Discovering a hidden haven in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria, Australia

A Simple Plan…

Scentimental Rose in bud (close up!)

I admit it;  I’ve been looking at other gardening blogs and have been caught up in dreams of a beautiful garden with ‘just so’ garden beds and spectacular plantings.  The green eyes have come out! Is it blog envy? I don’t know, but I do know that I take photos of my flowers close up so no one can see the horror that surrounds them!

Today I realised I need a plan. A very simple plan. My garden is never going to be a show piece, but it could be my haven.

The reality is that if I look at my garden as a whole I quickly become demoralised. Think of a garden thug that could grow in the area my garden is in and I’ve got it in spades. Ivy, I’ve got it. Blackberry, the very bane of my existence. Running bamboo, check. Couch grass growing in plentiful supply, yup (but the good news is the Common Brown butterfly is said to love it!)

So, I am now thinking about it in manageable chunks. The Butterfly Garden is my first ‘chunk’ and on the hit list, apart from an awful lot of weeding, is the Ivy.

The before shot. Is the fence holding the ivy up or is the ivy holding the fence up?

Part way through, starting to see the extent of the damage.

Just in case anyone else was as silly as me to doubt the damage done by ivy

90% complete, fence still holding on, just.

After a long days hacking at the ivy and wrangling the couch grass I did allow myself the pleasure of the putting in the first planting toward the butterfly garden. My butterfly book tells me that apart from a whole range of nettles (please no, no more weeds!) the Australian Admiral butterfly is fond of ‘Baby Tears (Soleirolia soleirolii) as a food plant, so in it went in a shady spot today.

'Baby tears' in a shady, but possibly too dry position under a Buddliea

Last of all is a photo of a pest I’d like to identify. I’m sure it’s demonstrating my ignorance,  but I have no idea what it is. There are hundereds of these in my garden and we call them ‘flick moths’. Nothing comes up in a search for that nick name and my searches for moths have not revealed anything yet.

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Comments on: "A Simple Plan…" (5)

  1. I can so relate to hacking through the ivy. My neighbour did her side of the fence and I did mine. I really miss it this year during the winter time as it was so bright but my neighbour was afraid that the fence was going to fall down.

  2. That’s just my problem, I think it looks quite nice so I leave it there! If I don’t get on to the other areas where it’s still growing soon I think it will eat my fence 😦

  3. I think you are approaching this the best way….just working on small parts of the garden at a time. That is what I am trying to do. Heaven knows, my garden is a work in progress and far from perfect. I work on taking pictures of only the best parts of my garden 😉

  4. Hi 🙂 Almost 6 years on and a new comment..will this one disappear into the mighty vortex of the Internet land (assuredly controlled by a pack of fat, white mice).. Nonetheless, I shall throw out my request — did you identify the formal name for that pest you aptly nicknamed the “flick moth”? I have an army of them swarming now over my lime tree and our beautiful jasmine. Any help identifying them will assist research as to what problems they may or may not pose to our little garden sanctuary.

    Really hope 6 years on you still read this blog n pick up my SOS

    Happy gardening and merry X-mas!

    Lara, from Melbourne

    • Hi Lara and thanks for dropping by 🙂 I couldn’t let a comment like that drop into the ether, even though I don’t do much blog (and sadly garden) maintenance these days, wayyyyy too busy studying and working! I did get a shock when you mentioned this post is almost six years old, how time flies! The bug is the Passionvine Hopper, Scolypopa australis and I read one page that referred to the nymphs as ‘Fluffybums’ which is fitting for their appearance 😀 A more official verification right here http://www1.dpi.nsw.gov.au/keys/fulgor/ricaniidae/index.html They are nasty critters, sap suckers. I was just reading that they tend to spread disease too. Not sure if it was the former or latter issue that took out my raspberry canes in the end, but it was after these brutes swarmed all over them! Good luck with your sanctuary! Heidi.

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