Sunday, February 17

Strolling through the garden...

How lovely it is to see our customers take pride in their gardens. Our customer Helen Rodda  has built her magnificent garden up with large Shade trees, lovely flowering perennials and box hedging.
Helen's garden is called " Camelot Garden Stroll"and is situated at Kadina on South Australia's York Peninsula. Helen's Garden was open to the public in October and attracted over 300 people and helped raise funds for the local cancer council. Well done Helen, what a beautiful garden.

Take a look at the wonderful photos Helen sent into us...

Teak Garden Sculpture Balls from Serenity Nursery where strategically placed in a section of the garden.

Helen said "Everyone fell in love with them".  Comments like “Who made them”,  “Where did you get them from”,  “ I’ve got to have some of them”, to ‘I’ve never seen anything like them before” kept coming all the time.

Serenity Nursery's statue of Rose is enveloped by blooming roses and a metal garden arch.

Small wooden hearts from Serenity Nursery hang from the weeping mulberry tree.

Helen put together this nostalgic little nook. An old washer, washboard and basket
 complete the quirky display.

Friday, February 15

Heat Lovers

I drove past this amazing bougainvillea climber this week in Kingston. If you want a splash of vivid colour in your garden this is the plant. Bougainvilleas are excellent in pots. Grow up a trellis support to hide an ugly fence. They are @ Serenity Nursery now, and it's the perfect time to plant them. It's best to get them planted before it gets too cold. Look out for dwarf varieties too.
Below: Potted bougainvilleas in assorted colours that I spotted on a holiday in Darwin, just goes to show that they love the heat.

Thursday, February 7

What's new at Serenity...

"White Caviar" Magnolia (Magnolia yunnanensis x figo) is a new evergreen Magnolia
 with large fragrant creamy flowers and glossy green leaves. It's a medium sized bushy shrub that grows 3-4m tall and 1.5-2m wide. With it's upright narrow habit this magnolia is ideal for screening or planted in small gardens. It also looks great in a large pot features. Flowers in Spring and Summer.
Image via Garden Assets

Wednesday, February 6

Fur Real.

Two dogs sound asleep in their hand-made pooch parlour.
Miniature rocking chair on the right of the balcony.

Pampered Pooch keeps watch on his grand palace. The metal balustrade is made from lace metal work and the hanging lanterns are from our gift shop. Astro turf completes the look.
One of the great things about running a garden centre is all of the lovely people we meet, most of whom are regular customers. It's fun hearing about every ones projects and what d.i.y jobs they are working on. One of our enthusiastic gardeners, David came in hunting around for a small dolls rocking chair, which we found...( not at all surprising as we stock so many random
 hard to find objects).
David explained to me he was buying the rocking chair for his dogs. Seriously? I asked.
So it turns out a few recent purchases from serenity were in fact going towards the construction and beatification of a lovely hand-crafted dog house made by our talented customer David.
Check it out, this is for real. The house sleeps three dogs, each with their own bed and a
 balcony to share.

This made my day! Krystal

Monday, February 4

Pruning Standard Lilly Pilly...

So the hot weather has past and left us with some scorched plants...It's time to clean up and prune any burnt new growth off your lilly pillys ( or any plants in the garden that copped it).
It is important to start with a good pair of garden shears. I have a quality pair of Wiltshires from Serenity Nursery. Keep them sharp with a sharpening file and clean them after each use with bleach or disinfectant, this will help prevent spread of disease.

This is my lilly pilly standard. It barely resembles a topiary as woody growth towers towards the sky and it has lost it's shape due to a little neglet. Lilly pillys are extremely vigorous growers and if planted in the ground can reach  up to 10m tall, so it is important to prune them regularly...guilty!
I always like to start by pruning some of the woodier branches with the hand secateurs. It is easier to get a cleaner more controlled cut with them. These branches can be cut in towards to middle of the topiary allot harder than the finer new growth, to prolong the time in between pruning and prevent the shrub getting too tall and woody in general.
It is always easiest to prune the finer new growth with the shears. I round the top first and then continue around the bottom. Here I have prune under the right side quite significantly to show how visually important it is to the form of the entire topiary. Prune right up to the main trunk to help create the sphear form.
Work around the topiary taking little bits off at a time. Stand back from time to time to assess the form from a distance and from all angles. One thing I learnt from my sculpture classes in art school was to leave the project and come back to it with fresh eyes, this may help you see the form better and see what areas need more pruning.
The finished product. I could probably spend another hour or so perfecting the shape..but this is a big enough improvement. Once I'm done pruning I give the shrub a treat...a good drink of liquid sea kelp to de-stress it after all of the hot weather we have had.
Enjoy your garden...