Monday, April 25, 2011

Lavender's Blue Dilly Dilly

Well not exactly lavender (yet), but many of the plants flowering in my garden today happen to be in various shades of blue.
(ajuga, camassia, forget-me-knots, geranium, viola "freckles", 
pulmonaria, bluebells, brunnera and veronica)

One bed in particular is predominantly blue, somehow it seems very calming.

But I haven't just been gardening, I've been some fiddling with textiles too.  I was inspired after reading Emma's blog "A Little Bit of Everything" to try incorporating some seed heads into textile work. I've used them as inspiration before but never actually tried using real ones within the piece.  I was limited in my choice as it's really the wrong time of year for seed head collection but I had some stipa gigantica and lavender hanging about in the conservatory.

Golden Light (18cm x 14cm)
For this one I used handmade paper as well as undyed scrim, gold organza, gold thread and beads stitched onto a background of natural osnaberg.

And for this one I dyed the some of the scrim and used some sheet music and lace aged with walnut ink, before stitching the lavender underneath some lilac organza and adding odd bits of thread and some beads.
Faded Memories (18cm x 14cm)
I'm pleased with how they've turned out, I like the "threadiness" of them and I like that they include plants that I grew.  Not sure what I'm going to do with them though, might have to cogitate that for a while, although I might hang them somewhere!  Thanks Emma for the inspiration.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Look What I Found

When I moved here the garden was covered with bluebells, not the native ones but spanish ones - still pretty but rather invasive.  I've dug loads up but have also kept some, along the fences and in places where they can't smother my other plants.  But look what I discovered this week - white bluebells!  I've never seen them before and as they're growing in dense shade where not much else grows they can stay, as long as they don't start taking over.
White Bluebells

I also found these flowering this week - a whole 3 weeks earlier than last year!

Dwarf Iris - Knick Knack

This week I also started to tackle an area of the garden behind the veg patch that hadn't really ever had any attention from me:

The sharp eyed among you will notice that the wonky post has been removed and replaced by some equally wonky decking - I'd hate to break the habit of a life time and do anything level!  Personally I'm blaming the pallets underneath for not being straight, but it's better than it was before! I'm planning to plant some roses and clematis to climb over the pergola and put a bench underneath.


Fran and I acquired one of the pallets a couple of years ago, we saw it next to a skip in the front garden of a house enroute to a local garden centre.  On the way home we knocked and the rather bemused owner let me take it.  Incidently Fran has just posted some really lovely pictures of her garden over on her blog Lazi Dazi, if you haven't already visited her over there already, do pop over and take a look.

What else have I been doing this week - sewing, but that's another post another day!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Strange Goings On With Tulips.

Something strange is happening with my tulips.  Mostly they have multiplied nicely since last year -

Doll's Minuet now has 16 blooms compared to the 8 it had last year:

These dark purple ones (unknown variety as I inherited them), have also multiplied:

As have these (also unknown varieties):

But this one has just appeared - it's never been there in previous years:


And my lovely Apricot Beauties which flowered so well last year have totally disappeared.  Very strange.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The First of the Clematis

The first clematis of the year have opened this week, a real sign that the gardening year is getting going.  I love these early flowered ones as they're so delicate.  I guess it's because they're not having to fight to be noticed, unlike the ones that flower later in the year when everything else is in full bloom as well.

I can see Constance from my kitchen window as she is climbing up the pergola by the first patio:

Clematis Alpina Constance
Clematis Alpina Constance

Further down the garden is Propertius, climbing up an obelisk which is also planted with a Penny Lane rose (and a later flowering clematis):

Clematis Macropetala Propertius
Clematis Macropetala Propertius

And at the front of the house Markam's Pink is winding its way through my Abraham Derby rose:

Clematis Macropetala Markham's Pink

Sadly, I think I've lost my clematis Armandii - if anyone knows how to bring it back from apparant death I'd love to hear from you...

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Ferny Fascination

There are lots of lovely things in the garden at the moment, I'm especially proud of the blossom on my Japonica as last year it only managed one flower - now it's covered:

But what really fascinates me at this time of year are the ferns.  Initially they look so un-promising, just like a load of brown lumps, and then they start to unfurl:

Those tight little buds begin to reveal their secret centres:

Some of the fronds look as though someone has knotted them up and they're having to work hard to unravel themselves:

And then elegantly, they begin to uncurl themselves, like a hand slowly opening to reveal a precious gift:

Totally fascinating!