For those who like such things – more flowers and bread

I took the pictures for this post a week ago but was too busy to put it together.

So here is some views of my garden recently.

I was pleased to find that my Vagabond clematis had a new flush of flowers. clematisbut less so to see that the slugs had been busy lower down. slug damageI was surprised to find that the fuschia seemed a little more compact than last year, fuschia bushthough I prefer it that way.

The lavender that I planted last year had grown into a much bigger plant lavenderand as this is just next to my favourite sitting place, the smell is quite delightful.

I took another picture today, the flowers have really opened. lavender closerThe golden sage is looking very happy. golden sageThis will mean pruning next winter I think, as I know what sage is like!! (Like the card the leaves are more yellow than this!).

My roses were in full flow. patio rosesI bought them because of the scent but they seem to have far more petals this year which is not so good for the bees I believe.

Now Bread

I made another granary loaf granary loafand photographed it this time.

Next morning I cut some slices for breakfast.

Here are two of them. two slices of breadand here is breakfast.breakfastThree slices covered with peanut butter or fig conserve or honey. Yum!

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Sunlight

Joining in with Wild Daffodil’s photo challenge.The prompt for this month’s photo challenge is Sunlight.

All of these photographs are from the archive.

First a water lily and it’s shadow.

water lilyA rose glowing all the more because of the sunlight.

RoseSun on a spider’s web spider's webcreating shadows on the grass.

Shadowsand lighting up a cloud. sun behind a cloud

Of Clematis and Apples

Just another post from my garden – because I can.

The flowers on the ‘Lemon Dream’ clematis I showed you have died but down below there are more.

Lemon Dream clematis

There is also a flower from the other clematis I planted next to it. (A shorter one called ‘The Vagabond’.) The Vagabond clematisThe other side of the garden my ‘Diana’s Delight’ clematis has suddenly put on a great show. Diana's Delight clematisYou can see that it is planted just to the side and almost behind my rosemary and you can see a Christophe allium just opening.

The apple blossom has all died and I have little blobs of what might be thought of as unsuccessful blossom appearing all over the garden old blossombut on the tree there are signs of future apples, tiny appleseven more in some places. even more tiny applesAnd I did make some more bread – a granary loaf this time but have spared you a photograph. 😉

Garden update

My garden is very important to me even though I am not much of a ‘gardener’.

So I like to share what’s happening.

I was very pleased a few days ago to see the first flowers on my clematis that I planted not last autumn but the one before. At one point I wondered if it had died but no.  clematis beginning to open

And then yesterday They had really opened out. clematis fully openThey are called “Lemon Dream” and do have just a very faint scent.

More scent below though again you need to go close.

Lilies of the valley don’t photograph easily so here is just a peek. lily of the valleyAnd further along in the same bed I was pleased to see that my Lenten Roses are still making a brave show, though now they have faded from dark pink to a more dusky purple. Lenten roses

Flowers and my garden

I am really beginning to feel that Spring is coming.

Last time I showed you a portrait of some forget-me-nots, forget-me-notsone of my favourite flowers.

But when I went out later into the back garden, I realised that the forget-me-nots were happy colonising odd locations like here in this crevice forget-me-nots in creviceor growing in the wall. forget-me-nots in wall

I also noticed that the pulmonaria (also know as lungwort), that I had pulled up rather ruthlessly last year because I thought it was swamping the snowdrops, had managed to survive. pulmonaria

I was very happy to hear the hum of bees as they went about their work of collecting nectar and when I went out the front to photograph the flowers on the rosemary I managed to get a couple of opportunist shots. Just point at a distance and hope. Working at this resolution gives lots of opportunity and these next two photograph are using just the original pixels. Not quite in focus but usable I thought. bee on rosemary

and another sort of bee. another bee on rosemary

Of course we have had a fairly wet time in recent months and the paving has suffered. However I tried a little bit of cleaning with a scrubbing brush and water and you can see here the difference that it can make. clean and dirty pavingA large area to clean up though. It will have to wait till I am feeling a bit more energetic.

I am a great admirer of Leanne Cole and her flower photographs (Find the latest here). Just click on the tag below the post: ‘floral friday’ to find more, or use this LINK

And so I have been trying to make similar myself. I think my style is a little different to hers but I hope you like them.

First the lithodora: another of my favourites. lithodora

And the pulmonaria pulmonaria

And a daffodil. daffodil

There were just two left, relatively small flowers on very tall stems.

We had more snow!!!

I had to go out to Eastleigh on Saturday because my washing-up bowl had a crack in the bottom and the one I had purchased from John Lewis, although ostensibly the same size, in fact had a smaller base and my everyday plates wouldn’t lie flat in it. I had brought the previous one from Robert Dyas and now the nearest Robert Dyas was in Eastleigh.

As I set out on the bus there were a few white specks flying through the air but I didn’t expect them to amount to much, however by the time I came out of the Swan Centre clutching my new bowl the air was full of large swirling flakes of snow. I didn’t try to take any photographs at this point but the next morning when I looked out the snow was thick on the ground. Maybe not as thick as the last time and it looked more powdery. snow on stepsAlthough I am over my cold sensitivity, for now, I decided that I would not try to make a snow something both because the snow didn’t look as if it would work very well and because I decided that maybe my health suggested getting that cold was still not a good idea!

My Lenten Roses were back under cover! Lenten Roses under snowand out the front there was a trail of footprints and tyre tracks in the road. footprints and tyre tracksEach cars was covered in a blanket of snow. cars covered in showLater in the morning I stopped and talked to a woman who was trying to remove what was a very thick blanket of snow from her car, in order to go out.

These first few photographs were taken with my camera but later I decided that I would see if I could catch a bus and get to church. On the way I saw lots of trees embellished with snow, just has I had coming back from Eastleigh. I tried to take a few photographs of the trees I found on my way after I got off the bus but the difference between eyes and the camera is that eyes can ignore the background but the camera doesn’t. I did take a photograph, though, of this interesting grid pattern snowy gridand a nearby pub. snowy pubOn the way back I did manage to get a few photographs of trees and snow without a distracting background on the wide area of grass and trees in the middle of the Road known as The Avenue. Though had I stopped in the parks I could have got much better ones.snow on treesNot sure my phone got the focus quite right for this one!

snow on treea bit better perhaps!

I had to go the hospital early this morning, I couldn’t get a taxi but luckily the ground was not too icy so I walked. Waiting at the bus stop to come home I took this photograph. tree, snow and ivyThe snow is receding.

Going, Going, Gone!

I have been plugging away at the cables this last week and am probably spending more time knitting and should be able to show you the finished cushion, or at least the cable side, next week.

However one other thing I have been doing is recording the snow in the garden.

The photographs have all been taken from indoors through the window of the patio doors, so they include reflections but are maybe worth sharing as a record of how it can be with snow in Southampton.

I showed you what it had been like on Thursday.

ThursdayWell the next day we had a much better amount. Friday late afternoon This was taken Friday late afternoon.

But the next morning it was already receding. Saturday morningAnd when I looked out yesterday. Sunday morningThere were just patches round the edges.

However by mid afternoon it had all gone. Sunday mid afternoonThe white you can see in the flower beds is eggshells.

But I was pleased to note that the daffodils had emerged intact. daffodilsand even the Lenten Roses that I was worried about, seemed in much better shape than I expected. Lenten rosesI also made some more bread and tried adding cuts. loaf of bread

I did some gardening! and snow!!

Last weekend I noticed that the fuchsia in the pot in the front was already putting out shoots. So knowing that once I’d had my next infusion I would have to keep in the warm I decided that I had better do some pruning.

I also have a Mrs Popple fuchsia in the back garden that I have shown you before in flower. And you can see it in the front of this picture And here it is pruned. I think last year I pruned it back even more because it does grow so big, but it was cold in the garden and I didn’t want to kill it so I was cautious.

I was also cautious with the one in the pot at the front. This is a variegated one: grown from a cutting take from the one in my younger daughter’s garden. Smaller flowers and I think you can just see what the leaves are like.

Apart from the need to prune them every year, hardy fuchsias are very easy plants and flower for ages over the Summer and early Autumn.

Snow!!

We don’t often get snow in Southampton but we were promised it for Thursday (today) and when I woke up there it was.

All these photographs have been taken from indoors in the warm.

Not maybe yet enough to make a snowman (unfortunately I won’t be going out to do so even if we get more. 😦  ) snowy garden

The daffodils and crocus I photographed last week are suffering. daffodils and crocus in the snowThe Lenten Roses even more as far as I could see. Maybe even dead. I couldn’t bear to photograph them.

And here is the pruned fuchsia now. pruned fuchsia in the snow

No worse for the snow as far as one can see.

Signs of Spring

Today I allowed myself a little time in the garden, inspite of it being very cold, to take a few photographs and sprinkle eggshells round vulnerable plants to keep off the slugs.

Luckily I have a good view on the garden so I have been able to keep in touch with what has been growing, even if I have stayed indoors.

I am pleased to see that the snowdrops are still holding on and happy to see that the daffodils are finally here. There is also one lonely crocus. back over the other side, near the snowdrops, my Lenten Roses are giving a great show. Well it is Lent!You can see the remains of the Christmas roses at the front.

I am a great admirer of Leanne Cole and especially like her macro photographs of flowers, as that is something I enjoy experimenting with.

Recently she wrote an article suggesting how to edit macro photos using Lightroom – http://leannecole.com.au/5-tips-for-macro-photography-using-lightroom/

Now I don’t have ‘Lightroom’ but I was able to apply some of her ideas to the photograph of the crocus and produced this – What do you think?

Update with flowers and bread!

I still haven’t felt inspired to do any more than work on my sock(s). Though I have got beyond the heel now! sock latest

I would have got a bit further but when I had got about this far I realised that I had dropped a stitch a couple of rows after finishing the heel and the only safe way to sort the problem was to undo back to that point stitch by stitch!

Not much to show, so I thought I would share a few more of the highlights of my week with you.

Now a few weeks ago when my daughter came down she brought me a bunch of flowers. At the time I was still pretty weary and my granddaughter kindly put them in a vase for me. The flowers lasted well and when they were all gone I rather fancied buying some more but I have been shopping with a back pack lately and flowers would suffer in a back pack.

But then on Tuesday my brother came to visit me and brought lots of flowers! This time I felt up to arranging them myself, not that I have any special skill at this, but they looked so lovely in the vases that I decided to take some photographs.

I don’t have an ideal place to take photographs and by now it was the evening, so don’t expect something exceptional.

First I took some pictures on the dining table.

There were enough flowers for two vases!flowersand similar flowers to the above with roses and ?. flowersThe roses are much redder than this but, as someone very colour conscious, I frequently bemoan the ability of cameras to capture colours accurately.

I then took the flowers upstairs to the study to take against a more neutral background but this was taken at ISA 800 by artificial light so I adjusted the colours a bit to restore a green tone to the walls! flowersand flowersThe flowers were much more open on Friday so I took a picture of the first vase from above. flowersThe other flowers didn’t make an attractive picture from above so I just photographed one of the roses. roseI was also making some more bread: a white loaf this time, so I photographed that. bread