Re: [gardeners] Where I garden

Margaret Bell (
Thu, 03 Feb 2000 15:37:02 +1100

Hi George,

I've been lurking for months, so I guess it's time I came out of the

My name is Margaret, and I live in Melbourne, Australia.  My flatmate tends
the front garden (all pink), and the back garden is mine.  There's a lot in
it, considering it's a small, inner-city space.

I have a peach, a grapefruit, 2 lemons (Meyer and Lisbon), a bay laurel, and
a fig tree, the latter being very popular with birds and fruit bats.  I have
10 rose bushes, two tree ferns, two growing patches of Zantedschia, three
hydrangeas, four different types of lavender, all sorts of flowers, and
creepers, and, as it's summer here, I'm getting the last of my tomatoes,
strawberries, and basil.

I moved into this house just over a year ago, and at the time, the gardens
were both absolutely infested with weeds.  But turning it from all weeds to
the garden we enjoy now has been one of the greatest and most rewarding
pleasures I have ever experienced.  It can be expensive, though.  I knew
nothing at the start, so have spent a fortune on books, and plants, and
gardening gear, of course.  But I think it's worth every cent.

I'm also very lucky to live in a street where everyone seems to be very
garden proud.  From spring onwards, it's a real picture.

So that's me out of the shadows!


George Shirley wrote:

> Saw several posts here from folks letting us know where they garden and
> live so thought I would chip in.
> We live in SouthWest Louisiana, about 30 miles from the Texas border
> where I10 crosses. As a matter of fact we only live about 4 blocks from
> I10.
> Miz Anne (my wife of 39 years), Sleepy Dawg (our Rat Terrier female),
> and I are, I suppose, urban gardeners. We have a fairly large house on a
> city lot that's about 70 by 150 feet so we garden mostly in the back
> yard. The front is reserved for lawn and various flower beds that Miz
> Anne tends plus a very large white oak tree.
> The back has a slope such that the edge next to the house is about 6
> feet higher than the back fence line. In this area we have a 17X24
> raised bed garden for veggies, a 30 inch X 90 foot strip garden down the
> west fence line that has flowers, veggies, and fruit trees. An 8X12
> green house attached to the east end of the main garden, a 12X22 herb
> garden that runs up to the south side of the carport. And down the back
> fence line we have 10 blueberry bushes, a short row of Sunchokes, a
> short row of raspberries, and a couple of Mayhaw trees. Slotted around
> in the rest of the area are a Ponderosa lemon tree, 2 kumquat trees, 1
> aprium and 1 pluot tree, and a Kieffer pear tree, all dwarfs but the
> lemon tree. Additionally we have a group planting of azaleas, gardenias,
> and various other plants up next to the driveway and under the 3 large
> oak trees that are there.
> We actually grow enough veggies on our intensively planted plots to feed
> ourselves, a number of friends, and have some to give away to the local
> soup kitchens on occasion. I do most of the preserving, canning, and
> freezing, also the cooking and shopping, and Miz Anne does much of the
> "heavy" work around the place, ie mowing and raking. We both crawl
> around in the dirt planting and harvesting. Sleepy Dawg mostly lies in
> the sunshine napping and guarding us from any boggles that may be
> around. Lately she's shown an increased interest in the greenhouse so I
> may have some mice overwintering there.
> We're both semi-retired, I work about 20 hours a week and Miz Anne is an
> art teacher and artist. We left the corporate rat race in 1991 just
> prior to my second heart attack (wish I'd waited until after money wise)
> and found out we could live on a lot less money than we ever expected.
> Our needs and wants are modest so life is indeed very good for us.
> It is the middle of our winter here, temps in the low forties at night
> getting up into the high fifties during the daytime but with windchills
> from the north wind making it uncomfortable to be outside much.
> It is also the time of year when we start our seeds for planting out in
> March. Right now we have 4 varieties of pepper, 3 varieties of tomato, 2
> varieties of eggplant, and 1 variety of edible gourd started and growing
> under the lights in my home office. Sleepy and I spend a lot of time
> tending them, ie watching them grow, and I'm trying to teach her to blow
> on them to help them grow better but she doesn't seem to understand the
> concept. ;-)
> I'm also the listowner for this modest group of gardening fanatics and
> inherited it long enough ago that I can't remember exactly when. We've
> still got most of the first half dozen folks to sign up although a few
> of them are lurking a lot.
> Anyone else out there?
> George

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