Saturday, November 3, 2012

Ducks, Waterlilies, and Ponds...

It has been a mixed fortnight at Willowbrook. We have been busy preparing the park for our first wedding, which was to be today, but was rained off. 

The dramas all started a few weeks back when we noticed that the liner of the lake had started to emerge from the water. Closer investigation revealed that it had sprung a leak, and within a week the 1,200000 litres of water which was supposed to be on top of the liner was under it! So, we had to get a pump and pump the water across the park to a far away drain and empty the lake out. Then, after we had got a man to fix it, we pumped 1,200000 litres of clean bore water back on top! 

The whole undertaking was just finished in time for the planned wedding. We had had nothing but fine weather for the last 2 weeks (the vineyard needing daily watering since planting). Then this morning the flood gates opened again, and any hopes of a lakeside wedding were completely dashed.

Above: The Ruuner Ducks wandering their new paddock

The water lilies, which the runner ducks had eaten down to their rhizomes (rendering them beyond resurrection), had all been replaced (thanks to the ever helpful and pleasant Sam at Waihi Waterlily Gardens). The disgraced ducks banished to the pond down on the farm by the pig paddock (the future site of the Pheasantry). The Indian Runners are not the only ducks to have made the lake their home. We have several Mallards nesting along the brook and swimming in the lake...
Below: A Mallard Duckling that I caught in the brook (and released again)

Still the Highlands have been happy, and putting on a lot of weight...

 ... and the roses are starting to bloom in the potager garden. I hope to be able to share some photos of them in a couple of days, once the rain has passed. 

Til then, 


  1. I am sure that was a drama you could have well done without!
    Your ducks are Runners. What sort? I know of Indian Runners and I suppose Khaki Campbells are sort of Runner Ducks. . .
    I am enjoying reading your blog.

  2. What a blow about the lake, but you handled it with such aplomb. Although I'm sure there must have been some stamping of feet & grinding of teeth when you saw the liner floating on the surface of the water!

    Dear, dear David, thank you so much for your lovely comment over at The Hedge yesterday. You would be the most welcome of guests on the Rosebery bus, but of course what happens on the bus, stays on the bus - those Hedgies of mine are a wild bunch! Hope you are both well & emerging from the depths of a Kiwi winter. Things at work are keeping me far too occupied. I'm somewhat over talking SpO2/MetHb/IBP defib parameters, as I'm sure you'll understand. Need some beauty & elegance in my life, so off to catch up on your recent posts.
    Millie xx


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