Secret garden discovered in Camden - Sep 18, 2020
Lavender makes the bees happy!
Dear gardening friends
I've had a busy week.
Things happen to me, I've always got stories to tell. There's a few in here this week. Let's see if you can make it to the end?
I've been admiring this secret garden in Camden, through the gate, for some time.
But today, as I drove slowly past, I saw a man head down, and getting his hands dirty.
I stuck my head out the window and told him how much I loved the garden, and would he mind if I took a look.
I discovered straight away that Patrick McMaster and I are kindred spirits.
Patrick is a tree lover.
He guerilla planted Plane Trees, on his nature strip, six years ago.
His neighbours complain about the leaves, but on those hot days in summer, their cars mysteriously appear in their shade.
You can't see Patrick's house from the street.
A clipped hedge encloses the house and garden, so you can only catch glimpses of it's quirkyness through the gate.
Patrick has planted at least 20 trees in his small garden. He's used them as backdrops, then he plans the gardens around them.
As you enter the gate you are met with an older style house with a Pierre De Ronsard climbing rose spilling over a pergola.
There are standard "Thankyou" Roses that must look amazing, when they start to bloom. They have fragrant mauve flowers for 9 months. Their foliage was so lush and healthy with coppery new growth.
There are rusty urns and mismatched pots full of plants and flowers, that all seem to go.
Through the gate I discovered raised vegetable gardens made from corrugated iron. I smiled when I saw Tim's Italian Tomato seedlings waiting to be planted.
A Wisteria covered patio caught my attention. The mauve blue flowers had amazing perfume. This led on to another courtyard.
I realised then, that the garden is rooms, that lead on to each other.
There are different themes, and theatre everywhere. It's not all finished.
It's a work in progress.
I couldn't see any houses looking in.
It was total privacy and seclusion in the burbs.
Why don't more people make gardens part of the house? Not a last minute after thought?
Why does everyone build to the boundaries so they can hear their neighbours fart?
It's happening in this part of Camden too.
Old houses getting knocked down to be replaced by monstrosities with no green space.
This is old house has been renewed.
The garden is part of the house.
Thank you Patrick.
You are amazing.
There are so many ideas here that you can do at your place. A hedge across the front for one. Stop your neighbours looking in through your windows. It's a must.
Come see us for hedging plants that will suit.
Azaleas are bursting into bloom and if we don't get rain right now they will continue to bloom for a month.
This beauty is called Azalea "Red Wings". It's growing in our garden.
It has these double red flowers in spring and autumn. It's growing here in full sun and it's thriving
We have heaps of Azaleas in the nursery today. Ask for the Sun Lovers, because these tried and tested varieties, grow best in our hot dry suburb.
"Happy Days" and "White Bouquet" are winners too!
I got kidnapped on Saturday.
I was driving past this house in Camden, that had the most beautiful, Lavender garden.
I stopped the car, jumped out quickly, leaving my door open, and raced back to take a photo.
The front door of the house was open, so I just thought it would be nice manners, to let the owners know, that I loved their garden.
Dawn Martin came to the door, she was so excited to meet me, she started yelling out for her husband, to come to the door too.
Brendan turned up several minutes later.
He was wondering what the fuss was about.
I told him how much I loved his garden. The Avonview Lavenders were in full bloom and looking amazing.
Brendan and Dawn bought this house about 6 years ago.
It was in disrepair.
Their son designed the garden and bought the plants. Brendan planted them and did all the work.
He's done up the house too.
They originally came from Macquarie Fields. They have fallen in love with the house.
Every bit of it has been brought back to life with love.
They are hard working.
Their daughter has helped with kitchen cupboards and a new bathroom.
Yes I got shown around the house, while my car was parked, up the street, with the door open.
It might have even been still running?
I was suppose to be watching my son play soccer.
I was sure they were about to make me a cuppa, when I made my escape.
They've been married for 52 years.
They were so proud of their house, it made me happy too.
When I got back to my car the door had been closed. What ............d leaves his car door open? They must have been thinking.
The secret to growing Lavenders is to prune them back by 25% in late spring and then again after flowering in autumn.
They flower off new growth.
Pruning gives them that.
We have a nursery full of Lavender plants.
I'm not joking. You should see the bees.
If you want to get more fruit, plant a Lavender plant to attract nature's pollinators.
We have 10 varieties.
Chilli MR BIG won't burn your bum.
It's an exciting new variety that has heat, but not the fire!!!!!
The fruit are huge, up to 25cms.
You can pick them green, or let them turn red. The longer you leave them, the hotter they get.
This variety, is best for gardeners like me, who love Chilli, but you don't want to set yourself on fire.
This exciting new variety has high disease resistance. The fruit are a rich source of vitamin C, A and Potassium.
They can be grown in pots, in sunny spots, and they look so amazing, when they are covered in red fruit, they look Christmassy.
You can grow them in your vegetable garden of course or in pots.
I'm still amazed how many people don't dig Cow Manure into their gardens, before planting.
How are veggie seedlings and flowers going to grow with no nutrients?
People tell me they bought Premium Garden Mix, so they don't need it.
Nothing premium about garden mix.
It's made from Recycled Green Waste and it has less than 1% nitrogen.
If you want your Chilli plants to thrive, dig a bag of Tim's Cow Manure into the soil first.
It's natures natural fertiliser.
We know you have fallen in love with gardening. That's great.
Come and see us if you need help.