Two Surreal Images

As usual I am desperately late with my gardening jobs (partly blamed on the very hot summer but mainly because my default state is sat in front of an easel, painting!).  To illustrate here are two, I think rather surreal,  photographs: one taken from the kitchen window and one taken from the dining room. Both show a complete mess which I should really be ashamed about but probably aren’t!

The tubs are for mature Dioscorea caudiciforms which ideally should be potted every three of four years but I am not sure if I have actually potted them this century!  If I had they would have armchair sized caudexes by now, which admittedly would take up a lot of room.  I am potting the ones that grow in the winter and will now have to, reluctantly, leave the summer growing ones to the spring (or will I – I may chance it).  Interestingly whether they grow in winter or summer is almost dictated by chance, or more likely watering regimes when they are still seedlings.  They come from South Africa so would normally grow during our winter months.

Someone has given me an eight by six foot greenhouse but I am not sure where to put it; hence the bits propped up against the outhouse!  I already have four plus three ponds, not to mention a relatively newly planted lawn so flexibility is somewhat lacking.  Logically the best option would be to remove the six by four plastic lean-to and put it there but I am reluctant to throw away an old friend.  I will continue to muse!

Incidentally something I am ashamed about is not realising the lemon was not getting the rain during a wet spell last month.  It subsequently dried out and lost its leaves -very embarrassing that!

Test Valley-20130828-07520

Test Valley-20130828-07522

A Photo From The Eighties Or Nineties

Continuing with the theme of old photos initiated yesterday; this is the now top succulent house as it was in the past (some when and somewhere!).  Unfortunately the photo is out of focus and probably taken at least twenty years after the one posted yesterday.


Hello Again – Plus A Photograph From My Childhood

I am very sorry for not posting anything for a while but this blog tends to be the Cinderella of all the ones I write.  I usually post to my literary blogs on a regular basis (I am not sure if these are the ugly sisters!) and the art ones only slightly less frequently but this one – despite by passion for plants, animals and the landscape of Southern England – gets ignored!

I must also confess to not gardening enough during the summer months.  Up to quite recently it was blistering hot and as my studio was much cooler it became even more enticing than usual!  I did take a handful of photographs over the summer months which I will share over the next few weeks.  I may try and post one photo a day to see if I can build up some kind of momentum – we shall see!

However the picture below is from much longer ago and illustrates my very first greenhouse: which was made from corrugated PVC and purchased in the Sixties and an Alton greenhouse I bought a bit later in my middle teens (with a bit of help from my parents!).  The small greenhouse was heated by a blue flame paraffin heater and housed Chrysanthemums in the autumn, lettuce et al through the winter, bedding plants in the spring and tomatoes etc. during the summer months.  The larger greenhouse was initially heated by a coal fired hot water pipe system – which unfortunately caught the greenhouse on fire and then by electricity. It housed the start of my cacti and succulent collection and a large selection of pot plants; most of which I grew from seed.

The frames housed overwintering bulbs, vegetable seedlings and other small plants.  The rest of the garden, and a very large allotment, belonged to my father.