Monday 27 May 2024

Rosa 'Just Joey'

The soft winter temperatures and the endless rain make that our roses are thriving.

This is 'Just Joey', by far my favourite. Because it is strong, big, and has a beautiful perfume.

In the garden centers it is difficult to resist the offer of roses. With my gift voucher it will be fun to go and find a new addition for the garden.

'Windrush', 'Black Swan', 'Peau douce', 'William Shakespeare', 'Park Direktor Riggers', 'Audrey Hepburn', 'Lina Renard', Pemberton roses 'Cornelia', 'Felicia', 'Penelope', and three more of which I do not know the name are all displaying their beautiful blooms right now.

Happy summer, happy roses time!


Friday 1 April 2022

Team meeting in a snowy garden


'Shall we work in the garden? Or shall we have a day off because of the snow?!', that is the question of the entire team!

Northeasternly wind with a feel of -1 C, whereas the temperature is 4 C. What a surprise to open up the curtains at 7 am and see a white world. The first snow we have seen over a long period. It is magic, the garden has turned into a fairy tale world. The magnolia looks like a tree full of marshmellows!

All these blossoms covered with snow! It is an unusual sight!

There is work to be done in the garden, a lot of work. 
Maybe the outcome of the team discussion is to do a bit of everything: finishing a job in the garden and then hot coffee and apple pie. There is a lovely book waiting, 'A Gardiner's Journal' by Anni Downs. As such wonderful to read and look at, but of course plans have to be made to do something with the designs. Together with the book I ordered a fat quarter of Kaffe Fassett's colourful rose fabric. It will be a lovely addition to any project from this book. 
The forget-me-nots are flowering, the dandelions peep out here or there, there are so many vibrant colours on this 1 April in the garden. The sun makes the snow melt fast! 

Wednesday 23 March 2022

Celebrating spring

Colour inspiration for a nice pair of socks! The flowers are so vibrant all around in the garden.
Maybe I should get the knitting needles out and use this pattern?! It is called 'Enchanted socks'' and looks so inviting with the birds, the tulips and the little hearts.

Two crows are building a nest in one of the trees on the side of the house. Smaller birds are flying in and out of the hedges. Celebrating Spring!


Monday 21 March 2022

Apples and pears

 'An apple a day keeps the doctor away', is the saying. My husband always adds 'But what does a pear at night?!' and I laugh!

This knitted red apple should have added colour to my Christmas scene, but somehow it was difficult to match up the sides with its rib stitches. It got thrown in a corner, but every time it peeped out of my stash screaming to be finished. A lot of patience was needed to get it neat and acceptable, I think I took out the sewing of the sides about 7 times.  The way these knitted apples look once finished is so cute, especially with a small garden twig added to them. This one is about 12 cm in diameter.  The other one has been nicely tucked away in the Christmas boxes, a beige one. Just any leftover yarn used brings surprises. It is a rectangular knitted piece, pulled together at the bottom and the top. They make nice pumpkins too, in orange and green!

Two out of three espalier pear trees survived at the back of our garage wall. Their blossoms are about to burst open any moment now. 'Doyenne de Comice' and 'Conférence'. The malus tree will soon be blossoming too. Its little apples will be a delicacy for the black birds and the ara's. Ara's eat those with shrieking voices, the apple juice leaking from their crooked beaks.

Sometimes the pears get funny faces and shapes, like this one.

I hope the trees will surprise me again and share their fruits plentiful. Maybe I should be knitting some more red apples with leftover yarn to add to my Christmas basket, when sitting in the garden in the summer? 

Enjoy today to the full, it is the first day of Spring!

Sunday 20 February 2022

The weather gods


Storm ‘Eunice’ arrived with a nervous and fast changing sky, beautiful at first but soon looking threatening.

‘There is always music amongst the trees in the garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it’. Was there music just in the trees?! It was outrageous, it sounded like Wagner, or Andriessen. Heavy going and most certainly going to our hearts!

In this painting by J.W. Waterhouse we see Boreas, the god of the cold Northern wind, bending the trees. Oreithya, goddess of the cold mountain winds, is trying to resist his force. She goes along in a field with daffodils, wearing one in her hair, pink blossoms behind her on the tree. The end of winter, a new beginning, the energy and brightness of spring. A beautiful painting!

'Eunice' damaged a lot in our garden and moved a few roof tiles. We were lucky not to have major disasters happening to the house. When I was clearing away the broken branches of our birch tree, out on the street next to our hedge, many a passer by told how scared they had been. 

A storm clears the air. After raking the lawn, clearing away the débris, after having put the roof tiles back into place, the trumpetters of spring, the daffodils and the blossoms were catching our eyes.

The tête à tête daffodils around the foot of one of the beech trees are a gift from my aunt. She presented them in a large bowl for my birthday a few years ago. They enjoy their second life and remind me of the long and animated chats I had with this so dear aunt, the last witness of my parents young life. My dear aunt is in my heart, I hear her music, and the beech tree hears Helena's music too.

Thursday 17 February 2022

Boisterous weather


It is a bit boisterous out there. WSW storms! A lot of work to do in the garden, débris everywhere. More storms have been forecasted until Monday. Maybe it is better to wait and do it all at once?

The snowdrops and crocusses look fragile, bending in the wind. The petals of the snowdrops look just like propellors!

The freebee on internet by Primitive Bettys just suits the time of the year. So far there has not been any snow, but who knows what the coming month will bring? The pattern ended up on my 'wishlist' and 'to do list'. I have to decide to do it in mono colours or dream up a colour scheme. It will keep me off the road and my hair will not blow away like in the sculpture, 'Blown away', by Penny Hardy (2014). A fabulous sculpture made of old machine parts. 

The tree of life with the birds is a very old pattern. Recently I came across it on an inherited needlebook. It can be stitched in red and green for Christmas, but in any other colour it would look great. Storms are always remembered in this garden, because of the damage they leave behind. Many a tree went down.

Wednesday 16 February 2022

Busy birds

Although the garden itself produces a lot of food for the birds as such, they still love coming to the bird feeder.
They certainly have 'eating hours' and many of them are there all at once.
Soon they will be starting making nests, using all kinds of stuff that people or the wind have blown around. It is amazing to study a nest and see how they use moss, pieces of thread, plastic, and make it into a warm place.

The picture is a detail of a spring miniquilt. It was an attempt to use beads and free style embroidery.
The beak is the most minute piece of purple silk. Once you get going on such a project you cannot stop!

The supermarket has all its Easter goodies on display, so early in the year. My Christmas lights are still up on the facade. Time flies ..... like the birds.
It is difficult to resist the colourful bags full of praliné eggs. They soon vanish in this house! This is what is left over from a bowl which was filled to the top ..... Yesterday I got a new bag and I wonder how many more of those will follow before it is Easter.

The red robin visits many a time during the day, and way into dawn. Someone told me once there is only one robin in a certain area, but I see two. They certainly fight, and this little round ball is not friendly to the other small birds either. Taking a picture through the window does not give the best result, but who can resist it when it is so close? 
He does look me straight in the eye, with his black charcoal eyes. A darling!
Bird watching is so fascinating. We can see the bird feeder from all corners from both our living and dining room, such a joy. 

Happy day! Happy bird watching!