Friday, 29 April 2011
Tuesday, 26 April 2011
The blanket above is a different pattern, just to make knitting them a little bit more interesting.
This one has slightly wider strips, and just one 'bar' at a time. There are 5 strips so not as much joining later on. I've adapted a quilt binding strategy and the outer edging is made up of bits of wool which are too short to make a row of knitting. I can't bear to throw anything away!
In the background is the arm of my magnifying lamp for handquilting and the roll of upholsterer's wadding which I use as the filling in a quilt sandwich. Both of these take a bit of carting upstairs and then down again when I need them so I leave them in my lounge and don't 'see' them any more...
Any ideas, anyone, of how I can pattern more blankets? Nothing complicated....
Friday, 22 April 2011
I bought this lilac at a car boot about 15 years ago when it was about 18" tall, I think. Now look at it! This autumn I'm getting the 'tree man' back to prune some of my shrubs, they're just getting too exuberant and I can't reach up in this one to cut off all the dead heads. Each flowering point has two flowers and the scent as you walk past is like a cloud of talc.
I've always known these as Welsh poppies and they're usually yellow but somehow over the years a lot of them have become orange - or they've been transferred from someone elses garden. This one grabbed my attention because the ?calyx is still on the flower.
These pesky bluebells are growing from a fuchsia magellanica so they're a permanent fixture! They are pretty, though. The tulips are Jan Roos, a favourite of mine, and Gillian's, too. The half pot is covering a clematis and this is where, a couple of years ago, a badger dug out what I now know must have been a honeybees nest. I was watching the Nature programme on BBC2 last night and Chris thingy mentioned that bees do nest in the ground. The first allium is just beginning to open and there are lots more to come. I can't remember which kind this is. I've found that as Gillian now plants everything I lose track of what is where. This year we've resolved to pick up what we've been slack about the last couple of years and that's making a note of what goes where. I shall make labels from old margarine tubs which can be stuck in the ground...
Monday, 18 April 2011
Sunday, 17 April 2011
Purple honesty pops up without any need to sow seeds, they are so plentiful. The correct name is Lunaria because the seed pods look like a full moon, flat and silvery. They're not usually under the correct name in garden centres! The sort of tasselly growth at the bottom of the picture is Aconitum, or Wolfsbane, and it's poisonous. It has purple flowers which are said to resemble a monk's hood, which is another common name for this plant. At the top right hand corner is my Philadelphus, a double flowered variety, which smells strongly when it's in flower.
Some years ago I fancied growing white honesty - in the days when I actually sowed seed, transplanted etc - but the seed had to be ordered from a family-run garden centre. The leaves were once 2 colours of green but have reverted to plain green but I'm pleased it's still around. It's not a prolific scatterer of seeds but it makes a large plant at this time of year. Behind the weeping birch trunk (cut down as it got too vigorous but sprouting again) is a Weigela 'Victoria' which doesn't grow any bigger than this, between 3 and 4 feet, and has a dark red flower. The Boy, my bird bath with Pan playing his pipes, needs filling again. Pigeons like to bathe in here, perhaps because it's deeper than the bowls on what's laughingly known as 'the lawn'. Forgetmenots are everywhere at the moment despite 'all' the plants being pulled up each year just as they begin seeding. Too late, obviously. But they make a nice blue carpet covering a multitude of things Gillian and I haven't been able to do yet. The tulips are in a blue pot for their second year, just ignored all winter; the pale ones are Holland Chic and the darker, central ones are called Burgundy.If I remember I'll put some fertiliser on them...
The primroses are still very much in evidence, tucked in with the forgetmenots.
Don't look at the weed in there! These dainty little flowers are epimediums, or Bishops Hat, or even Bishop's Mitre, from the shape of the pointed leaves. They're unobtrusive plants but in the autumn the leaves turn a reddish brown so they have quite a long season of interest.
I wonder what I'll find to write next year.....
Wednesday, 13 April 2011
Sometimes I haven't stopped to take photos but I couldn't resist having a closer look. As you can see this stag is made from old horseshoes welded together. I think it must be lifesize, too.
Here's the detail of how the chest area is tightly packed with parts of shoes and the body is whole shoes. Some people are so clever! I wonder how many shoes went into making this - and the time and patience.
and few years ago there was a sculpture of kites circling, also on this sort of scale.