The powers that be in Blighty Tweeted last night that people in Greater Manchester, parts of Lancashire and parts of West Yorkshire can not visit their neighbours houses but you can meet them in the Mosque, Church , Restaurant or even the old rub a dub. You could even go out of your county and meet them there.
Call me stupid. But am I missing something? I think I will go back to 'Portugal'my polytunnel and pot up some perennials.
I checked on my Cotoneaster cuttings today. This fellow had decided to grow roots. I could have just left it with it's other comrades to over winter and root. But I always like to check them and pot them on.
Have you had any success recently making plant cuttings?
I noticed one of my Phormiums had seed pods on it yesterday. So I picked them and sowed two trays of it's black seeds. I usually divide my Phormiums in Spring. But I thought why not grow some from seed. Then I Googled sowing Phormiums and discovered that they can take from ten days to six months to germinate. We'll see. Any one on here ever grown Phormiums from seed?
My Buddleias seem to be late flowering this year. It's probably because most of my gardens are North (Northsider) facing. I brought one plant with me to Ireland that I had took from a cutting about twenty years ago.
Some people say they are invasive and that's why they called the bomb site bush. I saw some wonderful self seeded specimens growing at Temple Mead Station in Bristol in 2018 on my way to Hardy country.
You can grow them from seed but I like to make cuttings of them and over winter them in pots in "Portugal" my polytunnel or until they are rooted anyway.
I must look for some different colours. Have you any red ones? Mine are bluey purple. I am not female and can't do shades. If I went in a paint shop I would ask for a tin of "red" paint. If they asked me what shade I wanted? I would reply: "Red". I know what Azure is. It's blue! See what I mean?
My Buddleia bushes. If you want to attract butterflies and bees to your garden. Plant a Buddleia Bush. Sedums attract them too.
The back garden overlooking the bay. The Shastas are putting on a mighty show this year.
The Myrtle tree I bought from a church fete in Durrus 18 years ago. It only cost 1,50 for a small plant in a pot. Walter Raleigh introduced the Myrtle to England and Ireland. He also brought potatoes, tobacco and I think bicycles. Not sure?🤔
A small herbaceous border in flower. The yellow rose (of Texas) came from our local German garden centre this week. I potted it up. Hope you like the pictures?
Yes I am talking about Nasturtiums. Apparently the Latin translation means "nose twist". I let them self seed and since I top dressed the veg plot with fym, they have gone mad with the weeds. If you want good weeds and big flowers and veg top dress with cow muck.
Nasturtiums originate in Peru like the potatoes. They where first introduced to Europe in the Seventeenth century. They are also a members of the Brassica family and they are Legumes. So they extract nitrogen from the air and release it through root nodules. Legumes actually put something back into the soil
They are edible and contain vitamins C and D. They mix up the crop rotation self seeding everywhere. But I like them and nasty insects don't like their peppery smell.
Anyone else like Nassies? Do you have any good recipes? I am sure Sol does?
We have quite a mixed diet and we eat spicy food at least a couple of times a week: Mexican, Chinese and Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes are all on our menu.
Recently we have been eating beef pittas. If you look online there are many recipes for them. I love kebabs because it's a full wholesome meal in a pitta.
I like to make the chilli sauce really hot and the other members of the family prefer them quite mild. In Northern England you could order a mild, medium or hot kebab. In Ireland they just serve mild donners. She's a right one that Donna kebab and she's HOT!😊
Ireland or "The Kettle " looked rather mystical yesterday. Beara Peninsula looks how I would imagine Heaven to look like. The temperature begin to rise and Ireland-the Kettle begins to steam.
The Cumulus Nimbus made me think of Sweden by The Stranglers. It's from the Black and White LP. A record I have played more times than I have had hot dinners. I have told you a million times don't exaggerate Dave!
Any road have a listen and sing a long and marvel at those guitars, keyboards and sensationally imaginative lyrics. It's like Pink Floyd plays Punk. Enjoy:
I have been looking through some more of our snaps and this one is when I went to Dorset in 2018.
This is Tess Cottage. We talked to the owners who were keen gardeners. They said Thomas Hardy arrived one Summers day in a pony and trap and announced:
"This is Tess's Cottage."
It must have been after Tess had paid for the new roof.
Dorset is full of chocolate box cottages like this. I often dream of winning the Euro Lottery and buying a place like the one fictional character Tess lived in. It's like a chocolate box picture. Made with traditional materials and so aesthetically pleasing on the eye.
A better photo for Mr Pudding and everybody of Tess Cottage.
We made( I helped, well kind of) some homemade pizza last night for the grand total of two Euros. I know! But you have got to be extravagant sometimes haven't you?
One bought pizza base for 1 Euros, half tube of tomato puree =20 Cents, half a pouch of chopped cheese = 45 Cents, chopped onions (home grown on veg plot), sprinkle of dried garlic and oregano. Total= One Euros and sixty five Cents. Plus twenty minutes electricity to cook it. So we'll call it TWO Euros.
If you put pizza in my blog search you will find a few posts about pizza.
Well it's only took me ten years to get here. A lot of things have happened in that time. Some good like finally seeing Kansas live in 2014 and some bad like when my mam and dad went to Heaven in 2012.
My blog is like a Chronicle of living in Ireland, visiting Poland, Portugal, Austria, Germany, Spain, Bratislava and some of the islands next to Ireland.
I have made internet friends like Cumbrian and I have made some good blog friends over the years.
Thanks for your continual support and comments and I will enjoy reading and commenting on your blogs.
I feel like a fanfare for finally writing my one thousand blog. What could be better than some Prog by probably England's most talented band: ELP. I was lucky enough to see them in about 1989 at Manchester Apollo. What a concert.
The wet weather and the top dressing of fym gave us a decent crop of Kelvedon Wonder peas. They weighed three pounds when we had podded them. What a job that is. It's like shelling peas. They weighed three Pounds.
Peas originate in the middle east and they are grown and ate all over the world.
Kelvedon Wonder came from Essex. They are the Essex girl of the vegetable world. "Shut up".
I will probably sow another crop this week. They can be prone to mildew growing peas from July onwards.
I asked the wife to go to town and ask them in the local hardware shop if they have a mushy pea variety? She told me to ask them myself!
A woman knocked on a recently widowed friends kitchen door:
"Oh Ethel it was terrible to hear about your Bert having that fatal heart attack. What ever happened Ethel?"
Widow: "Bert went down the garden to cut a cabbage for our tea and he dropped dead right on top of the cabbage."
Woman : " What ever did you do?"
Ethel: " I went to the kitchen cupboard and opened a tin of peas instead!"
Can you get Odlums soda bread mix over the water? I was busy yesterday morning making Cotoneaster plant cuttings and potting on in 'Portugal' my plastic pal and polytunnel. It was persisting it down and rather windy and it wasn't a bad day for November. It's a pity it's July.
After a few hours I came inside and smelled fresh bread being cooked. The wife had only been baking a loaf in the stove. One of those Soda bread mixes that you buy in a paper flour bag from a supermarket like Supervalu. My German garden centre and supermarket and beer retailer don't seem to stock it. It costs about four Euros and you get three loaves from a bread mix.
It's wonderful and took me back to my Irish grandmother's kitchen and the waft of freshly made bread. Go on bake some fresh bread. It will be devoured , I promise!
Another favourite garden perennial are the Shasta Daisies. In a week or so the gardens will be a sea of white Daisies. They are named after the snow capped Shasta mountains in California.
It's wet and miserable here today on the Irish Riviera. Another day of it tomorrow and hopefully back to the sunshine on Thursday.
Shasta Daisies are easy to propagate by division and by cuttings. I started off with two bought ones and now I have over fifty in the garden and a also some ready to go in plant pots. They look good in a vase too.
Growing up in Northwest England we grew up on bitter and a staple after the pub diet of chippies (chipoyles) and kebab houses.
Well we did when you would go to town have eight pints and a kebab on the way home and still have 1p left out of a ten pound note. Those were the days.
I love Shish kebabs and it's sister Donna (Doner) kebabs. Sometimes we make our own Shish kebabs. It's hard to get fresh spices and the one's in jars are far too mild.
The wife made me these for us tea (why do I sound like I'm from to'ther side of Pennines?) yesterday. She makes 'mild' one's for herself and 'atomic' fiery one's for yours truly.
The minced meat cost 3 Euros forty nine for organic steak mince. One tomato, one of my homegrown Japanese onions, some yoghurt, garlic and some minced Easy chillies in vinegar out of a jar from the German garden centre and supermarket and beer providers. So say five Euros for the two of us.
Take on the takeaway and make your own:
Onions (homegrown), Tom's (Lidl), yoghurt and jar of pickled chillies.
Torpedo kebabs are my spicy one's. Flat burger shape kebabs are hers and incredibly mild.
The meal is served. They are hot, hot, hot!
What did I say about them jars of spices being too mild?
Here's a classic Les Dawson sketch. He was a comic genius. One of my comic heroes. They must be some great laughter in Heaven?
The yellow Loosestrife is magnificent in all it's glory at the moment. It's one of the perennials we brought over in a wheely bin in the back of a Luton van with our belongings when we emigrated to Ireland all those years ago.
I have made hundreds nay thousands of plants from this particular perennial favourite. I don't even know which or where the original plant is. It's a bit like grandad's axe: it's had seven new handles and 6 new new heads. But it's still my grandad's axe!
This plant doesn't mind damp ground or even the edge of a pond. I have grown it from cuttings and divide it up Spring and Autumn and even in Summer when it's a wet one like this weekend is supposed to be. I call it my 'garden buttercup'.
Loosestrife was tied to Oxen's necks to deter insects like flies and other biting insects when ploughing and working in the fields. It could also be burned in the smallholding dwelling to eradicate house flies.
Like most plants it's got herbal uses. Herbal ointments can be made from the perennial.
The best thing about perennials is they come back every year and you are mad at dividing them like me. You will have lots of new plants.
That's a picture of one of the hedges that I planted when we moved here nineteen years ago. I cut them with my petrol hedge trimmer for the third time this year, yesterday.
Someone once wrote the definition of an hedge: A statement of man's arrogance against nature.
It's so very true. Especially living on the Gulf Stream here in Southern Ireland. I usually cut them at least five times a year. I have heard that we have ten months of growth. I am not surprised with all the rain we get.
Hedges define boundaries and offer privacy, shade and shelter and help to create a micro climate in the gardens.
They are also somewhat of a chore. Every year I leave the first trim a bit later in case there are birds nesting.
How often do you trim your hedges? Do you use hedge clippers or an electric or petrol hedge trimmer?
Apparently if you want to sell your house you should trim your Bush!
Regular readers of this blog will know one of my hobbies is carboot sales. Not so much selling more browsing and buying stuff:
" 0ne mans rubbish is another man's treasure!"
Any way I am a collector nay Womble. If there is a carboot sale I have to have a look.
Here's a Cornish scene I purchased from a carboot sale in Cheshire about twenty three years ago. It's a picture of a pumping station. Pumping out water from a tin mine:
I only paid five Pounds for the painting. It's signed Collins. I have found a Roland Collins who painted Cornish landscapes. He always seemed to sign his pictures Roland Collins. His paintings are worth three thousand Pounds. There are lots of painters called Collins.
Not that I want to sell it. I would just like to know the provenance of the painting.
Do you love carboot sales? What's the best piece of treasure have you found?