Tag Archives: garden

Garden Hands

7 May

I like to potter in my garden and I am finally seeing some results with fruits for my labour.   I also have a lovely pair of gloves to protect my hands, however I’m all fingers and thumbs when wearing them, so apart from when touching yucky stuff, I usually ditch the gloves.

Ditching the gloves causes dirty, rough hands which is a problem of a night when I like to indulge in my other hobbies of knitting, crochet and embroidery.  There  is nothing more annoying than thread catching on rough skin.

My solution is a home made hand scrub.  I made a batch today to share with some friends this Thursday.  If you would like a copy of my recipe leave me a message in the comments.



The Lemon Happy Dance

3 May

I have just harvested my first lemon.  If this seems like an odd thing to ‘happy dance’ about then you are blessed.  It means you have never suffered form Black-Thumb-itis.

My sister has the gardening genes in our family.  She can and does grow some strange and varied crops.  In fact, she was growing Kale before it became trendy (makes good chook food apparently).

The last couple of years my darling children have encouraged my poor attempts at growing food to put on the table by buying living plants for me as presents.  Oh, the pressure.  My lemon tree has survived a couple of years now.  We have had a love hate relationship.  I love the tree, it hates me.  It has flowered, only to succumb to wind.  It has set fruit, only to succumb to wind and heat.

Finally, this year, through much trauma and angst the tree and I have managed to sync, and I have lemons.  I have yellow lemons sitting on the tree.  They feel like little rocks and I don’t know when they will be fully ripe and ready to pick.  So today I took the plunge.



3 Feb

Why won’t my lemons ripen?

2015 saw me receive a Lemon tree as a gift from my son.  Yay, I love lemon curd.  My Pop had bought us a Lemon tree when were first married  but we had to leave it in the garden of our first house.

Gardening in the country has a few more challenges than the city.  Mostly from Possums and Wallabies.  The first night my lemon was left on the back deck someone had a nibble on the stem and gorged on the new leaf buds 😦

Then the first, second and I don’t know how many flowers have been lost in the wind.  Westerly winds and I are not friends  😦

Then the fruit would set, get to about the size of my pinky and drop off 😦

Then the fruit would grow bigger and disappear, I suspect the wallabies were picking it off.

Finally, it appears the tree is strong enough, there is plenty of decent sized fruit, there are new flowers, there is new fruit budding……… but nothing is ripening.

I think I can see some hints of yellow, maybe.  How long can a lemon sit on a tree?

My latest lemon tree love is a new fertiliser, instead of a water soluble weekly solution, I’ve scattered a slow release that according to the packet can last up to 6 months, and is only used by the plant when it needs it.

If anyone is a lemon guru and has any advise please leave a comment.



29 Jan

Pottering in the garden this afternoon and I noticed the leek flowers were covered in bumble bees.  After a quick dash inside for the camera I came back to find only one bumble bee left, but plenty of honey bees.  These are the best shots, with both my 12-40 zoom and my 60mm macro.  I’m loving the detail I was able to capture.


11 Jan

The back door of our house faces south-east, the top half is glass and I have a hanging fern garden decorating it.  It seems that I have managed to cultivate some very happy ferns.  This morning the sun shining through the ferns inspired todays photo.  There is a new frond curling up, almost ready to open.  I haven’t quite captured what is in my minds eye but it’s a start.

Gone to Seed

3 Jan

In the garden it seems that I have the best success with plants going to seed.  Italian Parsley is the best at this, plant it one week, seeding the next.  At the moment I have some neglected spring onions and leeks.  Neither returned much of a crop that I was able to cook with but both are now producing the most amazing seed pods which gave me the perfect opportunity to bring out the 60mm macro.

I stated out watering my lemon with my camera in hand with the 12-40 pro lens in place.  I wanted a photo to prove that my lemon tree is producing fruit, even if it seems the wallabies are eating it before it ripens.



Then I noticed the leeks have rather attractive seed buds just starting to bloom.  As I was shooting this bug came in to land and stayed long enough for me to get a focussed shot.

©2017 Cathy Craig

Original shot with 12-40 Pro


I’ve been teaching myself LightRoom, I’m not sure what I’m doing and welcome any feedback on this cropped version of the previous photo.

©2017 Cathy Craig



I decided to see what the difference in photo ‘quality’ was using a specific macro lens with my tripod.  This is a different pod that was closer to the ground and easier for me to shoot with my tripod setup.  I have quite a few photos where I varied focal point and depth of field.  Of course half way through my experiments a slight breeze came up.  So my focus bracketing attempts aren’t stacking very well.

©2017 Cathy Craig


This spring onion flower caught my eye and it was interesting to see what effect physically moving the camera gave to the shot.

©2017 Cathy Craig

This is where I was hoping to have some success with focus bracketing, unfortunately the breeze was just there and created too much movement.

©2017 Cathy Craig


Embroidery Shop Courtyard

3 Mar

My friend owns an embroidery shop. A Stitch in Time is a little piece of heaven for stitchers.  One of the things I like the most is the Courtyard Garden out the back of the shop.  It’s sheltered, gets lots of sun but plenty of shade and is a lovely size and always has lots happening.  As I live in a windy spot my ‘garden’ is wild, untended, untamed native.  I stick in a plant and it either lives or (usually) dies, either from wind, neglect or wallaby/rabbit nibbles.  Today I got to snap a couple of flowers in the courtyard.

P3030123 P3030110

Garden bed installed

9 Jan

My sister who has the greenest thumb in the world is testing my ability to garden.  For Christmas she gave us this amazing raised garden bed to sit on the balcony, as well as 3 tomato plants and two chillies.  Now chillies are something I can grow.  Tomatoes and I have a rather chequered history, so we shall see how these ones survive.


I decided to only put one tomato in this bed along with the two chillies.  This bed is on the east side of the house, so will get lots of early morning and most of the day sun and will get shade from late afternoon.

This flower is in a pot by the front door.  Despite my not so green thumb I have managed to keep this one and it’s pink counterpart alive and flowering for over 2 years now.