Tag Archives: gardening

Pretty Garden

Bronze Pot Flowers 1

Haiku 255

A fun art project

Passing the time in Lockdown

Brighten up the stoep


In my recent post A Little Potty, I describe how I decided to brighten up my garden pots. The two plant pots shown below were the first to get a make-over.

Bronze Pots Before Prep 2

I’d bought them many years ago from a supermarket and originally they were painted a lovely blue-green. You can still see some of the colour.

One pot still had a plant in, a Japanese Sacred Palm, as I was busy preparing a place in the garden to transplant it.

To clean the pots, I scrubbed them with sugar soap, rinsed and left them to dry in the sun.

Bronze Pots Primer 3

The paint has been chipping off these pots for a long time. I could see that underneath they had not been primed, but simply painted directly on to the clay. I bought a spray can of primer and applied two coats.

Even with just the primer, the pots were already looking better.

Bronze Pots Second Coat 4

This was my fun project, and I was using spray paint for the first time. I chose a metallic bronze for these pots. Not really sure what I was doing, I just sprayed on a thin coat, deciding that it would be better to build up the layers rather than spray on too thickly.

I applied three coats over a few days and was really happy with the result. They now looked like brand new pots.

Bronze Pots Final Coat 5

Time to plant something in them!

I transplanted out the Japanese Scared Palm from the one pot, and chose orange pansies to complement the bronze. Eventually I planned to plant daffodils bulbs too, but that is another story.

After a week or two, the pansies grew nicely and spread over the pots.

Bronze Pots Flowers 6

Here is the finished result, with the blue pots full of violas and freesias in the background.

Now I have a pretty garden!




Dianthus 1

Haiku 210

Incandescent glow

Shimmering and glittering



The evening sun illuminates my few Dianthus flowers with its last rays.

Dianthus 2

I usually plant Pansies as my winter flowers in this bed. However, the garden centres were closed earlier in the year, due to Lockdown, so I had to make do with these Dianthus that, luckily, I’d bought just before.

Dianthus 3

They sat there very quietly to start with, all green leaves, with barely a glimmer of colourful flowers. Now they are blooming merrily away, in various shades of red and pink, and cheering my winter days.


Close ups taken with my new Galaxy A50.



Weed 1

Weed 1

Look at the pretty flowers!

Weed 2

Weed 2

Actually, I think they are weeds.

Now how can something so pretty be a weed?

Weed 3

Weed 3

Oh, That’s how! You are over-running my plant pots!

Time to weed you out!


post script: My most viewed post ever was Weeeeeeeed! (Not liked or commented, just viewed.) I wonder why?


Bougainvillea 1



Scifi 0

While it is nowhere near real winter yet, the temperatures have been dropping significantly at night, and it is time to begin reclaiming some of the garden. The two months or so of actual winter are not nearly long enough to hack back the jungle.

One drawback of a sunny climate is that everything grows; the unwanted along with the wanted. This morning I decided to tackle some of the neighbour’s vines on my side of the fence and behind my bougainvillea.

Even with very thick gloves on, the bougainvillea still got me good!



The first cut I didn’t even know about.

Ouch 2

Ouch 2

However, as the long poisonous thorn ripped through my palm, this second gash had me yelling out, “Fiddlesticks!”





I just love the name of this little flower – Phlox.

Over the years I have tried, unsuccessfully, to keep some of these flowers growing in my garden. I had white and purple ones, but the purple ones disappeared very quickly, and eventually the white ones followed suit.

Somehow a few seeds must have remained dormant, because, years later, here in my pot with another plant, these few straggly white phlox have suddenly appeared.

I know you’ll be tired of hearing it by now, but really, you have to be an extremely hardy and persistent plant to survive in my garden!


When breathing isn’t enough! – Wordy Wednesday

Let the Sun shine through

Let the Sun shine through

Yesterday was not a good day! –¬†After an hour at the dentist, where I got my front tooth fixed, and nearly had a heart attack when I got the bill, I drove straight into a traffic jam, at 1.30 pm! Road works on the freeway! (Now, these were the roadworks I was expecting on the way to the dentist, as I’d run into them the last two times I’d been that way. But nope, the lanes were free and I arrived 20 minutes early for my appointment! So I sat in my car and did crossword puzzles.)

Still, not too bad? Yeah, I was recovering; having hugged my dogs and posted my blue skies photo.

Later in the day, after I’d walked and fed the dogs, I thought I’d do a bit of gardening quickly, and hack back some of the side vines to put in the big rubbish bin (wheelie).

Now, in South Africa (well the Western Cape for sure), people go round the streets in the dark of night and rifle through your rubbish bin, which you’ve already put outside on the street for collection the next day, because the refuse guys usually come before 7 am. There is nothing of use in my bin, as we recycle everything, but if I ever do have something that I have not already taken to a charity shop, then I put it on top for the guys.

When my parents were visiting here from the UK, years ago, and we were going out one night on rubbish night, my Dad whispered to me, “There’s someone going through your rubbish.” I’m like, “Yes, of course.” We are so used to it that you forget it is not usual in all countries.

Well, I don’t mind them going through my bin. But I do mind that they open and empty every packet and the bin gets very smelly, and there is rubbish on the street for me to pick up in the morning. One way round this is to fill up my bin with garden refuse. I do this every week. Only this week I hadn’t had a chance, because my right thumb was extremely sore, red and swollen at the base joint; my dog, Little Monkey, in her inexhaustible exuberance, had sprained it and I couldn’t do any gardening.

So, since my thumb was much better now, I decided to go out and cut some vines to fill up the bin. I fished around for my gardening gloves on the floor and then was looking for the good shears, when my left index finger got “stung”. I jumped back, only to find the large hack saw attached to my finger-pad by its nasty sharp interlocking teeth.


(I usually keep the hack saw blade wrapped in cardboard, so I don’t know what happened there. Yes, it is in thick cardboard now!!)

There was quite a hole ripped in the pad of my finger, and blood spurting everywhere. By the time I’d sorted that out I decided the bin could go out as it was. And looking at blue skies, hugging my dogs and breathing wasn’t going to work any more.

So I poured myself a large Pernod on the rocks! Cheers!

post script: If I had any computer skills at all, I would have removed the telephone line from the sky photo above!

Portrait of a Plant #2

Camellia and Visitor

Camellia and Visitor

I’ll flower when I’m blooming ready!

What is it with plants in my garden? I have had this camellia bush for twenty years. For the first ten it simply sat there, not dead, but not flourishing; just a sticky thing in the ground. Gradually, it began to grow and finally there were buds. I counted each new flower. Thirteen one year. Hooray!

Now, there are countless blooms. But there was still a mystery. Why do I find so many dead flowers and buds under the bush, when I have just raked there the day before?

It took a while to solve this mystery. Then one day, I looked through the window and saw the whole bush shaking violently. I watched in astonishment, wondering if there was a cat fight or something going on in there.

The shaking stopped, and out popped a little grey squirrel. It turned round to face the bush and stood up on its hind legs. Then it attacked the flowers with a quick pitter pat of its tiny grey paws.

Flowers and buds alike fell to the ground, whereupon the little squirrel picked one up, hopped onto the old bench, and sat there happily eating my camellia!

Squirrel thief

Sparky the Squirrel Thief