My apologies that I have been so “quiet” on the blog and also in visiting the blogs of all my gardening friends. The last ten days have been no fun. I’ve been holed up inside with a bad flu, spent a couple of days flat on my back in bed and finally feeling better, yesterday I decided it was time to get my hands dirty again. The weather was great, the sun was shining and there was no wind so I set about getting a few new plants positioned, pulled up a lot of weeds, composted all my plants that are in pots, did some pest control (snails, slugs and aphids!) and did a general clean up of the garden.

The roses were pruned (according to all my books the last week in July is cut off time for rose pruning in the Cape), my battle with the mole continued, plants that have not over-wintered well were cut back, other plants that need it were pinched back and when the sun started to disappear, I made a list of everything that I would do today, Sunday. I was full of enthusiasm for getting down to the actual fun part of gardening, that is the laying out of new beds, composting and preparing the soil and then planting of new plants – and I woke up this morning feeling as grotty as I did a few days ago. So unfortunately it’s back to looking out of my windows and wishing I could be outside …

Apart from feeling grotty and very sorry for myself, there is some pretty in the garden. All the Azaleas are in bloom (I’m almost sure last year they flowered much later than this?) and lots of the new bulbs are showing signs of life.

Here is what I am seeing …

Azaleas and new LiliumsAzaleas and new Liliums

I love the foliage on these plantsLovely foliage plants

Alliums not so greatAlliums not so great

Lots of Tulips coming upLots of Tulips coming up

Hellebore bud … is it a pink?Hellebore bud ... is it pink?

The first snow-drops open!The first snow-drops open!

More lovely foliageMore pretty foliage

And the ugly – Lots to be done!And the ugly - Lots to be done!

There’s work to be done …Lots of work to be done

More unfinished business!More unfinished business!

Now I’m going to bundle up warm and spend some time visiting all the gardening blogs to read the posts I’ve missed this past week.

Then I’ll make another of my endless “To Do” lists – top of the list is ‘hope for good weather next weekend’.

Happy gardening