I can’t remember…

the last time that I spent more than a couple of days indoors as I did last week. I wouldn’t have minded the snow, which didn’t amount to much and didn’t last long, but with the temperature staying below 0 C it felt much colder due to a strong easterly wind.  I’m thankful that we didn’t get this weather back in December which would have made it a really long winter,  and that it only lasted  a few days.  This coming week is looking much better and warmer, which will be welcome.

This morning I looked round the plot for the first time since Tuesday and was relieved to see that it all looked okay.  Over at the horticultural society trading shed I bought a white flowering primrose which I’ll show once the flowers have opened.

I’ve only ever come across two fiction books that are centred around allotments –  Ivy Lane by Cathy Bramley and Murder Plot by Keith  McCarthy.

However last week I came across the recently published The Allotment Girls by Kate Thompson which I bought for my eReader at the bargain price of 99p.  I’ll do a review once I’ve read it.

 

Have a good week!

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Sofa reading, February 2018

It was certainly the weather to do plenty of sofa reading during February, and especially this week.

One of the books that both Liz and myself have read recently is A Legacy of Spies by John Le Carre.

Liz – There were so many articles written about this author  when this book was published last year that I put my name down on the library reserve list to borrow a copy.  It didn’t disappoint as Le Carre returns to revisit the days of George Smiley through his now retired colleague Peter Guillam. The book interweaves episodes from the Cold War at it’s height with the present day.  For me this author is still a master story teller.

Mike – Among my favourite books are Le Carre’s Smiley trilogy, written during the 1970’s, which includes perhaps his best book Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.  I was slightly disappointed with A Legacy of Spies as, although well written, it seemed to lack a compelling plot compared to his earlier books.

The noted author Val McDermid says that Mick Herron is the John Le Carre of our generation, and having really enjoyed reading the first four books in the Slough House series I have to agree.

The fifth, London Rules, has just been published and I’m sure that when I read it sometime soon I will find it as engrossing as the others.

Happy reading, and have a good weekend!

 

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I treated myself…

at the horticultural society trading shed today as I bought this pelargonium Frank Headley which has variegated foliage and salmon pink flowers.  It was only 50p, and as you can see I’ve repotted in a clay pot.

I also bought some gladioli Break O’Dawn corms which have white and soft yellow flowers.

On Thursday morning it was dry and sunny so I did some plotting, but there was a bitterly cold wind so I came home earlier than usual for a much needed cup of tea.  I don’t think that I’ll be doing any this coming week as the forecast is for even colder weather, and there’s likely to be some snow.  The temperature is set to remain around 0 C at best with an easterly wind making it feel much colder.

Have a good week!

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A primrose, and potatoes

Last Sunday I bought this primrose, which was £1, at the horticultural society trading shed.  There were various colours available but I like yellow as it’s warm looking, and contrasts well with the green leaves.  Since then a couple more flowers have unfurled.

I was told that there’ll be more on sale this coming Sunday so I may treat myself again,  perhaps  a white one.

I’ve now used the last of my stored potatoes and had to buy some for the first time since last summer.  The ones I’ll be planting late March and early April, ground conditions and weather permitting, are all chitting well in the spare room.  Yesterday I hoed and weeded the area where they’re going, and then started to spread compost over the surface.  The ground is looking good, turns over easily to fork depth, and there are plenty of worms to be seen which both robins were making the most of.

Have a good weekend!

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I did some plotting…

on Friday and yesterday morning when it was sunny and there wasn’t a chill wind.

 

Looking round it was good to see the crocuses Snow Bunting had opened and there were plenty of honeybees on them.

 

 

I hoed and weeded the area where I’ll be growing onions this year,  and I worked my way through the younger strawberry plants in preparation for replanting them sometime soon.

The robin kept me close company for much of the time.

 

 

 

 

Looking round I was pleased to see that the vinca major by the teasels at the end of the log pile has finally flowered, and the first of the dwarf tulips are starting to appear.

It looks like being wet most of tomorrow and then getting colder again, so I guess that I won’t be doing any more plotting for at least a few days.

Have a good week!

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I Don’t Have Weeds…

The post on Tuesday included a nice surprise as Karen, who I sent some flower and tomato seeds to recently for her 17th floor balcony container garden, very kindly sent me a thank you card along with this lovely wooden sign.

It’s about four by seven inches and I will find a home for  it on the plot, probably on the side of the shed.

It certainly brightened up the week, much of which has been spent armchair gardening again thanks to the miserable weather.

Have a good weekend!

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Home delights

Apart from flowers that have flopped I rarely cut any to bring home to put a vase. It’s not that I don’t grow enough so this year that’s what I hope to be doing.

I have some vases, or suitable containers,  including these – a matt black china one, a stoneware jug, a tall glass and a plain white tea mug.  Hopefully a couple of them will be filled with daffodils, tulips, pot marigolds, cosmos, cornflowers and sunflowers over the spring and summer.

 

There are two plants that hope to grow on the windowsill this year, one each flower and vegetable.

The flower is the gazania rigens Talent Yellow which has silvery leaves and all yellow flowers.  If I get a plant that’s as good as this one I’ll be well pleased, (picture thanks to Benery).

 

I have grown tomatoes at home but didn’t last year.  They’ve mostly ended up rather taller, and with less fruit, than I’d hoped.

I’m trying again with Sweet n Neat Red.  I’ll be successively growing a couple of these in a six inch pot which neatly fit into one of these small galvanised buckets that I was given recently.

 

Have a good week!

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