Is My Mattock Coming Back? - Jun 07, 2024

Dear gardening friends
Robert and Ruby Swane turned up yesterday with the most amazing indoor plants!!!!! Yes it might be raining and cold but you can still garden indoors with these fabulous Calatheas.

Robert is Horicultural Royalty because his family started Swanes Nursery. His father was Ben Swane. He could tell you which variety of Citrus it was just by chewing on the leaf.

Today Robert has become more of a gardener than a nurseryman. He helps Ruby do the deliveries and he fixes things, but then he disappears out into the garden. He's had fabulous results from our Tim's Cow manure recently.

Ruby does all the nursery work, she grows these amazing colourful indoor plants from cuttings. They are the most beautiful healthy plants we've seen this winter. Most cost just $10.99. She can keep the prices down because she does all the work herself.

Buy a Calathea and a ceramic pot and we will pot it up for free using Tim's Best Potting mix. We want your plants to thrive. They need bright light near a window.

Water just once a week. But a big drink, not a sip. Come for a visit this long weekend.
Yes we are open. 10-4 Sunday and Monday.
Normal hours today.
Zoom zoom.

Sachin came in looking for plants to grow in his parent's garden. They are away on holidays so Sachin has decided to landscape their garden. He came in with a photo. It looked terrible of course, and it was full of weeds.

Sachin told me that his dad loves cricket, I come home and he's always watching Cricket.
Where are you from?
"We are from India, we love cricket."

Does your dad play cricket?
"No he's too old but he loves watching it, his mates took him to play golf recently so now he loves golf too. I come home now and he's watching golf"

Sachin had me laughing right from the start.
I showed him some plants that would look good together. We started with a tree of course.
A Crepe Myrtle Natchez. It will flower for 100 days in summer. He really wanted a Cherry blossom but they just don't do well in our heat.

He came back an hour later to tell me that his garden is full of black plastic. It's hiding under the weeds and mulch. It didn't work because the garden is full of weeds. Sachin laughs but he gets serious when I tell him to remove the black plastic. It poisons the soil and stops water getting in.

He asks me how to do that.
Do you have a shovel? I inquire.
What about a mattock? I get blank looks.

I show him what a mattock looks like, I have one in the shed. I notice his hair cut as he turns.

What's with the Mullet mate?
"It gets the chicks, they love it."
Did you cut that yourself, it looks like it?
"No I got a barber to do it"
He's burst out laughing.

I'll lend you my mattock, I tell him.
"Are you serious, you don't know me, I might not bring it back". If you don't, I'll put your photo on Facebook. Hold up the mattock and I'll take your photo now.

Sachin laughs so much. I give him an action plan. He has to dig out the plastic and the weeds and then dig Tim's Cow Manure into the soil. It's better to improve the soil you have and Cow manure will bring this dead soil back to life.

Sachin leaves but he showed me a photo of himself in uniform, he's a Paramedic, never judge a book by its haircut. I think I'll see my mattock again.
Isn't life amazing.

Oh my, I cooked up a concoction today. I was going through the freezer last night and I found bits of meat that could have been there since the ice age.

I found 2x lamb chops, 2x Lamb grillers, 6x fat sausages and 2x Skinny ones. They all went into the slow cooker.

Then I chucked in 1x Eggplant, 1x Leek, 1x Onion, 1x Big Mushroom, 1x stock cube, 1/2 a lemon, Garlic, fresh Rosemary, Olives, cracked Pepper and Pink Salt plus 3 x Anchovies. Yes.
I chopped everything up.

Then I added 1x big can of Tomatoes. That's all I could fit in. I cooked it all day on high. I add Fetta cheese just before serving with Brown Rice.

It was a winner and I've cleaned up the fridge. The house smelt amazing when I came home.
This is The Greek Dish basically.
It fed four people, with left overs for 3 lunches.

Jimmy did turn up, and he loved it. He doesn't like mushrooms, luckily it had disappeared into the mix.

I'm not sure if I started my business in 1986 or 1987 but I remember that this plant caused chaos around that time. Burkes Backyard had started and the ratings were huge, everything Don talked about on Friday night was in high demand on Saturday morning.

He did a story on Orange Trumpet vines. There's a famous vine growing at Hawkesbury Agricultural College. Don took the cameras out there and did a story about how fabulous this climbing plant could look. It covered half a building at the college.
It looked absolutely spectacular.

When we arrived at work the phone started ringing.
"Have you got that Orange Trumpet Vine that was on Burkes Backyard last night?" We must have got 100 phone calls, the phone rang all day. You couldn't find an Orange Trumpet vine for sale in Australia. It was incredible.

This was before mobile phones were invented.
I remember one of the sales rep had a mobile phone in a suit case. He had to carry the suitcase around incase he got a call.

I think people did more things in those days. They certainly gardened more. Home owners had bigger yards, they had more room, they had more time.

Orange Trumpet Vines are flowering again. The Trumpet doesn't blow so loud these days. But it's still an amazing climbing plant. It can cover your fence, if you let it, it will cover your house too.

In warmer places it's become a bit of a weed. It's not a weed here in Macarthur. There's a beauty growing on a fence in Ingleburn. You've probably seen it.

We have plants in stock today. It loves a sunny spot.
Never turn your back on it, never.


Happy gardening