Delightful daffodils

I enjoyed the yellow daffodils, especially the arc of Tete-a-tetes, for much of March but sadly that’s coming to an end as the flowers are now fading.

Following these the luminous white variety Thalia  are now flowering. As well as the ones in the picture, that I planted last autumn, there are also some in a container.  These delightful daffodils are definitely a Flighty’s favourite. I’m not surprised that it’s such a popular variety, and they have a wonderful scent which sadly I can’t enjoy due to my really poor sense of smell.

 

I spent every morning plotting last week.  I planted out the rest of the onions Sturon. The first ones I put in a couple of weeks ago are beginning to shoot.

I also planted out the second early potatoes Charlotte. I was surprised to see that the distinctive purple foliage for the first earlies Red Duke of York is already appearing.

The broad bean Crimson Flowered seeds that I sowed almost three weeks ago only started to appear yesterday. I’d just about given up on them as germination is normally less than two weeks.

On Friday I somewhat half-heartedly turned over the compost heap and was rewarded by finding both of my long lost weeding knives.  Yesterday I picked the first handful  of rhubarb stems.

Have a good week!

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Sofa reading, March 2017

This month Liz and I are both writing about non-fiction books for a change.

Liz – I read this book last month which I found to be affecting.

Paul Kalanithi’s autobiography When Breath Becomes Air is a brief and profoundly moving story of facing death in one’s thirties.  Diagnosed with terminal lung cancer while still in residency as a neurosurgeon Kalanithi describes the ironies of being both doctor and patient, and ponders whether to continue his work or take another path in the time remaining.  He relies on the sustenance of support from family, friends and colleagues.

The forward is by Abraham Verghese, another doctor-writer, and the afterword by Paul’s widow Lucy. Between the two is a three-part account – diagnosis, early family life  and the final months. It is beautifully rendered, without self-pity, but rather a discourse on how we approach life and our inevitable passing.

Mike –  I read my book at the end of last year which was inevitably tear-jerking at times but certainly heart-warming.
Christmas at Battersea, True Stories of Miracles and Hope starts with what Battersea is like on Christmas Day then goes on to relate stories of inspirational owners who found a place in their hearts and homes for abandoned pets.

Over the Christmas/New Year period I read a chapter a day.  Despite the sadness at times the stories are uplifting and the pictures delightful, including two week old kittens and a Great Dane.

It’s the perfect follow on read to Rescue Me by Melissa Wareham, which tells of her fifteen years working at Britain’s most well known and loved dogs’ home.

Happy reading, and have a good weekend!

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Once I’ve made a cup of tea…

first thing in the morning I then turn the PC on to look at the Met Office local weather forecast for the day to check if it’s changed from the previous evening.

I prefer to go to the plot for a few hours after breakfast but the forecast on Friday morning was chilly and overcast then sunny from late morning onwards.  Following an early lunch it was then much better so just for a change I went for a while in the early afternoon, when I generally pottered.

It’s been a sunny weekend so this morning I planted the first early potatoes Pentland Javelin and another row of onions Sturon.  I then went across to the horticultural trading shed for tea, biscuits and a chat.

The forecast for the coming week is looking generally good so I’ll be planting the second early potatoes Charlotte and the rest of the onions.  At home I’ll be sowing the first seeds in pots that I’m starting off on the windowsill.  They’ll be the tomatoes and some flowers.

I’m pleased with everything so far and looking round it’s all looking good.  For instance the hydrangea that I recently moved is showing plenty of new foliage and  the rhubarb is growing well.

     

Have a good week!

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It’s remained unsettled…

throughout this week and the only day that I’ve done any plotting was on Tuesday morning when I had a general weed round.
The blackthorn tree is now in full blossom, which is lovely to see against a blue sky.  Sadly it’s all to fleeting.

 

 

 

 

 

Out front at home are these pretty daffodils and nestling against the wall are some vinca.

   

It’s looks like being drier and sunnier from tomorrow onwards so I hope to get planting and sowing again.

Have a good weekend!

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Starting and stopping…

plotting is inevitable when the weather is unsettled, as it is at the moment.  It’s been a damp and dull weekend so I’ve not done anything, nor will I tomorrow as rain is forecast for much of the day. Thankfully after that it looks like being  a drier and sunnier week.

On Friday, which was a good day, I planted the first early potatoes Red Duke of York and the first two rows of onions Sturion with hopefully more to follow next week.

Looking round the site during the week I noticed this plum(?) tree covered  in a cloud of white blossom.

These lovely bi-coloured daffodils are growing in the grass under a cherry tree.

My yellow daffodils continue to delight, especially on grey days.

    

Have a good week!

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Something new

As well as the tomato Legend seeds that I mentioned receiving last week Shelagh kindly sent me a second variety, Sunrise Bumble Bee, to try.  This one is an organic, cherry type which is yellow with flushes of red.

She also sent me a few Centaurea montana Amethyst in Snow seeds as she remembered me being interested in this lovely perennial cornflower, which has white flowers with a purple centre.  It’s an eye-catching variety, and if I manage to get them to germinate then grow I will replace the ordinary blue flowering ones I have with these.

Yesterday plot neighbour Trevor kindly gave me a black willow (Salix gracilistyla Melanostachys) whip to plant and grow. As you can see I’ve put it in a large pot to get established before planting out next year.  I look forward to seeing how this does.

 

I’ve had three good plotting mornings this week, which included sowing some broad bean Crimson flowered seeds. I also sieved some multi-purpose compost then bought it home to use in the pots I’ll be sowing various flower and vegetable seeds in to start off on the windowsill.

 

Have a good weekend!

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I’ve been delighted…

with the crocuses this year, especially the Snow Bunting that I planted en masse last autumn.  They have now finished but a few of the others, such as these white ones, are still flowering.

 

 

As these finish some of the daffodils have started flowering. So far there are these tall traditional yellow ones which I prefer to the various others that are available.

 

Here are the Tete-a-tetes that I planted last autumn in an arc around the dogwood.

 

Being a dwarf variety they withstand any heavy rain and/or high wind better than the tall ones. Some are multi-headed so they provide plenty of colourful flowers.

 

 

I’ve still not planted or sown anything and just about the only plotting that I did last week was yesterday.  I armed myself with a small pruning saw, secateurs and heavy duty gloves before cutting out the dead wood from the blackberry bush and dogwood rose. It’s a job that I’m thankful I don’t have to do very often.

Have a good week!

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