Australia · autumn · basics · cooking · rain · subtropical weather

A Wet Easter Monday

On a day when I hardly saw my back garden let alone Mount Warning, due to this mist and low cloud, I spent most of the day working on a university assignment, which is due this Wednesday.

During constant reading of any description, I find I need to take regular breaks, usually in the garden. What to do when it’s raining heavily outside? I baked a loaf of bread instead.

It’s been many years since I baked a loaf of bread, although I always bake a batch of hot cross buns every Easter. This year, I baked two batches, and they turned out so well I was inspired to try bread baking again.

I started simple, just a plain white loaf, and the result was a beautifully crispy golden crust and soft white bread inside.

It was a pretty good way to spend the final day of the Easter long weekend, here in the damp subtropics.

Australia · autumn · garden flowers · in my garden · rain

On a Rainy Day

When the rain returns, as it did today, and Mount Warning is hidden by the clouds again, as it was today, those are the days when I can share a random assortment of photos taken around my garden during finer weather.

Mandevilla

When I took this photo, I didn’t realise a tiny spider was also admiring the flower.

The first three photos are plants in my front garden. The last is the beginning of a flower that will open more fully over the next few days. I think, from memory, the plant is a bromeliad. It’s a shade-loving plant that my son-in-law planted about ten years ago. Back then, he stuck a shabby, dry plant in the ground, and a couple of days later he told me it was probably dead and he’d just take it out. I persuaded him to leave it, assuring him that I’d keep an eye on the plant, and if it didn’t show any signs of life, I’d get rid of it. As you can see, the plant thrived, and every year it produces these rather eye-catching flowers.

During the next week, I will have to take each day as it comes with the photos I can take, which will depend on the weather. Rain is predicted every day, but if I keep an eye on the mountain during the day, I might just catch it peeking out from behind the clouds, if I’m lucky. 🙂

Australia · autumn · in my garden · native Australian birds · rain · subtropical weather

Golden Rain

The title of today’s post is referring to a large tree at the top of our garden, close to the street. It’s deciduous tree, and just before it loses its leaves it forms pretty yellow flowers, then these pink seed pods, as shown in the photo.

Husband curses this tree every year, as each seed has the potential to grow another tree, and they are rather large trees! We have two in the garden already – both of which we planted several years ago – so every year I go around pulling out the tiny trees as I see them taking root. Some people regard golden rain trees as a weed, but I quite like them, they are sturdy trees, and one of the few trees in our yard that change with each season.

There’s been plenty of the clear variety of rain falling from the sky today as well, which prevented me from taking my camera for a walk to the top of the garden to take a close-up photo of the tree. This photo was taken on full zoom from my front veranda. I spotted two kookaburras under the tree also, foraging for bugs in the wet earth.

For the next two day, fine weather is predicted! I’m sure you will forgive me for not holding my breath in anticipation of a dry day, but wouldn’t that be wonderful? Imagine, maybe I could do a few loads of washing, perhaps have a window or two open around the house, the dogs could spend some time out in the yard instead of indoors.

I might even see Mount Warning! We’ll have to wait and see what tomorrow brings.

Australia · autumn · floods · garden flowers · native Australian birds · poetry · rain

Flooding Rains

Tonight I heard on the news that it rained in every town throughout the state of New South Wales today. The whole of the eastern coast of the state, and towns further north into southern Queensland, are on alert for excessive rainfall and flooding.

While media alarmists cry out “climate change,” the realists among the press – and yes, fortunately, there are some realists remaining in Australian media circles – reminded viewers tonight of a famous poem, once taught to most school aged children. The poem, “My Country” by Dorothea Mackellar, written between 1904 and 1908, is a timely reminder of the predictable harshness of the climate in this country I call home.

“My Country” is a beautiful poem. It romantisises Australia, while at the same time emphasising the ruggedness and challenges of living in this land. The second verse of the six verse poem is the most famous and is the verse I am sharing today. The other five verses can be found on the Official Dorothea Mackellar website.

My Country

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror
The wide brown land for me!

~~ Dorothea Mackellar.