Monday, October 08, 2018

Things I've Planted Now Producing.

 We moved here on the 4th July. I planted these climbing snow peas shortly after that and am now picking the first pods. The garden had good soil here and compost bins full. I am putting in more every now and then.( they are the sort you can eat shell and all. )
 The broad beans have tiny beans forming ; they will take a week longer, the first flowers being slow to pollinate .I've seen one bumble bee and many ordinary bees but they like the lavender and cherry blossoms best.

I removed the unsightly frame from around one bed . R had made a very smart strong bird protection frame for my strawberries. All 4 plots here are the same size so it is movable when I want to put strawbs elsewhere another year.
The lids come up in 2 halves - nice and light.
 Grandson will be very pleased. He loves picking and eating strawberries. To have ones own strawberries after the recent sabotage of punnets for sale will be reassuring.

This pure wool 4ply scrap blanket is now finished. the weight on the needles was getting heavy so a good time to stop.
 We have seen 2 more adult rabbits yesterday and one today. R can only get a shot at them if there is no neighbour's  house behind. Meanwhile I am covering every little plants I plant out. 
 On my next post I will show how I am getting on with newest Grandson's Felt embroidered ball.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Getting the Feel of this Place.

I think the reason it has taken me ages to get to feel as though I belong here is someone else had done all the work. Gradually I can look around and think I did that or changed that or planted that, so maybe I'm / we are taking possession. The weather has warmed up beautifully, that makes me happy. My health has returned to normal along with my energy levels. Yesterday we were out with friends for lunch for R's Birthday and they had the dreaded bug we struggled with for the last few months and they too were feeling awful.( altho on the mend now )

 Here is a photo of ( dead )  rabbit # 6 who was being a digging pest in our garden, especially where there was newly worked soil. I already had wire netting cloches but not enough, so today got some more.  Cover and protect is a necessity.

At the weekend elder Grandson almost 3 and I made and sailed little boats made from saved walnut half shells.We launched them from the jetty and the side of the estuary. Most soon became water logged but we had a happy hour and a half mucking about with boats and sticks and other stuff.

 That photo is on it's side ↺
 ( does anyone know a way to rotate photos once in Blogger? )

 Theses are sideways too. I change them and they don't stay when I up load them here!

 Unique rhododendron coming into flower - there seem to be about 8 all the same one.
 Clivias orange and lemon are doing well. 3 tiny pink and white azaleas next to them don't seem to clash. This shade area is the best part of the garden. The previous owner wasn't into flowers.
 We are glad to say one tatty half dead box hedge has been removed. 18 agapanthus overhanging one grape vine have also gone. It's a start of the many changes and improvements we wish to make with the garden, Inside the house lights have been changed and the sound system finally got going in the lounge.
 R went and bought a hedge trimmer as there are many, mostly photinia red robin, hedges to keep cut.
At the moment they are bright red with Spring growth.

 Sewing = 0
 Knitting = a blanket using left over wool is  almost complete.
 I am on the way with newest Grandson's felt embroidered ball too.
 The table I hope to use for sewing finally arrived last week. So maybe my quilting mojo will return sometime soon.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Bright Quilt.

Yesterday was Patchwork and Quilting day for me with the Tauranga group. In order to get ladies to finish some put aside projects we have a thing we call " Top  5 ". Any one who wants to enters their name in a notebook with a description of the project ( quilt ) they would like to get finished but for whatever reason procrastinate over. We have  a draw of the names every now and then with a small prize. Valerie came with this huge bright quilt which she started over 10 years ago. She had finally finished it. It was magnificent and bigger than King size.  ( the photo shows it lying on a bench but gives an idea of the bright colours.
 On the sunny day during the week I weeded this area around one of the cherry trees. Today I planted some ice land poppies and some snapdragons.. I have covered them with net to try and deter the digging rabbits.
 This morning I added 6 asparagus plants to the little patch here. I also planted an early cucumber and a sweet 100 tomato in the plastic house hoping they will come ready before our main outside plantings.
This lovely cauli I picked and gave to the nice neighbours. There is an even bigger one for us to pick for dinner.
The bees are loving the many lavender bushes.
 Its been a beautiful Spring Day in BOP.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Having a short Break.

We recently had a flight to Wellington.
 The Captain wanted some good photos of the mountains in the middle of the North Island so we also got some good close shots.
This is Mt Ngaruhoe ( the pointy one ) and Mt Tongariro.

 This is Mt Ruapehu - the crater lake is just visible.

  We visited Te papa - this was a colourful display for kids.

 We visited the War memorial Exhibition and went down in the Trenches. Very realistic very smelly. ( Peter Jackson Creations.) No cameras or phones or bags allowed so no photos.

 Staying at our Hotel were  the All Blacks. ( just back from Nelson )  Gosh they are tall when you stand next to them in a lift! 

 We only bought meals and Books! quite a few books.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

I've Had My Gumboots on Most of Today.

 I've been strenuously working in the garden then decided to take a break down at the Jetty. The tide was coming in fast.
This trailer was delivered this morning, so having it's first photo shoot.
This is the boundary fence between us and nice neighbours.
From their side the sun makes a swaggy shadow.
 Do notice the sky in these two photos.When R offered me a quick ride back up the guessed it....I had the first ride in the trailer!
 Glad I did cause it bucketed down.

 First thing this morning this was in the sky.( it has a 2nd very pale one to the right ) 
But then the sun stayed out. I got washing dry...then suddenly navy blue sky.
Earlier we both had been pulling out half dead box hedge. R wants to plant his potatoes behind here.
 He has a heavy grey strap around the trunk of the plant. The Hustler does the work.

 Elsewhere I was carefully digging my ones out.

 The  first lovely cherries are now finished and have new feathery red leaves.  4 more are yet to flower - different  ones.

Friday, August 31, 2018

What's Happening in the New Garden?

Bulbs that came with me in pots are flowering. The rain knocked these freesias with very long stems to the ground. There are other orange plants beginning to flower under the cherry trees. Clivias  like the shade.
 Yesterday I went out during a spell in the rain and planted a new rose called Golden Jubilee. My sister had it in a bucket since the end of last year and bought it up when they came to visit late Monday. It didn't seem the worse for too long in a container so I hope it likes its new place in my new garden.
 The dying box hedge to the right of it is on the list of things to pull out so then it will have more space.

R has had seed potatoes out sprouting ( chitting ) . He is clearing a patch of garden at the end of the vege garden of irises and renga renga lilies. They host slugs and snails and along with agapanthus are not great things to have planted beside edible plants - just asking for trouble. ( we will remove them all given time ) 


 Down the steepish  bank where all the fruit trees are growing the first few pink buds are appearing on I think a peach tree and this plum is covered with blossom.
 Right at the bottom of the property near the estuary it can be very wet - especially when the tide is in. This Swamp Cypress is an ideal tree for the conditions. I noticed it is just showing new green leaves . Here from a distance it still looks bare.
(The pear tree is to the right behind it ) 

 In the vege garden that was already here we have lots of side shoots on broccoli and cabbages coming ready. Cauliflowers are showing promise too. We have grapefruit and lemons in abundance.
 Everything I have planted new is doing okay.  ( my snow peas and broad beans are climbing!  )  Rabbits visit the garden daily and so far R has only been able to eliminate one ! 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018


I have finished knitting a jersey for elder Grandson and a beanie as well.

 Its about the 4th time I have knitted this 4 ply  Jersey pattern and think its a good one by Debbie Bliss.
 Its a really wet day here in BOP so its all inside activities.
 I am now working on an embroidered felt ball for new Grandson.
 I wonder what motifs I will decide to put on it?

Friday, August 17, 2018

A New Family Member.

Finally rid of our nasty bugs we got to visit the Big Smoke yesterday and meet first hand our new Grandson.  He was born last week. A tiny wee brother for Grandson who you have recently seen here on this blog when he was flying a kite.
 This is my favourite photo I took. Son was holding him and  big Grandson was talking to him so he was listening and looking where the voice was coming from. We  are very pleased to have 2 lovely grandsons. 

Saturday, August 04, 2018

Many Different Views.

Today it is overcast and misty giving us quite different views from the house.
 This is from the lounge door. 
 On a finer day this pic looks up the valley from the top steps.

The clumps of daffodils are a bright splash of colour 

This lot Molly with the avocado tree behind them.
See it is quite large.  As we know what to do with avos we will prune it into a vase shape to let more light in and reduce the overall height.
I picked some of the first blossom from the flowering Cherry ( Pink Cloud  - 3 of those ). It came out quickly inside in the vase.The trees have a real red tinge and will shortly burst forth.

 You know I like taking photos of mailboxes well this is ours...the one with the red flag up.
( no scruffy boxes allowed obviously ) 
 These of course equate to how many homes are in out small subdivision.

 I got my knitting out yesterday. Hurrah!!. Feels really good to be knitting again. I made rapid progress. Just the sleeves to do now.
 I think my cold is on the way out -seems better today. Having to stay in in the warm so here's hoping.

Monday, July 30, 2018

New Place.

Signs of warmer days to come in our new garden.
Grandson ( 2 years 10 months ) has gone home ( after 9 days )  last Friday afternoon but enjoyed exploring the new surroundings despite having a nasty cold....which I caught from him just when I thought I was coming right.
 I have zero energy at the moment. R has caught it too!
One very windy day we tried our hand at flying this little kite. ( his Dad flies big ones so he had the general idea. ) 
 We used the beach toys to do a little digging in the garden around one of the cherry trees. There are 7.( 4 different varieties. )

I can't say I am adjusting very fast. This place still feels very strange( and often inconvenient ) to me.
 When the sun shines in it is super warm. When it doesn't and in the long windowless hall it is very cool. I don't know why I got it out but I went back to the large coloured brochure advertising this property and I can see by the photos they took at least one wall heater with them. - that explains why one room is cold.

 The kid's playground needs a lot of repair to make it safe for an almost 3 year old.

 The neighbours are friendly and invited us to go out with them last Friday - hope they didn't get cold germs off us.
Things don't fit well in what is to be my sewing room so I will have to change furniture. We were more lucky here in the office where the computer is. It is a small snug room and the 2 filing cabinets and computer desk fitted with not a centimetre to spare. 
 I also like having a large ( first ever ) walk in wardrobe.
 The other thing I am pleased with is a very generous sized hot water / airing / linen cupboard.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

At Our New Place

Hi,My blogging Friends
 We we have made our move and it was totally exhausting. I had little idea it was going to be so stressful, but after 40 years in one place I guess we had a lot of stuff to go through and probably came here with far too much of it ; we'll see
 The first photo is from the very bottom of our property  I am standing on the little jetty looking North
 The garden is 6152 square metres this is the flat bottom bit .There are 4 terraces one sloping the others more or less flat.

The 3rd sloping part is covered with fruit trees which I assure you are standing up I just had my camera upside down. I will go into the range of fruit trees in more detail when I am sure about them but there is plenty of citrus and 4 avocados ( yeah ! ) and a walnut - to make me feel at home here. There are also apples plums etc. 
 Yesterday we went shopping and got some of the things we need , like 4 doormats 2 more heaters as so far we have found it cold. We ordered a couple more pieces of furniture to house my good china and glass and some new dining chairs..
 We are also replacing the dishwasher as it does not dry and has only one option and leaves soap behind - so that has to go. There will be lots of other changes I expect. 
 If I never see another large cardboard carton that has to be emptied I'll be glad. The movers came back for the empty boxes today so that has freed up space .
 Lots more to tell as I explore..

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Moving Right Along.

Yesterday  morning we spent an hour at our lawyers signing documents. At 4.45pm we went unconditional on the ( only ) property we wanted to buy.
The lawyers were holding us up trying to straighten out   some minutiae. We could see we were going to miss our 5 pm deadline so were stressing to the max. We asked in writing  ( email ) for them to send the money across to the seller's lawyer. We know the sellers as yet have nowhere to go and we did not want to give them the chance to call the whole thing off.
 It was a huge relief just before 5 to hear the money arrived and we were now committed to guying the property. Phew!
 Our new place which we will shift to in the first few days of next month  is only 2 kilometres away from here. It has a very large garden with lots of fruit trees and a little jetty at the bottom of the last part of sloping lawn. As soon as we get there I will show you lots of photos.
 Meanwhile I have been packing smaller fiddly things. Grandson ( now 2 years 8 months old ) will feel reassured that ALL the wooden vehicles are moving with us. Along with all the other toys and books. I bought 6 large Sistema plastic tubs for my fabric stash. That was the first thing I packed.There is of course lots of equipment and books as well in my sewing cupboard.

 My lovely Daphne bush has decided to flower now so I get to see it and I have picked some for the kitchen window sill.

 It will of course be staying put as will the waterlily bowl beside it. It has a crack that would not let it be transported without destroying itself.
 I will miss my garden very much but can look forward to seeing what comes up in the new one and then making some changes there. I know we will be enlarging the vegetable patch ( but at least it has one established ).

 The carpet got finished!

 Meanwhile I have had a birthday ( 7th ) and a nasty throat and cough which lasted 2 weeks went away then the cough came back and is still with me.
 Today R had a medical appointment so I went along and walked in the sunshine. Good thinking as it is now raining. I am sure 45 minutes Vit D must have helped. I am consuming  Vit C at an excessive rate and trying to get plenty of rest.....that part not working quite so well. Stress may have something to do with it too.
 Never mind things are moving along now and we are looking forward to our retirement.
 ( Will I still want to call this blog, The Quilting Orchardist? )

Monday, June 04, 2018

Finishing Well.

Finally, finally the kiwifruit picking happened last Thursday and Friday in fabulous fine weather - so lucky! Since then BOP has had appalling weather.
 A picker emptying his load into the bin. There were 2 ladies in the gang of 22 .
 They were a happy lot on the whole and worked very hard to make the most of the fine days. They have been having lots of down time this season because of the many, many rainy days.

 We had 4 tractors ;each tractor pulls a trailer that holds 3 bins. All our tractor drivers were older chaps one was 83! He did so well.
 Rob doing some adding up as they go.... Tallies must be accurate.
 The drivers levelling out the top of a full bin.

 The bin trailer gets tilted and the bins slide off as the tractor moves forward.
 The truckie talking to the forklift driver who stacks 3 bins high and lifts them into the truck.( 30 or 32 to a truck ) 

 We were happy with the bin tally. There was some sooty mould we knew that would show up but the fruit is big and the final dry matter test came out very high so that means the fruit will taste good.

 For us this is huge! This was the 36th Export crop of kiwifruit we have grown. We have lived here 40 years and planted it all when we arrived here. So our FINAL crop. we have sold the orchard. It becomes unconditional in 2 days time. The new young owners have been here watching and learning while  picking happened. They are very keen.

 Strangely the selling didn't prove to be the hard part as we thought....finding a new place to buy is far harder. There is one we really like but are not sure if our offer will be enough. I do so hope so cause we can find much else that suits our needs ( must have a workshop / shed and a sizeable garden for fruit and veges. ) that's the hard part there are lots of lovely houses with tiny sections.

 Other things. The carpet layer STILL hasn't come back to finish the part around the fireplace! 
 The new grass seed / lawn is looking fabulous . It's such a bright green colour.