Saturday, 20 January 2018

A Matter of Perspective

Mizzy BunnyButt at the pond.

As well as colour & sun, all my summer photos spill beyond the borders of the lens.

<=  Take a look at Mizzy BunnyButt next to a pond in our last garden.  

By contrast, my winter garden photos are of the small joys, puzzles & surprises.  Here's a few from this week.

1.  I've been relocating aconite with every move for 10 years now.  Not having seen its sassy little face in my garden for 11 months, I feared it simply hadn't survived.  You cannot imagine (or maybe you can) my joy on stepping out the back door one morning to see this delightful prodigal.

First aconite.

2.  Equally cheery are the garlic chives sown as seeds last year.  I'm hoping we'll see blossoms this summer.

A few years ago, I read an article that said weeding to bare ground deprives your garden's ecosystem of travel routes from earth to plant to infinity.  As a result, I consider it a virtue not to over-weed my pots.  Even so, this one could use a slight tidy.  Very slight.

Garlic chives in their little weed pot.

3.  Something which has caused me pause this week are the lilies inherited from my son's uni days.  Most've been planted in the bed & show no signs of life, nor do they appear to've been robbed by the fox. The potted ones, on the other hand, are striking forth.  I'll definitely be watching this space.  

Look out, here we come.

4.  Another puzzle comes courtesy the candelabra primula.  They did well in this spot over the summer, but now look like they want to go walkabout.  I'd worked & composted the soil before planting last year, so this really surprises me.  Any suggestions?

Candelabra on the move.

5.  It's only January & there's a broken egg under the bird feeder.  Although pigeons & doves breed all year round in warmer climates, I thought it too early here for them to start.

My dog's hair being next to it made me think a nest'd been knocked about by the wind or a predator.  

Broken egg & DoodleFace hair.

After taking several photos outside, I scooped up the egg & brought it inside with hopes of getting a better photo.  Once given a proper look, it's obvious that the Doodle hair wasn't part of a nest.  

Brought inside for a photo shoot.

6.  I've been watching the buds on one of my favourite plants, the sorberia.  You can bet I did a little dervish at the sight of its leaves coming out.     

My delight faded when I couldn't get a good photo - the leaves were always blurred.  Then I noticed that the ground (which was about a metre below the branch) was in perfect focus.  I needed a backdrop to change my camera's perspective.  

It took a few permutations, figuring out how to hold the hat & take the photo - I even tried balancing the hat on my knee because my one-handed photo-ing wasn't very steady.  Eventual success.  

Aren't they lovely, lovely leaves . . .

Have hat, will sorberia.

What'll snake across my path next week?

Thus comes the end of my Six on Saturday.  Do run over to the creator of this hashtag, The Propagator for his Six, as well as links to many other half dozens in his comment section.

Hope to see you again for the next Six to take my fancy.

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Week of the Wet

Cedar covered in droplets.

I don't know about the rest of you, but the wet is starting to get to me.  On the bright side, it's become obvious I could never be a mud wrestler, so there's one less thing on my bucket list.

As to the garden, everyone out there seems pretty happy about the weather.  Such as . . . 

1. . . . the mushrooms in the honeysuckle pot.

Happy little mushrooms.

2.  The bleeding heart seems to've woken up.  I don't remember the name of this dicentra, only that its leaves were supposed to have a silver cast to them, contrasting with flowers that were a deeper red than other bleeding hearts.  It failed on both counts, so will be left behind in this garden when I go.

Wakey, wakey sleepy head.

3.  There's also buds on these unknown little things.  They got rescued in my last garden from under a cordyline that'd sucked all the nutrients out of the soil.  They're quite prolific, whatever they are.  Any pot I stick them in, they fill in coupla seasons.  Last summer, there were only 3 plants in this lot & look at them now.  Wildfire, they are.

Poor nameless orphans, but dearly loved.

4.  Years ago when I lived in Galway, fuchsia was the go-to plant for covering up ugly spaces - then promptly neglected to turn ugly themselves.  I've inherited a few in my various gardens over the years, & those stepchillen taught me that, with proper care, they can be stunning.

Even so, after the Galway uglies, the sight of a stranger fuchsia still raises that urgh feeling in my stomach.  The only way these annual babies entered my garden last year was as a free gift with a plant order.  I stuck them in my tree pots & tried not to get too friendly with them.  

To be honest, though, how can anyone with a heart feel repulsed by that sassy thang? 

The last fuchsia blossoms & a fading snapdragon.

5.  Like many of you, I've been pruning, only I do it a little at a time lest I anger Demon CFS.  Wisteria, elder, apple, none have escaped me.  Even the yew's had a bit of the back & sides.

A certain SoSer whom I shall not name & shame, has given me tripod ladder envy, especially when battling our old & incredibly grumpy wisteria that's  currently throttling the apple tree.

All this photo needs is a tripod ladder.

6.  What I should prune but will not, is this lovely little cherry tree.  It'd either self seeded or more likely, been planted by a squirrel under an enormous hebe in my last garden.  

The now vertical trunk grew horizontally along the ground, then turned upward to get sun.  The landlord's 'gardeners' would trim it within the hebe shape.  Where the 2 o'clock trunk suddenly becomes small branches denotes the time I came into its life & stopped the annual decapitation.  

So now this large hebe globe had a cherry tree sticking out of it.  For 8 months, I wondered what to do about the situation.  Once we moved, it'd not have me to protect it.  The tree itself answered my question by blooming.  

Have you ever fallen in love with a tree?  Head over heels, I confess.  So I crawled my hag body into the small space under the hebe, dug like an archaeologist unearthing a rare find, then pulled out the cherry tree & hoped for the best.

Here it is, 2 years later, crooked & thriving.  Which I hope it'll do until I find my forever home where it'll get planted in a spot even ancient-crone-me can see from a window.

My cherry crush.

So there's my very damp Six.  I'm very glad you stopped by this week.  Do go over to The Propagator for his Six & links in his comment section for a dozen or so more Six on Saturday.

Snowberry shrub covered in rain.

Saturday, 6 January 2018

New Year, New Growth

Wildlife water bowl.

It's been another wet week.  All this rain gave me plenty of opportunity to see posts about what's growing in other gardens.  Between showers, I compared notes to my own space.

While the freesia are still asleep & the clematis has no noticeable new growth, there are a few things happening out there.

1.  I admit, I've been worried about my witch hazel.  When it dropped its leaves early last year, I told myself the move had changed its signals.  Then all these great photos of yellow & orange & red squigglies appeared in my Twitter feed, convincing me my tree had died.

But hello!

Witch hazel tutu blooms.

2.  The leucojum has had its first blossom.

Leucojum not yet fully open.

3.  I've been keeping an eye on the sweet peas, self seeded & . . .

Self seeded sweet pea next to the toadflax.

. . . 2017 survivor.

Old man pea.

4.  The greatest joy of week, proof positive the daffs have survived Brer Fox.  (You can read about our Neighbour From Hell saga here & here.)

The Brer Fox repellant worked!

5.  The kerria surprised me with a blossom in the middle of its many wands.  The smudged yellowgreen bits below the horizontal stem are leaf knobs getting ready to open.  This is the kerria overshadowed by the elder tree, which I've been pruning back, so hopefully there'll be more vertical & less horizontal this year.

Oh kerria, you yellow face delights us.

6.  Mlle DoodleFace pointed out a new hole under the fence, this one too small for Brer Fox.  I keep filling it in & it keeps getting opened again, sometimes by Mlle DoodleFace herself.

The new rat-sized hole.

Mizzy BunnyButt (who tends all things rodent) sent a memo about some big heavy stone to be lodged in there quite soon.  (As you can see in this photo, there were no blossoms on the witch hazel earlier this week, so WOW, eh?)

Mizzy BB inspects.

All these new things in our new year.

So once again, thanks for stopping to see my Six on Saturday.  Please be sure to visit The Propagator for his SoS plus links to many other garden peeks.

Tuckered Mlle DoodleFace.