Thursday, 18 July 2013

Abundance ...

I'm enjoying what I think is known as a glut! A glut of sweet peas. I'm not complaining.  The colours are divine. The scent heavenly.

I have two cane wigwams of them on my allotment and at the moment, I am stripping them every other day and what I haven't room for, I am giving away to friends.

I don't really need any more words, I can let the photos do the talking, but suffice to say I am A Very Happy Girl.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show in 10 ...

  •  A surprise message popped up on my Twitter page on Monday - with congratulations, I had won 2 tickets to the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show from Sophie Conran! There may or may not have been an excited squeal. Then I went into panic mode because my reply kept failing so I had to anxiously wait for 24 hours to see if it was actually true. Time felt as though it was ticking away as the only day I was going to be able to honour the tickets was yesterday as my week was all accounted for. In a flurry of emails on Tuesday evening, it all fell into place.  Rather aptly, considering my backyard companions (scroll down through the post!), Sophie is one of a team of designers who have created a henhouse, all of which are being auctioned, with the proceeds going to the RHS Campaign for School Gardening.

  • After a journey that comprised of a car drive to my Mum's (who was my companion for the day), a bus, a tube, a train and finally a boat down the short stretch of the Thames from Hampton Court Station to the entrance of the show, we finally arrived to a gloriously sunny day. Perhaps it was the soaring temperatures that drew me to the cooler coloured plantings. This Willow Pattern garden reminded me of Alice.

  • This garden won Best in Show and I loved the planting and the idea behind it. I'm thinking of adding something watery to my garden in the autumn. The agapanthus were absolutely enormous - I must read up on how to increase the flower size on mine, which has been in decline over the years.

  • I think this was actually my favourite stand in the show. I love everything about it. It was by Wild Thyme Nursery in the Floral Marquee.

  • I made notes and took photos of many plants I would like to add to my garden, including this dahlia from The National Dahlia Collection.

  • This rose, that I will be on the look out for in the autumn to plant as a bare-root plant. So pretty.

  • I think finding a spot for this climbing rose is a high priority, with its namesake patrolling the garden on an hourly basis!

  • I loved the Franchi Seed stand in the Growing for Taste marquee. We arrived just after they'd had a royal visitor apparently! 

  • If the mood took you, there was copious amounts of opportunity to spend, spend, spend. I could only dream ... about the greenhouse of my dreams ... maybe one day ...

  • I did concede to one purchase other than a packet of seeds! I bought the 2 clematis shown here to use with the willow support I made last year. They are fabulously healthy plants and full of buds and promise. Cool spectrum colours again, and a reminder of a wonderful day out.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Nothing if not predictable ...

It was always on the cards that there would be a cushion to sit atop my new quilt. It is the best way to use up the scraps from a bigger project and I wanted to eek out the Flea Market Fancy love as much as possible.

I decided on making the back-to-front version of the quilt block by using the plain white as the flower.

It gave me lots of scope to keep playing with my perle threads for the hand-quilting. There is something extraordinarily satisfying about a simple running stitch, both in terms of actually doing it and the finished result.

So my bed now has a summer look, and one that I am extremely happy with.  Although with this wonderful warm spell, the quilt is being thrown off with abandon!