Even though the weather lately has been very mild, Winter isn't my favourite time of year. I've had the dreaded flu etc but did find time for some painting. Thought I'd share a couple I've done recently.
I took the photos with my phone and try as I might I can't rotate the last one sorry.
If anyone knows how to do it I'd appreciate the advice.
We took advantage of the beautiful weather on Saturday and visited a local open garden. This garden had planned to open the weekend before but postponed due to wet and windy conditions and there was more of the same on Sunday, but the weather behaved itself for our visit.
The garden is set on 3 acres and has been cared for by the same people for 25 years. The most striking feature of the garden is the sheer number of bromeliads.
Pathways wound through garden beds
overflowing with bromeliads
Of course, there were also annuals and perennials and succulents and begonias
but the stars of the show were certainly the broms
Rows and rows of bromeliads most planted in garden beds beneath the trees - not a weed or a dead leaf in sight - many showing off blooms
They had topped up the wood-chip mulch throughout the garden. Everything were as neat as a pin. Having had a large garden I couldn't help thinking of the amount of work it takes to maintain a garden so large. Ours was never this neat and tidy.
Even the little touches of whimsy through garden featured bromeliads - shakin' them tail feathers
An assortment of red baskets replaced the foliage in the frangipani tree, with red impatiens and begonias as well as broms.
Not one of our native birds, but the flamingo must feel at home to have so many eggs.
The "sculptures" throughout the garden made we wonder whether grandchildren were regular visitors here.
Plant stalls were set up on the lawn - orchids, perennials and (of course) bromeliads for sale.
There were also talks on various subjects throughout the day and a morning tea area near the house.
The Australian Open Garden Scheme folded a while ago -- don't understand why. I'm grateful though that gardeners like these carry on regardless to open their gardens for us to enjoy.
Thank you, Marie and Lindsay. You have a beautiful garden.
I should have seen the signs of course. When a young colleague apologised to me after saying someone was behaving like an old woman, that was a clue.
Then one morning I woke to this. One of our wonderful neighbours left balloons at the front door and a sign on the garage door.
There was no hiding the fact that my birthday had arrived.
I have turned the big 60.
A champagne brunch was held to celebrate the occasion and being old and forgetful, I forgot the take any photos. I thoroughly enjoyed the day and look forward to whatever the next decade has in store.
Living on a relaxed laid back island is all very well if your lifestyle is also relaxed and laid back.
Lately mine has been anything but. My job plus the commute to and from work seems to have become more demanding this year. I love my job, but there are many times I wish I could stay home and walk along the beach with Missy (and John) instead of setting off in the car each morning. I'm still glad we moved to Bribie island but I have much less free time than I used to.
The garden is powering on without any help from me.
The pink pompom hibiscus keep flowering and are thickening up well. They'll soon form a hedge.
Along the back fence the palms and the native hibiscus have reached fence height. The cannas continue to flower, but with Winter coming on they will die back soon.
The heliconias are also growing well and the crepe myrtle.
Today we went to the Ginger Factory at Yandina - about an hours drive up the road. It was their annual Flower and Food Festival. Ginger plants, ginger recipes, cooking demonstrations and gardening talks.
I did not buy one ginger plant.
As we walked into the main cafeteria we were greeted by this enormous floral arrangement featuring beehive and torch gingers as well as various heliconia and other flowers. (This is just the lower half)
Heliconias (my favourite flower) made up the upper half
To get an idea of scale, you can see it was twice the height of a person.
There's an extensive garden shaded by large trees. The ideal growing conditions for gingers and other tropical plants.
Love this combination
This was the view from where we sat to eat lunch.
They sell all manner of ginger products - cosmetics, candles, etc, jams and sauces and chocolate coated ginger (some of that came home with us)
I didn't buy any ginger plants because they need more shelter than we can provide yet. Heliconias, on the other hand, don't mind full sun and when they grow tall will help provide shade for the ginger plants I might buy next year.