Here in Australia it is now officially Spring. In reality I think Spring sprang a couple of weeks ago, when the temperature reached a balmy 26 degrees celsius. However, it is the real thing now according to the calendar. Having said that, the nights are still quite cold and the temperature is expected to get close to zero tonight. The days have been fantastic though and it is a great time of the year. It is very pleasant to be outside at the moment (during the day I mean) and working in the gardens where I work is quite enjoyable also.
The usual external activities continue – hedging (we have lots and lots of hedges), weed control, mowing, etc. I am currently getting the lawns ready for fertilising, with lawn weed spraying being a major part of my work at the moment. I’ll be on annual leave for two weeks at the end of this week, so when I return the lawns will get fertilised – I don’t want the lads having too much work to do in my absence.
On Friday I was visiting the Bulahdelah Cemetery in order to photograph headstones for my family history research. I decided to go up to Bulahdelah after work, it being only a short journey from Tea Gardens.
What I had noticed over the last week or so was that as the temperature had begun to rise so the number of bushfires and controlled burns had increased around the area dramatically. In fact, there have been quite a lot of bushfires burning around the area. Though this photo was taken on Friday, bushfires are continuing to burn around the place, driven by the very strong winds and dry conditions that currently exist. There is a massive fire burning over toward Nelson Bay by the look of it, as there are huge plumes of smoke in that direction.
This photo was taken from the Bulahdelah Cemetery toward Alum Mountain, where the fire was burning. The air throughout the area, from Tea Gardens to Bulahdelah, was full of smoke and there was a thick smoke haze. I wouldn’t say the air was choking, but every breath certainly had the taste of summer upon it.