How do you measure up?

Stevie and I have gardened here for four years, and for most of that time I have wondered if we should join our local horticultural society.  My mum is a member of her local group, and gets involved in all sorts of activities; they have head gardeners coming to talk to them, they visit specialist…

SNOW!!! IT’S SNOWING!!!

We were VERY excited to wake up to snow this morning.  School was cancelled and it looked like it was going to be difficult to get a car out.  These are a few pics from our walk down the lane.  It was so quiet!  The only sounds were the crump of snow as we walked,…

Orange, apricot and almond flapjack

As I eagerly expect some snow (please please please let there be enough for an igloo!) I thought I would have a little play in the kitchen. This recipe comes from one of the two wonderful Wendys in my life.  Food has emotional warmth and meaning attached to it, and I love collecting recipes from friends….

Folly alert! The meadow experiment.

I am a very impulsive gardener. I do sit down and make lists and draw plans, but I also have mad moments of ‘inspiration’ as I’m emptying the washing machine, and have to rush to order seeds/plugs/bulbs right now. Stephen is more considered. If I have an idea which requires his cooperation (i.e. it is…

The mother of invention

Today my mum turns 70.  But she won’t be treated to afternoon tea at Eastwell Manor, because she’s trekking in India.  Yes, trekking, with a backpack, and sleeping in a tent, and having bucket showers. That’s not to say she won’t get afternoon tea when she gets back, but she might have to squeeze it…

My fingers are tingling with magic!

That title picture was just to put you off the scent.  It has nothing to do with this post, other than that was in front of me when the magic struck. I wasn’t even going to write a post today.  But then I read this blog post from ‘Sharpen your Spades’: Sowing Broad Beans – A great…

We’re on a break.

You meet.  Your eyes lock, you catch your breath a little as your heart skips a beat.  You look away, flustered.  You look back. Falling in love with a flower can be a heady experience.  And this is what happened with me and Helenium ‘Moerheim Beauty’.  I loved everything about it.  The frilly flamenco skirts…

Crocus Bunny

Here’s a selection of the crocuses in my garden, and a few in egg-cups.  Egg-cups or espresso cups seem the only thing tiny enough for a crocus.  Whilst snowdrops have long enough stems for a little jar or a tea-cup, crocuses have very stumpy legs.  I even have to bung a bit of tin-foil in the bottom…

The flower-grower’s veg

If you are a seasoned allotment-holder, look away now.  This selection will not feed a family of four.  If you, like me, dabble in veg for aesthetic purposes, for the colours and shapes and tastes, and the delight of popping a pod of peas into a waiting colander, then this post is for you. Since…

Flow

When I am gardening I experience “flow”: the complete contented absorption in a task or activity, where I lose track of time.  There is no distraction by the minutiae of what to cook for dinner or whether I remembered to put the washing on.  There is no worry over the things that are going on…

Making the most of the morning commute

I get to drive all over Kent for my job.  Given that much of Kent is pretty stunning, this is no bad thing.  There are sweeping views over fields and chalk downs, winding worm-holes through woodland, coastal roads looking out over the sea, and misty, magical marshes, which used to be under the sea. The other…

Murder in the flower-bed

Please note: this post contains descriptions of graphic violence against bamboo and hybrid tea roses. I am capable of a certain level of violence. There are crimes of passion when I have been pushed too far. Bamboo, for instance.  I hate bamboo.  We inherited a thicket of it growing along a short stretch of fence….