Monday, 17 November 2014

Sleepy hollow...

Friday, 16 December 2011

 The decay of the grape vine, the leaves are losing their chlorophyll, as it is a precious substance reabsorbed into the plant, and the leaves develop patterns of decay, pixels of decay.
The vines will be pruned back, and the plants will regrow in the spring. 

 Hannah decorating our Xmas tree. It is 2 metres tall, and rooted in a pot. After Xmas the tree will be put into the garden where it will stay until next Xmas or the one after that. Then it will be brought into the house, decorated again, and returned to the garden. There is nothing like having a real tree in the house, instead of a plastic one. The real tree has fragrance, charm and is alive...

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Serpent Squash

It has been raining constantly, almost with a day of break since the middle of May. A couple of weeks ago, a weekend break and I could do some garden work. Last weekend I spotted these two serpent squash hanging from the trellis. They were not there last Sunday, five days before and now they are over a meter in length and growing!

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Ode to a Lemon, Neruda

As we anticipate our lemon tree blooming, wondering if it will set fruit this year or not here is a poem to the lemon tree by the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. It is a wonderfully organic, sensuous poem. Every year for the past 4 years or more the tree has blossomed, but the fruit drops without setting, at best. This year we live in hope...

Ode to a Lemon
Pablo Neruda

Out of lemon flowers
on the moonlight, love's
lashed and insatiable
sodden with fragrance,
the lemon tree's yellow
the lemons
move down
from the tree's planetarium

Delicate merchandise!
the harbors are big with it-
for the light and the
barbarous gold.
We open
the halves
of a miracle,
and a clotting of acids
into the starry
original juices,
irreducible, changeless,
so the freshness lives on
in a lemon,
in the sweet-smelling house of the rind,
the proportions, arcane and acerb.

Cutting the lemon
the knife
leaves a little cathedral:
alcoves unguessed by the eye
that open acidulous glass
to the light; topazes
riding the droplets,
aromatic facades.
So, while the hand
holds the cut of the lemon,
half a world
on a trencher,
the gold of the universe
to your touch:
a cup yellow
with miracles,
a breast and a nipple
perfuming the earth;
a flashing made fruitage,
the diminutive fire of a planet.

Sowing season 2011

 Here are the seedlings one week on from the pictures below. First, ate the sunflowers, and also one or two globe artichoke, violet. Second,are the emerging barlotto seedlings. Third, are dwarf French beans. Fourth is labelled Goldtuft, which is a variety of safflower. The next is Zinnia, Giant Scarlet, followed by field poppy, with Cavolo Nero in the pots behind. So far germination has been good to very good. The tomato seedlings have grown greatly and need to be potted on. I cannot do that until Saturday.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Feburary Poem

Here is an occasional poem, written in 1916 by Irish poet William Butler Yeats, almost 100 years ago today. It is a simple poem of simple and rich pleasures and as with many of Yeats' poem it is marked by melancholia, mixed with joy. The ephemera of life to be lived in love and with pleasures. Wine is certainly a pleasure, as is being with, seeing the ones you love most in the world. Social beings have social pleasures, drinking wine together is one.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

A Drinking Song

William Butler Yeats

Wine comes in at the mouth
And loves comes in at the eye
That's all we shall know for truth
Before we grow old and die.
I lift the glass to my mouth
I look at you and sigh.

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Sowing season 2011

I made this cold frame to germinate seeds for vegetables and flowers. The frame is a little over 1 metre tall and the space between shelves is approximately 33 cm. If anything, more space between shelves would be better for ease of watering. So far it seems to be working, on the left there are two pictures of germinating seedlings, French beans and sunflowers. I am hoping to have an array of sunflowers spread around the garden this year, perhaps around 100 sunflowers, as well as other flowers and vegetables and fruits. They look magnificent reaching two metres or more with multiple flower heads that can be cut and displayed indoors as well as enjoyed outside.

Monday, 28 February 2011

Sowing season 2011

Now is time to start planning for this year's growth in the garden. I have a hoop tent where broccoli was planted, some spinach, carrots and other seeds sown at the end of January.
On the left is a picture or the Brussels sprouts seedling.
The photo in the middle below is of a broccoli seedling.
To the right below shows the emerging carrot seedlings, with their long cotyledon leaves, on still holding on to its seed cover.
The final picture at the bottom is of spinach seedlings, with their second stage leaves. The string appearing in the photos is the marker dividing the square metre bed.


Hannah preparing dough

Hannah preparing our weekly bread dough. At the back you can also see some of her recent artwork.