Saturday, 31 March 2007


The weather's been quite gloomy again and I've been pretty busy with other things besides gardening; in fact the only chance I've had to get into the garden has been taking plants out to the greenhouse in the morning and bringing them back inside in the hoo

.....I'll be glad when I feel the nights are warm enough to leave all my "babies" outside. That said it's a wonder I didn't trip up as all the time my eyes were darting right and left trying to spot if anything NEW had happened! Although it's not fully open I just had to take a quick photo of the Snakeskin Fritillaria....................
any excuse for a linger!

The local schools have all broken u for the Easter Holidays now and over the course of the last few weeks Manda has been telling me all about the paper mache bowls and Easter Cards that the children at the school that she works at have been making. It's been fun listening to the exploits of the children as they moulded the paper mache round balloons, the drying, the cutting, the painting etc. As the children had made some "extras" I was thrilled when she brought both a card and a bowl home for Mick and I....................

didn't the kids do a great job!

We have family visiting over the weekend but I'll try and fit in a little post when I can...and it sounds like the sunshine will be back next week....that'll be "blooming marvellous!"

Friday, 30 March 2007


First of all a blog birthday wish to Sharon, CT Daily Photo ; 1 year old today! I've a few months to go before I reach that milestone.

I've been quite busy so it's just a photo and caption post today.

The latest type of daffodil that has come out
Well rooted Strawberry Spinach seedling.
Pricked out into a tray with a few in pots to pass on to family and friends.
The only thing worse than a Lily Beetle; TWO Lily Beetles mating!

This Begonia and Grass just happen to be next to each other in the shed; I like this colour combination.
The Variagated Pieris is starting to flower.
The Hellabores still looking good.
The Pulmanaria flowers now changing colour.
Muscari are flowering.
Realised I'd forgotten to show you The Alternative Gardener's front garden when I posted the overheads of ours the other day.


Thursday, 29 March 2007


My dear young blogfriend Gleds...the one who keeps referring to me as an old age pensioner...has tagged me with this A to Z

A- Available or Single? –
'myspace definitely Unavailable
B- Best Friends? –
Hubby, some family, many bloggers
C- Cake or Pie? –
Cake..chelsea bun
D- Drink of Choice? –
cold - water, hot - coffee, spirit - brandy, wine - red
E- Essential Item? – toilet paper
F- Favourite Colour? – any with a stem and leaves attached
G- Gummi Bears or Worms? – sour worms
H- Hometown? – born Middlesex, family town Ramsgate, current home Great Cornard
I- Indulgence? – chocolate coated ginger
J- January or February? - january (before the credit card bills come in)
K- Kids and Names? – always loved the name Brett, never met one though
L- Life is incomplete without? - oxygen
M- Marriage Date? – Ist 1970, present (and last) 1989
N- Number of Siblings? – one sister (younger, taller and prettier...grrr)
O- Oranges or Apples? - apples preferably cooked in a pie
P- Phobias/Fears? – of being tagged!
Q- Favourite Quote? - "I'm so unlucky that if I fell into a vat of tits I'd be the one who came up sucking my thumb"
R- Reasons to smile? - being loved
S- Season? – any except winter
T- Tag 3 People? - Sebastien (El Divo), Mel Gibson, Sean Bean.....a girl can dream!
U- Unknown Fact About Me? – too many to choose from
V- Vegetable You Hate? – cooked carrots (though I eat them so the grandkids don't have an excuse not to)
W- Worst Habit? – worrying
X- X-rays You've Had? – clavicle 1962ish
Y- Your Favourite Foods? – Rare steak and more rare steak
Z- Zodiac? –

just kidding
Now can I get back to gardening posts tomorrow!!!

Wednesday, 28 March 2007


Right the picnic hampers ready so off we go............................
Just click on the pages

Cool Slideshows

Round the corner into Broom Street now

Cool Slideshows

Now we turn left into Highbury Way

Cool Slideshows

Thanks for joining us. Wasn't the weather lovely. (Many apologies...each album did have 18 photos in but they seem to have disappeared!!!)


I was putting out the dustbins yesterday evening (blue bin, recycle day) when I saw that for the third evening running the had turned sun turned deep red as it set. Again I took countless photographs trying deaperately to capture the red; I tried every variation that my camera has but no luck at all. In every one although the sky colour showed up the sun remained white...Grrrr. I now have 20 photos in my computer recycle bin....those of you who drop into my Our Sky blog will know that good or bad I DO NOT dump any photo of the sky...but even I thought 21 shots that all looked practically exactly the same was a bit excessive!

Speaking of recycling; I must show you a photograph that Mandi on her Tel Aviv Photo A Day blog posted. Isn't this one of the most attractive recycling bins you've ever seen. This one is for plastic bottles. Just click on the words Tel Aviv and pay her a visit; she has some great photos of Tel Aviv on there.

Now this is quite a short post...I want you to conserve your energy because later today I'm taking you on the walk Mick and I went on yesterday.....not to The Co-Op at The Drift again! this time we are off to the Dairy Stores. See you later...packed lunches WILL be provided.

Tuesday, 27 March 2007


Quite a clear sky first thing yesterday morning and as the sun increased in height the temperature really started to pick up. I decided that it was time to get the cloches out of the garage; this means that a few of the half hardy plants will be able to be brought out of the house and as long as temperatures don't drop too sharply at night, they will be able to stay outside snugly in the garden. This will not only give me more window sill space for the very tender plants but will also save me traipsing back and forth every night bringing all the half hardys back inside!

Mick made these cloches quite a few years ago; they are just four pieces of wood joined to make a rectangle; some pieces of flexible pipe (he found on a skip) bent into half hoops and attached with some nuts and bolt; then covered with fleece using a staple gun. The beauty of them is that the can be folded down and this saves space in the garage when we are not using them.every few years we have to replace the fleece

Then when we get them out for the Spring we just push the hoops up again

I can get all these under one cloche; that's equal to one and a half window sills!

Snug as a bug in a rug.

Speaking of bugs I found two more of these today.... the dreaded Lily Beetle!!!!!!!!!

They don't only ravage Lilies; they also like Fritillaria

like this Snakes Head that is in bud

and Persica that is just starting to bloom. Something else that is starting to bloom is my favourite tulip that we have; I just love the colour of it

Isn't it a beauty!! Right I'm off Lily Beetle hunting again...those pesky things aren't going to get my plants!!!!!

Monday, 26 March 2007


You'd better settle down there's a whole weekend to catch up on.

Grab yourself a mug of tea while its nice and hot and here we go.

I'm sorry but I've been time for cooking cakes! I promise I'll make you some next time.......

Saturday was an abysmal day weather wise so it was time to do some kitchen gardening; as in gardening in the kitchen. Armed with my trusty dibber and mini trowel; these came free with a gardening magazine years ago; Mick had been over to buy his Saturday newspaper and came back with the mags for me; I'd been using a pencil and old fork up until then...we were such newbie gardeners we didn't even know there was such a thing as a dibber! It's nice that something so unexotic can hold such sweet memories.

So compost and pots at the ready and under the watchful eye of the head gardener I set to work.

The first thing I did was prick out and pot up the Butterfly Flowers (Schizanthus). Normally I would have pot them up singly but I know I won't have room for so many pots indoors if the weather turns really cold again; so I potted them up in'll either mean they will end up looking like one massive plant or it will be a case of survival of the fittest!

I always water my potted up seedlings from the bottom; funnily enough Christine Walkden in her TV programme on Friday night says she does the same thing!

The pot of orange pip seedlings for The Great Pip Challenge have their true leaves now so I've potted them up too. I was pleased with the amount of root they had on them.
The Senetti had grown on really well; I want them to bush out and so I've potted them up into 4" pots now

I still had some compost left in the bag so I thought I'd check on the house plants in case anything needed a top dress; the Lucky Bamboo I've been weaning from water to soil looked ready for its final repot; this photo is from the "weaning" stage.

Of course, when your looking over your houseplants inevitably there may be the odd accident or breakage, never one to be able to risk a bit of propagation......I had to make a pot of "bits and pieces" cuttings up! Luckily these are all succulents so it's just a case of popping them in some damp soil and waiting for them to root. Not that I actually NEED any more houseplants....but I just gotta do it!

So endeth Saturday.
Sunday's weather was completely (almost) mild and very sunny day so out in the garden we went.

These are self seeded from last year and already starting to flower.

I hope I won't regret leaving this caterpillar safe and sound...he just looked so snug..I didn't have the heart to remove him.
These particular tulips aren't in bud yet but the leaves are so pretty, especially with the dew on them.

Last Autumn I'd split a small clump of Ajuga into pieces to try and make an edging to the centre bed; it's taken off well!

It's good to see the ladybirds didn't suffer from the cold snap
but neither did the flies!
I love the blue of this Hyacinthand the Violas have really perked up
The "un-named 25p Clematis has really grown well, it was only a stick when we bought it and now has buds on it. At least although it is nameless I will now know when to prune it, it obviously flowers on the new years growth..I wonder what colour the flower will be.The Skimmia is starting to flower; to think this started off from a berry Mick brought home one day, from a bush at a house he was painting.This is my favourite piece of stone round the pond,
it has it's own mini garden of lichen and moss.

While we were sitting in the garden we heard a lot of banging from our neighbour, the alternative gardener; I could resist a peek from the bathroom window to see what exciting new project he was working on

Tried to work out what was different.......I think he was working on this area....erm...I hope that gas canister is empty!!!!

I thought I'd take an overhead view shot of our garden'll be nice to look back and see the difference at the height of the season

The back

The (left) front

The penultimate won't be long before the sun starts to shine on the pergola and FINALLY the sun has moved round enough so that I can capture a sunset from the BACK garden!




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