Week 2 January 2003: No rain and high temperatures this week. We feel sorry for the farmers and graziers who depend on rain to earn their living.
Saw a feral cat in one of our shrubberies one morning. We will have to take steps to get rid of this destructive predator.
Used grey water on some of our fruit trees and new plants. When our family visited there was a surge in the flow of grey water from kitchen, laundry and bathroom. After eight years of using grey water on the garden there has been no horticultural ill effects.
Another new bird has been added to our Yallaroo bird list. We are now up to 85 species. The new sighting was four White-eared Ducks. They were resting on our Big Dam that is slowly becoming a Little Dam.
We have a small hybrid Banksia in the garden. It is reputed to be a cross between Banksia integrifolia and Banksia marginata. Although the plant is only one metre high it produced a number of cream-green brushes last winter. This week we picked some mature cones. The seeds will be extracted, from the cones, using a paint-stripping heat gun. We heat the cones until we hear the follicles (seed protecting structures) crack open. The cones are left to cool and after a week or so the seeds fall out. It will be interesting to see what sort of plants develop from the seeds.
We have a Callistemon comboynensis in flower. Our specimen is about one metre high and is carrying a number of brushes. This species is a native of the wetter coastal areas, but is doing very well on a dry, windswept slope.
Although the drought persists the kangaroos are leaving our plants alone. Some Correas and Eremophilas were defoliated. They are now a mass of new leaves. Other gardeners have had many other plants defoliated by hungry macropods. Their plants should also recover.

Garden Diary