Wednesday, 25 January 2023

Quirky Cutlery

Himself and I  had a quick lunch at a small local garden centre earlier this week - the indoor premises were uncomfortably crowded so despite the artic temperatures we sat in a covered 'pod' with an overhead heater. We shared a delicious bacon, lettuce and tomato toastie. I had a hot chocolate and he a cup of tea. We were amused by the cutlery which accompanied our liquid refreshment. I was convinced that I could put such cutlery to good use in my greenhouse so must see if I can find a source.

Monday, 16 January 2023

IAVOM ~ Thereby Hangs A Tale

 This week's vase is still a work in progress - as you can see the flowers are still to fully open. I don't often buy flowers these days but this week after seemingly days and days of relentless rain, wind and grim grey I felt in dire need of some instant sunshine. Ordering an online grocery delivery I was tempted to order two bunches of daffodils although perhaps three would have filled the vase.  

I would usually greet the delivery driver and then unpack the shopping but couldn't this Saturday afternoon so delegated the task to himself and presumed that he had executed his duties efficiently. It was only later in the evening when I remembered that I had ordered the daffs. I searched high and low expecting to come across them hopefully in water somewhere about the house but to no avail. I then asked himself if the delivery had contained two bunches of daffodils. The reply was a firm no. Puzzled I wondered whether I had simply forgotten or whether my flowers had gone astray in the delivery van. I checked the order and yes I had indeed ordered the daffodils. 

By then I was thinking that I should contact the company to enquire about the missing items but decided to check with himself again. This time I asked whether there was anything in the delivery that wasn't in some sort of packet or tin or other form of containment . Well he said and after some consideration came up with a head of broccoli, a red pepper and a bunch of spring onions. "Are you sure there were spring onions?" I replied having no recollection of ordering spring onions. The reply was in the affirmative and he informed me that they were in the fridge salad draw. I went into the kitchen, opened the fridge, pulled out the salad draw and there were the bunches of daffodils staring me in the face! They were very tightly in bud without as much as a peek of yellow showing but they were definitely not spring onions! Needless to say I laughed loud and long and so did he when he realised the error of his ways. 

The vase was part of a Christmas or birthday present of one of those bulb kits - containing coir discs and muscari. The muscari not surprisingly didn't flourish but I hung on to the vase.

Thanks as always to Cathy who blogs at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her excellent hosting skills each weeek.

Monday, 2 January 2023

IAVOM ~ Burning Embers


My first ' In A Vase On Monday' in 2023 is very much a pick and plonk effort, with not much in common other than both the occupants are very much last year's flowers from different seasons.

  • The chrysanthemums are a mix of chrysanthemum 'Spider Bronze' and 'Bigoudi Red'. The latter  started off as deep red almost burgundy colour before developing warm shades of orange. I raided the plants in the greenhouse for the flowers. The plants were moved there before the bitterly cold snap in December as they are described as tender. Despite a small heater being left on overnight and once or twice throughout the day, the temperature in the greenhouse still dropped to well below freezing more than once. We had fitted a device to advise us just how much the heater costs to run and have decided that it's too expensive in view of rising energy bills. Since then himself has unearthed an antique paraffin stove which my Dad used in his greenhouse but there has no been  occasion to use it yet. 
  • The second occupant of the vase are a couple of stems of dried lunaria seed pods were flowers last spring. They were loosely woven in my festive wreath hanging from the front door but I noticed this morning that they had fallen out so I thought that I would make use of them in the vase.
With thanks to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' who hosts this excellent weekly meme with considerable aplomb and a most Happy New Year to everyone!

Monday, 26 December 2022

IAVOM ~ Festive Faffing

Not a traditional vase as such this week but some green from the garden and dried lunaria seed heads were used to concoct a festive hanging for our front door. A string of fairy lights was threaded through. All held together with the aid of twine and sticky back sellotape. Thanks to the Christmas fairy in the shape of Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her hosting of 'In A Vase On Monday', which has been an excellent source of information, inspiration and encouragement throughout 2022 and no doubt will be a source of enjoyment in 2023.

Here it's Boxing Day and whilst himself relish getting back into the usual sports viewing routine normally associated with Saturdays, I'm plunging headfirst into sorting out my seed box and will be making lists and plans for warmer days. I hope that you enjoy your day whatever you are up to.

Tuesday, 6 December 2022

A Week Of Flowers, 2022 ~ Day 7


It's the here and now in the December garden for day 7, with the last defiant few flowers of geranium 'Rozanne', an absolute star of a hardy perennial, They have been covered with flowers most of the time from late spring onwards - trouble free and such a beautiful colour. It makes excellent ground cover and can be also be grown in containers. I think that this last brave show will sadly be finished off by hard frost as this week unfolds but it more than deserves a winter break.

A special thanks and a virtual bouquet 💐 to the lovely Cathy over at 'Words and Herbs', who came up with this idea of banishing the blues through sharing photos of our flowers. I have enjoyed seeing both familiar flowers, new to me ones and those that I just can't grow but would love to be able to. It has made me realise that I've haven't taken many photos in the garden this year, so a new year aim for me is to get reacquainted with my camera rather than rely on my phone and get out there weekly to capture what is happening. 

Monday, 5 December 2022

A Week In Flowers 2022 ~ Day 6

The summer was well advanced when this photo was snapped during the first week of August. It is an inula but I'm not sure of where I obtained it from. I know that I originally came across an inula on one of Cathy's from 'Rambling In The Garden' open garden events that she holds under the National Open Garden Scheme. The NGS raises considerable amounts of money for charity each year, thanks to the gardens that participate and open their gardens to visitors, usually provide welcome refreshments and often have brilliant plant stalls. I'm not sure whether I actually bought the plant that day or whether it was at another open garden event in Cumbria the following year. Well wherever I got it from its's a ray of sunshine, a bee magnet and opens up it's flowers in a most fascinating manner. Amazingly this year it has had a second wind and has sported a few late in the year flowers. There are still one or two hanging on in there today but I think that they will be finished off by the predicted severe frosts that are heading our way later this week.

A special thanks to Cathy who blogs at 'Words and Herbs' for her steadfast hosting this week.

Sunday, 4 December 2022

A Week Of Flowers 2022 ~ Day 5

Fast forwarding to late May, possibly my favourite time of the year and a bulb in the shape of allium siculum also known as Sicilian Honey Garlic. Not only is it loved by the pollinators it has most attractive architectural seedheads too. It apparently has a tendency to self-seed and can become invasive but it has never reached pest levels in my garden ..... yet! It is also is happy in shade so that is a plus for me.

Thanks to Cathy who blogs at 'Words and Herbs' for hosting this week's celebration of flowers.

Saturday, 3 December 2022

A Week Of Flowers 2022 ~ Day 4


It's back to to the middle of May this year when spring was working her magic and a couple of aquilegias. All my aquilegias have been grown from seed either kindly given to me by friends or obtained via the excellent seed exchanges run by The Cottage Garden Society or The Hardy Plant Society. Over the years they have self seeded and some interesting offspring have arisen.

We woke up to a light frost, blue skies and sunshine this morning and the weather is set to get much colder as the next week unfolds. I'm off outside to do some rearranging over seedlings in the greenhouse and one or two hardy perennials that have been bought under cover for the winter. Then to cut some lengths of fleece for protection on the colder nights. I'm trying to cut down on using the greenhouse heater overnight this winter but it may be switched on when the overnight temperatures are minus. Many thanks to Cathy over at 'Words and Herbs' who came up with the excellent idea of brightening up these back end days with a myriad of flowers. I'm looking forward to peeking at what other bloggers are sharing when I'm back in  the warmth later, coffee in hand and pen and paper in reach.