Last year

Last yearIMG_20180619_141557_656

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

Roses are red

Violets are blue,

This doesn’t rhyme

I dont know why!

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….

 

Flower time

This was my back garden last summer! 20170831_153616

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!

In my friends garden

I took these photos in a friend’s garden 6 years ago (they came up on my Facebook feed) I am a nut about colour and some of these just zing!

I think I used a little digital camera with no added features to take these. I was just amazed how the reds and oranges stood out in the green.

I wish I could time travel back to those simpler times. But time flies, tempus fugit, and before you know it you are 6 years older and perhaps not wiser!

But in the meantime I’m going to enjoy browsing through these again…

Cheers x

Poppy painting

This is a painting I did 6 years ago outside in the garden. I love these large poppies. I had decided to  paint outside because it was a beautiful day and why not paint in situ instead of from a photo. I think then decided to take photos of the process. I guess I painted the poppy first as it was the focal point of the painting.

I added all the other flowers to make it more interesting.  One of the things with creating art is the idea if artistic licence. The other flowers were in different parts of the garden and I wanted to add their colours to the mix.

I’m not sure whether I like this painting, its a bit flat, maybe I should have used more shading as the colours are all of very similar tones, but I was looking at a shady garden and the light was changing over the time it took to paint it. it reminds me of an illustration in a book or magazine, I almost coukd see it next to a children’s story.

I love to paint, and it is always a challenge to improve.

Biddulph Grange

Biddulph Grange, once a stately home near Biddulph, staffordshire, then a TB hospital. Now a National trust garden that was rebuilt and uncovered over the last few years.

Made up of garden rooms. Such as the China garden where a beautiful bridge reminiscent of the Spode willow patterns stands over a pool stocked with koi carp. There is a pavilion floating above the water, giving a serene feel to the garden. there is even a great wall taking you round to another aspect if the garden.

There are sphinxes in the Egyptian garden, daliahs in the daliahs walk….so much to see, so many ideas on one place. There is a Swiss cottage, and a frog staring at you from a stone wall. There is a golden calf which must have pagan overtones. The garden was created back in victorion time. I find the best time to visit is when the daliah walk is in flower. It is spectacular to see with the backdrop of a tower leading up to a higher level.

There are tunnels to walk through and various paths winding through the gardens. At the top of the long walk up the slope from the main building is a huge urn standing at the very top of the hill. You can look back and see the grounds spread out in front of you.

If you are in the vicinity why not call in?

 

 

Chelsea flower show

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Chelsea flower show was on this week. A garden based on a Yorkshire cottage garden and surrounding countryside won the people’s prize.

The show is built every year. Each garden is planted up over the week or so before the show opens. Ancient trees are planted. Plants are either kept warm to bring them into flower early, or kept cold to stop them flowering too soon.

There are small and large gardens and indoor displays. Plants from around the world burst with colour.

At the end if the show the plants are sold off, or the gardens are dismantled and planted up at their new homes. I think it is a wonderful thing. People seem to love it. The fact that each garden is designed, and innovative ideas are shown to the world is a good thing. Art of whatever type should be showcased. Gardening is such a massive industry and it has expanded over the years. Fashions start with shows like Chelsea. Purple onion flowers were very fashionable a few years ago. The next year everyone had them…..

Enough rambling……wool gathering…have a great weekend.