Week 4 September 2006: Rain = 17.5mm. Total for September = 40.5mm Average = 53mm
This week we saw and heard our first Channel-bill Cuckoo for the season. These large, ungainly birds migrate from Southeast Asia in spring and lay their eggs in Currawong nests. We applaud this activity because Currawongs prey on the nestlings of smaller native birds. There are always plenty of Currawongs but the smaller bird species are declining. See: Small Bird Decline.
We have a worm farm that disposes of our vegetable scraps. One day this week we noticed some pumpkin seeds germinating in the farm. The same thing happened last year and some seedlings were transplanted into one of our native gardens. These plants survived and thrived. Last summer we harvested a number of pumpkins from these plants. This year we will transplant some of these emerging seedlings and hopefully have the same result as last summer.
We have a number of Senna (was Cassia) plants in full flower. They have brilliant yellow flowers and this week the blooms were visited by a number of Carpenter Bees. These large native insects could be described as iridescent blowflies on steroids. The females are blue and the males green. The females try to feed on the Senna flowers whilst the males spend all their time trying to mate with the females.
Lots of other plants are bursting into bloom. Myoporum bateae and Myoporum viscosum plants are covered in flowers. The flowers, of the latter species, are perfumed, particularly when they first open.
Grevillea flexuosa was a new addition to our gardens last summer. This week the plant presented us with cream flower heads. Grevillea Copper Rocket has a number of red, toothbrush flower heads. Grevillea bedggoodiana (this spelling is correct) has also flowered for the first time.
Hibbertia aspera is a scrambling plant and we have a specimen growing up the supports of our back patio. Large numbers of small yellow flowers appeared this week.
We have flowers on these Acacias: cheelii, diphylla, doratoxylon, ligulata, mabellae and pycnostachya.
We dug more holes this week with 18 plants going into the ground.
We found lots of cuttings producing roots this week in our propagating bench. One of particular interest is an Eremophila that we collected from a Tamworth garden a few weeks ago. This is a form of Eremophila maculata with pink flowers.
Two researchers, from the University, visited Yallaroo this week. They may be using our Acacias as part of a research project. We have 48 species growing in our gardens.
Some years ago we planted a Grevillea banksii in one of our gardens. This plant is now about two metres high and this week we found developing buds on the ends of a number of branches. Grevillea banksii is one of the parents of a number of sub-tropical hybrids including the famous Grevillea Robyn Gordon. We are looking forward to the flowers with great anticipation.
Some of our plants that went into the ground in early winter were cut by frost and appeared to have expired. This week we found a number that are shooting.
Our grey water line became blocked one day this week. Despite great effort we cold not clear the pipe. A local plumber solved our problem with his electric eel. This consists of an electric motor driving a flexible metal tube. Ten years accumulation of soap and other debris was cleared from the pipe.
New on the site this week: Grevillea flexuosa, Grevillea Copper Rocket, Grevillea bedggoodiana, Grevillea laurifolia, Dodonaea viscosa, Hibbertia aspera and Acacia doratoxylon.