Saturday, November 14, 2009

Restoration of the Garden at 'Mullengeandra' November 2009


After a good month of procrastinating, wondering what to write before I send it (whatever 'it' is), after half a bottle of red I have finally plucked up enough courage to put pen to paper (so to speak).

The original thought line behind the construction of this blog was so that I could easily write down my thoughts, trials, successes and failures associated with the restoration, and subsequent celebration of a half acre piece of paradise in the beautiful village of Leura, located in the Blue Mountains 100km west of Sydney, Australia. Those of you who have found this blog via my company's website will have probably read my limited journal entries to date. Those of you who have come via an alternate route, if you wish to gain a little history or the story thus far, is my website, and you will find it in the Journal page.

It is mid spring here in Leura and we are in the middle of an unseasonal (whatever that is these days) heatwave - it's 28'C on the back verandah today and expected to be hotter tomorrow. The spring borders are budded and just about to burst into bloom, though today most of the fresh spring growth as looking very forlorn in the heat. The new turf laid about six weeks ago, which up until 2 days ago was a rich emerald green, has taken up a more Australian tone of khaki.

On the plus side, I don't think the Kalmias have been more floriferous and the Iris laevigata at the edge of the pond are truely beautiful. The large Wisteria longissima, which over the years has built up a rather close rapport with the huge Deodar Cedar at the entrance to the garden, has flowered with racaemes stretching to around a metre. Recently, as an addition to the front entrance to the garden, at the top of the front steps and above the water tanks, I have constructed a simple Bellevdere pergola. This is located very close to the Wisteria, and about 10 days ago we cut one of the main Wisteria lianas from the Cedar and attached it to the pergola. Talk about instant gratification - Wisteria clad pergola without the 10 year wait for flowers!

Since writing my last journal entry, which I'm embarrassed to say was posted further back than I care to admit (way back in December '07), probably the most substantial improvement has been the construction of a rather impressive flight of sandstone steps, covering the rather steep and treacherous front drive. In the past it has not been unknown for friends and visitors to have close calls leaving after rather long luncheons/dinners. While I was always sure about setting a flight of steps over the original driveway, I was always a little unsure about how to realise the actual construction. So after a period of initial discussion/debate with my boys, construction began using sandstone flagging. The steps were completed within the week, and I have posted a couple of photographs to illustrate the scope & execution of the project. Our visitors can now leave 'Mullengandra' well fuelled without having to worry about their safety (at least till they're off our property).