Sunday 30 December 2012

Ice lantern

So that was Christmas sorted, have you got anything special lined up for New Years Eve? The Christmas holiday is a rather low-key thing in my house these days, but I do like to light up these darkest days of the year and make the Christmas and New Year period a bit special both indoors and outdoors. I made a couple of ice-lanterns the other day, and I thought I would share with you how to make these very easy, decorative lanterns as this is something you can do in minutes and freeze overnight. The result is pretty spectacular :-)

Thursday 27 December 2012

The Norwegian Christmas tree

Living in London, UK, I often hear at this time of year about the famous Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square, often referred to as “the tree given by the people in Norway to the people in London”. As a Norwegian, knowing the story behind the Christmas tree, I thought I would use the opportunity to tell who the gift is from, and why, since I don’t think that’s something widely known here in the UK, and certainly not around the rest of the world.

Sunday 23 December 2012

Merry Christmas!

Are you celebrating Christmas Tuesday? Or are you celebrating tomorrow? Around the world, Christmas is celebrated in many different ways and at different times. I live in London, UK, and here, Christmas celebration takes place at 25th December, Christmas Day. I guess we all know the story why we have celebrated Christmas the last 1700 years or so, in one form or another, but it takes place in very different forms on different dates around the world. And in fact, Christmas as we know it is an amalgamation of many different celebrations which people in Europe have celebrated for thousands of years, long before the Bible was written.

Thursday 20 December 2012

Gingerbread Houses

Have you ever made a gingerbread house? I used to make one every year when my son was a kid, and I used to make them when my sister, my brother and myself where kids too, but the last house I made was in 2002 and since then I haven’t been able to go ahead with projects that require that level of physical input.

Saturday 15 December 2012

December bloomers

I took my photos for this Garden Bloggers’ Bloom day on Thursday and even before I opened the backdoor to my garden I could see it was cold outside. A quick look at the thermometer revealed a measly minus 1 Celsius, but with the sharp breeze it felt more like minus 10. We have had a cold spell the last week, with minus degrees every night and not many above zero during the day. Britain is freezing in weather like this, with un-insulated houses and many people with only single pane windows or poorly made double glazing windows. I struggle to keep warm in my house despite central heating and I am dreading my heating bill.

Friday 7 December 2012

Plans for my corner

Once upon a time I had a nice Holly tree in my garden, it wasn’t that big when I moved in here 11 years ago, but Holly trees are relatively fast growers and mine was no exception. By this summer it had a healthy height of around 8 metres.

Friday 30 November 2012

Early bright morning

I am ending November on my blog with a photo I took this morning, just before the sun was getting up – and just before I was getting back to bed again. I have had a 48 hour migraine coming and going and my body clock is thoroughly confused again, I try to sleep as much as I can when I have migraines like that, it’s the only thing to do.

Thursday 15 November 2012

Pink November garden

It was 15 degrees Celsius and a nice and warm day in my garden yesterday, I was out doing a bit of gardening and took the photos for this month’s Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day. Being middle of November and less than 6 weeks till Christmas, I can’t help thinking of those freezing cold and wet days we had in May and June – 15 degrees and a bit of sunshine would have been welcome back then! When I started looking at the photos I had taken yesterday evening I realised that all of them were pink – pink flowers on all the photos! I had not really noticed that when I walked around photographing, but getting them all up on my computer screen, I had my theme for today’s post :-)

Friday 9 November 2012

Winter is looming

Living here in London, it’s not easy to say when winter actually starts. I grew up in Norway and I was 35 when I moved to London, up until then winter was defined by snow on the ground – around 5 months per year, usually from mid October to mid March, although it could snow as late as May. Here in London it rarely snows, some winters not at all, and if it snows it only lays for a few days and that’s it – according to my old definition, winter would come and go in less than a week....

Wednesday 31 October 2012

A flower for Halloween

It’s cold and windy outside, I have just spent 2 hours in the garden clearing up leaves and putting some of my plants to bed for the winter and it was good to get inside again to get warm. In my garden ‘putting plants to bed for the winter’ just means moving pots from the beds up to the nursery area where I can keep an eye on them and water them if necessary – nothing gets lifted or wrapped up in my garden over the winter. My garden has taken on a distinctly wintery look, but thanks to all the evergreen plants I have there are still a lot of greenery. And I do have a lot of plants in flower still. My dahlias are still in flower and I thought I just had to post a photo of my Dahlia ‘Striped Vulcan’ on this Halloween day, what an appropriate colour!

Monday 15 October 2012

My October garden

Autumn has arrived in London, it is either cold, crisp sunny days or hammering down with rain. The nights are chilly and my garden has started to die down here and there. I can’t really believe it’s only 2 ½ month left of 2012 – we waited so long for the spring that never really arrived, then we waited forever for the summer too and now it’s all over. Well, nothing is really over in my garden, I have plants in flower every month of the year, but the winter is going to feel very long after a spring and summer like we have had this year.

Wednesday 3 October 2012

I’m in Fuchsia heaven!

You can have fuchsias in flower from early summer until first frost, depending on which type you have and things like temperature and sun level. They don’t like too much sun and heat and will flower nicely in deep shade, although later than with some level of sun. This year has been a strange one for us all here in UK, with a cold and wet spring and most of the summer. My fuchsias didn’t start to flower until August and haven’t really taken off until the last couple of weeks!

Friday 28 September 2012

Out with the old, in with...

I have been off the grid for a while, had a bit of a computer disaster when my laptop decided to break down. I have managed to get online again by using borrowed equipment but I will have to bite the bullet and buy myself a new laptop again. This will be my third laptop, the one that just broke down only lasted 3 years and 4 months and even had to be repaired after 18 months. My son, who works in IT retail assures me that 3 years and a bit is a decent life for a mid range laptop that runs 8 hours a day, 7 days a week, but I think it is a short life. I suppose it is the same as with all electrical appliances today, not really made to last. Can you remember when fridges and washing machines were expected to last at least 25 years? Oh, I guess I sound old now, but I can remember those days, and it’s not that long ago. These days, a washing machine would never last 25 years! And I am not asking for 25 years from my next laptop either, it would be a piece of museum exhibit by then – but a few more years than 3... would that be such a big ask? I have already chosen my next laptop, it is a Sony Vaio, haven’t had that before, it cost more than my previous one and hopefully it will last a bit longer, time will show...

Saturday 15 September 2012

September in my garden

What a strange month September has been so far. It started with a careful promise of better weather, then a week of Indian summer and now we have a definite autumnal feel with chilly evenings. I am still not doing much work in my garden after my hip dislocation a month ago and it really shows. I keep up with the watering, that’s it really. My new garden helper hasn’t been back yet after her first visit, she was meant to come again this week but had to cancel and now I don’t know when next visit will be. I have a very long list of garden chores ready for next time she comes :-)

Sunday 9 September 2012

Aphis nerii, a wacky aphid

Every summer I have a bit of an invasion in my garden. Small, orange bugs that have only one thing in mind, attacking my highly precious Dregea sinensis – the wine covering the arch. If I keep up with the spraying against aphids I can keep the numbers down, but sooner or later the war against these particular bugs gets lost and they win. I use a combination of soil drenching and spraying with a liquid mix of herbs and fermented soy oil, an amazing product against all kind of aphids, including these ones, but they seem to get more resistant over the summer and into the autumn the population just explode.

Wednesday 5 September 2012

A bit of reminiscence

What do you know – we finally got summer here in London! Well, better late than never I suppose...may it last the whole month! I have been out in my garden trying to do a bit of work the last week. My new garden helper came Monday and together we started on a long list of tasks for my neglected garden.

Saturday 1 September 2012

Discovering my garden again

I have finally managed to take some photos of my garden again, I don’t think I have ever had such a long break from taking photos of my horticultural hobby. The last photos on my camera was from 6th August, the day I dislocated my hip and since then I have found it very difficult to stand and take photos since I am on crutches. But yesterday and today I have been outside with my tripod and a chair and taken a few, just to get some of the things flowering in my garden right now recorded. I can’t believe autumn has arrived already. I waited patiently for spring to arrive, but it was so cold and most of it rained away. Summer didn’t really arrive either, although we have had days here and there with nice sunshine and warm temperatures. The longest spell of warm weather was when I was in hospital, typically. And now it’s all over and my garden has started to put on autumn colours. The big tree outside in my street have already started dropping its leaves. Yes, autumn is here, and it will be a whole year until next summer.

Tuesday 28 August 2012

I am slowly recovering

Three weeks ago I dislocated my hip replacement and I am now slowly recovering, but I realise that it’s going to take time to get back to where I was right before the incident, and I have been told that I have to be careful for the rest of my life so that I don’t dislocate my hip again. I had my hip replacement operation in June last year, my third operation on that hip, after the two previous operations turned out to be unsuccessful and no other solutions were found than to give me a hip replacement despite my relatively young age. Since the hip replacement my hip has been a bit unstable and the pain after the operation never really settled, this is due to my primary condition and not something gone wrong during the operation. I have now been told that there is nothing more that can be done for my hip, I will not have the planned hip replacement on the other hip, and I will just have to careful not to dislocate again.

Wednesday 15 August 2012

GBBD post from my sickbed

I am writing this GBBD post from my bed, sorry if you have wondered why I haven’t posted for the last 10 days, but I have been in hospital for a week. I managed to dislocate my hip whilst working in my garden on Monday the 6th August and today is the first day I am looking at my blog again. I know this is going to sound unbelievable, I can hardly believe it myself and I have had a hard time explaining this to all the doctors I have seen over the week I was in hospital, but I was standing in one of my flower beds, cutting off spent roses on my new David Austin rose Wildeve, when some of the petals fell to the ground. I bent down to pick the petals up and then my hip popped out; the hip replacement I got 14 months ago. That’s all I did. No fall or any force applied. I knew straight away what had happened, I felt it pop out, I heard it pop out and one second later I got an excruciating pain in my hip and groin and although I have experienced really bad pain in the past with 7 prolapsed disks in my back and neck and numerous surgeries to my spine, hip and stomach – this was pain like nothing I have experienced before.

Saturday 4 August 2012

A touch of oriental

The air in my garden is heavy with the scent of lilies wherever I turn, finally the rest of my lilies are in flower! It’s been a long wait; my Asiatic lilies flowered in beginning of July and most of my Lilium regales were finished flowering by mid July. But now the rest of the oriental lilies are finally catching up.

Tuesday 31 July 2012

The best bits of this summer

Last day of July, can you believe it? Here in London we are back to 20 or so degrees and showers. Anyone who saw the women’s cycling from last Sunday on TV? That’s the kind of weather we have had more or less since beginning of April, just with a few exceptionally good days here and there in between. Summer? What summer? And what about August? Not looking any better I am afraid, the first 2 weeks of August is supposed to be, well you guessed it: showers with some driers spells in between.

Saturday 28 July 2012

A garden with many rooms – July

I have always wanted a big garden. Actually, I wouldn’t mind a huge garden, a garden where I could have a shed for my tools, another shed for potting, a greenhouse for tender plants and early vegetables, an area for composting, a vegetable plot, a garden big enough for several mature trees, some fruit trees and some berry bushes, a barbeque next to a seating area and a Jacuzzi, and lots and lots of my favourite plants and flowers of course. And I wanted a garden with different themed rooms with plants according to each theme. Unfortunately, to have a garden that size living in London you need very deep pockets, as property prices come at a premium here. I don’t even own my property, I rent it, but I have lived here almost 11 years and when I moved into this house I couldn’t wait to start developing what was then just a piece of overgrown jungle in the backyard.

Sunday 22 July 2012

Olympic weather in London!

We have finally got summer in London! About time you might say, we have had rain almost every day since beginning of April but now it seems it’s finally our turn to get sunshine and warm weather, very nicely timed for the start of the 2012 Olympics in London. By the time we get to Tuesday or Wednesday this week we are expected to hit over 30 degrees Celsius mid-day, I can’t wait! Those blasted jet streams have decided to go north after all, and they can just stay there until Christmas for my sake!

Thursday 19 July 2012

Yikes, caterpillars - help needed!!

Some flowers in our gardens go on flowering for a long time, like many roses for example. Other plants flower just for a short time and then it’s a whole year till next time. I have been eagerly waiting for my lovely Crocosmia 'Lucifer' to flower, a large clump that produces very tall spikes of absolutely stunning bright red flowers. The clump is so big now that I have been thinking of dividing it, if I only knew where to put a second group of crocosmias – I absolutely love these flowers, but I don’t really have room for more in my garden.

Sunday 15 July 2012

My July flowers

I have been trying to take photos for the Garden Bloggers Bloom Day the last couple of days, but it hasn’t been easy – dodging the showers! I so wanted to show you how much my garden has progressed since last month and it would have been nice to show everything off in glorious sunshine, but alas, the rays of sunshine have been few and far between the last month. Well, not just the last month, the last three months to be honest!

Sunday 8 July 2012

Beautiful Lilium regale

I got my very first lilies in 2004, 3 fat Lilium regale bulbs which I first planted in a large tub. Since then my collection has grown to around 80 Lilium regale, my next door has got 20 of mine and a friend of mine has another 15 – all from the 3 bulbs I got 8 years ago. Each flower produce an abundance of seeds, and each seed has the potential to become a new plant, so if I wanted to I could soon have thousands of new lilies! But I haven’t got room for thousands, or enough friends and neighbours, so I only let a few go to seed every year to replenish my stock.

Wednesday 4 July 2012

My new David Austin roses

There is something special about David Austin roses. I guess if you grow roses you know what I mean, if you don’t grow roses you might not even have heard about David Austin and his rose project. I have wanted one of his roses for a long time, for years! Last autumn I redesigned a large part of my garden, got rid of the last bit of my lawn (yeah!), and decided I actually could squeeze in a few more plants in my already very full garden.

Monday 2 July 2012

You can’t be serious?!

Every Sunday I have the same ritual, checking the 10 day weather forecast to see what to expect. As a keen gardener the weather is important to me, it has a huge impact on many aspects of gardening, in terms on what to expect to flower, when to water, when to sow, when to do almost anything – including when I can go outside and do what I like best; spend time in my garden. Mind you, I do put on 4 layers of clothes in February and venture out, despite bitterly cold winds, and I have also been found in the garden in bucketing rain – but that’s not very often.

Sunday 1 July 2012

I just love red things!

I guess you already know what this post is going to be about? Yes, the colour red! I suppose most people have a favourite colour, or some colours they prefer, and in the same way has colours they don’t like that much. I can’t stand lime green, but I like most other shades of green! But when it comes to red I have a special shade of red I really, really like. Not post-box red or tomato red, that doesn’t do it for me, but the dark red, crimson red, almost blackish-red – I think it is the most gorgeous colour!

Friday 29 June 2012

The One Lovely Blog Award

It’s always nice to receive recognition for the work you do, whether it is your job or your hobby. I have been medically retired for almost 18 years and I try hard to fill my days with interesting things that can engage at least my brain, and possibly something a bit physical too on days when I can manage that. Gardening and photography is a perfect combination for me, and throw in some Photoshop and web design on my computer and I am fully occupied!

Wednesday 27 June 2012

Sprucing up for the Olympics!

The news is filled with the preparations for the great spectacle that is going to take place right on my doorstep in 30 days time, the Summer Olympics 2012. Not only is it taking place here in London, but right here in my borough where I live, in Newham, and the main arenas – The Olympic Stadium, the Basketball Arena, the Aquatics Centre and several other arenas are located in the Olympic Park at Stratford, only 3 miles from where I live.

Wednesday 20 June 2012

Peonies or paeonies?

My spell checker always corrects me when I spell peonies with an a, but I am used to spell it ‘paeonies’ so it’s hard to stop doing it, besides – who said the spell checker is always right?! In this case, both spellings seems to be just as correct, so I am going to continue spelling it with an a, and just simply ignore my spell checker :-)

Friday 15 June 2012

June bloomers

The rain is hammering on my windows as I am sitting down to write this post – will it ever stop raining?! We had a brief spell of nice weather earlier today, with overcast and sunny intervals, but it didn’t last for many hours. I am so sick of all the rain now, I need a long period of warm sunny weather to make up for all the cold and rain we have had. It has rained almost every day since first week of April, only interrupted by a short period of sunny days the last week of May.

Tuesday 12 June 2012

The Illuminating Blogger Award

I keep apologising for not posting here very often, but tonight I have to come with a big apology: I was nominated for my second blog award nearly 3 weeks ago, and I have not yet done the required linking and thanks! I am still recovering from my recent pancreatitis so I guess I have a valid excuse, but the days and weeks are going very quickly so I thought I better write a post about the award before the whole thing gets forgotten.

Wednesday 6 June 2012

Will it ever stop raining??

I am still on the mend from my pancreatitis last month, taking it easy, sleeping a lot, not doing much and my garden is pretty much taking care of itself these days. Fortunately I guess, the rain has come back; we have had so much rain that the hosepipe ban we were threatened to have to struggle with until Christmas now is likely to be lifted within the next month or so. Good for the water reservoirs, good for our gardens, not so good for sun thirsty people of Britain.

Tuesday 29 May 2012

I’m still around

Have you been looking for news from my London garden? Sorry for being absent for such a long time, but my short stay in hospital for a simple stomach operation turned out to be a bigger ordeal than expected. I contracted pancreatitis as a complication from the operation and although I am now home from hospital I am still recovering and will be for a while. I haven’t done any gardening the last 2 weeks, but I have been able to enjoy some of the marvellous weather we have had lately. Finally summer came to Britain!

Tuesday 15 May 2012

What’s flowering in my garden – and what’s not

It is the middle of the month again, we have reached May - and it is time to show what’s flowering in our gardens. Here in London we have experienced the strangest spring ever, with a relatively warm winter, a dash of high summer for a few days in March and then over 5 weeks of rain and persistently cold weather with very low night temperatures. My garden has never been as late as it is this year.

Saturday 12 May 2012

What’s eating my garden?!

We have sunshine! After something like 35 days of rain, either during daytime or night time – or both, we have finally got a few days with sun :-) I spent yesterday outside in the garden, and although it was a chilly wind, the sun made up for any lack of feeling of warmth.

Sunday 6 May 2012

A small miracle

I suppose we should almost have got used to the rain by now, after all it has rained for one month and 2 days straight. That, according to the Met Office, makes us qualified to collect the award of wettest April since record began more than a century ago. The rain has also led to unusually low temperatures and the gardens in London where I live are now really late compared to normal years.

Saturday 28 April 2012

It’s still raining!

With the risk of repeating myself – it is still raining and it is a weeks since my last post where I was moaning a bit about the rain, although grateful enough that I didn’t have to water my parched garden, but enough is enough! Since Thursday the 5th April it has rained EVERY day. Not bucketing down all the time, and not all through the day, but we have had rain every day at some point either during the day, evening or night. And it is still raining.

Saturday 21 April 2012

Be careful what you wish for....

Here in London we have had the driest two winters on record, and after the snow we had in the first week of February it hardly rained a drop. Finally the government decided that we were to have water restrictions and a hosepipe ban introduced on the 5th April as our water storages are at the lowest on record. I am on a water meter and pay per litre for water I use, so I really hoped we would get some rain soon for my parched garden as the free stuff from above doesn’t come at any cost or any work at all.

Wednesday 18 April 2012

Make your own Bonsai trees

The art of making Bonsai trees is truly a unique and special hobby, but oh so rewarding. Not for the impatient gardener though, as Bonsai trees grow veeeery slowly! Growing Bonsai is a Japanese art form using miniature trees grown in containers. Bonsai can be created from nearly any perennial woody-stemmed tree or shrub species that produces true branches and can be cultivated to remain small through pot confinement with crown and root pruning.

Sunday 15 April 2012

April bloomers

It is Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day over at Carol’s May Dreams Gardens, a whole month has passed since last time, where did it go? Here in London we have had all sorts of gardening weather, mainly dry and fine although cold, but the last week we have finally got a bit of the long awaited rain. Not enough to call off the hosepipe ban that was introduced on the 5th April though, rumours say we might be stuck with the water restrictions the whole summer.

Wednesday 11 April 2012

Ooohhh, those squirrels!

Over the years I thought I had come to an understanding with the squirrels in the area, I let them come and go as they want to, and occasionally they saved their lunch for later by leaving their peanuts behind for harder times. It has worked perfectly for 10 years with minimal damage. I have even left a handful of peanuts for them from time to time when I have newly planted flowers, as a peace offering to save my plants. It has worked well – that is until this winter.

Saturday 7 April 2012

The Camellia makeover

Every winter I wait with eagerness for the grand lady of my garden to start flowering. Will she open her first flower before Christmas? Will I have to wait until April to see her first flowers?? In the 10 years I have lived at my house, the camellia has opened its first flower at any time between 20th December and 8th April, so it is anybody’s guess when it will happen – and I think it is more dependent on the weather and temperature of the winter as a whole, not just the last few weeks before it starts flowering. This year was a rather early start, with first flower opened at 19th February.

Thursday 5 April 2012

Sweet mice in my garden

Today we got five drops of rain here in East London, or something like that, just to tease us....and the hosepipe ban started today for 20 mill people in England. It’s going to be a long summer for everyone who has a garden or an allotment, trying to keep it alive. I am fortunate in that as a registered disabled and with a Blue Badge Parking Permit I am exempt from the hosepipe ban (and I promise to be careful with the water I use :-) ) but we might all feel the effect of the drought if this goes on for the whole summer. The farmers are already complaining about bone dry fields, if they don’t get weeks of rain soon it will affect harvest and subsequently the price of food for all of us. Yikes, we are still feeling the effect of the recession, and the food prices are sky high already....

Saturday 31 March 2012

Bold colours in my garden

Sorry for being absent for such a long time! Between long spells of migraine, dragging my feet through the start of the hay fever season, my usual aches and pains and my many hospital appointments I just haven’t been able to sit down and write anything. It has been a long period of glorious weather lately, although typically now coming to an end, right on cue for the Easter break. I have been able to take some photos of my garden the last week though, and I thought I would share them with you here.

Wednesday 21 March 2012

The troublesome corner

“Once upon a time there was a lady who had a small garden in London whom she was very fond of.” Ehhm…..Let me just interrupt for a moment here and say that these stories usually claim to have a ‘tiny, little old lady’ or a ‘grey-haired old lady’ or something similar, but this story is different, this story is about a not so very old, 47 year of age lady, who is not tiny, not even short…in fact, she is 5’9”, but the last bit is perhaps not that relevant, so let me get back to the story!

Saturday 17 March 2012

My terrariums….oh dear!

Last month I decided to have a go at making some terrariums, after reading about this new craze on several people’s blogs. The photos I saw looked so nice and the whole idea of a closed ecosystem that only needed minimal watering a few times a year really appealed to me. I even considered giving my son one, as something like this might have a fighting chance of surviving a bit longer than the couple of pot plants I have given him. So after a thorough research and a quite extensive shopping round to get all the necessary bits and pieces I made my terrariums, two large and two small. You can read about the process in my post from 19th February. One month on I thought I would tell you how they are doing.

Thursday 15 March 2012

What’s flowering in my garden?

March is an ‘interesting month’ in London, with down to a few degrees one week and 16-18 degrees Celsius the next week. Today on my way to my hospital appointment I saw a man in T-shirt, shorts and flip-flops! I think that was incredible brave, or perhaps I should use some other, less flattering words of description, but it has been really great weather lately. The result of this ‘great’ weather is that the whole of Eastern England is having a hosepipe ban from 5th April, as we have had two exceptionally dry winters and there is now a drought here.

Sunday 11 March 2012

Remove message verification?

Hi everybody, just a quick post to all of you who has been annoyed by Blogger’s recent change in word verification of post messages. You know, those often impossible to read words you have to write, in order to send your message. These words are called captcha and are meant to prevent spam, but they seem to prevent legitimate people from leaving messages too, as sometimes it is just impossible to find out what the words are!

Saturday 10 March 2012

My Camellia in full glory

My apologies for being absent for a whole long week, time just flies away when I am having fun :-) I have been working flat out with my book number 6 and the plan is to send it off to the printer on Monday or Tuesday, just last minute finishing touches and then I am done! But today we had such a nice warm day that I just had to take a stroll in my garden with my camera to see what had happened since last week-end, as I had not been out there the whole week.

Saturday 3 March 2012

My Blog-in-a-book has arrived!

My Blog-in-a-book came in the post from the printers today! I can’t tell you how exciting it is to finally see my own product presented in a book. I have been posting things on the Internet since 1999, starting with the very first baby steps I took playing with web design and graphic design back then and although I now, 13 years later have many more people visiting my website than I could ever imagine, and same goes for my blog for that matter – my books still stands for something special to me.

Thursday 1 March 2012

It’s 1st day of spring in Britain

I know there is a debate about when spring starts, whether it’s 1st of March or 20/21 of March, but I think those who say 1st of March is the official start of spring got it right so I keep to that date! We have had lovely spring weather this week and I have spent many hours every day working in the garden. I really hope winter is over by now, although we can’t really be safe just yet as we have had snow in London as late as mid April in past years.

Sunday 26 February 2012

My son’s kitten is growing

Hi everybody, just a short post tonight, with some photos I took last Sunday when I visited my son. I have been busy in my garden every day since Thursday as the weather has been sunny and great. And even better, the nice weather will stay at least the week, with warmer weather, possibly 18 degrees towards the middle of the week :-)

Saturday 25 February 2012

It’s spring in my garden

It has been a lovely weather the last few days in London, Thursday I had 18 degrees in my garden! It felt like a nice spring day and I spent the whole afternoon working in my rather neglected garden. It has been too cold for too many weeks to do much at all and finally, finally we got warmer weather.

Thursday 23 February 2012

The blog-in-a-book is finished!

After a rather short gestation, helped by numerous cups of coffee and more chocolate than my hips actually can tolerate and with the aid of many long evenings and nights my baby, sorry my book number 5 is finally born. The delivery was short and relatively pain free, although my Internet connection was groaning in pain due to the relatively large birth weight, but I finally got the ‘Upload Completed’ and I could sigh a big relief. Book number five is here.

Monday 20 February 2012

Another of my Garden Books

It is Garden Book Review again over at Roses and Other Gardening Joys. This meme was started in January and attracted 16 bloggers last month, who posted reviews of “any book about gardening, gardens, or books that has a garden influence in it.”

Sunday 19 February 2012

Terrariums, my first attempt

It’s been cold for weeks, then we had a few days with milder weather, just to tease us into thinking spring would be arriving, but this week-end we were back to freezing cold weather again. This weather means my garden doesn’t get much attention, but inspired by several articles and posts about terrariums I decided to make one myself. This past week I have been collecting together everything I needed to make one, as I didn’t have much of it in house.

Wednesday 15 February 2012

February bloomers

I can’t believe it’s 10 days since I last made a posting on my blog, but there you go, between days in bed with migraine and achy joints, and…let me see, no less than 6 hospital appointments – writing on my blog has not really come high enough on the priority list. But I thought I would make an effort today, as it is Garden Blogger Bloom Day over at May Dreams Gardens every 15th of the month, and as we already have 15th February I would like to participate this month too.

Sunday 5 February 2012

Snow in London!

It shouldn’t come as such a surprise that it has snowed in London overnight, after all, Britain is placed in the northern hemisphere, and for the rest of the world it is only natural that it’s winter here during the winter – but not so for the Britons. Every time it snows here in London, it comes as a huge surprise, people are stuck in cars overnight, lots of unnecessary accidents happens and there are huge delays on roads, airports, rail and other public services – if they are open at all. Schools get closed, because teachers can’t get to work, and if they can get to work they won’t allow the children into school for health and safety reasons – the children could fall over in the snow you know…..

Friday 3 February 2012

Plantaholic’s season

Oooops, I did it again! I have been putting aside money for a while to buy plants, now in the winter, when they are cheap and on sale, and a few days ago I sat down on the Internet and put in my orders. But I just can’t seem to restrict myself, there are so many plants I would like to have! So I ended up ordering more plants than I had intended – again. Not a problem in terms of my garden, after the complete overhaul last year I have room for quite a few new plants, no, this is more a problem for my bank account I guess….although I must admit all the plants I have ordered are really good choices for my garden, they are really good offers and plants I have researched and wanted for a long time. I can sacrifice a lot of other things for some new plants for my garden, which I will have to do this spring I suppose :-)

Sunday 29 January 2012

The squirrel is back!

I sat here today having my late afternoon lunch and suddenly a squirrel jumped up in the window box right in front of me! I am not exactly unfamiliar with squirrels in my window boxes, but I haven’t seen any squirrels for months, and the squirrel that was here today actually looked exactly like the one that was here most days last year!

Friday 27 January 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award!

There are weeks when I look back and I wonder…where on earth did that week go, how can it be Friday again ALREADY?? Last time I wrote anything here on my blog was….hmmm, yes last Friday, sorry, all of you who have been looking after new posts and not found any; there will be more frequent posts later in the spring. Some weeks my body, my head and I are very good friends and we cooperate quite well and we get things done, other weeks, like the week last gone, nothing seems to go according to plan, I spend most of the days and nights in bed and when I am up I don’t get much done. Winters are worse than summers, especially for my achy bones - and my arthritis is certainly better in the summer. I am soooooo looking forward to some spring sunshine and some warmth :-)

Friday 20 January 2012

One of my Garden Books

Here in the Blogger Community it is common practice to start so-called memes. Now, you might not be familiar with the term, even if you have seen and perhaps even participated in memes in the past; you might even have started your own meme at some point. Anyway, I am joining another meme today, and I thought I would spend a few moments explaining what a meme is, and where the word comes from.

Thursday 19 January 2012

I love trees!

I had a stroll in my garden today, haven’t been out there since last Sunday when I took the pictures for the Garden Blogger Bloom Day and I was keen to see what news my garden had to present me with today. I looked and looked and looked, and there was….NOTHING new since last Sunday, except that the one single crocus that was almost opened last Sunday was now off and lying on the ground. That’s January in London for you. With temperatures around zero at night and not much more than 5 degrees during the day the last week I suppose I can’t really expect much to have happened, I should just be grateful nothing has died!

Sunday 15 January 2012

Garden Blogger Bloom Day

It is Sunday the 15th January, usually the coldest part of the winter here in London, UK, and today it actually is quite cold! I am not sure if we had any of the forecasted frost last night; by the time I got my achy bones out of bed there were no sign of frost in my garden, just a very crisp, sunny, 7 degrees January day. After having had breakfast I took my camera to start my round collecting images for Garden Blogger Bloom Day.

Saturday 14 January 2012

Dregea sinensis, part 2

It was 6 degrees in London at 2 o’clock today. SIX degrees! And when most people were wrapped up at home in front of their fires, what do you think I did? I was outside in my garden, pruning!! Well, today was a perfect day for pruning the rest of my Dregea sinensis, and as I wrote yesterday, in my post Dregea sinensis, part 1, what I managed to do yesterday wasn’t even half of the job.

Friday 13 January 2012

Dregea sinensis, part 1

It’s been a few days with colder weather here in London lately, and the forecast for the week-end is for frost – the first frost in London this winter. I decided I would start on one of the very few tasks in my garden I don’t really appreciate doing; pruning my Dregea sinensis.

Sunday 8 January 2012

My son's beautiful kitten

My son got a kitten on Christmas Eve! A beautiful, sweet little bundle of joy and my son posted pictures of his new buddy on Facebook. I had to go and visit my son and see this little wonder of course, and the kitten was just as beautiful as on the photos, except my son’s new buddy turned out to be a little lady!

Monday 2 January 2012

My garden is waking up

I have had a long run of migraines lately, quite common for me, but nevertheless exhausting when it happens. I often have more than a week at the time when I have migraines coming and going almost every day and I deal with it by sleeping. Sleeping and sleeping. Often 12-14-15 hours at the time, then I go up to have a bit to eat, maybe watch a bit of TV if I can stomach it (thank goodness for TV recorders!), then usually followed by a stint on my computer with emails and blogging and then back to bed for another 8-10 hours of sleep.

Sunday 1 January 2012

It’s 2012!

Yes, it’s finally here, a brand new year, twelve new months we all can fill with whatever we feel like, a new book with blank pages. Have you got any big plans for this year? Any major things happening in your life? I got a few things planned, nothing major I suppose, but I always got new projects for my garden and I plan to publish my fifth book sometime this spring, and possibly a sixth one too, if I can manage to find the time. I wish I could find out where to apply for an increase of the day – 30-32 hours day would suit me much better than just 24 hours :-)