Standing with my bare feet on the pathway in my shade house, I remember my partner, Ken and I collecting those stones from beaches a short distance from our home. We borrowed his mother’s shopping trolly and filled it to the brim on each trip. We spent many fun-filled hours fossicking along the beach to select the perfect small, rounded stones to create the pathway. Unfortunately, our enthusiasm was more than the load-carrying capacity of the trolly, and one of its small wheels broke under strain. I recall that Mother was unconcerned about the trolly and came with us on the next pebble finding expedition to help carry the stones to the car.

After a few years, the pathway is being taken over by the babies tears, leaves and litter kicked up by birds scratching for a meal

Years have passed since we first created that pathway; babies tears grow along the edge and threaten to cover the pathway. Leaves and mulch often cover the path from birds that scratch the dirt up in their search for worms.

Tomorrow we have an open garden with members of a garden club from across the river coming to visit. As I look around, I wonder what other gardeners will think of our efforts.

We grow the things we love and enjoy a profusion of colours throughout the year

Some will see chaos because we do not have immaculately trimmed hedges and balanced garden beds.

Our garden has a glorious confusion of plants we enjoy growing. We have fruit trees growing amongst fuchsias, iris, and annuals.

Covid-19 meant we had time to grow winter vegetables

Since Covid-19, our vegetable patch has crept around the corner and commandeered part of the lawn in the back yard.

Ken enjoys the challenge of mowing the grass around the shrubs, trees and groundcover in the front corner of our yard

Over 60 young Australian native plants have been planted in the front lawn, and we have put woodchips around each one.
Mowing the lawn is a challenge Ken fortunately enjoys.

We had fun collecting rocks and tadpoles for the pond

Recently we created a tiny pond and collected tadpoles from pools alongside the roadway.

Unable to sail away for the Tasmanian winter because of Covid restrictions, I began propagating plants at an alarming rate. After filling all the new shelves, Ken had made for my pots, he placed a “Plants for Sale” sign out the front.

Now we enjoy a fabulous range of like-minded people popping into our garden to check out our plants.

Last week a young man with tattoos and a tongue piercing brought me some poppy heads from his garden. He said he noticed that we didn’t have the purple ones that he has.

I love how the simple act of growing things on the earth can bring people of all ages, colours and creeds together.

I love gardening, but I also love sailing around the South Pacific exploring the islands and meeting new people.

Covid-19 saw us ‘stuck’ in Tasmania. We were more fortunate than many other cruisers because we own a house here.
We both enjoyed gardening and Ken also had time to paint again.

Covid has given us an excuse to do more things that we enjoy.
It always amazes me how positive things can emerge from negative situations.