Sunday, 5 June 2011

autumn photos

I'm alive, I promise!

I was on a wonderful holiday in Turkey for two weeks; three weeks and 500 photos later, I'm only halfway through sorting them all!  So I've been neglecting both my garden and this blog.  Here's a bit of an update.

This autumn has been a real stunner in Melbourne, after a wet summer and a cold snap.  Unfortunately I missed the best of it, by the time I got back a lot of trees were just past their prime.  I missed my crepe myrtle's show entirely and after all the effort, missed the best weeks of my white anemones!  But my little maple put on a real show this year, it's the first autumn it's really shown off.
The time last year I was still referring to the poor thing as the "sad little maple" and it looked like this!
Big improvement, isn't it?  The oakleaf hydrangea is also looking very handsome, I reckon there's more red in the mix this year:
Compared to last year (the leaves did lose their green eventually but didn't gain the reddish hue):
I also had a little surprise come out of my giant elephant ear colocasia.  I've seen the flowers on my Amazon Queen colocasia before, but never seen them do this!  I'm not sure if it was just that the species type was more mature than my Amazon Queen or what, but it made a cheerful bright seed pod that looks a bit like an exploding triffid corn cob.
Finally, a quick snap of my lovely little colmanara hybrid orchid.  I took the advice of the grower I bought it from last year; when it finished flowering I put it outside on the porch.  It's grown several new pseudobulbs over the winter, and doesn't seem to mind the cold or the added sunlight from the low winter sun.  It's getting a few black spots that I hope are not mold!  No sign of new flower spikes though.  I wonder if I'll go to the orchid show again this year, and if I'll take home another orchid from this hybrid family.  The whole family seems to have drop-dead gorgeous flowers, and it seems to be pretty easy to care for.  But the real test will be whether I can get it to flower again!
That's all for now.  It's definitely winter now which in the garden is a time for reluctant maintenance in the cold. I've only got a few winter veg to look after this year so it's mostly a matter of raking up the rest of the leaves and getting through some major winter pruning tasks.  So you might not hear much from me for a little while, but I'm still here!