Hello Summer

… and to think it is nearly Christmas.


New Zealand’s Christmas tree – the Pokutakawa

I have a jumble of pics for you – and none of my garden (hard to believe this is a gardening blog don’t you think).

But I do some gardening news … here goes

  • The garlic has been removed – the bulbs were tiny thanks to the rust
  • My tomatoes have a fungal nasty already – I’m going to try some baking soda in water as a leaf spray. However, I have a sneaky feeling, that I will be buying toms this year
  • The salad garden is falling all over the place, bossy feverfew is flattening lemongrass while lemon balm is squashing oregano – yes we all know I overplant
  • Runner beans have grabbed the trellis and are skyward bound – they are sharing this space with potatoes, cosmos and zinnia (gorgeous on the eye)
  • The orchard has been given lots of food (seaweed brew and rok solid), but there is a heritage apple tree with woolly aphid (I have a tear pricking) – remedy neem oil I hope
  • There won’t be an olive harvest next year – and I don’t mind one bit
  • The spuds are in the ground thanks to my brother who was a great help in the garden while he was here .. I shall think of him when we are munching on them


Self seeded poppy and calendula


Great mates …




Blue sky, beautiful day

I forgot to mention that we went fishing a few weeks back for King fish, and yes yours truly caught one – 12.5kg. Magic weather, great company, we ate fish for days!


This doesn’t look real does it?



Sorry Bill … Andrew said he looks like you!


I just love taking shots of this letterbox!


My dear bro .. thank you so much for your help




Merry Christmas from us at Frog Pond Farm … and

Happy gardening!

73 thoughts

  1. 12.5 kg fish. Wow! I have never caught a fish that big. I bet there was a few whoops and hollers! The rule in our house is; you catch it, you clean it. Did you dress the King Fish Julie? Shame on you if made your brother clean your fish! 🙂 Lovely photos and wonderful report. Are you going to have fresh spuds for Christmas? Merry Christmas from Lisa and I, in the Canadian Rockies, to you and Andrew at Frog Pond Farm!

    • Hey Bob .. I did catch that fish but Andrew was holding the end of my rod 🙂 I would have tried to clean it, but Andrew’s buddy is a whizz at it! 😀 Glad you liked the pics and the report – damned tomatoes! No fresh spuds for this Christmas. Merry Christmas to you and Lisa and the family from us at Frog Pond! Hugs

    • Hello! I miss your posts .. Glad you liked the pics … as for those gardening woes, my days of gloating are over! LOL … Merry Christmas right back at you, I hope you have a wonderful day with family and friends.

  2. Happy holidays, Julie. A hug from the other side of the summer to you ^~^/ Your side is plenty of beautiful reds and soothing blues; I was thinking precisely in your chronicles, thank you for share this with us : )

  3. Your photos are just lovely! Made my very cold bones happy to see all that sunshine and weeds and blue skies and cute animals and the Red Hot Pokers!

    Merry Christmas!!!!


  4. Merry Christmas to you and yours: human, canine, feathered, hoofed and wooly. No matter the hemisphere, we’ll all be shovelling! I love poppies, and that shot of the sheep and chicken.

  5. Hi Julie, such great photos from your side of the world… beautiful blue summer skies! Have a wonderful Christmas and best wishes for 2017. Happy holidays and gardening. 🙂 Much love, Iris

  6. Hi to you both photos are excellent. Well looks like I will be going to Faroes a lot more if your crops are not doing well! Have you eaten all the fish? Looks like a trip to the fish market and fresh cooked fish and chips, and bring the chips back for the chickens,if you don’t eat them first! Only three days before I come on my way looking forward to seeing you both again. All for now lots love to you both Bill xx

  7. A lovely collection of shots. Sorry to hear about some of the gardening failures, but you’re still doing better than many of us, errr … me.

    Merry Christmas to you. A wonderful 2017 as well.

  8. Summer? Sure, rub it in. We’re freezing here in Las Vegas at 49 degrees f (9.4 c) and raining. If it gets any colder we could have a white Christmas! 🙂 Actually I much prefer winters here. The summer temperatures are hot enough to fry an egg on your car hood. We’ve been thinking of growing our own vegetables but have to research what would do well in this environment.

    • Sorry for rubbing it in! LOL … Ah a white Christmas, now that would be nice. Me well I’m thinking about going down the beach. 😀 Best of luck with your research – there is nothing like home grown! Great to see you at Frog Pond Farm.

  9. Goodness gracious, I love summer at your place. I’m not good with this bleak mid winter stuff ever though I try desperately to keep my spirits up. Maybe I should be moving back and forth to New Zealand summer to summer, like the ski kids do from winter to winter, what do you think?…lol. Oh the summer gardening headaches. I’m so sorry about your garlic and tomatoes. Some years are like that. On the other hand…fish! Good for you! How wonderful is that? I’d love fish for days. Loads of great omega 3s and fresh from the sea goodness. Love that letter box. That reminds me; in my naughtiest times I think about submitting a monthly garden column to the BBC of rude and sexy plants. Red Hot Poker!!! Yup that’s one of them. Ha ha ha. How many can you think of? Love lies bleeding, pussy willow, breast cactus….oh dear! One day I will see if I don’t! Hugs to you and yours Julie, Big hugs and so much love for Christmas that you stay warm and toasty for the entire season. <3 Thank you so much for being my friend.

    • Hello V … I love sharing summer with you. I’m not good with the bleak stuff either. You should come over and enjoy an NZ summer you would love it 🙂 I can’t believe the rotten luck I have had with my veg garden this year. Not sure if it is me (probably LOL). Never mind – it’s good to keep on learning. Fishing was fun, what a monster it was, I had to get Andrew to hold down the rod. Yes I love that letterbox … and those red hot pokers. Now you have me thinking! ha ha One day dear V, I plan on meeting you! Now that will be so special. Merry Christmas lovely girl … big hugs right back at you

  10. Quite a challenge to get into xmas mood when you’re running around in a bikini 😀 but I guess singing xmas carols around the bbq is fun too- have a good one, Julie, I look forward to hearing from you in 2017 <3

    • Ha ha … I couldn’t imagine running around in a bikini anymore, I’d clear the beach! LOL .. BBQs are fab at this time of year Annette. Hot and sunny today. All the best lovely, I Iook forward to hearing from you in the New Year. I hope it is a special one for you and yours 😀

  11. Merry Christmas from my household to yours, Julie! Sorry about the problem with the tomatoes. I’ve never heard of mixing baking powder with water to spray – do let me know if it works. (We water tomatoes with epsom salts to prevent or stop bottom rot, and that works, but never thought to treat the leaf problem, which we also get. ) My best to you and your menagerie!

    • Hi Cynthia and a very Merry Christmas to you and yours. I can’t believe my luck this year with my garden – the weather I feel is much to blame. Baking soda is good for a host of things as it changes the pH of the leaf. Doesn’t always work, but I think it slows things down. I must give the magnesium a go to! Thanks for that .. Great to see you at Frog Pond Farm.

  12. It is hard to get used to not having cold weather for Christmas now that we have moved from New England to Florida…very much like your weather. I hope that you and your family are enjoying this Christmas day.

  13. Have a wonderful Holiday Season, Julie! It is always hard for me to picture Christmas in full bloom, coming from the northern hemisphere, but it looks so lovely where you are! I love the sheep and chook. 🙂

  14. Hi, Julie. I’ve been offline for a while and now just getting caught up. I really hope your Christmas was wonderful! LOVED this post and all the sunshine. *sighs* We are grey and cloudy and cold here. Sorry to hear about your garden woes …. from one gardener to another and I totally understand the work involved. And that pic of the boat …. no it does not look real. NICE! Thank you for this glorious post!! <3

    • Hi Amy .. we had a lovely Christmas! 😀 Hope you did too … Ah, you should see today – it is just beautiful, cloud puffs, bright blue sky .. Oh I’m sorry about the gardening woes too – keeps me on my toes though. Never get too comfortable! LOL I love that boat pic too. And I loved your comment. Made my day even brighter. Hugs

  15. You are surrounded with environment that is filled with photography worthy scenes, and you absolutely do great job in executing so. Happy New Year, Julie!

    • Hey Wendy .. it is a special Christmas tree 😀 That’s a splash orpington .. she is a real character and good friends with that sheep Poppy. Happy New Year – so pleased you are back in the blogging world!

  16. Dear Julie, you know I changed my blog(s) to private and I try to send invitations to my blogger friends. And I sent to you too, I wanted to inform you, I hope you ddn’t miss t. If you wish you can visit again be sure I would like to see you as always. Thank you, Love, nia

  17. Oh my, you give me a view of Christmas and “winter” here up in the northern hemisphere that I do envy ~ but in a very positive way. There is something special in the world you live in, perhaps because you embrace it fully, but it is beautiful – seen in your photos and well as your words. Wishing you a fantastic 2017.

    • Ah Dalo .. how lovely to see you here 😀 I think there is something very special too – but your world through your eyes is beautiful too as are your words. I always enjoy your journeys … A fantastic NY right back at you

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