The cold weather feels like it’s here to stay this time. Time to start putting away the warm-weather clothing and bringing out the woolly scarves and jumpers. I love an excuse to put more layers on, but I miss wearing sandals.

It may be cold and rainy out, but there’s still things to see in the garden, if you pull on your boots and a warm coat.

The miscanthus flowers still look beautiful and they should last some months yet. That little purple flower you can see beneath the miscanthus is Plectranthus caninus, commonly called dogbane. Don’t brush against it, it has a most unpleasant smell, which supposedly is why dogs dislike it. I think any creature would dislike it. It is very hardy, though.

You can see that my beloved ‘Senkaki’ japanese maple has turned into a cloud of gold. It lights up the garden at this time of year.

The purple flowers behind the pink salvia are wallflowers. Do they ever stop flowering? The salvias are very much appreciated by the little brown honeyeaters that live around here. I would love to take a photo of them for you, but they are so darned quick. Just a blur of wings.

I don’t know if this is a staghorn fern or an elkhorn. Is there a difference?

It belonged to my mother-in-law. When she left the old house in Blackburn, it was given to me. It looked miserable all through the drought years, no matter how much I watered it, but now it is thriving. You just can’t replace rain.

Time to retreat back to the fireside and read the Sunday paper.

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