Friday, 31 October 2014

End Of Month View ~ October 2014

As October evaporates in a heat haze a bit of outside has come inside today to acknowledge Halloween. Meet three of my little 'Wee-B-Little' pumpkins with some being more little than others.
The taste jury is out as yet but soup will be on the menu soon along with a verdict. We have quite a few of these to get through but only one of the much larger 'Black Futsu' the surface of which reminds me of a lunar landscape.

I am still struggling with getting to grips with the new camera so again this will be a photo light post. Now that the dark nights are upon us time to do some serious reading of the manual before the snowdrop season is upon us.

So a quick run through October starting with the garden where there seems to have been little in the way of action as the season has shifted discernibly to autumn. There have been various affairs going on in the background which have distracted me. One that I will share here is that after much earnest discussion we have purchased a static caravan in the southern Lake District. The discussion has been going on for a couple of years and with himself's possible retirement on the horizon it was time to make a decision about our options. One of the few advantages of not having the child or children we hoped for, is that our savings can be spent on ourselves. We both love France and spent time looking at some properties over there this summer but we did not want to uproot ourselves completely. If we lived near the south coast we would have been seriously tempted but instead we have looked nearer to home.

We can be in the Lake District in less than an hour and a half and both love the area despite all the wet stuff. Himself is a keen rambler and sees himself walking up fell and down dell, whilst as well as taking me for some gentle low level walks in the beautiful surrounding countryside. So October has seen us rather preoccupied fitting up our new second home with some necessities, before the site closes for winter to reopen in March. Himself is already chomping at the bit to be there as much as we can in the spring, so I am in a quandry about how I will manage seed sowing next year let alone the allotment. I have much thinking and planning to do over the winter and there will have to be some compromises!

One fiddly job  that I have done much later than planned is to top dress all my pots of special snowdrops with fresh horticultural grit. They are all looking pristine and fresh at the moment in readiness for flowering. At the moment the pots are all outside but if the weather turns really cold I will bring them under cover into the greenhouse which needs clearing in readiness. I'm also planning to relabel some snowdrops as names are disappearing. Talking of labels I will be posting the results of my label experiment soon - a year on from the date it began.

Meanwhile at the allotment clearing and dismantling is the order of the day. Beans and sweet pea wigwams are coming down and old foliage is heading to the compost heap. There are still some harvests here and there. The 'Polka' raspberries continue to flourish and produce. I picked what I think must be the last courgette of the year earlier this week. After four months of eating courgettes I'm happy to wait another few months before eating another. The strawberry plants are sending out flowers and occasionally there is the odd strawberry to nibble - especially sweet at this time of year.
Tomorrow we are having an autumnal celebration on site which I'm looking forward to with soup and parkin being on the menu.

Plantwise I've resisted the temptation to make purchases apart from bulbs. A shipping order from Peter Nyssen arrived a couple of weeks ago which is looking at me and shrieking "Plant Me Now!" every time I go past. I've also added another snowdrop to the collection or was that last month? Whatever the date of arrival it's galanthus 'Ding Dong' which is an early riser. Maybe there will be photos in November. Yes I must make a start on that manual.

Thanks as always to the lovely Helen over at 'The Patient Gardener's Weblog' who provides us with the opportunity to reflect and contemplate about our gardens each month as well as look forward to the future.

17 comments:

  1. How wonderful, a static caravan in the Lake District. I'd love a place to be able to escape to at weekends, or even for long weekends when able. The allotment is all about clearing up at this time of year, there hasn't been much done on mine yet, I really must pull my finger out. Ding Dong must herald the beginning of the snowdrop season if it's an early riser, I look forward to seeing it.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words Jo. I hope that one day you will get your bolt hole :)

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  2. Oh, what a lovely thing to do Anna, I hope you both really enjoy spending time there, though I can appreciate it will demand some adjustments to your gardening habits. Isn't 'Polka' amazing? We planted ours last year and thought they were pretty good then, but we'e been picking them two or three times a week since mid July and they are still producing! I shall look forward to your labelling post, and to snowdrop photos in due course. Getting to grips with a new camera is always a little tricky.

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    1. Yes I think that I will have to do some fine tuning as regards gardening habits Janet and maybe even some ruthless pruning :) 'Polka' beats my other summer fruiting raspberries hands down. The label experiment post will be out sometime next week.

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  3. Ooh you've got lots of lovely times in your caravan to look forward to - sounds exciting! I'm sure you'll manage all your gardening tasks too. What a lovely hot Hallowe'en it has been - and today just about as warm too. Bliss!

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    1. I shall try to fit it all in somehow Ingrid. Late October was fabulous wasn't it but there's a definite chilly nip in the air now.

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  4. I had been wondering what had happened to your holiday home ponderings. The Lake District sounds ideal and maybe himself will finally retire! I do love your golden syrup pot, what a clever idea. I get through lots in baking so might have to copy that idea.

    And what's this about a new camera, am I the only one left using a point and click? :(

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    1. I'm hoping that himself will take that plunge Helen but he likes his job :) The new camera was a birthday present earlier this year for one of those big birthdays ending with an O! Still getting used to it. Nothing wrong with point and click. I still take my little Fuji out with me occasionally and the photos are just fine.
      PS I missed the trick with the golden syrup tin - I've got a special trick and treat limited edition one but had forgotten about it!

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  5. You keep on sneaking in these snowdrop purchases, Anna - I am quite restrained in comparison (well, relatively)! And a static caravan - you will still be keeping your campervan won't you? I wonder whereabouts you will be located - no doubt we will here more in due course. All very exciting! Enjoy your pumpkins!

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    1. Cathy the odd 'drop sneaks in here and there - I don't know how they get here. Yes we are keeping the camper van for now - we still hope to have the odd holiday in France and in the UK :) I can't quite believe how big the caravan is in comparison and will post some photos of it in due course.

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  6. A static caravan in the Lake District sounds wonderful and I can just imagine how many happy times you'll be spending. Something to look forward to each time and at any time you wish. October was wonderfully mild and may that trend continue!

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    1. Thanks for your comment guys - the caravan is something that I'm sure that we will really make use of and enjoy in the future.

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  7. I'm so happy for you, Anna! All these new and exciting things to look forward to. Pity though that you didn't choose a house in France as you'd be a little nearer then but no doubt, the Lake District is stunning and you'll spend many happy hours there. We too have lots of autumn raspberries...and strawberries for that matter and enjoy the fine weather. Cute pumpkins, what do they taste like, I wonder.

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    1. Thanks for your good wishes Annette. We did make a list of pros and cons when it came to France or the Lake District and being close to you and your fabulous garden was appealing. Maybe we will still get there one of these days as we still hope to have holidays in France. I will report back on the pumpkins.

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  8. I loved reading about the caravan Anna - it's great that you've both taken the time in making the decision. You are both going to have such fun.
    I love the little display with Cyclamen and pumpkins, it's very cute!
    Will be looking forward to hearing and seeing how you get on with the new camera.

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  9. Thanks for your kind words Angie. Your comment made me chuckle as we have taken a couple of years at least to come to a decision :)

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  10. Congrats on the caravan. It will be a wonderful spot. I do not travel in summer as I have yet figured how I can veg garden and be gone. I know it can be done though. I look forward to seeing your Snowdrops as it will be months before I see mine...April more than likely.

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All your comments are much appreciated and treasured. I wil try to reply to everyone who leaves a comment, but it may take me a few days, especially when I start spending more time in the garden and at the lottie. I know that you will understand :) I am sure that I will also visit your blog if I have not already done so. If you have any specific questions I will either reply to them here or you can email me at : thegreentapestry@gmail.com

Namasté

- Anna.