Outside

White lilac
Aqualegia and Welsh poppies

When I come home it’s lovely to see the Lilac in flower, it’s turned from a bush to a tree. I think the Latin name is Syringa? The white is unusual and we have a white buddliea behind it that comes out a little later. The bees and butterflies love it. Then in front of the house on the pavement we have an assortment of yellow and purple flowers including the aqualegia and Welsh poppies. There are also pansies and other plants. Later on the year there will be nasturtiums. I’m surprised we’ve only had one pot taken in all the years that my hubbies been doing this. It cheers me up.

Two old codgers

Hubby and I, helping in the local allotment. We are helping a community project clear a couple of old allotments of weeds so they can be used for growing produce. It is slow going to get rid of so many weeds. We are trying to take out the cooch grass and convolvulus (bind weed). However we are leaving some flowers like poppies in situ. I wasn’t feeling well today so I only managed a bit of work. Its going to take a while to get on top of it. Hopefully by next spring it will be planted up and ready for a good summer of growth. One thing that is already there are apple trees with masses of apples on them. We were allowed to take a few home with us.

Reflected water

From ssummer two years ago. A reflection and mirrored image of the canal surface at Middleport. Taken when we went to see the ceramic poppies that were used to decorate the bottle kiln at Middleport pottery. The art work of thousands of ceramic poppies travelled round Britain in 2018, to celebrate the centenary of the end of the First World War in 1918. If I find a photo of the poppies I will share it.

My own flowers

Last year, painting of morning glory flowers and some poppies. I haven’t grown much from seeds this year. We do have some lettuce plants, but they have probably been drowned by the amount of torrential rain we’ve been having over the past few days. Some places have had a months rain in a day! That compared with six weeks of sunshine in April and May. As usual our weather is topsy-turvy. Basically because of where the United Kingdom is positioned. We get weather from every direction, the Atlantic, the Arctic, Siberia, even dust dragged up from the Sahara. We are a weather magnet!

I want to go and get some seeds and see if I can grow some nasturtiums for late summer bedding, and the butterfly caterpillars love them. They are a nice, spicy, bitter and peppery orange flavour when added to salads and cold soups.

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Poppies

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One of my favourite plants is a poppy, the red of them is beautiful and I painted these to try and express their beauty. They are on a long thin canvas. Painted in acrylics and made to look a bit like pottery tiles. I showed this here a while ago but saw it on Facebook so thought I would share again.

Red is a colour that not many mammals can see. Apparently we see it because it’s the colour of some sorts of ripe fruit. Humans were attracted to it so red became a special colour. Red lipstick, red racing cars, red fruit, so many things that are visible only to a few animals in the world.

Memory

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If you can’t read the writing it says (bit truncated) weeping window, 31. 8.18, middleport pottery.

The drawing is of thousands of ceramic poppies which were displayed on the bottle oven at Middleport pottery, middleport, Stoke-on-Trent in August last year. These poppies had travelled round the country to commemorate the men who had fallen in the first World War.

At one stage the poppies were not going to come to Stoke-on-Trent despite thousands of them being made here. I for one am glad they came.

Poppies

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I realise why poppies don’t flower in our garden. It’s too shady. I’ve been out and looking at people’s gardens and the ones in full sun are resplendent with poppies, ours are short weedy things. I’m going to have to have some of the overgrowth cut back a bit. I do not want to make it tidy or remove stuff for the birds but I’m growing a wood or forest in the garden. Bearing in mind it’s the area where two terraced houses were and their yards we have three cherry trees two apple trees, a walnut, two or three Ash trees, two baby oak trees, a sycamore, an acer, a mountain Ash tree, a pear tree, a eucalyptus, a willow tree, a laurel Bush a couple of Holly bushes and elderberry that are taking on tree like proportions. The walnut is raided by a squirrel which plants them so we have baby walnuts growing. Plus there is a lot if ground cover ivy and geraniums. It’s a jungle out there. I feel very lucky to have the land but I think I will contact our local wildlife Trust to see if they can help.