Sunday, 22 November 2015

In times of stress ...

I get my best gardening done when I'm stressed! Our wheat crop is due to be harvested any day, and it is my job to deal with contractors, organise trucks and generally make it happen. To say I find it stressful is an understatement! There is significant (for us) income at stake and every decision can be the difference between making a profit and not. And so, one of the things I do to calm myself is to pop outside into the garden and pull a few weeds. The upside of this is that the farm garden is looking a picture!

There are new plants to enjoy. Leucospermum glabrum x tottum 'Carnival Red' is a particular show-off.

Some plants are flowering for the first time, like Iris sibirica 'Sapphire'. 

Parts of the garden that seem to have been struggling for years are finally coming into their own. I planted this bank of roses years ago now, and underplanted them with ox eye daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare). Many times, I've almost pulled these daisies out, but I'm glad I didn't. They are giving this part of the garden a pleasingly ethereal and dainty look this year. They can stay.

The daisies are mixing quite prettily in with Rosa 'Granny's Bonnet'.

Just behind these roses is a brand new garden and I'm looking forward to watching it evolve.

The roses, as usual, don't disappoint.  This is the lovely David Austin, Rosa 'Jubilee Celebration'.

 I took some garden photos just recently, and managed to catch some of the roses in the early morning dew.

Rosa 'La Reine de Victoria'
I've read somewhere recently that the prime time for taking photos is in the early morning and late afternoon. I had sort of worked this out over the years, but in photographic terms, these times are called the 'golden hours', and are defined as the period shortly after sunrise or before sunset during which daylight is redder and softer compared to when the sun is higher in the sky. 

Rosa 'Reine des Violettes'
There is even an app called GoldenLight which can help you to determine the perfect time for taking photographs in your location in the world. It really can make a difference to the quality of your photos.

Rosa 'Double Delight'

Rosa 'Pat Austin'
We've had barely any aphids this year, presumably because it has been so dry, at least until recently.

Rosa 'France Libre'
Having said that, we have had 5 inches of rain in the last few weeks which has not been good for anyone trying to get crops harvested. Rain late in the season can mean that crops fall over, or grain can shoot while it's still on the stalk, causing harvest to be slow and expensive, grain to be downgraded in quality and prices to be lower.  This is our wheat before the rain. It remains to be seen how badly the rain has affected it.

And so for now, I'm waiting patiently for the harvesting contractor to arrive.

Rosa 'New Dawn'
And enjoying to solace of the garden in the meantime!

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