Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Wandering wallabies continue to munch the garden. One in particular, last spring’s joey in fact (daughter of our sweet resident wallaby), is a fearless teenager (so to speak) which pops by every dusk and dawn.
A little background information: about 20 years ago we bought a few acres of beautiful bushland in the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges, with a small clearing and here we built our little house over 6 years. We are incredibly fortunate to have visiting wallabies, blue-tongue lizards and occasionally echidnas and wombats along with superb blue wrens, honey eaters and even iridescent opal-blue beetles the size of ladybirds; initially (and still, ambivalently) charming. (Also wasps.) Despite much effort, the garden is still primarily only the unpalatable winter roses (Helleborus), salvias, mock orange and a few daffodils; all else is devoured by wallabies.
Last year we put up a fence around about ¼ of an acre, surrounding the cottage, completed by a gate we designed. (It’s purple; as the hardware man said: Everyone will know it’s your gate!) I thought that we had slowed down the munching marsupials but – despite salvias being (seemingly) not to their taste – a sage which I’d bought for the herb patch was eaten down to 2 old dusty leaves, in one night. And yes, it was, of course, culinary sage. Yep, near the delicious garlic chives. I think we can all learn something here.
Leek seedlings were nibbled down next; foolishly, I cried. Plants cost a bit, but still it was an overreaction; let’s face it, this has been happening for about 15 years. So J, dear man, has added wire, stakes and even trellis to those parts of the fence where our greedy guests (there’s heaps of green grass on the other side of the fence!) clearly slither under or through the wire.
Waterworks were contained today, but only just: Fresh roo poo had appeared and the large gardenia by the front door has become a sorry scarecrow. To deter the hungry herbivores I have just 2 words: chili and powder (scattered over leaves); it’s not pretty, is it?

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