Sunday, 26 April 2009


Just a quick post today, I've got the art show next weekend and I'm rushing to get enough stock made up!

We did have time to nip to the Lansdown carboot this morning, unfortunately it was a bit rubbish this week, completely lacking in storm lanterns, old buckets and enamel ware! I did however find a nice lady selling plants, and she had a lovely little Wisteria called 'Amethyst Falls'!

I cant tell you how long I have wanted a Wisteria, I know they take a long time to grow but I just thing they are so beautiful, lots of the houses around Bath have them, they just look so amazing against the creamy coloured cotswold stone.

So I took out the Passion Flower we have growing up the side of the porch, its never really been happy there and has gone very leggy and sick looking. To be honest I always wanted a Wisteria there but they where just too expensive from the garden centers, but Rich said it was ok for us to spend £9 on one!

So there we are, its now sitting happily next to the Honeysuckle Rich's mum gave us last year. Mmmm a porch covered in Honeysuckle and Wisteria, how English is that!!

Wednesday, 22 April 2009


Every time I think 'right I shall go and pot up some seeds today!' I get an email from my agent, or someone buys something from my shop or I remember I really must get my wedding invites finished and printed to send out, I'm not complaining as it great to be busy and god knows we need the money right now but I feel I don't get a chance to breath sometimes!!

Soon I'll have even less time or maybe more I haven't decided yet... I've managed to get a new part time job! one I actually wanted instead of something I just do to pay the mortgage. From next month I shall be working a few days a week a the local Library as a Stock Assistant, I'm really excited as I really wanted this job but was convinced I would never get it as I was sure there would be far more quantified people applying for it. This is official proof that I am slowly turning into my mother (she's worked in Library's for the last 15 years) Richard will be so pleased! But mmmm books!!

Anyway back to the garden, we had another busy weekend as it was so beautiful, Rich managed to get sunburned after about 5 mins of being outside!

I got some of my Sweetcorn planted up...

and the rest of my early spuds in (a bit late but never mind!)...

The Raspberries have suddenly taken off like crazy, they need a bit of a trim to keep them in line actually, there also sending bloody runners out all over the garden, I keep finding little Raspberries shoots trying to come up in the middle of the Strawberry bed, you can tell they from the same family as Brambles!

The Apple trees are in bloom, I love this as the whole orchard is now alive with bees.

Another major reason why I love April sooo much is the Lansdown Car Boots start up again!! Woohoo, stuff and junk at bargain prices! This year we are on a bit of a mission to get stuff for the wedding in September, I need as many storm lanterns as me and my mum can find (to be hung in trees in the little field where the reception will be held!) I'm also on the hunt for old enamel buckets or tubs, as the ever generous Stephen and Serena over at Victorian Nursery's have very kindly given Rich and I several packets of free Molly's Cottage Garden Mix as a wedding present, the idea being to plant the buckets up and come September have beautiful cottage garden flower displays around the reception! Lets hope I can find enough contains in time.

Sunday turned up a new storm lantern (£1) and some old cast iron shelf brackets (£2)

The rest of the day was spent on trying to build me a display stand for an up and coming art show (Rich would like it pointed out here that THIS is how he got sun burned and not sitting around drinking beer of anything!) anyway like a trooper he slaved all day making me a wonderful stand out of 2 old doors...

and a pile of old gash timber...

Its going to look amazing when its all painted up with my little Circuses on it!

So slowly, slowly me make a little progress.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Special Delivery

I've been meaning to post since Wednesday but as usual work kept getting in the way every time I sat down at the computer!

Ok so I'm finally feeling a lot better after last weekends dodgy food incident (that'll learn me!) so on Wednesday I was very excited when Rich told me some long waited for parcels had arrived from the wonderful Victoriana Nursery's (ohhhh excitement!!), I've been working with Stephen and Serena designed some new logos and other bits and pieces for there lovely websites, and in return they had agreed to pay me in plants, a very excellent arrangement as I would only of spend any cash buying plants anyway!

I'm amazed I could control myself long enough to take pics of these...


Here are my 2 Cobnut Trees emerging from the amazingly compact parcel, some where in there is also an Olive Tree.

In the box all this wonderfulness was packed inside...

God it was all so exciting I had to have a little sit down and a cup of tea!

As it says in the helpful literature that Victoriana Nursurys send out with all their plants its best to get them planted as soon as possible, especially for the trees. So the rest of the afternoon was spent getting as much of this lot potted on or planted out as possible.

The Olive tree I planted in an old bin, this is mainly so it can be moved in the greenhouse to over winter, it also means if we even move house it can come with us!

The Cobnuts we planted down on the edge of the lawn along the fence, we're hoping to grow them into a hedge. I've wanted to put something productive in this area, we have a small lawn by our shed, there's not much there and I would quite like to dig it up and put veg beds in but Rich does like a nice bit of green to sit on on a sunny day so its stayed. However this year we are making a real effort to make the whole garden as productive as possible, to grow as much food as we possibly can, so we though the Cobnuts where a good compromise. We will have to keep on top of the yearly pruning though as left unchecked they can shoot up to 20ft (and I'm not climbing that just for some nuts!)

Please ignore the shapeless jumper I'm wearing, its another example of my gardening wardrobe!

So both Cobnuts are in and hopefully happy...

I had started growing my Onions this year from seeds, however they don't seem to be doing very well, I thing this is probably down to me (also my veg growing neighbor assures me growing onions from seeds is a right bugger, so I don't feel too bad!) so just to ensure we actually have some onions for autumn I caved in and asked Stephen to send us some onion plants (I feel like I'm cheating!!)

One of the other plants I had asked for was some Rambling Strawberries, we already have a Strawberry bed but are constantly fighting with the slugs to get any fruit, so we thought we'd try growing some in hanging baskets and see if this worked better...

We now have 2 baskets hanging by the front door, I'm really looking forward to walking out the house in the morning and picking a handful of Strawberries!

If this does work well I may do away with the Strawberry bed as the plants will be 3 years old next year and they recommend replacing after 3 years as productivity starts to drop off, also the bed takes up a lot of room for the fruit we manage to rescue from the slugs! We'll see how we go this year.

I have now finally got some Sweet Peas in, I LOVE Sweet Peas, they are one of my favorite summer flowers, my Nan use to grow them on her allotment so I always remember there being bunches of them around when I was little.
As the veg bed is getting a little crowded now I decided to grow them up on our sunny patio in front of the cottage, then I can just snip handfuls of them when I like and hopeful we'll get the fantastic smell too (Sweet Pea scent is the smell of summer for me!). They have been planted in to the little butlers sink we got a few months back.

Another little project we're trying to tackle here is the mini orchard (I say orchard its actually only has 5 fruit trees and 4 soft fruit bushes but I cant think what else to call it so mini orchard it is!) this section of the garden is right at the bottom of the 200 foot slope that's is our yard. It was part of the veg bed originally and also a general dumping ground, Rich spend most of the first summer we lived here flattening it out and haling great pills of rotten rubbish of the the recycling center, finally we planted the trees on it as it was too stony to grow veg in. Since then we've let the grasses grow back up around the trees and have been encouraging wild flowers to grow here, in summer this bit of the garden swarms with bees and butterflies.
One flower in particular that we have tried to encourage here is the lovely little Cowslip which is now endangered in the wild, gardeners have been asked to plant Cowslips where possible to try to boost numbers again. So I was really pleases when I discovered that Victoriana Nursery sold then as plug plants!

So 20 little plugs have gone into the mini orchard jointing then 5 or 6 plants we brought last year which are already beginning to spred.

The Cowslips where also joined by 3 Borage plants which should be another huge hit with the bees!

We also got 10 Foxgloves which are Rich's favorite flowers, they have gone in with the Cowslips and Borage, however they seem to be the only thing I forgot to take a picture off!

And last but not least we got these 5 Scented Geraniums for the patio...

As I think you will agree thats a hell of a lot of plants to get in too pretty small packages! So there you go that lot will buy two new logos for your website, anyone fancy trading for a chicken coop?!

Tuesday, 7 April 2009


Sorry for the lack of posts, usually I have a nice big one after a weekend of sunshine and ordering Rich about. I was really looking forward to Sunday, I had a whole day of planting planned however whatever it was I eat on Saturday night decided that wasn't to be. I'm now into my 3rd day of feel awful, although I'm slightly better than I was on Sunday which ended up with me lying on the sofa trying not to throw up and shivering with 2 blankets and the fire going full blast! God I hate being poorly, it doesn't happen very often so I always think I'm dieing when it does!

Saturday was a better day (before I ate the dubious stew in the evening) we had a few months back been given a load of logs by a lovely lady who had had some branches from one of her trees come down. She was looking to have the rest of the tree felled as it was unsafe and had said at the time we could come and collect as much as we wanted. Anyway Saturday was the day so we went to load up our trusty little car (which is brilliant but we are seriously considering trading it in for some sort of pick-up), we ended up getting 2 car fulls of very large logs which just needed cutting.

Rich spent most of the rest of the day sawing and chopping, and I stacked the result in the new wood shelter, we where going well until the handle on our axe broke! I feel another trip to the DIY shop coming on...

Anyway as you can see we now have enough wood to last us through the winter and we haven't chopped all the logs yet!

By Sunday morning I was feeling pretty dreadful but dragged myself out to the veg patch hoping the fresh air would stop me feeling sick, I managed to get the Pea wigwams up in the prepared Pea bed.

I got about half way though planting the Peas when I had to give in and crawl back to the house in defeat, but the lovely Rich finished planting them out for me, I need to start some more off in the greenhouse but that will have to wait will I can stand to smell of compost again!

Rich made a nice job of it didn't he!

So there we are, hopefully a better post after next weekend as I'm expecting a delivery of plants and I shall be out planting them even if I do feel like death!!

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Book Lust

I have just made the mistake of looking about on Amazon while waiting for paint to dry (god how exciting is my life!) Amazon is never a good idea, especially not when you have a credit card about your person. However I have managed to resist for today, but these are what I shall be lusting after and dropping hints about before my Birthday in May!

and this last one isn't really to do with gardening but its recycling and finding new uses for old stuff, very Shabby Chic (or in the case or our house, Shitty Chic!)

Mmmm books!