Before and after

When a tradesman says “Its like an oasis”,  you have to take the accolade and run with it especially when your inner eye reminds you of what was there before.  Trawling through old photos the other day I found this “before” picture of the back garden.  Some plants have changed, many have grown beyond recognition but the basic structure is the same.

And its just the same with the front garden which was a bit of barren wasteland in 1997.

It now looks like this:

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Possum proofing


Explanation needed?
Once there was a beautiful rose (called Lordly Oberon) growing quite happily around my deck. Unfortunately the local possum acquired a taste for rosebuds.
Cheeky little thing. I am actually quite fond of the possum ( I think there is only one). I love the big possum eyes and the twitchy little nose.
What I don’t like is my roses being considered a possum smorgasbord.
Time for action.
This mosquito net left over from the Moroccan-themed 21st seemed just the thing. I nail it and peg it convinced that I have the possum bested.
But it appears that the possums hunger for my rose knows no bounds. Shredded! Totally!
Next trick: alternate food source. A plate of delicious apple. Surely apples taste better than roses.


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Look right there, right there! She’s on the tele!

Stilettos, a sharp suit, pearls and a pink shirt, looking every bit the legal lady.

Sunrise 9.10.2012

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Legally Blonde In Sydney

Opening night. The fabulous and talented Alexandra Elizabeth Ann Calder, known to most as Ali, shone as the snooty anti-blonde, Vivienne in this pink, silly but fun, high velocity, high energy musical.

They say that a mother can distinguish her own baby’s cries. I only heard my treasure sing tonight!

Reviews so far:

“Ali Calder makes a tremendous impression as Vivienne” ~ Theatre People

“Ali Calder shines as his new ‘serious’ girlfriend Vivienne” ~ Aussie Theatre

“Special mention lastly must go to Ali Calder (Vivienne) who shined and much like her Broadway cast counterpart, Kate Shindle, made me wish the role allowed for more showing off of what is clearly an incredible voice.” –

“Ali Calder was good as the unlikeable Vivienne.” ~ Curtaincall

“Ali Calder is dynamite in her role of Woods’ Harvard nemesis, Vivienne.  At age 21 Calder displays a voice beyond her years and her solo work in ‘Legally Blonde (Remix)’ and the finale, is scene stealing.” ~ stagedoorjohny blog

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Keeping an eye on things


One of dog’s favorite things to do is to sit in the back garden and just watch. I suspect he is trying to work out where the neighbors chooks have gone.
He is not a good gardener, this dog! If I could train him to dig holes where I need them that would be a big help.
But I love that he is happy being in the garden with me while I work!

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With a little help …………

….. from my friends, and family.    That is how my garden has grown.


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The recycled garden

 Damaged and broken things find a home in my garden

What do you do when you have a really slopey a back yard full of building rubble, a couple of rubbish trees, some gigantic weeds and not much else?   Sigh very loudly and dream a lot about what could be!   Twenty years ago, with a minuscule budget and no idea about plants and gardening I embarked on a love affair that grows!

From the outset my garden has been all about recycling.  The first job was to make the worst part, the bit where all the building rubble had been dumped, fairly flat and solid.  So some pretty heavy manual labour happened and the result was covered by a horrible old carpet that came with the house.  The carpet was then covered with bark chips.  What followed next was trial and error.  Old pot plants inherited from the previous owners were dug in and surprisingly flourished as specimen trees.   Salvaged round treated pine posts were donated by a friend.  The first installment of  these posts went into making  retaining terrace walls., the second and most recent delivery has made a raised garden at the very bottom of the slope.  Friends and family donated plants and cuttings.  I reckon that if a plant cost nothing and grows thats excellent, and if it doesn’t thrive its mulch.   Nothing goes to waste in my garden,  it swallows up clean fill from friends’ renovations as well as  rocks and ancient broken concrete garden pots.  Objects left at the side of the road for Council collection have become decorative features – a candle holder is a frame  for Spanish Moss, broken terracotta pipes have become the bases for water features, a wrought iron garden bench waits to be fixed,  and old kitchen pots have become planters.   The recent rewiring of outside lights provided some perfectly excellent candle holders, and pavers scrounged from a garden undergoing a revamp have provided the backbone for a veggie garden.

Twenty years later it is a refuge visited by parrots, possums and children.   A place for secret garden parties, or quite times.    And always a work in progress!

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