Friday, 25 July 2014

Just padding about.

Well guess what I've gone and got? 
An Ipad air. 
I don't need it. I can hardly justify buying it but its so lovely and I used my birthday money.
 I am a gadget freak. 
When we went to the Apple store I was overcome and also bought a RIDICULOUSLY overpriced case for it. But its so beautiful. Duck egg blue leather. 
Sigh.

Anyway it takes brilliant pictures. You can get tons of stuff in one shot so I took a load of garden pictures.

Now....ever since I started this blog I've been moaning on about my poor gardening skills and terrible results. But that was  before I discovered the joy of compost. It was also before we had a major hedge chopping and light- enhancing session. And several major weeding sessions. And a few garden centre spending sessions. 


Its not exactly Great Dixter, but now we have a garden with a passable bit of growth..well when I say growth I mean planting of course. I haven't grown many of them, and it remains to be seen whether they will survive the marauding army of slugs that appear here every time it rains a bit. I think the danger time will be when they start their new and tender growth next spring. The plants, not the slugs.
Well thats if we get any sun. This summer is great in that respect. 

I've moved my precious flag iris into a space where the tall yellow iris have come unbidden, in the hope that they'll flower again.




I'm a bit obsessive about it, as with everything I do, except dusting. 

I grew those teeny cosmos from seeds, but not the big ones.



I go out at night and seek out the slimy fellas and poke them into a bottle of Guinness. One I found last night was so FAT I had to get a stick and push it in. (I keep missing and that only makes it more dangerous for plants when they escape nearer to the blooms.) or if they have a shell they get whizzed over the substation fence behind the house.

 Don't you just love nasturtiums? I actually poked a few seeds in this big pot which holds a jasmine, and they did the rest. Fabulous and very vintage in that they always remind us of our separate childhoods.. I love them with a bit of dark blue lobelia (which I bought)


 I must draw your attention to a picture from a previous post in about 2008 where I failed miserably with them.



So you can see why I'm delighted.


I've composed tubs.
The little tiny blue star on the right is pratia. As soon as I saw it I snapped it up because I remember once visiting a garden and asking what it was . The owner said it gets everywhere so I bought some. And guess what? EVERY NIGHT its covered in tiny dark slugs. I have to pick them off by torchlight with my gloved hands.


And we've cut a bit of grass out to add planting space. This is my favourite bit with three different Monardia, or Bergamots; Phlox, Astrantia, Verbena bonariensis bought for me by a greenfingered friend, and some pale lemon daisies I forget the name. Most of these came from a lovely garden centre near Clitheroe called Holden Clough which has a super cafe and I had my birthday lunch there and then went out and spent too much on plants.
The hypericum might have to go, to make more space.


  I went to a super and very inexpensive garden centre not far away for most of the rest of my plants. Aren't these exquisite? Brown flowers? Wow.
The structure of the gold one is amazing.



 My Mum bought me the calla lily for my birthday. 
The white thing is a little delphinium. I would love to see it flourish and increase next year but ..slugs...hmm...I have to be vigilant.



 Hetty came out to check on me i-padding around. (Thats Ed Redfeathers lying prone.)


 Now can you see those pale pink candy-tuft type things? I GREW THOSE FROM SEEDS!!!!


I bought the heuchera and the delphiniums, and the lupins but I must say I put the lupins in quite some time ago and I consider it a triumph that they've got through to July, despite the window cleaner snapping them with his hose, and the slimies gnawing at them.



I put two post worth of sweet pea plants in quite late but I have hope. Two lots are in tubs, and three lots are dotted about the garden. Nowhere is always sunny so its tricky. They're doing ok but no flowers yet.
The thing about taking pictures with an ipad is that you shouldn't put your finger in front of the lens. Still I love these cosmos .


I can't remember what the other pointy pink thing is called. Verbascum?


 Does anyone know what this  shrub is? My mother-in-law took a cutting from a garden of a house we stayed in in Charmouth about 20 years ago and this is it now. Huge. It has glossy leaves and gets little pompom type greenish white flowers, then in Autumn it has peculiar orangey berries.


 And just because they're lovely, hydrangea flowers.



 This little bunch of 'weeds' is so cute. Feverfew.


 But what is wrong with Agatha? 


My rose that I got for last years birthday. 
She arrived in November and I stuck her in the clay soil and when I dug the hole she was standing in water. 
Nevertheless she did well. Then we did a load of weeding, added grit and compost and raised the level of the soil surface, and ..this might seem a bit creepy...I had two cremated dogs ashes in the house...yes I said weird but I thought it would be nice to have Daisy and Willow buried at last with a rose on top.

I moved Agatha. 
She seemed to like it. 

Before we went to Venice she had a few large buds one almost open. 
When we got back, they looked sort of 'petrified'. On some of them the stems went brown just below the neck, and the bud fell off.

Oh dear. Dare I move her again? Into a tub?
Can anyone offer advice? 


Its been a real pleasure to sit and enjoy the lovely weather in a garden that is no longer full of weeds. 
I finished reading 'The Luminaries' while I was outside today. I was a bit baffled by the end. I've read some reviews and found that what I thought had happened, had happened. but it wasn't very clear.
It was a great read though.


Here's a bit of textile content. 

I went to a talk by Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn which both inspired and depressed me. I felt as if I have no right to call myself an Artist. I tried to combine my work with their technique, working on water soluble fabric. 
I didn't like what I did.
I haven't done a thing since except started a small commission. 
Its too hot to sew.


I also got a lovely new rack for spools for my birthday so I'll finish with some eye candy for sewers.


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