Backyard Reno Problem #7

Most of the plants that were in our backyard had to be removed (most upsetting was Kings Park Special, my gorgeous Callistemon and my lovely Swan River Pea) or relocated (unsuccessfully like Molly, my most favourite Grevillea). But a few plants could stay. These plants have been through a lot. Maggie the Magnolia has had a particularly rough time, being quite big and right in the path of demolition. She had quite a significant branch snapped off during the shed demolition. I watched it happen in horror!

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Maggie was always a bit lopsided because she was up against the shed, but losing this branch made her even more lopsided. I’m hoping she fills out a bit more before the wedding.

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She’s also been through several rounds of excavation. Adam made a barricade for her to protect her from the patio excavation, which worked well. Although the landscaping company who did this excavation were very rough. The knocked over the pile of bricks you can see on the right of the photo below, which damaged my Captain Cook Callistemon a little. It could have been a lot worse though!

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They also thought a good place to rest the heavy block which holds up the temporary fence was on top of a pot plant, damaging the pot and the plant. Unbelievable!

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Thankfully they chose a plant that’s hardy as all hell and it’s totally fine. The pot looks crap now but the plant will grow big enough to cover the damaged pot in no time! I think it’s a Jade plant or something? It’s some kind of succulent. My neighbours gave me a small pot that they’d grown from a cutting. A small branch of that cutting was knocked one day and Dad shoved it in this pot. Tough stuff!

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Back to Maggie. She’s since been through plenty of knocks as Dad and I built the weatherboard wall behind her. We found her quite annoying! And Adam and friends no doubt gave her a few knocks while painting the weatherboard wall. She’s got little cuts and bruises here and there.

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The final knock (and hopefully the last now!) was the final soil excavation where she got heaps of her roots exposed. I’ve since covered most of them up with extra dirt, but you can see a few big ones poking through. I think this has knocked her around a bit. She’s been looking a little sick since this. Some of her new growth has died and her leaves are a little yellow. I’ve been giving her extra love and food and water over the past couple of weeks since the root incident and I’m sure she’ll be fine (the second picture in this post was taken today so she looks pretty good still).

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She’s had a tough life, Maggie. She used to live at my brother’s place. He rescued her and put her in a pot before he demolished his house to rebuild. She stayed in that pot for ages, waiting to be planted again. One day, Tom offered her to me. Since we were starting our garden from scratch, an offer of an established plant was very exciting! This is what she looked like when we got her:

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She’s a tough cookie!

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