I’ve known Renita for a while now. Originally from America, Renita now lives in Wigtown, which the book town in Scotland, with the most stunning views across the estuary. When I’ve performed at the festival, the children have all been whipped up to a frenzy by Renita, who welcomes them in and “settles them down” [...]
Looking again, I realised it if the fluffy seeds from the willow tree above the studio that are drifting across the garden. I suppose the first really warm day is a trigger for the tree to release all those little fluffy down seeds to drift in the warm calm, tranquil air. They are not really built for floating in howling gales.
We went to the Malvern Spring Gardening Show last Friday. We’ve been going every year for 19 years now. It’s our big day out, usually costing a fortune in plants and garden stuff.
When my arms start aching with plastic bags full of plants, I take them to the car and start again. We leave early so we get a good parking place. Now everyone has foldaway trolleys. The are a complete menace! The peace is broken by the endless turning and scraping of little wheels. People stop to look at stalls and leave their trolleys in the way for you to fall over.
Nineteen years ago it was plants, tools and a bit of garden furniture. Now it’s £8,000 hot tubs and thatched tree house grottoes. The photo shows garden orbs that looked like they would make toy boil inside. I didn’t look to see how much they were. I just don’t get who buys this stuff.
There was one really fun show garden based on Hansel and Gretel. The bird’s nests had chocolate eggs. the roof of the house was made from pieces of toast. The pond was full of Ribena and there were all sorts of little references hidden away in the corners. Great fun.
Can’t wait for next year. I suppose I’d better go and put those plants into the garden before they dry out and die.
There is a long field adjacent to the River Wye between Lydbrook and Goodrich that is quite often full of onions, but this year it is full of yellow-flowering Rape. I’ve been past it a few times, but today I managed to stop and take a pic. Its so bright it looks like a river of yellow flowing alongside the real river. And it smells! A strong sweet honey-like scent fills the air.
I went for a walk in the Forest this week, and the sap is definitely rising. Although a cold wind is blowing from the north, Spring is here at last.
You can see it best in the ferns that are bursting out of the ground everywhere you look. I love the way they uncurl and open out as if they are all packed away underground, and are just being blown up inside, like curly, party blow-outs tooters.
There used to be a quaint tradition here, where young lovers would go into the Forest for a bit of privacy. It was known as a Fern Ticket. I remember the local paper printing Fern Tickets for you to cut out and give to someone you admire to let them know you wouldn’t mind a private walk in the Forest with them. If That doesn’t get the sap rising, I don’t know what does!
Of course I stopped to get out and take the pictures – I wouldn’t drive and shoot!
On my way home from Garway School, I popped into the Premier Plant Centre for a sandwich and bought myself a nice new Day Lilly too. The Coffee Shop was laid out in a Greek Taverna style,With the doors open and the sun shining in you could almost believe… almost! For the entrance was guarded by the most extraordinary creature. Apparently he used to be in a display in a castle as a marauding Viking or something. He’s now masquerading as a ship’s cook, I think! Fun anyway.
I came back Via Symonds Yat, which involves crossing the river Wye at what everyone calls the Bailey Bridge. I’m not sure if it really is a Bailey Bridge. It’s only one lane and often two cars meet in the middle and one has to back up. As I stopped to photograph it, I was aware of a stone with a plaque on it in a filed nearby. I have no idea what it is for, but there are Five trees planted in the enclosure. I feel it maybe a memorial for someone who may have drowned in the river or something like that. It is a popular place for canoeists to start their journeys downstream.
Lots of spring flowers bursting out before they are swamped by bluebells and ferns. Violets, strawberries, oxalis and even the bilberries are setting already. I was surprised. The woods are full of birdsong and there’s a feeling of making up for lost time after a long, cold winter.
Pontygwaith Primary clings to the side of the mountainside, high above the Rhondda Valley at the very top of the very top street. I had a great day, yesterday, telling stories, drawing and plotting new stories for my characters for the children to write after I’ve gone.
I was totally surprised to find an impromptu graveyard or memorial garden – I’m not quite sure what to call it. group of home made crosses, most with the name of Ken or Kenneth on them and ages that make them human and not pets. Click the pictures for a bigger view.
I’ve no idea what it’s about. I’ll ask.
The skies are bright blue and peaceful as the Volcanic ash keeps the airports closed, but I did see one vapour trail at lunchtime. a brave or foolhardy pilot?
Click the pictures to make them bigger.
The tadpoles have hatched in my pond. These little ones are sunning themselves in the warm shallows. No, those are not legs or arms sticking out of their sides, but gills. That’s what they breathe with before they metamorphose into air-breathing amphibians.
Strangely, a new dollop of Frogspawn appeared this morning. Someone was a bit late for the main spawning last month, or maybe it’s more than a coincidence that it is a full moon!?
I’ve just discovered this new slideshow thing that WordPress have just released and being the fun guy that I am (geddit?) I thought I post these bits of fungi I came across on my walk this afternoon to see what it’s like. Hope it looks good. Its done in java, so there won’t be any lego boxes turning up on iphone and ipad screens.