Thursday, August 09, 2012

Tunnel Vision

Broussonetia papyrifera
Now that things are moving so quick again with the pond project I find myself putting nearly all of my attention, physical, and mental energy towards the project. I am enjoying it though, just so glad that things are moving at a quick pace again.

I am mindful too of the finer details of the project, and it's easy to lose track of it if you're not careful and lose focus. And focused I am indeed...

So focused that I missed my usual train this morning as I got engrossed filling and sanding a corner of the pergola! Fortunately I still managed to get in at work on time. But I did smile to myself, thinking of the reason why I missed the train - sanding a pergola, now you don't hear that excuse too often.

The other thing is though, with this focus it also means that I don't think of our garden and plants that much. Perhaps I can say I'm not in my usual plant-y mood. Yes I still keep an eye on the garden, making sure everything is fine as can be and nothing is in need of urgent attention, still giving the basic care that it needs. But I don't spend as much time soaking in the beauty of the plants as much as I used to, or even as much as I would want to. Not at the moment anyway, I have to concentrate on what needs to be done first.

Schefflera taiwaniana - just some of the lower leaves of a plant over 9' tall now
A blog reader sent me a message asking if I can feature a few more of our other plant collections, like we have done previously with our Farfugiums, Kalopanax and Fatsias amongst others. And to which I was also reminded that I haven't done a 'proper' blog yet about the Scheffleras in our garden (although I do remember having a small, preview like post about them before, with an indication that I will follow it up with a lengthier, more detailed post sometime soon after that...). Well I have started that one, and it's still there somewhere, buried under the depths of a mix of published, unpublished, and other unfinished blog posts. I'll get that one done, day....

Perhaps when the project is finished. At the moment I have a temporary, self imposed 'Tunnel Vision' where I blur out the peripheries as I concentrate on the main task ahead.

But I am not that rigid, I still relax my tunnel vision every so often. Mainly to take a little break and spend a little time looking at the plants and the rest of the garden. A little break yes, not as much time as I would want to but I'm better at bringing the camera with me in those little moments...

Crocosmia 'Lucifer' - easy, readily available, undemanding, beautiful!
For foliage fans out there, this might tickle your fancy - Broussonetia papyrifera
The lovely Eccremocarpus scaber, which I didn't expect to sail through -10C in our garden last winter
Even the seed pod of  Eccremocarpus scaber is attractive
A rare deciduous shrub given to us a couple of years ago, Euodia fargesii (could be Tetradium fargesii now??)
The delicate bloom of Impatiens sodenii
Slightly later than usual but fast catching up - Zingiber mioga 'Dancing Crane', possibly the hardiest ginger in our garden
Also a bit late but has now started to bloom - Dahlia 'After Eight'
Not always a fan of Ligularia blooms but this one's not too bad - Ligularia przewalskii
A touch of New Zealand in the garden, the bronze foliage of Elatostema rugosum
Hmmmm....looking back at those photos myself, I'll relax my tunnel vision just a bit more, as it's summer after all, and the garden is too enticing to fully resist. Besides, you only get one summer a year, make the most of it!

Mark :-)


  1. Eccremocarpus scaber is hardy for you? Oh, the jealousy...

    What about this Impatiens sodenii? Is it an annual? Does it reseed by itself?

  2. You know....I do the same thing here. You get so focused on the task that you forget why you're doing all the work in the first place....for the plants! And I overlook my plants at times...I wouldn't say that I take them for granted......just forget why I run around all the time doing the other things:) Love your plant choices. Chris

  3. You've put so much thought into your garden in the first place that you easily ignore your plants for a month or two while you finish your pond. They'll patiently wait for your attention to return :-).

  4. Excuse me? Your Schefflera taiwaniana is over 9 ft tall? WOW! How long has it been in the ground?

  5. You know I love your wonderful foliage, but I am always looking forward to the post where you show us your completed pond project!

  6. Some wonderful photos here. It's so easy to get caught up doing things and lose track of time, I have done it also.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  7. Yes indeed, Boys. Enjoy your garden for goodness sake!!! It is a beaut and there are many of us out here who would give our eye-teeth to spend time there and have a good long nosey. My Ligularia przewalskii are long gone - sniff. D

  8. Thanks for the pic of the Broussonetia papyrifera. I saw it just earlier today at Will Giles' and we both had a senior moment and couldn't remember its name! Will's is quite big and it was interesting to see the entire foliage higher up the tree but the more attractive cut leaves as a juvenile sucker from the base. I guess it might do quite quite well with hard pruning to encourage this. Incidentally nearby Will had stooled a plant of the tulip tree, Liriodendron which had produced wonderful huge striking truncate leaves! great stuff for small gardens!

  9. College Gardener, I'm surprised myself that the Eccremocarpus sailed through fine last winter. It suffered more from me cutting it back rather than the cold weather. The Impatiens is tender and I overwinter rooted cuttings inside a heated greenhouse.

    Thanks Chris! Just wish there was more time in a day so can spend a bit more of it just doing good old fashioned gardening. When things calm down a bit I'm sure I can do more of that again :)

    Thanks Gerhard! With the warmth of August nearly all plants are having a growth spurt. Some of them could do with a trim again when I had the chance to wander around earlier.

    Loree, I think I slightly overestimated that, it's actually just under 9' rather than over. It's been on the ground in our garden for about three years, although it went it as a relatively tall plant already, dug up from another garden.

  10. Thanks Debs! More likely it won't be until next year now when we'll be able to post the completed photos of the project/area.

    Indeed Cher!

    Thanks David! I'm glad the Ligularia is still doing well here up to now :)

    A pleasure Ian! I saw Will Giles' post on facebook yesterday about your recent visit. Good to hear about the stooling of a Liriodendron tulipfera, we have one here and might considering doing that as well.

  11. I really admire that you're so focussed ... and that you manage to hold down a job while maintaining a tropical garden and building a huge pond. Amazing!

  12. That's what I love about your blog - one of the things anyway - I invariably discover new plants. This time its Broussonetia papyrifera. Fully hardy, huh. Mmm...
    PS Well worth taking the occasional moment or three to admire you lovely garden, in between sanding pergolas etc...

  13. Hi b-a-g thanks for your lovely comment, sometimes it seems like there's not enough time.

    Hi Janet, the Broussonetia is calling you..... :) Thanks so much and we do make sure we find time to enjoy the garden too, we are looking forward to finishing the pond though!


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