Saturday, 28 February 2009

Gradually getting a greenhouse

Oh boy have we had a busy day! The greenhouse awaits our attention and is spread all over the lawn but we have spent all day preparing a level base, which involved removing tree roots , moving existing concrete slabs and relaying them to achieve a nice even surface. Anyhow its done and tomorrow we can begin the jigsaw puzzle of all the pieces that will...we hope resemble a rather nice greenhouse.
The two snowy pictures taken in the heavy blizzard that shook most parts of England earlier in the month ,were kindly sent to me by my dear aunt who lives in Hertfordshire. However I have not spotted a snowman on them anywhere ... fancy all that snow and no snowman, ha!
Well my beautiful amaryllis has flowered and what a gorgeous soft peach colour it is... and a bargain for the £2 I paid for it.
So we are in March tomorrow.... the weeks are flying by again. The thrush was at the top of the conifer across the road singing his head off this afternoon and all the pots of bulbs are really beginning to flower in earnest now. I even have red tulips in bloom.

From my diary March 6Th 2006 ; light snow showers this morning. All the heavier snow that fell on Friday afternoon has now gone. Saw a thrush yesterday feeding on bread ,top of garage. Feeders are going quick in this cold spell, Wood pigeon hanging about . Spring flowers all ready to flower.. late this year.

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Prepare now for Roses

Obviously I didn't go out and take these pictures today in the garden... more's the pity but seeing them has reminded me that by treating the roses kindly now,
I will reap rewards later on. So a sprinkle around the roots with some fertilizer or some chicken manure and then a general tidy up around the plants, also making sure they are secure in the soil after the winter winds will definitely help in achieving this .

It was a really chilly,dull, windy day today. I certainly didn't feel like going out in the garden, which actually resembles a building site at the moment. The structure of the new greenhouse which arrived yesterday, is spread all over the lawn, as is the old one which I have advertised for £25 in the local supermarket. It might do somebody who has an allotment or who is on a tight budget and just getting into gardening.
The fun and games to put it up begin in earnest on Saturday ... well we hope!

I came across these Old Sayings about the weather;
A ring around the Moon or Sun
and rain approaches on the run.

Mackerel sky
rain is nigh.

And this poem which reminds me that when the greenhouse is up the work begins......

In March and in April, from morning til night,
In sowing and setting good housewives delight:
To have in a garden, or other like plot
To turn up their house, or furnish their pot.

Thomas Tusser 1520-80

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Let the Fun begin

Well it has been a busy day with a lot of hard work involved but I have enjoyed it and I didn't feel guilty eating my apple crumble tonight as I think a few more than usual calories were expended today!
The greenhouse is' no more,' where it was is a big space that we are filling up with rubble to bring it up to the right level before laying the base for the new one.
Tomorrow we have to go and get some sand and more slabs and then we can carry on.
The day was not with out it's surprises either, as half way through the afternoon I heard a mewing cry which at first I thought was coming from a seagull overheard..looked up and there right above me were two Buzzards circling and then soaring up and away.

The robin was very interested in our endeavors and came and sat on the stepladders hoping for an up earthed worm and then singing us a lovely song.
Bebe was also happy as we uncovered the bench and put it back in his favourite spot in the garden.
So we got done what we had set out to do and we have to thank our good neighbours for going to fetch the rubble in their trailer.

Friday, 20 February 2009

Out with the Old in with the New

I am getting a new greenhouse, a much bigger one than the one I presently have as it's fair to say I outgrew this one long ago.
Much propagating over the years has resulted in a large number of extra plants and there is no room left for them. It seems a shame as this one is still really in fairly good shape despite being 20 years old, but I hope I can find it a good home.
So this weekend we have to prepare ... dismantle this one now that I have emptied it{the summer house is crammed full as a temporary home} and then we have to lay a bigger base. IT'S GOING TO BE A BUSY WEEKEND! I suppose I will have to supply lots of coffee and bacon sandwiches, that usually helps things along a bit! I can hardly wait to have it all done and the new one erected so that I can begin preparing for spring.
The cats will be a bit put out for a while and will have to sleep in the lean to along side the shed until it is all done.. they will not be happy!

Looking around the garden today and I found a few more signs that spring is well on it's way, A couple of daffodils in flower and the snowdrops are out. I also came across a lovely cluster of miniature iris.
I have to say though when I went out on my bike this afternoon it did not feel very Springlike.... chilly!

I took so many photos when we were in Keswick that I am putting more up tonight. The stone circle just on the outskirts of Keswick was built in the Bronze age most probably as a meeting place for the tribes to exchange and trade everyday items and meet, rather than a worshipping place. I would really like to go back on a beautiful summer's evening though and see it as the sun dips low over the hills.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Lakes and Stone circles

I've not had much free time the last few days to update and tonight is just a little taste of a longer blog tomorrow.
Tales from a Lancashire garden' is having a little rest as I have not been around to go out in the garden to report on anything much for the last week but plan to do so tomorrow.... it says it will be a nice afternoon!

We had a really lovely time in in Keswick over 4 days .. a long weekend . The camera was in action a great deal. The light was atmospheric ,wintry and calm and quiet conditions prevailed. I actually like being there more at this time of the year than in the summer. We had a wonderful trip out on the boat on Windermere and it was almost empty compared to summer trips.
Anyway until tomorrow !

Sunday, 15 February 2009


No matter how many times I visit this place it never fails to lift my spirit. There are so many things waiting to be discovered each and every time. Today we saw deer, heron, curlew, little egret, whooper swans , barnacle geese in their thousands plus all the other native small birds that abound there.As for the sound of the geese as they swirl up and over head , well that really is fantastic to hear and see. Anyway I think these photos can tell the rest of the story for you!

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Keskadale in the Lakes

Coming back from a trip over to Cockermouth and I made the suggestion that we made a diversion and go via Buttermere. We followed the winding narrow road up through Keskadale,with stunning mountain scenery on either side and when we came to the little hamlet of Buttermere we parked up and went into the little hamlet of just a couple of Inns and a tiny church. There is a walk from here down to the mere which we did not do as the afternoon was too far gone.... saved for another time. It is of course the village made famous for 'The
Maid of Buttermere! Then back through the Honister Pass ,past the Slate mine and back to Keswick.
The photos show views of our trip and some lovely 'Christmas roses' I spotted outside a quaint florist shop on Cockermouth high street.

Friday, 13 February 2009

Out and about in The lakes

I am out and about this weekend and hope to bring you some lovely countryside pictures. Up high on the mountains I can see snow, not really heavy but enough to make a lovely scene but the mists came in low this afternoon so I didn't take any photos.. Tommorrow I hope to get better views.
It was quiet today in the little market town of Keswick but tomorrow Iam sure it will fill up with Valentine day couples.
The photo seen here were taken in the Yorkshire dales last February when I was on a break.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Waiting for the flowers

Whilst watching Master Chef this evening on the tv I found myself thinking ,all that work and sweat to prepare a meal and then it's gone a flash...... at least when I put the plants together in a pot or trough in the garden I have the pleasure of waiting and watching over weeks and months and sometimes years to see it develop and blossom. Ah yes, give me gardening anytime!
I am waiting at the moment for the bulbs out in the garden and also here in the house. I have an Amaryllis about to burst from its bud. I picked it up for £2 in sale and put it over a cup of water and let just it's roots trail into it and it shot up in no time. I can't wait to see what colour it will be.

I have a feeling that our resident Hedgehog has been up and around, perhaps he was disturbed from hibernation and was wanting a quick snack because I saw his trail at the edge of the garden today. I had better leave a few biscuits just in case. However I am pretty sure he will toddle off back to his bed as it's too cold yet.
The cats had me up early this morning and I stood at the back door listening to a beautiful early morning song by one bird.
The days are getting just that bit longer too, this time last year I had written in my diary that we were having spring like days... yes that is just what we want now!

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Views of pendle from Clitheroe

Yesterday we went for a little drive out of Preston and up towards Clitheroe, a nice little market town tucked in next to Pendle Hill, famous of course for its witches.
We climbed up to Clitheroe Castle to get a good view of the hill with its white, snowy coat but couldn't go right up, as there is a lot of restoration work going on.
I intend to climb up there one day this summer as I believe the view is quite lovely from the top.

While we were out I bought a little nest box for the sparrows in my garden as I noticed that they were being bullied out of the little nook under the eaves of next doors house by two starlings that also seem to find it a desirable residence. They will probably ignore it but they did, at one time many years ago, nest in one in the same location.They say now is the time to site them so they can get use to them.

We are going through such a chilly spell that not much is possible in the garden really. I have been checking on plants in the greenhouse and the sweet peas I eventually sowed last week and put in the propagator.
Just looked outside and the paths are covered in a light dusting of snow but it will not be around long I think.
Looking ahead to next weekend the weather looks set to change to wet and mild.... if they get it right of course.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

What a View

Now this is a garden with a view . It really is like looking at a postcard everyday, always different ever changing. At the moment the two lovely ladies that live there are probably seeing snow on the mountains and probably over their garden as well. I thought it one of the most beautiful spots I had ever visited and we were made so welcome and another thing I have never forgotten was the best soup I have ever tasted! It is in Scotland but that's all I will say!
Well no more snow here, except a few flutters but its been a very grey day unlike yesterday when it came out really nice in the afternoon and I went out in the garden and swept up more rubbish.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Snow Alert What Snow

I can't stand's everywhere ,the biggest snow event to hit Britain in 18 years and probably won't happen for another 20 and we got a little half inch which went the same day! It's not as if we get better summers either than the South, just damp....damp summers. damp winters.
An Aunt of mine in Watford near London has it...... 6 inches of it and her cat doesn't know what to make of this white powder and pays a quick visit outside and then its back in 'under the duvet!
In the 24 years I have lived here we have only about once had 6inches of snow but when I was young and living in East Anglia the winters were cold and snowy with a biting wind that made your ears sting! It was always hats and gloves there.

This is my new bird table, the old one eventually fell to bits after being knocked over several times when the cats jumped at it after the birds and also used it as a scratching post. But you know, I go to all the expense of providing it and really they would rather eat from the floor or the cheap plastic hanging one on the lilac bush!
The other is a photo of me at Pendle Heritage centre sitting on an old millstone.

I saw the sparrows today tugging off pieces of pampas grass and taking it to under the eaves of next doors house. They nest there every year and seem to thrive around here.
I suppose all those places that had the snow will have all this other thats due to arrive on Thursday too... Oh well!

Monday, 2 February 2009

Snow in the West but The East was Best

Doesn't the world look different with a nice snowy white blanket? All the mess is covered up and it looks so clean and tidy. Well it was nice while it lasted because by 4pm it had mostly I write though it is snowing lightly again.
I quickly grabbed my camera and whizzed out to the back garden to catch these scenes above, just in case it vanished quickly and you never know here when you may next see it. I love to see the little bird footprints in their track around the garden.
I left out extra big portions of bird food today.

I was nearly tempted to make a Snowman, haven't done that for a few years.
I didn't get chance to do the blog over the weekend but we visited Pendle Heritage Centre at Barrowford. It is a lovely little place dating from the 16TH Century and is now an arts centre ,tearoom and museum with a walled herb garden.

From my diary;5Th Feb 1996 On Monday noticed 2 birds on tree nr pond..berries...Kestrels they were making loud croaky call.Also saw Red wing thrushes and field fares . berries on tree nearly all gone.

Leave a comment if you have seen snow if you can.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

These photos are of the lovely Tulips that came up in the garden this year and as you can see they are huge. Everybody remarked that they didn't even look like a Tulip as they were so full of petals.
One thing I have noticed since getting my new camera is that I take much more interest in the finer detail of things and its amazing what you can see if you select Super Macro'as the picture of the inside of the pink Tulip shows....its incredible!

What a lovely April we had ,even here up North its been great to enjoy days of warm Spring Sunshine for a change and although it made the spring flowers finish earlier it was a small price to pay.
The Lilac is in full bloom and the Maple trees are in full leaf and there is lots of blossom on the two apple trees so we should be in for a good crop in September if they get the right conditions from now on.