Go away for a few days….

… and the garden goes a tiny bit bonkers.  Well, this IS the tropics.

The frangipani, coleus, dietes, agapanthus and hippeastrums, all bushy and delighted with themselves

The frangipani, coleus, dietes, agapanthus and hippeastrums, all bushy and delighted with themselves

The star jasmine has gone from weeny and a bit sad to throwing out lots of new shoots

The star jasmine has gone from weeny and a bit sad to throwing out lots of new shoots

The flame tree has got yet another bunch of new leaves at the top and is a good 30cm taller than when I bought it.

The flame tree has got yet another bunch of new leaves at the top and is a good 30cm taller than when I bought it.

Just LOOK at the lychee!  All those new bright green leaves.  2 months ago I thought it was going toes up...

Just LOOK at the lychee! All those new bright green leaves. 2 months ago I thought it was going toes up…

The avocado's not being very exciting... A little taller, a couple of new leaves...

The avocado’s not being very exciting… A little taller, a couple of new leaves…

The mango, too, is much taller than it was, and getting wider too.  It's grown at least 20cm in height.

The mango, too, is much taller than it was, and getting wider too. It’s grown at least 20cm in height.

Things have simply bushed out, grown up, thrown out a whole handful of leaves, or just one enormous perfect one, come into flower, become a tiny bit scary, or simply thrived.  I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.  We’ve had some  nice thunderstorms here while I was away, and the garden’s had a good solid drink.  No flooding, either, so I’m congratulating myself on the soil improvement.  Not too soon, I hope.  The Wet proper hasn’t started, and won’t until January/February. At that point, I fully expect to see a few things floating away on the tide, so I’m encourage that everything seems to be putting down solid roots and making the most of the weather.  I’m happy to see plants/trees I was worried about turning the corner and flourishing a whole branch of new leaves, or becoming the correct shade of green, or actually putting out some flowers.

Wow. Just LOOK at the red of the flowers on these bronze leaf cannas...

Wow. Just LOOK at the red of the flowers on these bronze leaf cannas…

A whole bunch of wrinkly new leaves on the Brunfelsia

A whole bunch of wrinkly new leaves on the Brunfelsia

That's the purslane I posted about before.  It's getting a bit enormous and slightly scary.  Maybe it's time for purslane salad...

That’s the purslane I posted about before. It’s getting a bit enormous and slightly scary. Maybe it’s time for purslane salad…

Lots of new leaves on the gardenia. Pity it's a bit late in the season for it to flower.

Lots of new leaves on the gardenia. Pity it’s a bit late in the season for it to flower.

The red Portulaca is taking over a bit.  Time to chop it back so the other plants can breathe.

The red Portulaca is taking over a bit. Time to chop it back so the other plants can breathe.

The Monstera deliciosa has produced an enormous glossy green leaf in the few days we were away

The Monstera deliciosa has produced an enormous glossy green leaf in the few days we were away

Look!  Two flower buds!

Look! Two flower buds!

The lime tree has loads of new leaves

The lime tree has loads of new leaves

The Bugle (ajuga reptans) is sending out some new shoots.  Ground cover is something it does very well.

The Bugle (ajuga reptans) is sending out some new shoots. Ground cover is something it does very well.

My lemons are growing!  I'll be able to pick them by Christmas, I think.

My lemons are growing! I’ll be able to pick them by Christmas, I think.

Oh, those coleus!  How gorgeously velvety and richly red. They don't look quite real..

Oh, those coleus! How gorgeously velvety and richly red. They don’t look quite real..

Banana and Strelitzia Nicolai both doing well

Banana and Strelitzia Nicolai both doing well

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Such delicate, tiny flowers on such long, slender stalks. What ecological niche are these beauties designed for, I wonder.

A single flower on the Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.  The leaves are telling me it needs a supplement...

A single flower on the Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. The leaves are telling me it needs a supplement…

Flowers on the sempervivum, very pretty

Flowers on the sempervivum, very pretty

The downside, of course, of all this mad growth is that the weeds are similarly encouraged.  I’ve spent a good 20 minutes pulling up palm seedlings in my desert garden, and foresee that continuing for months yet.  There’s sorrel, purslane, grass, acacia seedlings, Farmer’s Friend, chickweed, and numerous other irritating gatecrashers.  There’s nasty stuff attempting a break-in over the neighbour’s fence.  The other neighbour’s palm trees continue to drop fronds and fruit onto our side of the fence (which get promptly tossed back over, but sometimes damage a plant).

On the other upside, lots of scented things are now in flower, and the warm, humid evenings are lush with the aroma of frangipani, murraya, jasmine, brunfelsia, and angel trumpets.

Our trip south was long, useful, tiring, entertaining and now, thank God, over. The concert in Brisbane was wonderful; beautiful music, beautifully played, and heaps of fun at the end, waving flags, throwing tickertape, stamping, clapping and singing along.  The Husband enjoyed himself greatly and we will definitely be making a date of it next year too.

Christmas is not too far off, and I have volunteered to entertain the Chiconi tribe here in Chiconia, since I’m the only one with a table long enough to seat 14 comfortably.  Said table, however, needs to be sanded and dressed with a couple of coats of oil so that it’s looking its best and will be waterproof for the event.  Wonder what I’ll be doing on my next available day off, then…  The menu is still in development, but as it’s for a late lunch and will be the hottest time of year, turkey and all the trimmings will not be featuring.  More on that another day.

Till next time.

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11 thoughts on “Go away for a few days….

  1. Eat your weeds… at least the purslane and chickweed (and possibly the sorrel) xx

    • katechiconi says:

      Purslane and chickweed for sure, but too much sorrel will give you a mouth like a cat’s bottom…

      • We have two things commonly called sorrel: Oxalis and some species of Rumex (including R. sanguineus). The latter make an acceptable addition to salad. I’m sure the former are also edible (after all oca is an Oxalis) but only in small quantities because of the oxalic acid.

      • katechiconi says:

        I’ve got the Oxalis. Rumex acetosella is tasty and only slightly astringent, Oxalis is just super sour and would give you kidney damage if you ate too much!

  2. Gede Prama says:

    Amazing and Thank you so much for sharing

  3. Jen Gardener says:

    How nice is it when a plant is revived (referring to your lychee)! Lemons look great too! I’m waiting for my lemon tree to magically be revived – difficult when I don’t know what’s wrong with it. So I’m kinda jealous to see those beautiful lemons on your little tree!

    • katechiconi says:

      I’m assuming you’ve tried getting your significant other to pee on it…? It’s an old remedy for citrus that lacks various minerals, particularly potassium. Might be worth a try…

      • Jen Gardener says:

        Haha. Yes I have. And all of his male friends too..

      • katechiconi says:

        Now that I’d pay good money to see! Apart from that, all I can suggest is that they prefer slightly acid soil, regular and sufficient water (probably a drip system), and lots of nitrogen. Oh, and don’t disturb the roots too much; lemons are shallow rooted. Good luck…

  4. I love this glimpse of a garden so different from my own northern Ohio land, now covered in fallen leaves and ready to sleep for the winter. Beautiful!

    • katechiconi says:

      Living in the tropics makes me appreciate 4 seasons so much more! I miss the garden going to sleep for the winter. There’s a wide swathe of things you can’t grow when it’s either hot, or hotter, wet or wetter. That said, I’m in love with my huge architectural tropicals, the rudely bright colours, the sheer exuberance, and above all, the scents… I can’t wait till everything grows up and fills the space I’ve given it, till the garden creates its own shade, rustle, drip and perfume. This is the tropics. It won’t take long…

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