Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Bellis have started to flower beautifully now, after the rains we have had. April showers.
I worked today but have a whole five days off to garden and relax. I hope the weather holds!
The greenhouse is bulging with plants.I potted on the Geraniums, Busy Lizzies, Verbenas, and the Mimulus.
I planted the Echinops (only one in the box though , not two as stated!!), and the blue Agapanthus.
There are only a few plants to be moved from the old garden to the new one.
The other news is my name is on the Walton Allotment list, which is closer to where I am moving too.
The allotment is five miles away from the new house. Fingers crossed I get one next to Hils.
More posts tomorrow..

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


The bleeding hearts from the new garden are flowering away happily between the Welsh Poppies, Aquilegia, and Witch hazel..
The rain has finally stopped.I checked the water butt and it was totally full.
We may need a second water butt to catch the overflow from the first.
I am trying to sort out the old house today, packing things into boxes and trying to clear up a bit.
The Lilac is still a butterfly magnet..

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


The Welsh Poppies in the garden bring much needed colour when the weather has been grey and wet. The garden needs watering, and hopefully the rain but will collect the rainwater.
I'm working today, but am off tomorrow.It might be a greenhouse day if its still raining..

Saturday, April 25, 2009


This is Walter, the Racing Pidgeon who found his way into our garden and stopped off for a snack.
He had two coloured rings on his feet, and some red writing on his left wing underside.
Do Pidgeons get lost or stop for snacks when they are racing home?
We went to town today to buy some pots for replanting the greenhouse plants. I bought some Blue Echinops, and some blue Agapanthus. These will go into the new garden.
We stopped by the old house and the Tulips are flowering. Beautiful double Red ones, and delicate pink ones.
I have them on my mobile phone so will try to blog them later. Its the first flower show of the year tomorrow. The Harrogate Spring Flower show. The camera needs charging ready to take lots of photos...
The Lilac Tree today was surrounded by Butterflys. It is a butterfly magnet.The problem is how to take it five miles to the new house. It is around two metres tall, and in a huge deep pot which will take two of us to lift up.
The sun is shining again today, and no sign of any rain yet.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Late Post

The sun was shining today when I was at work. I imagined the garden and all the birds.
We planted yesterday Potatoes, Spinach, Lettuces, Sugasnax Carrots, and the Garlic from Wilkos.
The raised beds are slowly filling up with plants and rows marked out with sticks and string.
I have all day tomorrow to work before a weekend off. The first flower show of the year is Harrogate Spring Flower show.
I will be there with my camera. Time for bed soon to dream about the flowers, vegetables, and birds..

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Lilac Memories And Butterfly Wings

After waiting for over a year the Lilac Tree has got some flowers on it. The scent is so lovely and sweet. It takes me back to before I have memory, back to my Nans Sisters garden in Pickering. Cat and me went shopping for bird food, and ended up buying solar lights, a bird feeder station, more bird feeders, and a kneeling pad. At the old house the butterflys were flying around the Lilac. A blue one, and lots of Speckled Wood Butterflys..

They are such ethereal garden spirits, flitting around, and landing to bask in the Sunshine.I want to pot up plants later, and plant some Garlic and Cabbages into the raised beds.
Its a lovely sunny day to be outside in the garden.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


I'm off work at last after four nights and a long day today.I still need to get a computer to the new house to blog.
The raised beds have been filled with soil. The greenhouse is full of plants that need potting on.
I have a day off tomorrow to garden, and to remember my camera lead to upload the Cheltenham photos.
Cat and me made friends with a Racing Pidgeon called Walter. Seen Goldfinches and GreenFinches..
The new garden has a compost bin, and many fruit trees flowering.
We have a water butt which is now connected to the garage drain pipes. Alas it has not rained yet to fill it up.
The photo is from Cats Mums garden. A Dicentra Spectablis or Bleeding Heart. We have one flowering too, along with the Welsh Poppies.
The new garden is slowly being renewed flower by flower, and by adding new things.
I hope I have a computer soon to blog more often.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

cherry blossom

The Cherry Blossom was flowering before we left. The entire tree was a mass of these pretty white flowers. Bee's were buzzing to the nectar already.
The garden has a selection of fruit trees, but all with no labels!
I think there is an Apple tree, a Cherry tree, a Quince tree. But I need to see the fruit forming to be sure!
We are heading back to Yorkshire today.The trip was lovely to Bourton On The Water. A very picturesque Cotswold village.
It was a perfect end to my time off work. I'm back on nights tonight.
All the photos from Painswick Rococo garden, and Bourton need resizing before I can blog them.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Buttercup And Heirloom Plants

I took this photo when I was waiting for my taxi the other day. It was growing by the tree stump at the front of the house. I showed Cat the mystery flower with the yellow and white petals.
"Its a Buttercup" she said. It is still very pretty though, even though its a common wildflower. I thought it was an exotic flower....
I am still in Cheltenham. Today we are going to Bourton On The Water. A village in the Cotswolds on the river Windrush.
On the way back from Rococo gardens yesterday we stopped in a Wyedale nursery. I bought Mum two Tomato plants called Shirley for growing outdoors.
She will be growing this year some Salad Leaves, Raspberrys, Tomatos, Onions, Peas, Runner Beans, and Apples from her new Bramley Apple tree which is in flower now.
We have been planning what can grow where. I have become reacquainted with old plants from my Memory.
Mums Foxgloves, Forget Me Nots, Poppies, Money Plant, Lily Of The Valley, and the Montana Reubens Clematis which has grown madly up the shed. The Rose bush I pruned last year is full of vigour and flower buds.
It renews your memories seeing these plants again in a family garden. These are my Heirloom plants that remind me of Mum, and the Cheltenham garden.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Rococo Teaser

The Snowflakes today at the Painswick Rococo garden. I went with Mum, Jaws, and Cat. Despite the car getting a flat tyre we made it to Painswick.
The garden is a renovated 18th century in the Rococo style. It was full of spring flowers, Daffodils, Bluebells, Snowdrops, Aconites, Hyacinths, and Tulips.
I will do a blog post once I'm back in Yorkshire, when I can resize my pictures...
What a nice day, and the rain stayed away.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Kitchen Garden

The new kitchen garden at the back of the new house. These took three days to make, dig the soil, fill with manure from Hils allotment, and adding three big bags of compost.
Like a cake mix I kept turning the soil over and over untill it was like chocolate brownie mix.
The Cherry tree and white flowered one are to the left.
The Raspberry, Gooseberry, and thornless Blackberrys are behind the beds..
I planted Strawberrys, Onions, Shallots, and Carrots yesterday...
The greenhouse is full of more plants. Broccoli, Cauliflower, Pea's, Runner Beans, Green Beans, Leeks, Courgettes, Squashes, Cabbages, Beetroots, and Red Cabbages. Also Chilli's and Tomato's..
I start off small and get more into growing things, and suddenly I have hundreds of plants growing. I am positively addicted to growing plants.
From kitchen door to the beds is about one hundred and fifty feet...Fresh home grown vegetables.
Gardeners World are extolling the virtue of home grown Vegetables. Toby Buckland was giving passing people seeds to sow in pots, and take home on the last program. Celebrity chefs are into growing fresh herbs and vegetables at home and in their restaurants.
Last year was the first time I tried growing Potatoes and Vegetables after I got the allotment. I was a flower man before, with maybe the odd Tomato plant, and some Herbs.
Cat and me will cook many meals with Veggies from the allotment, and our kitchen garden.

(Ps I am writing this at Mums whilst they are watching Mama Mia...)


This is the Rhodadendron Shamrock in flower outside the house. It has beautiful creamy coloured flowers with a hint of green.
I have been tracking its progress since Hils donated it to me.
I am going to Cheltenham today armed with my camera.I will bring photos back of the trip and Mums garden.
Its Easter Monday today...

Friday, April 10, 2009

Easter Sunday

April is the time of year for the Tulips to start flowering in earnest. These beautiful orange ones are flowering outside Cats under the line of Daffodils.
Its Easter day today.I have spent most of the last three days constructing raised beds, digging the soil, then adding manure and compost.
I planted with Tom Strawberry plants, onions, shallots, and two rows of Carrots.
I need to pot up some Leeks and Red Cabbage that Hils gave me. The greenhouse is bursting with plants and is a balmy twenty five degree's.
My muscles ache and the soil has got under my fingernails. The garden birds keep flying in to see whats going on.
The raised beds were made with feather board. They are eight feet long and four feet wide.
The wood was in eight foot lengths hence the size of them.
I am going to Cheltenham tomorrow.I hope Mums internet works so i can blog from there.Its been a lovely week off doing nothing but gardening and the allotment.

Mystery Plant

This mystery flower has the look of an Orchid about it. Its growing at the new house under the Crocus stems. A long line of these pale lilac flowers with white centres with black lines.
The leaves are heart shaped and can be seen at the bottom of the photo. Does anyone know what it is?
I have been busy with the allotment, the new garden, and transferring plants from old to new house. We dug over the remaining beds at the Barretts Road allotment. Planted onions, potatoes, and garlic.
I have transferred most of my growhouse/cold frame plants to the big greenhouse.
There are masses of Vegetables and Flowers growing inside now.
I started work yesterday on two raised beds at the back of the new garden. The soil was compacted, full of tree roots and stones. I have seen the wood and the posts needed to construct the beds themselves. Hopefully I will have them made before I go to Cheltenham on Wednesday.
I got some new Strawberry plants too from Pat. They are also in the greenhouse at the moment.
The other thing we bought yesterday were hose pipe connectors to attache the hose to the outside tap, and a rain water divertor for the garage drainpipe. The water but is sat on the stand but it has only rained a little bit.
The other thing the new garden needs is a compost bin, to be able to put back organic matter back into the borders and raised beds. It should create masses of waste to turn into black gold.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009


Hils Camellia in flower a few days ago. It is nearly twenty years old and blooms madly away in March and April.
The new garden has my planted Red Camellia from Cheltenham, and two that were there before.
A garden is not the same without one. The leaves are glossy and resist frost and cold, and refuse to freeze when icy blasts hit the garden.
They have such lovely flowers too. I want to buy a white and yellow flowered Camellia.
I planted the Raspberry canes today at the New garden. I need to dig out the raspberry from the old garden today. The Gooseberry and Strawberrys will make the journey to the new house.
I am enjoying my week off work, the sun has been shining intermitttantly.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Black Magic

The first photo is of Hils Black Violas. These look like pagan witches with the fires burning in the middle. I cannot remember what they are called but I do love them. I got on my knees to photograph this low flowering annual. The purple satin colour shimmers between the darker petals.

Two boxes of mud? Thats what it looks like but these are Hils brand new raised beds. Her friend came up to put them together and I went yesterday to help her fill them. They are fourty square feet and a foot high! It took lots of maneuvoring a wheelbarrow laden with manure then digging behind the beds to fill it. I also got to do some more sedentary work like planting a row of Broadbeans for her! I took some spoils away with me. Some guttering pipes that will be used to sow seeds tonight at Cats, and some Raspberry canes rescued from the jungle behind the allotments.
Like Aztec gold these canes were buried beneath a jungle of plants. Brambles, Nettles, and Dock weeds.The previous owners had left the plots years ago and the wild nature has taken over.
There are panes of windows, canes, broken pots. Archeology in Walton.
I hope the Raspberry Canes will root in the new garden...

After filling the beds and digging up lost Raspberrys we went back to prick out seedlings ready for the Walton plant stall in six weeks. We potted around six hundred plants. The greenhouses are groaning under all the seed trays and pots!
I went back to my own allotment today which has run slightly wild. I built a raised Strawberry bed and transplanted the six plants into it. I dug over three large beds and planted the Potatoes.
Two varieties Sharpes Express, and Maris Piper. My body ran out of energy today however after three hours. I need to go back during this week to finish digging the beds over ready for planting.
The Onion sets and Isle of Wight Garlic came back with me.I will ask Cat to help me plant them this week..

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Sun On My Face

I got a book through the post called The Brother Gardeners, from an American publishing company. I read the first few chapters before bed.
It tells the story of the amateur Botanists who exchanged ideas and plants through letters from either side of the Atlantic.
I have read that the English garden benefited from American plants and Tree's.
I have read that wherever the British went, that trade routes opened up. Plants and flowers followed the traders back to Britain.
I will review the book after I have finished it. I love how the publishers had noticed my small blog and felt i was worth an Email.
My weakness after gardening is books. I have a small but ever growing Horticultural library. I buy some, am given more, and now even have them posted to me!
I'm going today to help Hils at her allotment to fill her new raised beds, and then prick out hundreds of seedlings in her greenhouses.
Gardening is good for friendships, for sharing plants and ideas. For working out horticultural problems, or making a labour intensive task easier.
I get a roast beef dinner too, and get to feel the sun on my face! A perfect Sunday.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

The first photographed Bee of the year getting up close to the Rhodadendron in the new garden. It has the most gorgeous Lilac flowers which attracted this Bee to it.

Growing from a raised bed these Campanula flowers cascade down the wall. Hundreds of these purple delicate flowers. I photographed these on the edge of the wall. I love the yellow and red centres. These are bright beneath the dancing Daffodils and Snowdrops.

Growing alongside the Campanula and the Daffodils are these Grape Muscari. Lightly scented and blue pendulous flowers.
I picked three flower photos from the same shade of the rainbow, to contrast with the burning gold of yesterday.
I looked today at my small garden and it is awash with colour. I have about six weeks left here before I move to the new house with Cat.
I feel excitement for the new garden, but a sadness that the one I am leaving. Will the new tenants look after it and feed the birds?
I need to decide which plants will make the trip. I have spent over a year tending the little borders alongside the pavers, and every plant has been bought and planted.
Only the Viburnum Tinus, and Peony were here before. They will be here long after I have gone.
I watched BBC Gardeners World on the I player today. The familiar theme music means another growing season is upon us. All the gardens have started to grow in earnest.
I need to plan the new garden with Cat, and what plants to bring to the show that is summer..

Friday, April 03, 2009

Golden Day

Three golden photos for todays post. I took this photo of a yellow Tulip in flower outside Cats house. The intricate stamen and pollen always amazes me. The detail inside the yellow Tulip cups. They seem to flower around April signalling the start of British Summer Time..

The bright orange and yellow of the Primula newly planted in the back garden border closest to the house. All the parts of the new garden need naming for describing where they are..
These golden flowers were luminescent in the April sunshine today, there was not a cloud in the sky. These flowers are like light houses in the border.

Finally after a year of waiting I photographed a Goldfinch. After a week of the feeders being hung up, a pair of Goldfinches alighted on the sunflower hearts and the Niger seeds. The first time they did it I had not got my camera. Today the camera was nearby to capture on feeding.
I trimmed a Butterfly bush, and cut back old growth on a thornless Blackberry. Tomorrow is back to the Allotment to plant Potatoes and Onions.
It will be a golden time off I hope these next ten days..

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Viola Cornuta

I have finished another long day and have lots of days off in a row!
I have been splitting my time between my house and the house im moving into soon.
I have a large new garden, and many grand ideas.
The house needs packing up and the plants digging up to move to the new one.
I need a laptop to be able to blog from the new house as it does not have computer access for my old pc!
The Viola Cornuta is now planted in the new border.I hope to start blogging daily once I have set up the laptop for my camera!
The sun is shining more, and it is lighter for comes the spring!