Don’t Trash That Junk!

There’s just one Green Harlequin plant, but I should see more fruits later.


One of a set. No idea what way these were placed. It’s like a plant bookend now.


Somehow I put these in all the wrong places, they’re so dark they remain hidden for the most part.


With the weather the older leaves nearer the pot tend to die faster so they look messier.


A great mishmash.

Yo, Dear Reader, it appears that I may, just may have hit a lucky streak with weather and squash planting, you may remember, you may not that’s fine too, I forget a lot, what was I say…joking, but planting a second set to counter possibly losing the first round of squash has turned into me having three sets of squash all growing while the sun beats down and it may be sticking around while the third set is starting to flower, this set has two different varieties, Jumbo Pink Banana and Hubbard, not to mention the extra carrots, beetroot, lettuce, parsnips I put down in the last round of heat. Last year’s weather kept attacking my crops, but as odd at this years has been it is much easier to work with, Dear Reader, I’m just happy to get what I can.

Took a photo of the Blue Pumpkin, but didn’t see the two harlequin.


This race over the garden now features a boost ramp.


Every year a few more bitter small blueberries appear.


Plant…coaster?


I just wander about to see where I can put these.

A friend brought me salvaging, hard to beat good friends and free stuff, Dear Reader, there is a lot of plastic these days instead of living plants, but I did find a hydrangea, likely as costly one, that had a purplely blue colour, I’ll do what I can to revive it. Taking off the flowers is a must, less energy going to the stems, but it does mean you end up with an ugly mass of branches. Also went looking at the marble dump and it turns out people have started throwing it into the river for fun, I would lament the state of the world, Dear Reader, but instead I’ll take what I can and not leave anything worth saving that may end up in the inaccessible river. There is just so, so much waste, Dear Reader, my taking it won’t save the world, but at least it find a home and a use. It’s mostly bits and bobs and broken things, but then again so is a lot of the garden and it looks better for it.

Later planted bulbs have thrived this year.


Stay alive this time please, you’re the last.


I’ll do my best. Sun burned, dehydrated and thrown away.


Green Harlequin.


Okay, tripping over the rhubarb means harvesting is needed.

For now I’ll keep things wet and hope the weather stays like promised, I have been lied to too often to trust the weather report, Dear Reader. The earliest of the harlequin and the evil harlequin have been harvested. I really enjoy the confusing mess that are squash hybrids. You take the lighter harlequin for example, that is set in stone when the seeds are collected, nothing can influence how it’ll form or look, but if that is pollinated with anything other than a similar type you are not guaranteed anything in the next generation. Cut open that squash, save the seeds, grow them next year and you may end up with the ugliest, emptiest squash imaginable or the greatest squash ever seen. To save that? Impossible. You’d need to go back and get both squashes the harlequin and the mystery and remake it and then pollinate them with each other. Confusing, right? A & B make C, C can’t pollinate itself so it needs another squash, but C & D will make E, not another C. So you need two Cs to make another. What I wonder with the green harlequin is whether it’s just a cross, how it kept the pattern so clearly is strange considering how dark it is, it could be a dark acorn + harlequin, but I wonder if it could perhaps be a harlequin but reversed. Think the parentage that creates a light one, but different genes to make a dark one. I have no clue, Dear Reader, I just think it’s neat to think about. Anyway, I’ll let you know what colour it is inside, if it matches the harlequin’s light flesh then it’ll be interesting to taste the differences. I’ll be back again soon, Dear Reader, until then stay safe and take care.

Raspberries? Again?


Really need more of this rose.


Assume they’ll all grow remains true, then toss them to rot elsewhere if they die.


It’s here or in the river.

Pouring Of The Dinasaur

I should take cuttings from this.


Tiger Flower, I think, doesn’t stay open long.


I had a bit left over, I just eyeball it, no other way really, but waste not want not. More cars.


Wherever there are cheap plants I will find them.


Rumba reappearing.


Foxglove self-seeding.


A new dahlia from a late bought mix, I like buying them at 50% off, get them at the right time they’re just as good.


They’re a little beaten by the cooler weather, but still doing well.


Every day it blooms and I’ll never get tired of it.


Reminded me of the nerve plant, think it’s a polka dot plant.

Yo, Dear Reader, we are now on the first steps towards the birth of the DINASAUR, no, that’s not a typo, as common as they are here, instead I have finally managed to get together everything I needed for the next batch of concrete ornaments. I was often impeded by the fact it’s actually easier to get cheap latex masks than it is to get plastic ones and that there are a fair few that are far too costly. The mismarked Dinasaur, which looks like a constipated frog having an existential crisis, cost a little more, but I had to have it because it is just so strange. You never know how they’ll turn out, what the indents that make up the mask will look like uncoloured, but this has been the most enjoyable thing I’ve done recently and thankfully these masks were shallower so I have more than half a bag of cement mix left and Halloween is coming up. This’ll sit for a few days, so it’ll be Sunday or Monday just to be sure. Not a skill I thought I’d develop, Dear Reader, but it makes the garden even more unique.

I’ve been entrusted with orchids that need reviving.


Still a good few roses about.


Not ripe yet, still lovely to look at.


Bouquet Rose having another showing.


Dahlias feel late this year.


Going to move a lot of lilies to the huge buckets.


Still a fair few lilies just now opening.


I like the rounded shape.


Compost corner looking spiffy.


You wait for pineapple lilies to bloom and then realise that’s it.

Things are a little slow, despite heatwaves everywhere Ireland is stuck in a weird pattern of a hot day followed by cool wet days, sometimes warm, but often not much. There hasn’t been a real Summer to speak of, but I’ll keep pushing ahead with everything I have going and hope for the best. I’m seeing more and more bees so that is heartening, I’ve been tossing wildflower seeds from drying plants everywhere they’ll be useful and plenty have self-seeded already. Between the birds and I there will be a lot more wildflowers about. Right now I’m on blackberry watch, we got the rains at the right time so there should be some, there was a year where heat scorched all the bushes around and there was hardly any fruit. That’ll be a while yet, but I have basil to pick and I’ll find other things to get ready. One of those in-between stages of the garden, with the weather things are out of sync with the time of the year, seems to be the norm going forwards, so I’ll hope we get a freak heatwave, might as well, Dear Reader. Until later, stay safe and take care.

Zeroed in and just fell towards it.


Ended up with so many of these included in mixed bulb packets.


Weird weather meant late planting did as well as early.


The stripes on the back are lovely.


Uchiki Kuri sometimes have deceptive necks, makes them look like they’ll get much larger.


More flowers on the new alpine strawberries.


Peas failed, but squash worked.


Tree lilies are great and so strong.


Grew through a crack.


I hope they’ll get big, either way is fine as long as they ripen, but it’d be fun.

Bucket For Your Troubles

Really popping up now.


You say mortar bucket I say planter, whatever.


I have a lot this year because they’re cheap.


Growing so much better in a dim spot.


Railway Rose is growing big. No buds yet, might be next year.


Not sure what’ll go into there.

Yo, Dear Reader, the weather continues to match no known seasons and I have gotten a little stir crazy, so I’m getting a few things together for some projects to keep me from cracking up. I’m still out gardening most days, but there has been no consistency which irks me. I’m waiting on cement mix I ordered when things were dry, currently wet and threatening thunder rain which makes my skull hurt, I’m very sensitive to air pressure changes, but that’s as useful as that goes. I can predict rain occasionally, but you can do that by looking at the sky anyway. I have a trio of masks I ordered a while back, these always seem to come in three, I ordered four and the fourth wasn’t suitable. Who know what they’ll become once I pour the concrete, that’s part of the fun, Dear Reader, I went from simple flowers to varied faces and haven’t looked back. An artist? Me? No, Dear Reader, I’m just someone with concrete and a sense of curiosity.

Why I remember how cheap this was and that it’s the wrong rose is a mystery.


Even the new batch is getting large.


An old rescue, I walk past it everyday, but forget how pretty it is.


Dahlias and now a rose duking it out.


Seaholly is great for colour.


First Bouquet rose is turning into a little bush now instead of a stick.


Summer is here to the plants at least.


My found holly is growing lush and green.


I was wondering why they’d dye another rose and then noticed how long lived the blooms on this are.


Another neighbour’s rose is budding.


A little drilling and a few rocks for stability and I’m good to go.


Beautiful.

Stores here are really running low on a lot of familiar products, hard to pinpoint where and what, but I see a lot of repeating and empty spaces where there never was. The big supermarket half a mile out where I do most of my shopping brought in huge mortar buckets, on my weekly shop I ignored them as I had fart too much to carry home already, but I knew I’d regret not taking a look. I think those small regrets are the worst, Dear Reader, I do still struggle going out and these extra trips sometimes feel harder, can’t even say why, Dear Reader, that’s agoraphobia for you. I did plan on getting a large and medium, but the large is 90 litres and the medium 65 litres so stacking wouldn’t have worked, I liked that they’re wide so I got two large and carried them home. Once drilled another planter was left in, someone was throwing it away and thought of me, Jack and Salvage goes hand in hand, and I walked around looking for the spot the mortar buckets, funny how that worked out as I was always buying cement mix, and found two dead areas. Two sites where it would be difficult to situate pots, but with a little work in one area, the wall has a higher foundation so you need to raise the pots, hence the trouble with multiple, but not with one large one. The other was easy, just empty because when the dahlias grow they usually fell out onto everything else, the fence is working now though they still grow through.

Really having a good year.


These are cheap, easy to grow and don’t look either.


I had blocks stuck elsewhere. Might put the huge lilies in there.


Starting to darken a bit more.


Why it flowers mostly against the wall is just to annoy me I’m sure.


I’m pollinating as I go, you never know.


Yellow rose from my last find.


Two of the cutting roses are this, came from a neighbour’s garden before they knocked her house. Gave it to a friend and ended up with all yellows for myself funnily.


A row of various mints to fill a gap.


I want to eat them, but not yet.


Going to save what seeds I can from the wildflowers.

So, what’s going in them? No idea, which is nice, I’m making a point of taking my time with things like this, not letting them go out of stock, but not rushing to get them finish, the shadow of the surgeries is still hanging over me, Dear Reader, always will be, but project like these are a reminder that things are better now. The garden has been a hodgepodge of salvage and repurposing and adding two big buckets seems fitting as there is already a wealth of various buckets all around, Though it is impossible to see it I can see where the garden evolved, where an area was marked out as the extreme end and slowly overridden. There are small spaces where a huge amount of work was done around them and it sometimes startles me to think I did all of this. When I see my friendly robin, how many generations is it now I wonder, Dear Reader, bringing me to the potato patch to watch it forage, I’m proud I guess? or the bees, hoverflies, wasps, butterflies, stay out of the cabbages!, and, yes, even the flies I realise I have found what I needed and that the work does good. Silly walks home with huge buckets does good for me when I know in time they’ll become something much grander than their origins. I’ll be back again later, Dear Reader, until then stay safe and take care.

Plenty to come yet.


More dahlias aren’t far away.


No work at all.


Roses are returning.


This was the last chance to get this rose back, the original died.


So strong, almost impossibly so.


These hebes are great grows once they establish again.


Gladioli “patch”.


Lots of photos as it’s been a few days.

Passionate About Fruit

The purple rose is going from strength to strength.


I was given a dogwood cutting to ID and told I could throw it away. Many months later here we are.


I thought I’d make an error and it was a tomato.


Celebratory Cactus.


Doing well, looks much better than my first blackberry did.


One of a trio of yellow roses I saved from being buried under concrete.


This started way too early, but this will be fine and others will start soon.


The Champagne Rhubarb rested last year and looks so much better this year. Still very young, about three years I think.

Yo, Dear Reader, I’m sure I had a theme for this little ramble of a post, but then I saw that a passionfruit has stared to grow and that threw everything else out of my mind. The year was just right for keeping it in the greenhouse and likely any other time I’d never have seen so many flowers let alone any fruit. It’s generally hard to get across what Irish weather is like, but this is the perfect example because it is antithetical to what the weather here is usually like. I know the fruit is more ornamental than edible and may not even grow fully, but to think that a few months ago I spent four Euro on a small potted passiflora, stuck it in a bucket and left it in the greenhouse and here we are now. It certainly never hurts to give things a try, Dear Reader, I never have expectations, I just go wherever the plants go. They tend to go to interesting places.

Smells wonderful here.


RTC not willing to be outdone is budding again while blooming.


Still more to open yet.


The wildflower have even covered the invasive Japanese Anemone.


Thought that was the fig tree flowering for a moment.


For a literal sewer pipe this looks nice now as a column.


More fairy roses.


I pinned it up after this.

I was thinking today that there are many paths through the garden, it’s not the biggest space, just a large back garden, but depending on what I’m doing I tend to walk through it differently, I’m hopping over squashes vines, squeezing through pots or walking the loop at the back and every time you see something new has appeared. It really is amazing how much happens in the garden, today I found out why the teasel has been dropping flowers: Bees have been yanking them out. I mostly bought them for the seeds for birds, likely will cause teasel to sprout all over the town, but never considered that bees might like this thistle like flowers too. I saw a leaf-cutter flying around today too, but couldn’t photograph it in time. There are a lot of bees about, they’re so busy I often can’t capture a photo, but the fruiting everywhere shows they’re happy and productive here.

Politely waited for me to get the camera.


Jasmine trying to climb the honeysuckle.


Gladioli came with every bulb mix so I had way too many, they’re everywhere.


Dahlias are starting to appear.


Hybrid squash is doing fine, the early ones are smaller.


Have to move the currant, slap the Crocosmia and lift a net to see the wild blackberries.


As long as you’re having fun I suppose.


Neat and tidy now.

I finish setting up the last fruit frame so I can now do even more weeding, it never ends, especially after heavy rains, funnily enough Dear Reader, I only now realised that the tayberry nearer the back is actually thornless. I’ve been careful with it all this time and there was no need. I think the other is a wilder variety I was given, that is thorny and you don’t mistake it more than once. The blackberries will soon be starting to set fruit so I’ll be watching on my way to the shops, an abandoned house has a convenient hedge beside it and also with my own plant that should put out a few berries, it’s young yet, Dear Reader, also a thornless variety. I hear they aren’t as sweet as the wild ones so it’ll be fun to compare. I would say I have enough fruit bushes, but I wouldn’t lie to you like that, Dear Reader. I’ll be back again soon, until then stay safe and take care.

A rescue, skimmia I think.


Another, might be a holly.


First batch of roses are going back, the newer ones will be out soon.


This was in the middle of a squash leaf. Probably came of a grave, birds do this yearly.


Blue Pumpkin is swelling.


Orchids are a real joy.


I never stop preparing for next year.

Locked Room Mushroom

Heavy rain just made them healthier.


I’ve been growing that Great Hairy Willowherb so long I can’t bear to get rid of it. Used to have a phlox in the pot.


They last a lot longer than you’d expect.


I have more coming, but wanted a last photo before the petals fall.


I bought so many reduced and just got lucky they didn’t rot.


Never saw it doing so well.


Mushrooms in the sealed compost bin…must’ve put a leaf in or something.


New alpine strawberries are doing well.

Yo, Dear Reader, we had our promised thunder rain and the garden looks better for it, hard to knock anything down as everything is incredibly tough so there hasn’t ben any damage. I did have to go out in the rain, yes partly because I refuse to wait, to raise a few potential, don’t count your squashes before they’re ripe, Dear Reader, squashes out of puddles and off wet soil. We’re supposed to be having yet another heatwave and I’ll hope for it, but still be ready for anything. The last batches of seeds I planted during the hot weather have started so I’m somehow manging to make the most of unpredictable weather.


Year to year I forget what I have if I’m honest.


They also store up energy some years so you don’t see them flower for another year.


There are just so many varieties.


This is never not fascinating.


Such a lovely shade.


I’m a little woozy with all the pollen.


Yes, more roses.


This was sprayed with fake snow and I had to remove branches and clean it, it’s finally growing new shoots.


Almost grey, so strong too.

Nothing exciting yet to be honest, I’m just now finishing up the last of the early Summer fruit, a few later ones like the tayberries have a few berries still growing and the yellow strawberries are just starting. There’ll be a lot more rhubarb and mostly it’ll be the later Summer vegetables, or fruits botanically speaking, and the early Autumn food that I’ll be harvesting later. For now I’ll be weeding and clearing bits of dead plants and taking off spent flowers. This is the duller part of it, but usually you’d have warm days to get a lot done at your leisure. It is what it is, Dear Reader and when I get to walk the the scent of roses, lilies and jasmine then things don’t seem to be lacking. Right now I keep using my stored in food, the Russian Red Garlic is intense and delicious and I remember a variety that was elephant garlic sized, but true garlic that I’ll need to check up on. Plenty to come yet, Dear Reader, until later, stay safe and take care.

Not going to stop blooming for a while.


No need to get that close either, just stand in the garden and you’ll smell it.


Should have a lot of butterflies around this soon.


I have a lot of these.


Mistook the heuchera coming back for lettuce for a moment.


Bring plants back is part feed and part patience and part luck.


New to you and me, Dear Reader.

The Rain Washed Away My Clever Title

Pincushion plant.


I planted those when it was bare in there.


I just raze the tops.


This bee really liked the teasel.


Buying cheap always pays off when it comes to flowers.


Arthur Bell is back to life.


So very boring to prep.


Lots of life in various stages.


Not sure what they’ll be, eaters or cookers, but I’m happy anyway.

Yo, Dear Reader, it is once again time to start harvesting and processing the basil. I managed to get lucky with my timing when planting and harvesting so I’ve gotten a great first harvest. Whenever I pick it and sort the leaves from the stalks I always use it right away, I managed to make the promised pesto and mango sauce, but also a coconut cream and basil that I’ll use as a base foe sauces. I bought the cream to see what it was, they called it cold pressed whole coconut, but no matter what it is it’s always the same. Still it’ll be ideal to make curries that are a little different with. I’ve long since learned that all pesto isn’t ideal, Dear Reader, no matter how delicious it is. Funnily it stayed fairly cool while I was working then the heat kicked up and when I’d finished water it rained. Strange weather is staying it seems, Dear Reader.


Harlequin babies.


I bought a lot of reduced bulbs and they’ve grown great.


Such a vibrant shade of pink.


Even the rescues are thriving.


I just threw the extra seeds in there.


Still more to open yet.


This is entirely new to me.


One of the 50+ roses.

I can’t remember if I mentioned I had an idea of using the large pots under the staging to raise the level of plants to get more sun and heat, my greenhouse is raised on blocks so there a little deadness near the bottom. One set of staging could accommodate two perfectly, but the others were of a shorter make, until I found longer connecting poles, no idea what from, which let me raise another and the final pot went in. Sadly they had no more cheap pots and they’d cost three times what I paid anywhere else. Still it’ll help with the lower levels and should be a boon for basil. Yes, more basil, this is my biggest crop next to squash, most of my efforts in the garden focus on those two in one way or another, Dear Reader.

This is actually a sunberry, like a red blackberry. Had to loop it back around it was so long.


This could be stunning of they open close together.


Blue Pumpkin.


Pampas probably won’t flower this year since it was moved.


Works well.


It’s a mix of cinnamon, purple, large leaf and a mixed packet of everything. Also was able to use my own garlic.


Another mystery rose is budding.

Right now I’m still setting up frames for the berries, it’s a slow process, lots of winding twine, but I’ll also need to weed and clear up a few spots, the weather has been against me and a lot of more important things come first. Still, the garden is teeming with flowers and various kinds of life, I’ve seen an assortment of bug and flies alongside the butterflies and bees. If you just start planting various kinds of flowers the rest will follow. I think a few of the squashes have been pollinated, once the flowers drop it’ll take a week or so to be sure and they can still drop off even when large, you just look after them and hope for the best possible conditions, Dear Reader, the rest is out of my hands. This is the second harvest time, when the berries are going back and the Summer crops are appearing. It’s easy to forget this comes too, especially this year with this wacky weather. I’ll be back again soon, Dear Reader, until then stay safe and take care.

Many moons ago I stuck a branch in the ground and here we are now.


Such a delicate pink.


Uchiki Kuri.


Natural lily globe.


Still getting bigger.


Hello in there!

Next Year’s Student, This Year’s Teacher

The roses are blooming while getting ready to rebloom so they never really stop.


New shoots hitting absurd heights.


I never see the fallen flowers funnily.


I thought it’d grow a little and that’d be it, but then the heatwaves came.


Over time everything gets stuffed into these beds.

Yo, Dear Reader, the weather remains duller, but the time to harvest basil has at least arrived to brighten up dreary dinners and lighten heavy hearts. I’m going with the measure of how strong the stems are when wet, when I pour water into the trays and they don’t crumple then they’re strong enough to harvest a lot of the leaves, mostly just razing the top two thirds or so, there’s too much for finesse, Dear Reader. I was lucky that the mangoes I could get were soft and sweet, as opposed to hard and sour or the very evil soft and rotten at the core. The pistachios are also shelled for pesto so I’ll have Pesto and Basil and Mango Sauce to add to my Spring Garlic pesto supplies. The freezer is getting full right now, Dear Reader and it is as always a very welcome dietary development.

I have these everywhere, they’re really old, but also bought new ones to see how they compare.


Hoping for so many seeds.


This went from a little nothing to this. Virginia Creeper.


So many roses still.


These are all top down because they’re so high up.


Soon, very soon.

I need to harvest at the right time, usually during the day when it’s just a little dry, I go by smell and once frozen it’ll retain that fresh taste for a year or more. I have my freshly cured garlic ready too so this should be a good year’s bounty. Right now we’re at the stage where the new growth is starting and there will be a sudden spurt, I can see it in the roses and the rhubarb. I have work to do with the greenhouse, I checked the large pots I bought cheap, wish I’d gotten more, but I have enough at least, and they didn’t fit under the staging in the greenhouse, but when I checked the last, nearly gave up, it is actually higher so I can put two pots of basil that’ll raise them above the ground and they’ll get more heat and light. I can put two under one and I found poles to raise and other to add a third pot. This is all next year’s work, but it has to be done now…well, I want it done now, Dear Reader.

Never tiring of these flowers.


The stamen were gently swaying in the breeze.


I think these were just marked as white when I bought them.


Can’t tell if the sun damaged the taro or it’s just variegated.


I came in from the garden and smelt of lilies and roses.


Took a few tries because it’s over six feet high.

Every year teaches you for the next, Dear Reader, I’m going to use the now cumbersome long trays for peas, I’ll use bottomless pots that can be transplanted by just shoving into the soil, worked wonders for sweetpeas last year, or the year before, this is the first year they failed entirely, Dear Reader, but not the first time they had trouble so I’ll work smarter next year with what I have to hand. You end up changing a lot, but the weather is always the wild card in it all so you can never plan so completely, but by learning to go with the flow you can get a lot growing. The second squashes started during a heatwave, fed with strong feed during another, are all getting big fast now. the first are full of flowers and potential squashes. Time will tell, Dear Reader, right now I work with what I have to make it better for next year. Not forgetting to enjoy this year either, have no fear there, Dear Reader. I’ll be back again soon, until then stay safe and take care.

Daylilies are lovely when they clump up.


Peperomia growing a big leaf.


A shame they fade so fast.


They grew in a small cervice instead of the big bed.


Yeah, these are super high.

Heatwave Goodbye


Fairy roses are popping up.


The 50+ rose is a very pretty rose if a little weakened with age.


Skip Rose gradually changing colour.


Lilies still popping up.


Two started early fruits, but this will be the main batch that hopefully bears fruit.


Tayberries are tidied, they’re thorny so this is better.

Yo, Dear Reader, the heatwave has just vanished and we’re back into muggy, dead heat. So, instead of dwelling in this dreary turn of events let’s talk about the garden, which is mostly just doing it’s own thing if I’m honest, Dear Reader. It’s in one of those little lulls where things are growing as other plants are going back. I should be able to harvest my basil soon it’s a toss up between pesto and the mango sauce, depends entirely if the mangoes aren’t rock hard, which they often are. I may be able to do both, but it’s hard to say how much basil I have right now, it looks good and smells fantastic so I’ll water it for a few days again and get ready to harvest it before any weather changes occur, I’m not ruling out sudden frosts or blasts of killing heat, Dear Reader, not not and never again.

Roses are cycling through a new growth and budding phase.


Sea Holly has such a nice colour.


Honeysuckle starting to form itself into the hedge.


More teeny roses.


They fragrance the whole garden.

I’m lucky enough to be working my way through so, so much garlic and the onions aren’t far behind. Even with the heat the root vegetables seem fine, even the carrots that just sprouted survived and they’re notoriously fussy. It’s hard to get motivated on days like these, Dear Reader, so I just ended up baking and letting things rest. I have more cages to assemble, they’re tidying up things and with the shape I can move plants without doing damage. I did start the newer bushes with jam in mind and I will likely be making some, but mostly I’ll be keeping them for myself, and the flock of starlings playing in the garden and jumping out at me. I saw a group taking turn bathing in the bird bath today. When I fried the burger, the fresh onion is so tender and flavoursome, I also used currants, great for thickening and tartness, and raspberries to make a fast “ketchup” in the pan. I boil them in some water in the microwave until soft, push them through a sieve, add a little sugar, salt and pepper and then use that to deglaze the pan while the burgers rested, a fast boil and it thickens up into a simple fruit sauce.

Yarrow making an appearance.


The roses never really stop for months.


The heat was so extreme the passiflora kept blooming.


There we go. The rest may just be yellow flowers, but I’ve felt this worth the wait.


Losing track of which are new at this point.


The Four O’ Clock plant is back.

I make sure to get out and really look at everything growing in the garden, Dear Reader, because if all I see is what’s needed to be done I’ll lose a lot of the joy of the whole. I do wish we had had a traditional Summer, plenty arguing we did and the short temperedness is a sure sign we didn’t. We’re not seeing normal weather from here on and it’s been obvious for a long time, all I can do is plan whatever I think will grow and just back up as much as I can. I’m still cleaning out the pots for more root vegetables, it’s just me, Dear Reader, but it’ll be a year’s supply, just a few more to go and I’m done. By the time I get to the last few I’ll have the potato pots again and there’ll be more. Still, they’re looking well, thinly sowed and I have hilled up the beetroot this year to protect the tops from discolouration. No big projects in the pipeline yet, Dear Reader, I may not have any big changes to make, but I have plenty of small things to change the garden regardless so I’ll be contented in my busyness. I’ll be back again soon, Dear Reader, until then thanks for stopping by, stay safe and take care.

Hope I get these ripe, I’ve left them more exposed to the sun this year at least.


Kiwi still vining up around around.


It’s much later than the usual hydrangeas.


Might be Self-heal.


Lots of new shoots on the kiwi.


One 50+ rose that is anything but weak.


A “baby” Blue Pumpkin.


Big buddleia is blooming.

Stop Attacking The Neighbours

Californian poppies sporting a two tone style.


Lilies are lovely.


Getting stone to help the insects get to the water. The birds keep emptying the baths.


Skip rose, after a year of growing, not red, but so very attractive.


Astilbe is staying pretty.


The latest flowering apple tree is fruiting too.


Hello in there. You can see the skeleton of The Rambler as it dies back.


Pea frame finds a purpose.


Tree Mallow, new to me.


So hot the passiflora is blooming again.

Yo, Dear Reader, the heatwave continues, for some reason it’s hotter in the evening and night than during the day now, currently twenty seven degrees in my room and I just wish I had somewhere else to hang out, but such is life, I’m sure the indoor plants love it at least. I use the coffee plant to measure how dry it is, once it drop it’s time to water. It’s worked better than any other measure, Dear Reader. I’m staying out during the day so the heat is being turned into time to work in the garden while covered in sunscreen. The soaker hose attachment has been vital in keeping things wet while not taking all my time to do so. This kind of heat is common here, but I’ve been through it once before, worse than this even, and you know me, Dear Reader, I’ll learn everything from a situation even if I never see it again.

I assume both the skip roses are the same.


Not sure if this is a new shape or heat deformation.


I was so confused until I realised they’re two different plants.


I forget where this hardly gloxinia came from.


Might be a tree lily.


Fairy roses are popping up.


Root vegetables are doing well.


Plenty to come yet.


A little hidden, but fun to find.


Hoping this is the old red rose.


More to go still.

I’m making frames for the fruit bushes, just saw one has nearly fallen into the neighbours, it’s over seven or eight feet long currently, that one must be the sunberry, it’s next to be framed, but it is slow and tedious, a lot of twining twine around bamboo held in place by me while I tie and while I knot, there may be an easier way, but I’m not spending a huge amount of money on frames that’ll likely end up not being enough anyway. The frames are ugly, but sturdy, they also stope the thorny vines from swinging at my face so I’ll gladly invest the time into them. The weather is really pushing things to grow as they’ve been waiting for it for so long, but you then need to suddenly hurry up and support, train and clean up. It’ll be worth it, Dear Reader…probably. I’ll be back again later, Dear Reader, assuming I haven’t dissolved. Until then stay safe and take care.

Not ready yet.


Blue skies, Dear Reader.


Everything is blooming and I’m remembering to take the time to really look.


Red Hydrangea is doing well.


Hollyhock opening more and more.


Such an intense fragrance.


A plain hydrangea, but it was almost killed by frost last year so I’m glad it survived.


Another plant that was being tossed.


Rumba putting out a fully yellow rose too.

Hoarding Small Joys Against The Heat

Well, looks like the clematis has found its spot…because it’s stuck in The Rambler now.


Rescues bonding.


Cheap bulbs don’t look cheap.


The bush I saved.


My freezer is getting full.


Worth the extra work to get this going.


I don’t think this is how you hybridize roses.


I hope I can keep it going for another year.


Yeah, flower where no one can see easily!


Oh, but I love this so much.


Every season is orchid season here.

Yo, Dear Reader, things have been slow as the weather is stuck in this overly humid, extremely hot without patches of cold that’s just not letting things grow well. There’s supposed to be a heatwave coming, how many times have I reported that, Dear Reader? The UK is currently in a dangerous places and still we’ll ignore climate collapse as I’ve heard it more accurately named. I don’t want to rant and rave, Dear Reader, but this weather is causing my arthritis to flare up so much I can’t remember when it hasn’t been bad. It’s taking a toll, so, Dear Reader, I have been taking photos, trying to gather the small joys to keep me, and perhaps you, going a little longer. It’s not turning a blind eye, it’s knowing that we all need a break and to rest. If everyone did their part the world would be very different, but if we all just throw in the towel because we aren’t be recognised then we’re nearly as bad as the ones who never started. I’m gardening for the bees and birds, Dear Reader, let’s talk about them as well.

Front garden currently smells incredibly floral. Even at a distance.


Every plant is now marked as for the bees.


Plenty of roses still.


One of the 50+ roses.


These are tree lilies so they could get extremely tall in years to come.


Don’t even need to be near these to smell them.


Yellow fading to white as it ages.


Slugs ignored the hostas.

As I haven’t been out as regularly as I want to, I’m out most days regardless, the greenhouse keeps heating so much it’s dry in there after a few hours, but the bees seem to be busy regardless, almost as if they don’t notice I’m not there, Dear Reader, I think a few pumpkins may have been pollinated, but I haven’t seen that many flowers on the squash yet, it’ll take time and if we see heat and less humidity they should start to grow rapidly. The bees have plenty here for them at least. The birds have been hanging around, emptying birdbaths, overnight no less, and I think one starling was admiring itself in the mirror. The one that hangs around the rose garden was in the lower squashes and scared both me and itself when it flew out and into a mesh, then into the roses to chirp at me. The insects are everywhere, funnily not many aphids, I saw that now and later who knows?. Slugs have been busy on some of the dahlias, but they’ll be okay, that or I’ll replace them. The garden is alive and kicking, Dear Reader, I just need to be vigilant with the extreme heat.

I think that branching bit might be rooted somewhere there.


Bought a terrarium, small joys, cheap too, and the two plants were just sitting inside some moss.


A mini rose returns.


Tasty, tasty bananas.


Naru’s Peach Lilies.


Hoya and Arrowhead plant find a home, the hoya was a cutting and only has teeny roots still after nearly a year.


Red…yeah, this isn’t the rose I ordered, but I like it.


First new thing I’ve done in months and months. Everything is so limited now.

Stinking days are looming again as the comfrey tea is once again ready. The squash will want a good dose right now, even the newer ones are catching up fast, it’s hard to say if I’ll see a big bounty thanks to the weather or no, you just presume you’ll have a lot of everything and act accordingly, Dear Reader, if it fails you just complain a lot. The shops haven’t been great with some stock so I decided to make use of the delicious onions hanging in the shed and made beef and turkey burgers, like when I used this combo in the cottage pies. It’s been years, burgers were always associated with bready buns and when I gave up gluten a lot of other things were left behind too. I kept it simple, just seasoning and egg to bind, and tossed them from hand to hand to let the air out and to form even patties. I say it every year, but the fresh produce from the garden really makes you enjoy food. The garlic can be tasted through any amount of spices and is just so, so different. Creamy and firm, crispy and tender. I hope to have basil soon for pesto or mango sauce, I just need to water and then harvest before it gets too hot. It’ll all pay off in time, Dear Reader, it already has, just hard to see it in the hustle and bustle of it all. Hence the photos for dreary days. I’ll be back again soon, Dear Reader, until then stay safe and take care.

Work to do, but you need to enjoy it all as well.


Peats are everywhere currently.


Well, hello…guess I planted you.


Every day I go out and it has bloomed a little more.


I am covered in pollen because I won’t stake this.


The bed below The Ramble is really full.


Naru’s Carnations, less hardy, but less work than saving seeds.


I have so, so many gladioli planted.


Every pink head is a chance of seeds.


Guessing this is the Russian red.


Small panic when I ses the ridges and mistake them for cracks.


Grow big buddy, I saved you from a teeny pot.