Changing Seasons January : 2019…

January is the hottest, driest month of the year, temperatures in this area are in the low to mid 30’s. But that can almost be considered mild compared to the searing mid 40’s around most of Australia with all time temperature records being broken daily. Torrential rain and flooding is pounding the northern areas and drought is still devastating out west. But with sea breezes keeping our temperature to that bearable mid 30’s, I think this is the best place to live. But  with only 10mm of rain in the first week of January we do need rain and I am watering the garden daily.

Then the spear pump died. After 18 years of trouble-free, stellar service, with a gasp and a groan it just stopped. I was devastated, it has been a garden life saver and used almost daily.untitled-1-1_5184x3888After 4 frantic phone calls trying to contact a repair man I finally found Paul, but he was very busy and couldn’t get here for 5 days. Unable to contact anyone else who could come, no hope of getting quotes, I just had to wait and use the expensive council water in the meantime. When Paul arrived he explained that during the 10 year drought, 2000 to 2010, with a high demand for spear pumps, many “cowboys” came out of the woodwork installing dodgy pumps, then disappeared when the drought broke. Consequently he has been kept busy repairing those pumps. We were lucky to have 18 years usage as the person that installed ours did a good job, but he has since retired, (I did try to phone him). So R.I.P. faithful, little pump.

We now have a shiny, brand new and far more powerful model. So the garden will live on…untitled-2-2_5184x3888

Just to keep you up to date, here are a few photos of the garden today…untitled-4-4_4482x3351

untitled-5-5_5184x3888untitled-6-6_4767x3515untitled-9-9_4000x3000I’m very pleased with how the annuals are performing, filling all the gaps. The natives I planted a few months ago are powering ahead and I’m waiting, expectantly, to see them flower next spring. The new rain gauge sits forlorn and empty waiting to be tested. The Poinciana still has a few of the vibrant flowers on show.


I have been recording the “changing seasons” for a full year. (Here is January 2018) What a great way to keep a record of the garden. Thank you Su for hosting this challenge. There are many bloggers from all round the world joining this challenge, here is the link to see what they are all doing.



  1. It’s such an enormous continent, Pauline! I suppose it’s no wonder that there are so many climates. But yes, you certainly seem to’ve got a good deal with your little patch of heaven. 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s a garden worth keeping alive and I’m glad you got so many faithful years from your pump. I’d happily send you some cooler temperatures if I could and we’d still be freezing, literally and figuratively, although you’d be more comfortable. 🙂


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  3. No one else has asked the question so I guess I’m the only one wondering what on earth a spear pump is? Does it bring water up from a bore hole? Does everyone have one? We of course have to use water pumped to us by the water companies and most people are on a water meter. Luckily we are not as the pipes are too entangled for them to work out which property they belong to, so we pay quite reasonable water rates.

    Garden looking good PP! The staghorn fern (?) is huge!

    Liked by 2 people

    • A spear pump brings water up from the underground water table. Not every one can have them , sometimes the water table is too far down, or the water maybe too salty. We were lucky and put one in back in the early 2000’s when the drought started. It was expensive but been worth its weight in gold to keep the garden alive. Especially when very strict regulations kicked in during the drought and if you used council water as the drought got worse and the dams started to dry up. No regulations on spear pump use. Water rates are quite high and most houses are metered.
      Yes that is a stag horn I have quite a number of them

      Liked by 2 people

      • OK. Thanks for the explanation. Like a bore hole then, which some properties have in South Africa. We had one on a smallholding we were living on, but it was a bit of a problem when there were power failures as then the pump didn’t work! And we had no mains water either.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Your garden looks so lovely Pauline; thank goodness you could get a new pump. We have a water tank, so I’m used to the vagaries of water pumps, but am incredibly grateful for the tank. It was originally our only water source, but when we renovated we got a new tank and needed to connect to mains as well. City water is expensive here, but also chlorinated and horrible. We do actually use mains in the house (well-filtered), and it means that our underground tank is available solely for the garden. Joy!!!!

    Thanks for being part of The Changing Seasons. Seeing the changes in your garden each month brings such joy (and learning on my part).

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Having a few years’ seniority over an older couple who moved to my area, I saw them in a hardware store getting supplies to fix their water system. I walked up to them, tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘Excuse me sir, I’m with the water department. May I help you?” We all laughed!

    I am grateful for my many lessons in various trades in this Latin American school of survival! What’s most important is keeping a sense of humor when Life tosses challenges our way.

    That lovely garden is worth all of the frustrations! It would be wonderful to sit there with both of you and bask in the beauty of life!

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