Six on Saturday 02.07.22

July is here, the shortest day has come and gone, and today it finally felt like winter this morning. I was in Auckland this week for work, and came back to see all sorts of things in the garden, in particular lots and lots of weeds. Nothing will be done this weekend as today we went to a wine tasting event and tomorrow is my birthday and we have other plans. It is always the way isn’t that when the weather is good? Anyway, today it is time for Six on Saturday when The Propagator encourages us to share what is going on in our gardens in all parts of the world. Check out the participant guide if you want to join in.

Let’s start with a couple of the camellias. I went out back to look at the ‘big flowers’ and found this one that had fallen onto the branches below. It is still a thing of beauty despite being past its best. I got a new phone on Friday, and managed to catch a decent picture of the little white flowers. I still haven’t managed to capture the big white ones, but will have a go during the week if I can.

So when I talk about winter temperatures, today it ranged from 8C to 14C with bright blue skies and sunshine. Where we live, we don’t get frosts, being well sheltered. I say this because at number two, we have the dahlia that did flower as you can see. A slightly smaller bloom than normal, but a gorgeous out of season flower anyway. One of the other dahlias has behaved far more seasonally, collapsing into a winter sleep.

Number three is really me trying out my new iPhone, aiming to capture the feathery beauty of the lavender. I need to have a play about and see what it can do. How the technology has advanced!

At number four, when I was checking things out on Friday, I spotted these wild strawberries. One was beautifully red and ripe, so I ate it, and very good it was too. Why are these appearing now though? We did have a very mild autumn, and it hasn’t got really cold yet, but still.

At number five, more bulbs peaking through the soil. I need to do a ‘pot and bulb’ audit and check what is what and what is working and what not. Last year, I had no luck with the iris I planted, and left them in the pot, but I can see the tip of at least one coming up through the soil.

To finish, the first signs of hellebores. I saw someone post pictures of hellebores they had picked and wondered where mine were….well, here they are, tight little pink buds getting ready to bloom. Yes – hellebores, wild strawberries and a dahlia all at once!

As usual, I am looking forward to seeing everyone’s beautiful gardens in other parts of the world. Hope you are all well and enjoying your gardens in whatever the season is with you.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistlesandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on


  1. Fine crop of Hellebore seedlings as well as a bud. I was just looking at NZ Camellia Society’s website, they have lots of pictures, of which ‘Sweet Emily Kate’ suggested itself as a maybe for the white?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am going to go and investigate that website and see what I can find – thanks so much for the suggestion! A quick look at Sweet Emily Kate looks a bit pink, but I will have a closer look. I really appreciate your help with identifying all the camellias Jim!


    2. Thanks Jim! I think you have found it. I can’t reply to your last comment for some reason. Thank you so much for all your help – will need to do some more camellia investigations.


  2. Have a lovely birthday! I am sure some excellent food will be involved. As for your temperatures, they are not so different from ours and we are supposed to be in summer!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The new phone seems to be working well……nice pictures. Meanwhile, it is our youngest grandson’s birthday today too. I bet you won’t be having a trip to Legoland like he is! 🤔 Anyway, enjoy your day and Happy Birthday. 🎊🥳

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy birthday! I can’t wait to see photos of a celebratory dinner with your new phone– ?? The idea of weeds in the winter makes me chuckle; I suppose a weed-reprieve is one reward for winter frost up here! I hope you enjoy your beautiful winter garden with all the possibilities peeking through.

    Liked by 1 person

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