It was a two bus trip to the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens (RTBG) this Thursday and I was so glad to walk from the second bus stop to the Gardens. It had been a few weeks since I had walked that path and, with Spring springing all sorts of surprises, I was offered new visions. For the first time in my life I looked, really looked at a couple of pine trees as they edged the path. Of course I have known pine trees in all sorts of ways throughout my life but yesterday it seemed I was seeing them for the first time. Both trees were different varieties (I don’t know the names of the varieties – information from blog readers will be welcome) and their new pine cone growth was underway. How surprisingly different they seemed. Dramatically different.
Then I trudged into the RTBG along the path where, sometimes I can look up and see Mount Wellington highlighted against the sky. Yesterday much of the top was swathed in clouds – but it was Thursday and, as you know, it is always fine on Thursdays and we always have blue sky. So I knew it was simply a matter of time before the cloud moved on. Either side of my path I could see trees and bushes bursting into leaf, including the bush which had been pictured in earlier blog posts sporting yellow flowers so dramatically. The encroaching richness of it all was terribly appealing. The speed with which it was changing was a wonder.
As I reached the flowering Hellebores edging the Food Garden, I noticed one weed, a yellow flowering oxalis growing healthily.
I decided that if Co-ordinator Adam was not around when I reached the tool shed and donned my gardening boots then, knowing these plants had to go, I planned to weed them out and fill the time until I was given other instructions.
I passed other volunteers weeding a long garden patch. Healthy looking garlic plants were beginning to spurt upwards in their happiness to feel warmer days. They need to be kept free from competing plants, aka the weeds.With digging tool and bucket I returned to the oxalis patch. Not one plant, not ten, but dozens more were growing often in full view. Not all were flowering. Many intermingled and tried to hide amidst the Hellebores. The theme of clever weeds from past weeks continues to be the highlight.
Others joined in the weeding in the area. M took on the task of removing onion weed, a flat leafed grass with a white bulb below ground clutching firmly at the soil.
Not to be confused with the grassy strands of grape hyacinths that we want to keep. The onion weed was simply another challenging weed to discern. Again one that tries to hide.
R wondered about the plants with the tiny blue flowers. ‘Are they weeds’, she asked. ‘I think they are called ‘Forget me nots’, I responded. ‘I rip them out of my own garden because they take over in a blink’. When I discovered a tiny patch of these where I was working, I broke a piece and found Adam. ‘The common name here is Forget me nots. Yes, kill it’, he said. You can read more here and here.Disrupted pleasantly by a visitor to the garden who wanted to photograph the expanse of Bluebells and Grape Hyacinths, I meandered along to watch the planting of silver beet and fennel.In what seemed like the blink of an eye, it was time for lunch and interesting chats with fellow volunteers.