Thursday 22 October 2009

Some things

Some things that are annoying me today:
• I have a cold. My head is stuffed and fuzzy and my nose is dribbling. Enough said.
• We have a cheap new keyboard and it's awful. I type a line and then go back through inserting the letters (especially "n") that didn't show up the first time.
• The weather. These sick bones want a patch of sunshine to warm them, but it's being obstinately overcast. Again.
• Lui has just jumped in my lap and is making it very difficult to type (although the comfort of his presence really outweighs that)
• Lack of choice in the pantry. I felt like making a stew or something warming in the slow cooker, but I don't have anything I'd need for that. Guess it's toasties again tonight...
• Weeds along the driveway. I've been planning to deal to these for a while but weather and time never seem to cooperate. It gets worse every time I look at it!

Some things worth being cheerful about:
• I've started a(nother) new crochet project - a ripple blanket! The first photo on this post is my swatch. It's a nice, easy project from Attic 24 - good for when your head is stuffed up and you don't want to think too hard, but if you get a couple of rows done then at least you haven't wasted the entire day...

• Pretty spring flowers! Above we have rhododendrons, sparaxia and pink lantern-flowers (no idea what they're really called).
• I have a pile of unread books (so no anxiety about running out), fuel for the fire, some dvds and a blanket. Also a vase of gorgeous flowers to look at.
• I have plenty of lemons and honey. The only good thing about having a cold is hot lemon-honey drinks!

So now I think I'll take my cat, crochet, books, blankets and hot drinks to the couch. And that's where I'll be for the rest of the night.

Tuesday 13 October 2009

In the glasshouse

Here is that tour of the glasshouse I promised you. Come, take a peek inside... no spiders, I promise!
Many treats and treasures are growing inside, including 2 strawberry baskets hanging from the ceiling, and 2 little pots of parsley seeds (one has a plastic bottle on it for a cloche, and it did indeed bring the seeds through quicker!) Inside the door to the left is Miss Rose Chiffon the miniature peach tree, and inside to the right is the Garden Prince, miniature almond tree.

Sweetly scented alyssum (I was told it helps keep whitefly away, but I noticed today that wasn't the case. We'll see how well the marigolds do!)

Seedlings in their newspaper pots await potting up. Here we have chives, onions and tomatoes.

Some more seedlings in a china saucer. Marigolds, Black Krim tomatoes and sorrel in the background.

Arctic tomato. This was sown in March and I was doubting the value of it as it didn't do much over winter. I had two inside and two in the glasshouse, and the two in the glasshouse succumbed to frost. So I put the other two in my sunny studio and they made it through winter. When the days grew warmer they came out to the glasshouse, and have rewarded me with vigourous growth and some flower buds. Well, we'll see how long it takes them to actually get around to fruiting - last year I harvested my first (normal) tomato in January. Mind you I didn't have a glasshouse then either.

A great crop of large, luscious mesclun salad. Delicious with a lemon dressing! Next to them is a folding chair - I like to sit in here and have lunch sometimes. On a cool day the change in temperature is very welcome.

Of course, you have to be in quick to grab the chair.

So that's the spring tour! Hope you enjoyed it. What are your favourite things to grow in a glasshouse?

Friday 9 October 2009

Windowsill vignettes

Here's a view of my kitchen windowsill. I like to keep pretty things there because it makes it much more interesting when you are stuck in the kitchen doing boring things like dishes or cleaning up! The predominant colour scheme in my kitchen is beige, green and splashes of pink.

I'm growing some herb cuttings in this little glass bottle.

The cyclamen flowers match the cranberry glass.

Want to see a few more windowsill vignettes?


Small dollies and a birdie

Lush green cyclamen

Glass teardrops and hearts

In my studio window

Thursday 8 October 2009

More vintage crochet

Here is some more vintage crochet, using up thread from my stash.

Saturday 3 October 2009

Brunetta's Revenge

Here is my sparkling clean glasshouse. I spent some time on Saturday cleaning it out and scrubbing out the spiderwebs. There had been a rather large spider living in there, getting fat on the blowflies that kept blundering in - I'd seen it several times dashing out of the corner to deal to a struggling fly. Which was icky, but fascinating.

Last week Jon and Tim saw it feeding and decided it was big enough to warrant the name Bruno. Although, the next time I went in there I saw the reason for Bruno's enthusiastic hunting - a little squiggling group of spiderbabies. So Bruno became Brunetta.

I scrubbed out spiders and spiderbabies along with everything else and didn't think much of it till later on, when I glanced down thinking a fly had landed on my shoulder. It wasn't a fly though, it was actually Brunetta and she was looking right at me with all of her eyes... horror! I dropped what I was carrying and danced around flailing, trying to shake her off without actually touching her but of course I had to touch her in the end and brush her into the grass and she fell on the grass and disappeared and I spent some time just catching my breath...

...And then it occurred to me, how long had she been there?? It had been a while since I'd been in the glasshouse, had she been sneaking up my leg, getting closer and closer to my face and all the while wanting to get me because I killed her babies?

I'm not a spiderphobe but I had to take a bit of time to calm down after that... it was just too close for comfort! And she's still out there, you know. I went back to the patch of grass where she fell and tramped all over it, but I'm sure she was long gone. (Off to a quiet corner of the garden to have more babies and when they are grown they will all attack me when I'm out weeding one day...)

All right, let's all stop thinking about spiders, and to help with that here are some cute kittypics of Mr Lui all tucked up in bed like a little human ♥

This weekend I'll take you on a tour of my spider-free glasshouse!


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