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Posts Tagged ‘garden’

House arrest

January 17, 2013 Leave a comment
Galileo in a patch of sun

Galileo in a patch of sun

Galileo spent the last 9 years of his life under house arrest at the decree of the Inquisition.

All in all, I don’t think house arrest can have been that terrible, particularly if there were 360 degree views from the house and he was allowed to sit in the garden.

He would almost certainly have been excused from going shopping which, if he’d been anything like me, would have been a great boon.

Our little Galileo Galilei (to accord him the full name of the famous scientist) is finding the house gives him ample scope for exploring.

He has truffle-hunting in his ancestry, apparently, and often seems to be looking for truffles in the most unlikely places, working his way over the floor like Dougall from ‘The Magic Roundabout’.

In the photo, he’s found himself a nice little spot in the sun.

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Rosemary in flower

January 5, 2013 Leave a comment
Rosemary flower braving the frost

Rosemary flower braving the frost

I haven’t been outside much lately owing to back problems, but I couldn’t bear to disappoint Joules any more.

He loves it when I venture forth, whether it’s to garden or just look round; he positively skips with excitement.

I found that the wild boars (probably, although it could be a particularly energetic porcupine) have dug an enormous hole in the bank where the garden slopes down, undermining a lavender bush.

Just above this excavation, I noticed that the rosemary, despite other flowers turning brown due to the frost, is producing pretty pale blue flowers.

If old wives’ tales are to be believed, that means my ascendancy over Clive (ha, ha) is still going strong.

Fragrance of carnations

October 2, 2012 Leave a comment

Hard to see but highly perfumed

I’m not a great one for attractive foliage in a garden: it’s flowers that I like.

But Clive won over on one point when we were making the garden, and we planted a few bushes of a kind I’ve just discovered is called Variegated Silverberry.

There’s nothing wrong with them. They’re evergreen, easy on the eye, and don’t have prickles or anything like that.

What I keep forgetting is that at this time of year they have flowers – small white flowers hidden underneath the leaves.

Nothing there so far to make them less boring, but they also have an unbelievably strong fragrance of carnations.

You look around, wondering wherever it might be coming from, and then you realise.

Raindrops

August 26, 2012 Leave a comment

Hibiscus bloom studded with raindrops

The weather forecast was right – we had storms today. The first drops fell just as I got into the pool.

It felt very dramatic: high wind, the first rumbles of thunder, and then arrows of rain as I was getting out again.

There wasn’t a huge amount of rain, but the contrast between the still, sun-soaked landscape before, and the torn, ragged monotones during the storm was so complete that it seemed like a different country.

I prowled around afterwards, revelling in not having to water the garden for a change, and saw this hibiscus bloom staring out at me.

August break

August 12, 2012 2 comments

The flowers I managed to find

By August break I don’t mean a holiday, but the lean patch which the garden always undergoes at this time of year.

Perhaps I should say ‘green patch’, because after all the colours of May, June and July, the garden is now predominantly green (and would have been brown if we hadn’t watered it).

The roses are between bloomings. The lavender is over. The buddleia is nearly over. The hibiscus is still largely in bud.

In honour of a guest coming tomorrow, I wanted a vase of flowers on the table and this little nosegay more-or-less wiped us out.

Slushy flower names

June 10, 2012 2 comments

A cupid’s dart and 3 love-in-a-mist

The flower in the foreground is called a Cupid’s Dart and there’s a little clump of them.

We’ve had a lot of cloudy weather recently so I’ve had to stalk it (no pun intended) to find it open.

The three flowers in the background are Love-in-a-Mist.

Altogether this is a very blue and amorous bit of the garden.

Why do I feel persecuted?

May 29, 2012 Leave a comment

A rainbow, or weather that can’t make up its mind

I don’t know what it is about me and the use of any kind of spray in the garden. As soon as I apply something that needs a given number of hours to dry and be effective, I can be absolutely sure that it will rain well within that timeframe, even when there was no rain forecast.

Today is a good example. I’ve been meaning for weeks to apply some weedkiller to a fast-growing patch of brambles which is threatening to invade my old vegetable patch, and today I finally did it. Good job done, I thought. It should at least slow it down a bit.

Two and a half hours later, when the minimum stated drying time for the product is six hours, it rained. It hasn’t rained for days prior to this!

It didn’t even have the good grace to to rain properly. It delivered a sharp shower – just enough to wash off all my weedkiller – and then stopped.

The same thing happens when I spray the orchard with insecticide and pesticide.

Could it be that in the high-up location where we live the weather is somehow sensing my intentions?

Some people would say it serves me right for using these products, but I say: you’re extremely welcome to come and tackle these brambles by hand!