Showing posts from June, 2018

Day 91 of the 100 day project

Not long until the end of the project now and suddenly it is time to pick things as well as to continue with the weeding and sorting.  It makes me realise just how long I have been doing this.  I started on 1st April 2018 at a time when things were only just beginning to grow after a long cold spring.  Now we are certainly in high summer and for May and June we have had a lot of hot dry weather.  When I look across to the hills on the other side of the valley the fields are brown and gold.  This is Wales.  The normal colour of my view is green, many shades of deep verdant green. But this evening through my window shows a bleached dry world.  It is still beautiful but it doesn't quite look like home.  It has been wonderful though to eat outside every day, to sit in the shade because the sun is too hot and to come into the old house where the slate floors and the thick walls produce a cool retreat.  The garden really does need some rain.  Ian has been watering his edible crops e

Day 86

I am keeping the project up but with a lot of time spent with older daughter and family and younger daughter and hers  I need to catch up with documenting it! It is an amazing day here in North Wales.  This was the view when I opened the kitchen door this morning and it has stayed pretty much like this all day.  The forecast for the rest of this week is similar so this is a time to appreciate how beautiful it is and to sit on the sense that everywhere needs watering!  Of course it does, we can't have everything! Today's task was just a little one: to cut down the sweet cicely before it seeds all over the place.  Sweet cicely is a  very beautiful thing and while it is flower I love it for the foam of white and the scent.  The plant has a sweet, faintly aniseedy flavour to my palate, and can be used in cooking instead of sugar for things like pies and tarts.  But when it finishes flowering and goes to seed it will seed itself absolutely everywhere, both where y

Day 77 of the 100 day project

I have not been recording what I have been doing so here is my attempt at a catch up: Monday: pulled bindweed from the front bed, time taken about twenty minutes Tuesday: did some Spanish in the morning, had a meeting in the afternoon, deadheaded some roses before tea!  time taken about ten minutes Wednesday: today I went a bit bananas about exercise, doing my dance class in the morning, deciding to join in with the walking group in the afternoon and going to yoga in the evening.  I did no gardening whatsoever but I felt great! Thursday was another committed elsewhere day as was Friday.  On Thursday I did pilates in the morning, took the campervan for its service in the afternoon and spent about half an hour in between weeding one of the herb beds which always gets invaded by creeping bindweedn On Friday I went to Welsh in the morning and we went over to see daughter and her family in the afternoon before heading over to some friends for a barbecue.  In between times I did

Day 73 of the 100 day project

I have been better at doing the gardening part of the project than I have at recording it on the blog!  This weekend has been full of family as younger son and his family came up from Devon and two of the others came across to say hello.The sun shone and the children got on amazingly well especially when you consider that they don't see each other that often!  And the value of the garden as a place to be was clear: to sit and chat and play and kick a football or throw a rugby ball or be endlessly pushed on a swing, to feed hens and make dens, to be taken for a walk by granddaughter number one, aged four and a half.  "I'm going to show you that there is even more garden down here, Grandma.  Follow me.  It goes on for ever."  (It really doesn't unless you are four.) So I am feeling more in love with the garden than I have for a long time.  Here is the side garden bubbling over with blue geranium. And the kitchen garden beautifully disguising its weeds unde

Day 65 of the 100 day project

Can you believe it?  Day 65 and still going!  The last three days have meant quite a bit of garden time, much of it with Ian working as well.  It has been practical, functional gardening: clearing a raised bed, planting out beans and courgettes as well as planting out the cosmos seedlings and doing yet more of the endless weeding. I am not a vegetable gardener.  I like eating it but I don't like growing it.  It is labour intensive and doesn't have any of the imagination and satisfaction I get from mixing plants together and trying to create something which moves me, and ideally other people too.  I can sort of see that there can be a romance in vegetable gardening.  I love a good allotment and I do very much like the sense of eating something where I know exactly where and how it was grown.  But a few years ago we agreed that Ian would do veg and I would do flowers and that has suited me fine.  But Ian has been very busy over the last few weeks and seedlings were queuing up i

Day 62 of the 100 day project

This is nearly two thirds of the way through!  That is amazing! Today younger daughter and her two children were here for the morning and for lunch.  As usual in the summer we spent a lot of time outside, feeding chickens, collecting eggs, swinging, throwing balls for the dog, hiding balls for the dog, going up to the farm to see the calves and then pretending I was the dog as Grace made me sit and wait and hid the ball for me to find.  All, as you can see, good fun but not what you might call relaxing.  It is lovely to be able to do it, for myself to build the relationship with the children and for our daughter to ease, just a tiny little bit, the relentless pressure of mothering two small children.  She handles this pressure with enormous patience, good humour and grace but it is still a hard job.  In fact both our daughters and both our daughters in law seem to mother small children far more easily and cheerily than I ever did.  I wonder if I would have felt less overwhelmed by my