Friday, November 11, 2011

Wildlife pond clean-up day - Maree

I know no subject more elevating, more amazing, more ready to the poetical enthusiasm, the philosophical reflection, and the moral sentiment than the works of nature. Where can we meet such variety, such beauty, such magnificence?
- James Thomson

Summer always brings the same chores - cleaning up everything the winter killed, fixing up borders, re-planting empty spots and, the biggest job of all, cleaning out my wildlife pond. That means pumping out all the water, scooping out all the leaves and sludge build-up, scrubbing and re-filling with clean water. The pond is quite large, so the job takes 2 staff members most of the day.

The pond has a waterfall and a fountain, not shown in the sketch, and this area, which is also where my tortoise lives, is a great attraction for all sorts of water birds. I purposely leave it to grow a bit wild with some tall indigenous grasses and a couple of indigenous trees for shade. Some of the residents are lizards, quite a few varieties of frogs, many insects including scorpions and spiders, and a few visitors like Mollie, the Mole Snake, some Brown House snakes and the odd Rinkhals (Spitting Cobra). Unfortunately Hedgehogs can't enter this area any more as I had to fence it to keep the tortoise in - left to wander the garden she cleans up most of my plants!


  1. Hi Maree! I love your paintings they are so serene!

    I just thought I'd let you know that while you are getting ready to plant up here in Ontario Canada we are getting our first snowfall!!! Think I'd rather be planting :)

  2. Oh my Mommy! Isn't your snowfall early...? I agree, I'm SO glad our winter is finally over and right now we are contending with an awful heat-wave. Haven't had ANY rain since the first spring rainfall, which wasn't very much at all. Thank you for your lovely comment, appreciate that!

  3. Here in VA we are putting our gardens to bed for the winter but your entry and wonderful sketch give me hope that summer will come 'round again. Although autumn is my favorite season and snow my favorite weather, there is a lot to be said for spring planting. I bought a waterhose-powered vacuum to clean my much-smaller pond but I haven't tried it yet. I'll let you know if it works.

  4. I've been considering one of those Paula. I made the mistake of not putting in a separate 'suction' point for removing old water and sludge and now have to use my filtration pump and pump the water out via a hosepipe, takes quite some time! Will be interested to hear once you've used yours!


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