Our garden is frying and, owing to my absent-mindedness in June when I emptied the underground rainwater harvester AND burnt out the pump, soft rainwater is in short supply. The pump is now (expensively) replaced. This shows the challenge of waterproofing the electrical component. I just love the men at play – sorry – work’.
Meanwhile the vegetable plot which was mostly growing marigolds,
is now pouring out beans – this morning’s haul – runners on left and flat French climbing bean Algarve on right – they are delicious and stringless (unless you miss them for weeks). Autumn raspberries make good grazing and we are eating the first tomatoes too. I’m getting quite excited about the peppers. Patience is still required; we must wait for the yellow ones to turn red and the green ones to turn yellow … before they’re ripe. My husband has been hard at work in the unpleasaunce, recycling more parts of the old shed and has produced a … temple?During the June storms gravel was swept all the way down the concrete path on the right. This is because the ground on the other side of back fence is two foot higher – hence the barricade of ancient building stones that we have found around the garden. The old shed door atop the two uprights is meant to provide another log shelter.
Some rather crazy colour schemes I am enjoying. And in lovely contrast the indomitable Californian tree poppy (Romney coulteri) is lighting up the dried out August garden. I treat it mean and it never fails.
The garden is happy but perhaps confused. I wanted to bring in some flowers the other day and found this charming combination of nasturtiums and winter jasmine. I also found some late blooms on the centaurea and and yet the hydrangeas have their autumn seed heads.
We still have cistus in bloom and below them autumn crocus are merrily flowering.
Then we have the winter iris stylosa – I usually start looking for a few flowers on this in mid-December and sometimes find blooms for the Christmas table and then throughout January and February. They are already blooming in three separate sites in the garden.
And late blooms have appeared on the summer-flowering non-clinging clematis Durandii.
A few feet away a primrose is feeling the air, while between these two Rosa Papa Meilland is throwing up yet another bloom.
Raspberries are still fruiting – they are autumn raspberries, but they are usually long gone before November. This is looking like autumn. …but what are the runner beans doing flowering at this time of year, and why can I hear the buzz of lawn mowers even as I write? And how come we had lunch in the garden in the UK on November 1st?
At least my general failure in the greenhouse has been redeemed by the late hot spell, and my magnificent sweet pepper is finally turning red.
Little garden interlude. The runner beans, having started to mature, are unstoppable. Luckily I have hungry neighbours.There are as many courgettes as we care to eat and the first french beans are cropping too. I have at last transplanted the leeks and we had torrential rain yesterday, so I am not looking out of my window worrying about thirsty plants. Mind you, we are promised the tail end of Bertha, the hurricane travelling across the Atlantic, tomorrow. As the beans are mostly held together by elderly bamboos, some string and their own tendrils, they may be on the ground by Monday.
So, after a morning putting in proof-reading corrections, I will, I will, get into the garden for some re-enforcing work.
My last proof reader did not really enjoy Border Line. Although this is, naturally, depressing, it is also more helpful than vague praise. I have learnt some useful stuff from what she said (and did not say) and it is not too late to make some, hopefully crucial, changes. Knowing WHAT to change is a great boon. Thank you JL.
It’s been a while since I put up a post, because I have been hard at work trying to update my embarrassingly old-fashioned website at hilarycustancegreen.com.
Today, through the Society of Authors, I signed up for a tutorial on my website and social media presence. I spent a generous and productive hour with Kristen Harrison of The Curved House.
My fear that I would be told to get onto various media outlets and advertise my books according to some hidden ‘rules for authors’ was unfounded. The session was unexpected for three particular reasons: 1) Kirsten had already checked out both my blog and my website and her first questions were designed to understand my work and interests. From there she swiftly showed me how to rearrange and redistribute the information on the web about me and my books. 2) She listened to, and understood, my concerns about cover design, about which she was extremely knowledgable (more about covers at a later date). 3) She aligned her advice with my understanding of the Internet and technology and with my needs outlined in a pre-session questionnaire.
How rare is that? All I have to do now is to put all this into practice…
I did manage to weed the vegetable plot and we have eaten the first runner beans.
But there are 74 posts to read in my emails and I am going Lindy hopping tonight.