Day 8 – 1/04/2020

Petra – just finished checking a rat trap – note the cloud in the valley

Another stunner of a day today. No clouds, very little wind and fresh clean air. Oh, did I say no clouds?, well there was just not above us. One of the interesting phenomena of nature when you live on a hill is the way the cloud hovers beneath your altitude. So it was first thing today, clouds in the low lands, while we bathed in early morning sunshine. It burned off soon enough and before long the entire region was enjoying the sun’s rays.

The view from our front deck this morning, overlooking the Mokihinui River

Last night there was a weka in the garden, not good! We accept we live in an environment where weka are a dominant species, however to live side by side and in harmony with them there are some steps that are required. Weka are opportunists, they will never miss an open door or gateway, feed bucket or anything else that they think will benefit them. We have had them in our vehicles, our house and our gardens. The have helped themselves to animal food, fruit in the orchard, eggs in the chook house and they readily make messes everywhere they go. They are so cunning; I have watched them wait underneath the dog’s kennels and hope for a biscuit to drop through the slats. If it does they grab the biscuit in their beaks and run like crazy. It is kinda funny, but drives the dogs spare! Weka in the garden will dig up any plants and eat the produce, including pecking holes in pumpkins! I got the weka out, but was puzzled how it got in! We have a fence around the garden that is designed to keep the weka out, so something was amiss. Laurie found out while he was having breakfast this morning. I had a pile of hay bales, stacked and covered with a tarpaulin, the weka climbed to the top of the hay, jumped over to the top of the fence, walked along the fence railing and jumped onto the compost and was then in the garden!

I moved the hay and that solved the problem. However Roger the weka was not impressed with this state of affairs and we have watched him walking around the garden fence looking for a way to get in. I took a video of him walking around the garden, but unfortunately I can’t post it on this blog, so I’ve taken a some photos off the video…

I spent most of the day gardening. My idea was to get a start on the herb garden and I was happily focused. Laurie was bringing up some gravel and stones from the gravel pit and I thought maybe I could get some for the strawberry plants. I have the plants in drums and have two empty drums to divide the plants and get a higher yield. The strawberries are very special to me as they were gifted to me by my second cousin Alfie. Alfie has passed away now, but the plants are a special reminder of our friendship.

It’s funny how a simple idea becomes a complex mission! I went to check the strawberries and the empty drums. I decided that before I filled the drums I should clear the ground. This job was too big for hand pulling, so out came the scrub cutter. It needed fueling and then it was time to get the grass, gorse and weeds down. I did that BUT next door to the strawberry patch are the raspberries that were also terribly overgrown with weeds! I couldn’t scrub cut the fence line so I had to hand pull them. Kayden came to help me, so he went on the other side of the fence AND before I knew it there we were, weeding the raspberries! As I write this in the evening light the job is done, the strawberry barrels have been situated on flat ground and the stones have been put into the barrels ready for stage two – dirt!

The herb garden will still be there tomorrow! I weeded a small portion of the vege garden and harvested four beautiful pumpkins.

Pumpkins from the garden

Tomorrow is another day! 🙂

Oh! Here are the promised photos of Ollie and his girls: Willow (big white goat) and Moon (with the coloured face).

One Comment Add yours

  1. Tracy says:

    Brilliant! I have only just started reading your posts.
    We holiday at Mokihinui every year and would love to buy holiday property there but its just a little bit too far from home at the moment… we live in rural Canterbury.
    I grow lots (and lots ) of herbs – is there anything you like sent over?
    Stay safe


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