In the language of flowers, bluebells denote constancy. They are also a true harbinger of long sunny days – and they are beautiful, too. It may seem odd to be talking about them in the height of summer, but someone gave me a packet of bluebell seeds that say ‘scatter in the ground in August/September’. … Continue reading Bluebells for constancy
The first time I saw Haloragis erecta Wellington bronze (Toatoa) wasn’t in New Zealand but in Oxford, England. Well, the first time I'm aware of having seen it, that is. I could have seen it in NZ and not noticed it. It is quite easy to not notice Haloragis erecta Wellington bronze. It is a … Continue reading Toatoa: one man’s wonder is another man’s weed
Supermarket plants – good or bad? Well yes. And no. ! Just over a year ago, Gardeners’ World presenter Monty Don stirred up the argument by urging gardeners to steer clear of supermarket plants. His argument was that they diminish choice: “You get lots of exactly the same thing, mass-produced to be as cheap as … Continue reading Supermarket plants
Sticks can be incredibly dangerous As can tree stumps, branches, twigs – and hard leaves. I had a dog who gashed his leg, plunging into a river, on a bit of tree submerged in the mud (luckily, missing anything vital: he needed stitches, but quickly recovered). Throwing sticks for dogs is also the cause of … Continue reading Simple garden safety tips
The world is full of the likes of 'you'll be amazed by these simple household tips'. And variations thereon. '101 uses for vinegar' (other than shaking the bottle over your chips*). 'Amazing uses for Epsom salts' (if you can actually find a shop that sells them: bubble bath probably not being a great substitute). There's … Continue reading Five 1940s household tips
Sitting out on the decking with a mug of coffee, I found myself thinking about the true joys of gardening. Beyond the obvious ones of harvesting home-grown produce (and eating it!). Beyond the pleasure in seeing flowers bloom, plants grow. Those truly are major joys of gardening, but they aren’t the only ones… Look up … Continue reading True joys of gardening
How often should I post on my blog? Thoughts, facts, and some common sense. Some of us set up blogs for fun, some for the challenge, some because we have something we want to share with the world, some in the hope of making money. (This post is part of Changing Lemons’ ‘be nice’ ethos). … Continue reading How often should I post on my blog?
Willow catkins keep fallin' on my head But that doesn't mean my eyes will soon be turnin' red Cryin's not for me… Actually, while I (thankfully) have never suffered from hay fever otherwise, there is something about willow catkins that does trigger mild symptoms if I sweep them up. I suspect it’s simply the sheer … Continue reading Cascades of willow catkins
The seed blizzards have well and truly begun! The annual dandelion seed blizzard started here about ten days ago. It’s the second of the quartet of natural nuisances here each spring. I love this time of year. The days are getting longer, the bluebells are flowering, so are azaleas – and all sorts of fruit … Continue reading Annual seed blizzards
Ash seedlings are a menace. Admittedly, not in the same league as Japanese knotweed, or giant hogweed. And the trees are native (to the UK), and in the right place, perfectly pleasant. But every spring, they are the first of a trio of nuisances for gardeners. The second being the annual dandelion blizzard, and the … Continue reading Ash seedlings, an annual nightmare!