Friday, September 16, 2011

The well of inspiration...and there's no denying it...

...spring has sprung!  Actually, it's been springing for the last few weeks, since early August in fact.  I like spring well enough, the trouble is it's always the herald of another long summer, which rather puts a downer on it for me.  Especially after last summer lasted about 6 months.  Winter has been very lax this year, hanging around half-heartedly for about 2 months, then it buggered off early. Still, at least it put in an appearance.  More than I can say for autumn, who failed to turn up at all.  Spring is when the garden looks its best, though I can't take the credit, it's the nasturtiums that make it look so lovely and they just come up by themselves without any help from me at all.  I only wish they'd hang around a bit longer, but come summer, they will all die off and leave the garden looking (and me feeling) bereft and empty.

I've never planted Flanders poppies before, I'm so glad I did this year, they're gorgeous.

This is one of the babies of my old lavender, which seeded itself all over the place (I've got about 6 babies from it).  It obviously likes this spot, some of the flower spikes are over 6cms long and the bees love it. 

The McCartney Rose.  It does this every much as I love it, I wish it would just pace itself a bit better and flower over a longer period.  These will probably all be gone in a week or so.  The apricot next to it flowered, then leafed, and now has baby apricots, all in the space of about 2 weeks...or less!

My poor confused almond.  The poor thing is probably wondering how the heck that year went round so quick (it decided to flower in autumn, the weather was so warm).

Nasturtiums taking over as always.  The tree in the left foreground is a Crepe Myrtle. Hubby and I have a running joke we laugh ourselves silly over every year.  For the first 3 or so years we had this tree, spring would arrive, everything around it would be budding and blooming, and it would continue looking very, very dead...right up until November or later, then it would suddenly grow leaves, and flower.  And each year, I'd sigh and say "I think we're going to have to pull that Myrtle out, it hasn't survived," convinced that this year it really WAS dead, and he would disagree and say it was fine.  And then Hubby started getting in early..."Hmmm, Chris,"  he'd say, snickering, "I really think we're going to have to pull that Myrtle out."  So now, we see who gets in first to say it, then both snicker like 6 years olds!  Daft, I know!

I think these are pansies.  See, I told you I know nothing about gardening.  They were pretty and cheap, so I bought some!

Look!  Over there, to the left...a tiny wood violet.  Again, I don't know what kind, it may be the native violet...but it's very tough, I can tell you that.  It will die off and you think "oh well, there goes the violet" and then in autumn, tiny green shoots will reappear.

The McCartney taking over Hubby's studio.

Nasturtiums and Lobelias together.  Beautiful, intense colours.

As for inspiration, this week I've been revelling in the world of Brian Froud, having bought several books that I've been wanting for ages.  I was introduced to Brian, and Alan Lee's book Faeries by my art teacher at school when I was about 13.  It had a profound effect on me.  One of the inspirational milestones in my life actually.

And the last two weeks I have also found much inspiration in these places on the winding web path:
Sometimes a Wild God
(Tom Hirons writes a poem to make you want to run barefoot through the woods and find the wild heart you've lost somewhere)
On wooing the poem.  A beginner's guide.
(Tom tells us the magical prose)
Jackie Morris writes a long post with the most wonderful links (visit them ALL!)
(and if you haven't found Jackie's blog before, you're in for a treat!)
This is just one of them!
(Isn't this marvelous?!  What an amazing revival of craftmanship.)
And lastly, this is just sublime!
(Make sure you read to the end to see them all.  And again thank you to Jackie Morris for the link.)

The deputy head at my girls' school asked me if I was interested in running an 'art club' at the school next term.  I must be getting braver, I said yes without even stopping to think.  So, a group of six or seven 9-13 year olds.  Hmmm, I'll have to think of a cool project we can work on over a few weeks!  I'm nervous and excited, I've never done anything like this before!


Valerianna said...

Hi Christina - the garden looks wonderful! We are finally having a bit of cool and dry weather to balance enormous amounts of rain. I'm ready for fall. That is definitely a pansy, I had the same one this summer, great color. Hope you have a cool-ish summer....
spring blessings from the fall forest!

Unknown said...

Thanks for the kind mentions, Christina - glad those words found a home on the other side of the globe! I know summer there must be hard on the flowers, but isn't it magic for growing vegetables? I still miss the Greek climate for growing tomatoes and such sweet courgettes!

A mermaid in the attic said...

Valerianna, I don't mind a hot summer so much, I do love getting down to the beach and swimming (though I have been known to swim in winter!), as long as it hangs about for its allotted 3 months and then gracefully bows out and lets autumn in! Tom, it's not so bad for growing vegies early on (things in the vegie box are coming up nicely at the moment), as long as we've got water (which is always an issue with no rain and water restrictions), but when you get weeks of 38-45ºC heat it just sucks the vitality out of everything...including me!

And Tom, I really do think you should record those poems, they're beautiful on the page, but would be magic to hear!

Von said...

I always think it's the transitory nature of Spring and the flowers that makes it so beautiful.Means if you want to enjoy it you have to stop and smell the roses more.

Trace Willans said...

thought you might like this link
x te

Unknown said...

Six months summer? Ours lasted six days I think. Sigh. Our summer has buggered off to the antipodes, and your winter has struck north. The world is topsy turvy all right.

But...the spring...seems a distant memory right now. Glad it's blooming for you xxx

Barry said...

MIA - spring with its light and colour does lift us out of the grey winter. Good to see such bursting energy in your garden. F and I have enjoyed getting back into the block and harvesting some of the bounty of our garden. Go well. B

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