Monday, 3 September 2007


First of all "HAPPY BIRHDAY" to Betty at Country Charm.....hope you have a wonderful day!

I had a lovely weekend with Lynn and could finally give her the birthday present that's been sitting in the garden waiting for her at it would have been to awkward to mail!..............she now has a Musa lasiocarpa (Chinese Yellow Banana), to add to her own beautiful garden. Thank goodness she had a car big enough to get it into. Leanne and co had bought her some cyclamen; I bet Lynn couldn't wait to get on with some gardening when she got home. Lynn is studying hard at the moment for an examination she has to do as part of her job......once this is over (September 13th) I'm hoping to get down and see her and Steve for a couple of days....although they've sent photos of their garden over the last few years it will be lovely to see it for real again before Autumn and Winter set in.

On Saturday we went for a trip to Poplar Nurseries near Marks Tey; it was quite exciting to go somewhere that I wouldn't be able to get to on public transport and I haven't been there since the Autumn of 2004 when Mick was the driver.
We decided we'd have some fun and give ourselves £500 each IMAGINARY spending money. I think we could have happily spent that on plants and bulbs alone and would have needed another £5000 each to purchase some of the following;

we both fell in love with this wooden water feature; the water trickling down the sides of the wooden sphere brought out the colours and grain of the wood beautifully...
these containers were made by the same company.........and Lynn had her eye on the bench!...if only that IMAGINARY money was real!!!!

one of the plants we both would have put on our shopping list was this Campsis; this is actually growing over a fence at the garden centre but they sold smaller plants for £16.99 which I thought was quite reasonable compared to some of the prices I saw charged for what I would consider just "every day" plants.

I'd never have room for this wonderful garden dining set....Lynn and Steve would though....memo to Steve if you're reading this "Hide your credit card!"...LOL

There were some wonderful Bonsais on display.......... the tiny pots at the front must be the smallest Bonsais I've ever seen!
Of course no IMAGINARY spend up would be complete without a Sauna!...this was the cheapest we saw...a mere £3,500!!!!
Imaginary shopping can be very tiring so we had a very civilised cuppa in the cafe and then resumed our wishful sending spree... I fell in love with a couple of the water featuresI wonder if an elephant in the garden would keep my neighbours cat out of the garden!
and can you just imagine relaxing in this on a warm Summer's evening........
I wonder what Lottie's chickens would think about these...............

Lynn bought herself, me, Manda and Leanne one of these "Star Balls"...they will look lovely with a tealight inside.

I bought a plant (in the photo above)...surprise! was only £1.49 and I just had to get it because I didn't know what it was!!!! I'm usually pretty good at naming most of the plants we see in Garden Centres and Lynn was astounded when I'd actually found one I couldn't name. It has Lantana type leaves and Flaming Katy type flowers. There was no label on it and so I asked at the check out what it was. The lady said Chleome but I was pretty sure it wasn't so she called another member of staff who said it was a PANTAS. I've done a search online and can find one photo but no text or information about PANTAS at all. I assume it's non hardy and intend to take some cuttings. It's probably something that's quite common in warmer climes so if any of my blogpals can give me further information or an alternative name for it I'd be very grateful.
The afternoon turned out really warm and sunny and we went on to Leanne's for a fish and chip dinner.......

no we didn't nab Koi from the garden centre...we got them from Leanne's local Chippy....we were so busy chatting and eating I forgot to take any photos except this one of Scarlet.... The fish was really creamy and the chips just like PROPER homemade chips cooked in dripping. I use Oven Chips at home now I've only myself to cook for and I guess they are healthier and less fattening but those chip shop calories and cholesterol tasted SOOOOO GOOD!!!

Hope you all had a good weekend too.....must fly...lots to do!

busy bee


Annie said...

What a fun day you had with your shopping trip and your celebration with Lynn. I love the first water feature you showed and would like to have one like it in my garden. It's time for me to start puttering around again, clean out the dry and dying and put in some Fall plants now.

Dirty Butter said...

I'm so glad you had such a wonderful time.

Allotment Lady said...

Brilliant outing and what a great idea having imaginary shopping money - what a fantastical fun thing to do - I must try it myself.

I do hope that your coffee wasn't imaginary too!

Thanks for all those lovely photos - I really couldn't have imagined all those works or arts as pots, water features - and the outdoor dining table and chairs - wow - I wonder if P did the lottery this week?

dot said...

What a fun shopping trip! Thanks for taking me along!

Katya said...

Oh Ruth! What a fun time you must have had!!!
I love Lynn's present. It is beautiful. And BIG!!!
The outing looks like it was such a great adventure! Nothing so fun as spending imaginary $$$. No pain at all! (except when you realize what you bought isn't going to *quite* make it home with you!!!)
I love those wooden "bowls"...they are gorgeous! Wood is one of my favorite mediums...good thing as I LIVE in the woods!!! hehehehe
So glad you had such a wonder-filled weekend!!!

Julie said...

Hi there! I am new to GTS, and was just stopping in to check out your blog. I believe your little pink blossom plant is a PENTA. I have red and white ones in my front garden! They grow well in south Florida!

Suzi-k said...

hi ruth, i think you may mean Pentas, try this site They grow well here and come in lots of bright colours, can get a little sprawling if not trimmed regularly, but well worth a space in the garden. Is Talj OK? I see she has dropped off the radar, please send her hugs if you are still in touch with her.

Helen said...

Lovely photographs, Ruth. I like the idea of pretend shopping money, but i seem to be doing an awful lot of pretend shopping lately. Not that it really stops me. I suppose you are beginning to settle into the autumn flowering now, whereas our spring is just starting. Beautiful time of year, here and there.

CG said...

You obviously had a fantastic day; that's some garden centre!! I would have spent some imaginary money on the wooden water feature and the unusual wooden planters...really beautiful!

Akelamalu said...

Ah window shopping is great fun and I absolutely adore garden centres. Sounds like you had a wonderful day out Ruth. x

You have an award my friend please call by to collect it. :)

Shaz said...

I love window shopping & just love that table (I wonder if next door would consider an open plan two way garden . . .lol)

Those ish & chips sound good too, I hate oven chips & don't own a fryer. I bet Leeanee's garden is coming along a treat too x x

Libbys Blog said...

You can't beat shopping with virtual money!!!!!!!!!!!

david mcmahon said...

I love cyclamen. They really brighten up a room or a patio

Curtis said...

I love the tiny Bonsai and the swinging chair. That looks like a good resting spot too take a snooze.

Elsie said...

The best shopping is done in this way...who am I kidding?? I would love to have the swinging chair and some of the water features.

Lovely photos as always.

Stay well


Mauigirl said...

Sounds like a wonderful day! I love water features like that. As I may have mentioned, we recently had old concrete dug up in our yard and now have a nice big square of earth to plant a garden in. I would love to have some kind of fountain or pond in the middle but hubby is not as keen on it. In the meantime it continues to be bare because I am afraid to put anything there until I know what I want!

Chris said...

Your day out gives us a lot of ideas :-) If you find a money tree at any sale perhaps you'll let us know LOL. Have a good week, Ruth.

Audrey said...

Loved that trip Ruth, those water features look fantastic, would love one for my garden..sigh.

Must try this imaginary shopping myself sounds like so much fun.

Good luck to Lynn with that exam Im sure she will be glad when its all over.

Gledwood said...

i like that wooden goldfish bowl thing... that would make a natural garden accompaniment to my 12 ft softwater amazonian bogwood tetra-filled aquarium I shall have in my Chelsea townhouse after my memoirs become a 10million copy bestseller...

i bet that wooden sphere was pricey but!




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