Showing posts with label Spring. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spring. Show all posts

28 March 2016

Missing but active.

The month of March is nearly over . 

During the first few weeks I was busy Spring cleaning
our little holiday cottage La Petite Maison

for our first visitors.

A little French rustic adornment.
I don't think I've ever seen anyone wear the straw hat, 
but it's there just in case.

The weather was perfect to bring out the Olive tree.

We also had a lot to do outside 
 to make good after the damage from the mini tornado.

The terrace pergola and new fencing was finished in time.
For the first arrival.
Even the tulips that come up every year were in bloom. can you see them on the right ?

I'm still waiting for the pink ones I put in pots to flower. They wont be long I'm sure .
This is what they looked like last year.

March is nearly over, the clocks have been put forward an hour, 
I look forward to the longer days. 

The birds are singing morning an evening

Finding a mate

 To help build their nest

I don't think I've ever seen so many different types of finches 
altogether at the same time, in the garden.
Maybe it's because Mr France has chosen some 
different type of bird food, which he scatters on the ground.

and frantically building their nests.

We even had this visitor in the garden .
Unfortunately I didn't have my camera at the ready.

These photos are images from a source found on internet.
 The Hoopoe bird. 

I'm hoping they'll nest again near us.
We hear them but don't always see them.

There's new shoots popping up all around the garden.
What could be better. I love this time of the year.

I haven't been feeling well this past week. 
A nasty chest infection, which knocked me for six,
it was a pyjama week for me, thankfully it's slowly clearing up.

Now I'm looking forward to some warmer sunny days.
then I can get into gardening again.
Things have been put on hold, yet again. 
I was hoping to get things done 'gardening by the moon '
this Spring, but it wasn't to be. I would have liked to test 
to see if it did make any difference, when things were planted.
or pruned.    Now I'll never know.

Lets hope April won't be full of showers. 

Thanks for popping by
 and if you are new to my blog I hope you'll come back again .

Look forward to seeing you again soon.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

01 March 2016

1 st. March Meteorologist Spring

When does Spring actually start ?

For me, it's when I see the flowers I associate with Spring, blooming in my garden.
So it's Spring in my garden it's arrived early this year.

According to the Meteorologist calender it's today the 1st March.
Take a look here to check
Then there's the  Astronomical seasons date which is 20th March 2016

Earth's axis and seasons

A few were nipped and didn't get to stand up straight
so I cut them and made them into a small display.

Just three daffodils and a little greenery from the garden
 a few sprigs of Forsythia and catkins can make a pretty arrangements.

On the 1st March 1906 Edith Holden  wrote in her diary
March has come in like a lamb
with a warm wind 
and rain from the south west.

Exactly like it has been here today 110 years later.
Full of such lovely illustrations. 

Do you like Country Magazines. if that's a yes.
you'll love Country Living UK.

It's high on the list amongst my favourites, as it is with Mary from
 A Breath of Fresh Air,.
take a look at her latest post, she tears out pages and puts them on her fridge. 
I keep some of my copies for several years 
as you can see this one is 2013

For those of you that still have snow 
I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of my Spring.

I'll hope you'll come back and visit me again.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

18 February 2016

Forced Forsythia

So much rain and now a covering of snow this morning. 
I needed some spring to lighten my heart.
  I'm so pleased that I had  brought some Forsythia into the house.
 A shrub had been damaged during the storm so I cut a few branches 
and put them in a vase near the window. With the warmth inside 
and the light it didn't take too long for the flowers to open.

Our weather forecast had shown, sun and a rise in temperature, however it 
didn't happen. It's been cold & we've had sleet falling on and off all day.
 This lovely bright spring yellow, has certainly cheered me up
 I've been browsing through my Edith Holden, Edwardian Lady books.
Nature notes 1905 and Country Diary 1906
She painted some lovely illustrations for both these books .
I've had them for a long time and only ever looked at the pictures.
Now I'm painting again they've  given me inspiration.
Reading the daily entries in the diary is so interesting, 
not unlike the way the weather has been so far this year.

If you like, nature, birds and wild flowers
these books are lovely to have.
I also picked a few catkins,
 when we were children we called them Lambs tails.

 On my last visit to Denmark I bought myself this slate tray. 
Just right to display a few bits & pieces.

I made this card,
 just For You.

Have you brought a little early Spring into your home yet.
Try something, especially if you have snow, it made me feel happy.

Until the next time.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

30 March 2015

Just Looking

 It's not very often we take this route, but how happy I am we did. 
Joy for my eyes , look what I found .
It's only a 25 min. drive south from where we live
but it's amazing how much warmer it is.
The temperature is always a few degrees higher.
which means the blossom is more advanced than where I live.

Then we took a detour to our daughters house and I was even happier
as we found a garden center which had opened last year
I spent most of my time inside .
I was in awe of the beautiful Camellias.

I hope you like Camellias, as there were so many I couldn't stop clicking.
and before I realised that the battery was running low
 on my camera, I had spent all my time photographing them. 

Outside were rows of shrubs,
Each row had a sign showing the type of shrub and where to plant them.

Easy to grow.

Climbing plants suitable for walls and arbours
I was very tempted to buy a Clematis, but as I hadn't done any research
on them, to know which one to choose, I resisted temptation
for the next visit, which I know will be soon.
So a few more different Camellias to show you.
I hadn't realised there were so many varieties.

My only disappointment with these flowers
is they don't last very long.
If they get caught by early morning frost they turn brown
and they don't like wind and rain.
Which seems to have been our type of Spring weather
I have one in my garden which is struggling,
apparently due to all the things they don't like.
Now after the expert advice I was given by the owner
 of the garden center, I need to move it, after it's finished flowering.
It was planted last year, when my heart was not into gardening.
I thought I'd chosen a good position for it, but apparently not.
Also we do have very acid soil, due to the hundreds of pine trees
that were growing here when we bought the property.
So I need to correct that, when I find a suitable place to replant it.
But not just yet, it will have to wait, as I have climbing roses 
waiting patiently to be planted and grow up the new arbour.
If it's stopped raining tomorrow, I'll take a photo to show you.
It will be like  ''before and after.''

 What ever you are doing in your garden
Enjoy your planting.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

It hasn't stopped raining, but I did what I said I'd do.
I took this photo, to let you see my pitiful Camellia. 
As I say I'm not a gardener and we all make mistakes.
It wasn't a plant I bought myself, as  I know all the difficulties
of growing a good plant  (it was a prize ) from our Floral competition.
Yes you did read that correctly  a prize. But I do grow lovely
hanging baskets.
The flowers were battered even more during the night
This is my Camellia looking very sad, waiting to be moved.

15 March 2015

Dahlias for Mr France.

When we were young and bought our first house in 1965.
it was a new build  on a small estate, in the north of England.
At that time, when the builders had finished building,
the garden was not landscaped ready for the new owner.
 We had a lot of preparation to do, before it even resembled a garden.
We were both very young and didn't know much about gardening then.

Then one day, my husbands father who didn't visit us very often,
arrived with a big brown paper bag full of Dahlias.
I wasn't  familiar with the different varieties.
So didn't know what to expect.
I must admit they grew quickly, but those huge flowers 
which were mainly the big blousey cactus type,
were not to my liking, and since then I've never planted them again.

There are not many flowers I don't like.
but these are not one of my favourite flowers.
I'll let you into a little secret.
Until a few years ago Mr France didn't know a weed from a cultivated flower.
However he's now started to take an interest in the garden.
and during that time he'd asked me several times
' What was the name of the flowers my Dad planted in our first garden '
and because I didn't like them, I told him ' I couldn't remember'

But I've been caught out.
as he now comes with me to the garden centers,
He saw the bags of Dahlia tubers with the image stapled to the bag,
and said 'these are the flowers I mean'
After all these years, I've only just told him I knew
what they were. but as I didn't like them I said
' I couldn't remember what flowers he meant.'

We made a compromise and chose another variety.
So he's happy.
These are the variety we chose and we both like them.

I quite like the look of these.
( Looks like a nice flower to paint in my Garden journal )

He immediately put two bags into the trolley.

Back to my first garden.
Looking at the old photos we had lots of colour from the 'Nemesia'
but my planting left a lot to be desired.
I can also see some other plants there
that's NOT on my list of favourites  'Gladiola'
I think that's because it's tall and spiky and only has one flower stem.

As I've shown some photos of our first dog, 'Ricky'
I thought I'd tell you a little about him.
He was a miniature poodle and I may add nothing like a posh poodle.
 At that time Mr France worked shifts and thought it would be a good idea
for me to have a dog for company, as he worked late hours
and sometimes during the night.

 When we arrived at the kennel to choose our new puppy
he was a bit surprised when he saw the breed of dog I had set my heart on,
 Something small and as we thought would be easy to look after.
 But who could resist a little ball of black fluff.

But he was nothing like a poodle in character.
As he grew he liked nothing better than to roll in anything that smelt nasty.
which was usually just after he'd been to the poodle parlour.
So we soon put a stop to that, and he only ever went to have a quick trim
around his face and feet  as we couldn't manage that ourselves,
and we trimmed the rest and shampooed him.

I hope you enjoyed my little trip down memory lane.
and you forgive me for keeping my secret from Mr France.

He's looking forward to summer, to see the Dahlias growing 
in the big stone pots we have on our sun deck.

Do you keep harmless secrets from your husband ?

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian