It’s been a mixed year for my back yard flowers. The handling baskets wilted in the heat but then I thoroughly watered them and fed them and they came back quite well. The Begonias, Fushias and Petunias have flourished but the Lobelia and small flowered plants have struggled. You can see a towel rail in the midst of it all, that’s because the tomatoes have flopped, and its supporting them and a cucumber plant.
Next year I want to tidy up the space first. Next doors wild blackberries are sneaking through the fence, but we just pick the fruit and have them on our cereal in the morning.
I love mixing colours and the whole yard sparkles with blues, reds and oranges, I hope the bees like it as much as I do.
Some paintings I did are at my relatives house so I don’t see them very often. The painting I did of Jupiter is there. I do think it looks a bit “knitted”. I would love to do some paintings based on the latest images. I think that it would be very difficult to accurately copy the atmosphere of Jupiter. Saturn’s rings would be equally difficult to render.
The other paintings are: a picure of our garden before it got madly overgrown. Two paintings of Bovisand, out over Plymouth sound and looking inland at the geology of the rocks. My husband standing under an old arch on the isle of Portland. A watercolour of a place called Jennycliff, which is on the south east side of Plymouth.
And finally a snow scene that I painted in the 1980’s. It was meant to represent the steppes and has Russian style onion domes in the background. I’m not sure where I got my idea from. I was reading Frank Herberts “Dune” trilogy at the time and I had never seen an image of the steppes…. But to me that’s part of what being an artist is about, pictures in your mind that you are trying to represent.
This was my back yard last year. Everything was lush and green with lots of colour. This year things are not as good, some plants are wilting in the heat, others have only just survived. I haven’t taken photos of them because its all a bit messy. Still I will persevere. We might be getting some rain on Sunday if we are lucky.
There may be some thunderstorms east of us but nothing due here. It’s so strange, we are a wet country usually. We are normally known for complaining about cold wet summers, and grey dismal winters.
Climate change? I don’t know. But something is going on.
Multiply up all the gardens in the country where the plants are struggling. Then think of all the farms that are having trouble, having to feed hay and winter food stocks to there animals because there is not enough grass for them. It’s not normal. While over in Europe temperatures have risen above 40°C.
But we are lucky in comparison with other parts of the world. Terrible floods, droughts. The world’s temperature has risen since the turn of the millennium.
We are worried by plastic in the oceans, maybe we should really worry about the climate before its too late. Climate scientists have reported that the weather could actually become so hot that we end up in a “hot house Earth” scenario.
If not for our generation, but for future ones we need to stop listening to business people whose interest is short term gain and move to a more balanced, less greedy world. If that means that rich western countries should share technology with the whole world then that’s what we should do. Rant for the day over. ..
Last year the garden was lovely, full of flowers. This ceramic head I made 20 years or so ago was full of nasturtiums and lobelia. It sits on the wall by the back door, its glazed in st Nicholas glaze if I remember rightly. Greeny grey in colour. It was hand built with a flat back and I used wet hand towels to support the face while it was drying out ready for firing.
The space inside it is not very big, so plants that can survive drought conditions are best planted in it.
We are getting our hanging baskets this week and I will try and plant some pots up with begonias, pelagoniums, bizzie lizzies and fuschias to cheer the walls around them up.
I would like to do some more pottery heads, maybe green men masks to make the yard more interesting.
Meanwhile in the main garden the trees are getting out of control. We had some work done earlier in the year but the remaining trees and shrubs have gone rampant because they now have more light.
Still if it works and we get more birds like a chaffinch and a couple of robins, plus nesting blue tits who’s chicks have now fledged , I guess I don’t mind too much!
Roses have such an important role in life, they are a symbol of love, lijd red roses for valentines day. They can be sent to patients in hospital, and are a beautiful addition to a garden. Roses are used as an image on greetings cards and can also be found as part of traditional canal art.
People always seem to want to retire to a cottage where roses grow around the door. I tend to think you might get spiked on the thorns if you are not careful.
Roses are red, but they can also be in many other colours, from palest white to almost black. Some roses have sweet scent, others are without perfume. Some flower continuously through spring, summer and into autumn while others bloom only once a year.
I am interested in trying to paint or draw them, their convoluted petals are a real challenge. How they intertwine, whether they are simple flowers like the dog rose, or more complex like hybrid tea roses.
The plants can be used formally, for instance in a rose garden with box hedges , or scrambling or climbing up trellises and trees. They will grow up a pergola and give scented shade in the summer. They can also be used as ground cover.
Don’t ask me about pruning, black spot, aphid attack or other problems because I don’t know….
This was my back garden last summer! Unfortunatley I haven’t concentrated on it yet this year. The weather was cold and wet into spring and even now I have tiny seedlings that are just not doing much. I have also been so busy getting ready for art shows and things…
Hopefully in a few weeks time it will start looking good again,
But in the meantime I’m looking out at Blackberry canes growing across the yard. The bees like them but I’m going to remove the long ones that are trying to take over. I will try and post up to date pictures soon if I get it sorted out!
I still need to plant out the onion sets a friend gave me! Shameful that I forgot them until I wrote this!