad, but everything pointed to a let-down, so before anybody came along to serve us, we had time to reconsider, and we decided to leave. On the way out I saw a waitress bringing some deep-fried spring rolls. Were they intended as part of the Yum cha?

On to Formosa Gardens nursery, where we bought the Quercus rubra (“red” oak, an American species that promises particularly red leaves in autumn) that I had been looking at, and five bare-rooted roses:


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The varieties are shown left to right, back (top) to front (bottom). They went in quickly, of course. The rest will have to wait until at least tomorrow, and I think the Salvia microphylla should stay in its pot (or a new, larger one) until the weather is a little milder.


More knightly vists
Topic: general, animals Link here

While planting the roses, I heard noise from the front of the house. More mediaeval visits, this time with Amber Fitzpatrick, who had bought herself a fur coat to match her horse:


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HDR: worth the trouble?
Topic: photography, technology, opinion Link here

The photo of the Schinus molle in the car was a challenge: dark inside the car, full sun at the back. So apart from the normal photo, I also took a 3 shot bracket and processed with Photomatix. I needn't have bothered: DxO PhotoLab did it for me with the single shot. Here the first photo as shot, then the result after processing and the HDR bracket:


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Arguably the image could have been a little lighter inside, but it doesn't seem to be worth the effort.


Monday, 16 July 2018 Dereel Images for 16 July 2018
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Garden flowers in mid-winter
Topic: gardening Link here

Middle of the month, and also middle of winter, time for the monthly flower photos. It's been a surprisingly mild (but dry) winter, and the garden shows it.

We only have one Anigozanthos (kangaroo paw) left, the one that Sasha tried to eat years ago. It has recovered with a venegeance:


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For some reason, probably inappropriate soil, the ones that Petra Gietz gave us have apparently died. We'll see for sure in spring.

The Grevilleas are doing well, both the grafted Grevillea bronwenae that we bought last year and the remaining ground cover Grevillea that we bought two years ago—the other one was drowned.


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The Hebes are starting to flower again:


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I can only assume that they suffered from lack of water, fertilizer or good soil in the past.

As ever in winter, the roses are a mixed bunch, but a couple are still trying to flower:


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The Tropaeolum are confirming my opinion of the quality of the soil south of the house (first photo). Those have been there for three years, and they have hardly grown. The ones in the second image were planted last year, and despite the exposure to frost recently are looking much better:


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And our little tree fern, the one that was recovering after being attacked by a whipper-snipper last November, has lost all its fronds:


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Hopefully it will recover in the spring.

The Buddlejas that I admired so much when we moved in to Kleins Road ten years ago are still (barely) flowering:


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And our Banksia integrifolia has a (single) real flower now, nicely hidden by the leaves:


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And one red Canna has defied the weather and formed new buds:


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More garden work
Topic: gardening Link here

Did a little more work in the garden. Planted the Quercus rubra (red oak):


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Also replaced the Schinus molle (peppercorn tree). There's no doubt that the new one is bigger:


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Also started planting the pansies in the boxes in the north garden, but it was almost completely full of bulbs that hadn't started to sprout, and I had to give up half way. I'll have to find somewhere else to plant the rest, probably in front of the house.


Nice-smelling jacket
Topic: animals Link here

Yvonne has bought a new jacket. It seems to smell good:


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More vitreous detachment?
Topic: health Link here

Flashes in my eyes again this evening, like I had last summer. Posterior vitreous detachment? I'll be seeing Paul Smith on Thursday, so we can discuss it then, but based on the last time (where the symptoms were worse), it's not overly dangerous, and there's not much to do about it except wait.

But why did it happen? Last time I thought it was because of exertion, and today I did my first digging for a long time. But it was hardly exertion. To be discussed.


Cat door woes
Topic: general, animals Link here

We've finally attached the sealing strip to our cat door. Not a spectacular success:


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The protrusions in the panel mean that it can't seal properly. More head-scratching, but one obvious “solution” is simply to accept it. It's the laundry, after all, and not heated.


This page contains (roughly) yesterday's and today's entries. I have a horror of reverse chronological documents, so all my diary entries are chronological. This page normally contains the last two days, but if I fall behind it may contain more. You can find older entries in the archive. Note that I often update a diary entry a day or two after I write it.     Do you have a comment about something I have written? This is a diary, not a “blog”, and there is deliberately no provision for directly adding comments. But I welcome feedback and try to reply to all messages I receive. See the diary overview for more details. If you do send me a message relating to something I have written, please indicate whether you'd prefer me not to mention your name. Otherwise I'll assume that it's OK to do so.


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