Can you imagine York Minster made out of flowers?
This fascinating film clip from 1952 shows you how it’s done!
The buds on my camellia are bursting open.
26 flowers at the last count and plenty of buds remaining.
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Hope you have a great May Day Bank Holiday weekend and if you want to get lost in a book, try Leefdale.
And for this month of May: another lovely lily of the valley image.
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but for Christmas I usually buy a poinsettia from the garden centre and pick a few sprigs of holly out of the garden to stick around the picture frames.
How about you? Any preferences?
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Please check out the Book of the Day at http://www.spurwing-ebooks.com/
Back in May, just five days before my health problems commenced, I promised an update after unwrapping my potted camellia from its winter fleece.
Now I’ve returned to 3sixtyfiveblog, here’s the update!
I downloaded the photo on this post from Pixabay but my own plant was virtually bare.
In autumn last year it took me ages to wrap the plant in its winter fleece. Not helped by trying to cocoon it on a rather breezy day! I used a whole bag of washing line pegs to keep the fleece in place plus half a ball of garden string. And some very expensive fleece from the local garden centre.
Needless to say, it won’t be happening this year. The plant can take its chances with the rest of our shrubs, bushes and pot plants. Since I’ve been having chemotherapy, I’ve had to pass all gardening jobs over to my husband, Michael. He says the best part of gardening is when you’ve finished! He’s handy with the strimmer and doesn’t really differentiate between the plants that are supposed to be in the garden and those that are unwelcome. Several of last year’s perennials have gone the same way as the entwining bindweed, burgeoning buttercups and stinging nettles which took over much of the garden when neither of us had any interest in it. I’m happy to have wild flowers in the garden but not when the most robust dominate and take over. We had a fine crop of four foot high thistles this summer which were starkly dramatic but challenging to remove.
I doubt that we’ll see any flowers on the camellia next year. The buds seem to be so susceptible to frost damage but who knows? I hope I’ll be able to let you know!
Thanks for reading my blog today and hope you’re having a great day.
You might also like September Song on my Cabbage and Semolina Blog.
I live in a chalky area where the soil drains quickly even after the heaviest of downpours. I haven’t planted anything very delicate apart from my potted camellia. I’m just as happy for wild flowers to live in our little space alongside anything we’ve planted there.
But a few days ago I read an article which raised the question for me.
Shukman reports on 90 year old Jean Combes. She’s been keeping records of the dates when certain trees in her locality come into bud. She’s recorded this for over fifty years and she’s found that the trees at her Surrey home burst into leaf about three weeks earlier than they did in 1960.
is right on the divide between two distinct climate zones. Residents of the north of the city find that their lawns don’t need cutting as frequently as those who live in the south of Northampton. It’s been like this for decades but now the more northerly residents are finding they need to cut the grass much more in early Spring and late Autumn.
while in other areas reduced water is creating just as many difficulties. Increasingly violent, stormy weather can be devastating and an excess of strong winds is highly problematic.
told Shukman that it was more and more important to keep watch on the highly changeable weather conditions. “My biggest worry,” says Cook, “is that these major weather events do such a huge amount of damage to the garden.” However, he’s not completely pessimistic believing that there could be opportunities to grow a wider range of plants.
A neighbour has recently removed a giant double Leylandii which has transformed the garden by letting in so much more light. I just want to observe the effect this has on everything that’s already growing in our garden.
So far the greatest beneficiaries of the increased light levels are the dandelions which are in profusion at the moment. The lilac tree is more heavily laden with flowers than ever before, presumably because it’s now in direct sunshine instead of the Leylandii shade. It will be interesting to see what else grows stronger or proliferates as we move into summer.
In high winds it lashed from side to side and we were anxious about our fate if one night we were sleeping and an extra gust of wind brought it down on top of the roof. But once we’ve become accustomed to the increased light levels, we’ll have to start thinking about what we need to do to cope with climate change in our garden too.
Today’s book promo:
“Warning! This book is seriously addictive!”
“Right until the very end, everything is not as it seems.”
“The reader witnesses changing times, changing attitudes and entire lives that are shattered with secrets and deceit.”
I know that a handful of blueberries make a great contribution to your 5-a-day. The NHS website spells out the benefits by asking are blueberries a superfood?
According to the NHS, some nutritionists believe that if you make only one change to your diet it should be to add blueberries.
Antioxidants are a type of molecule that can neutralise free radicals, which are a type of unstable and highly reactive species of molecule. I’m no scientist so if you want to understand more you’ll have to read this NHS page.
Alison Hornby is a dietitian and spokesperson for the British Diabetic Association. She told the NHS researcher that the health claims for blueberries were inconclusive but that blueberries make a fantastic choice as one of your five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.
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Today’s book promo:
Meet Alan: he was tone deaf, sang like a dog but he had a feeling he could write.
Follow this link to find out more and read a free sample: http://amzn.to/2o676Ve
We visit Sledmere House, Grounds and Gardens regularly as we have annual Gold Tickets which gives free admission after the initial visit.
The walled garden is a delight and ever changing but this walkway is one of our favourites.
We made our first visit to Burton Agnes Hall in the mid-1980s and it’s been a pleasure to watch the garden develop over the years. There’s a maze in the northeast corner of the walled garden which was planted in 1990. We saw the maze for the first time shortly after it was planted with 700 yew bushes. It’s a pity we didn’t make a note of the layout because now the hedges are so thick, once you’re in it’s hard to find your way out.
This photograph was taken during our first visit to Castle Howard in 2006. We’ve been back several times since and find new delights on each visit.
One of my most vivid childhood memories is seeing for the first time the monkey puzzle trees at Sewerby Hall. They’re still there; just taller! The walled garden at Sewerby Hall is a blaze of colour in the summer and the rose garden is bee-heaven.
We’ve only visited Scampston on a couple of occasions, most recently in 2009. The garden is a stunningly beautiful contemporary garden designed by the renowned Dutch plantsman, Piet Oudolf. The garden opened to the public in 2005 and features a modern, perennial meadow planted alongside more traditional areas.
I’m sure we’ll be visiting these beautiful walled gardens again soon. But there are so many other walled gardens in Yorkshire that we haven’t been to look at yet. Top of the list is the walled garden at Helmsley ; and the gardens at Newby Hall look fabulous too.
We visited Sledmere walled garden a few weeks ago. In the main grounds it was the height of the daffodil season and there were carpets of primroses under the trees.
The walled garden was cleared and ready for the new season. This is the same walkway as the first photograph in my blogpost; just from the opposite direction.
The vegetable garden was waiting to be planted:
And this path to the summer house will be a blaze of colour later in the year, I’m sure.
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My garden is quite small and more than half is covered in gravel. This is because our house was constructed about fifteen years ago on a brown-field site which was used by agricultural machine engineers for decades. Some parts of the site were solid concrete and just gravelled over.
The part of the garden which is soil is of poor quality and very chalky. As a fairly lazy gardener I keep things basic and simple. Last year I decided to re-plant one of the flower beds and I looked on gardening websites for plants which were easy to grow and would make a comeback each year.
I also wanted plants which were attractive to bees and butterflies.
These are five of the plants I selected. They seemed to settle in well last Autumn and are already starting to show signs of growth.
My colour theme for the flower bed is cream, white and shades of pink.
4 pink Geraniums
3 cream Astrantia
3 dark pink Echinacea
3 white Echinaceas
3 white Gaura
3 dark pink Scabious
3 pale pink Scabious.
I bought the geraniums from a local farm shop and the others from an on-line plant supplier. They were delivered as well established plants in 9cm pots and all survived the journey as the packaging was very good.
Hopefully in the Summer there will be a good display of flowers and lots of bees and butterflies.
Thanks for reading my blog today.
If you have a few minutes to spare you might like to check out my publishing website too. It’s at http://www.spurwing-ebooks.com