Nature and Crafting

As promised I will share some of my crafting over the last few months, and recent weeks along with how things are growing on the Plot.. April has been very dry here in the UK, and cold. With heavy frosts first thing in the mornings. So things in the greenhouse have been covered in fleece.. Tender plants are still vulnerable so holding back planting out some tender plants in the garden until later on in the month of May.

So here in picture format is just some of what is growing, If you click on the images they will enlarge .

So that is what is growing above. Below is what I have been creating . I have been painting, and creating knitting and crocheting. You will see a large crocheted blanket , and some small knitted and crocheted jumpers / sweaters/ tank tops for some teddy bears. And I recently had bought me a Mandala crocheting book from my daughter for my birthday and so I am now enjoying creating some mandala’s in crocheting.

The first is a bag I have done and crocheted the outside.. I made from a canvas back and created some pockets inside

So my friends, that is what I have been doing while I have been absent from blog land.. I feel the need to be creative. I hope you also embrace your creativity .. Enjoy ALL you create.. All you grow..

“Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last, you create what you will” – George Bernard Shaw

May you never stop Imagining into being that which you wish to create..

Autumnal Work On The Plot

Sunflowers and Bees

I am always saying how time is flying faster than ever, but no sooner were we into the beginning of September than we are nearing the beginning of October. The days in between just seem to be a blur. As I took myself away from the technical world, to dive into some reading as I opted for fantasy world for a time… Which at times seemed the better option than the madness we are witnessing in reality. We have had some lovely Sunny days intermingled with some Wild Winds and rain…. This week has seen the temperatures drop, rise again, and then fall again. So that Autumn nip has most definitely been in the morning air

Harvesting by the barrowload

Butternut Squash
Sweetcorn cobs
 Sweetcorn ready for freezing

Perpared SweetCorn

This was just one of the barrow loads that were prepared for the freezer . I also gave quite a few cobs away to neighbours and friends.

Dried Sweetcorn to be cleared.

Above you can see the old sweetcorn sticks now fully dried out, the plastic bottles! you may be curious about… These were planted into the ground near our courgette roots… The leaves grow so intense and thick with the courgettes we use as markers, that we then pour water into the open bottles so as to get to the roots , so as not to waste water. The bottles on top of the sticks is to prevent me poking my eyes while weeding… Despite wearing glasses, I have done this often and you do not see canes as you reach down to weed.. So this is a safety precaution.. The plastic bottles all get recycled after use also… I had cleared a lot of the mildew leaves away in the above photo shot.

Cleared Sweetcorn and digging over the ground

While Hubby was busy spreading muck/manure over where all the potatoes had been harvested, I set about clearing and digging where the sweetcorn had been… Even as I write three days after the digging my calves still ache from using the spade and turning the earth over… It was tiring, but, I enjoyed the hard work and despite the wind, managed to clear and dig what you see below in two and a half hours.

I dug all of this in two and half hours phew! Getting more grass twitch out in the process.

Sunflowers

Our Giant sunflowers have been a huge attraction to the biggest bumble bees… These now too have dried out and we have put the flower heads in the shed to try out the seeds… These we will use for bird seed in the feeders rather than for ourselves…

Onions drying out

The Onions too are all safely gathered in and they are drying out in these baskets ready for storage.. This year we have had a good crop of onions… I cannot say the same for our Leeks… For it is looking like they have been infested with a grub…. One patch of leeks we have already had to destroy as they were withering our main crop of leeks are not looking so healthy either.. This is due to what I have discovered is the leek Moth… More information on it can be found here at this link https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=652

We also need to remember even if we haven’t got a garden… We can get out into nature, sit beside a tree or some water and absorb inside of ourselves all that Nature has to offer…. Its no coincidence that Nature holds similar letter as the word Nurture… For that is what Nature does… It nurtures our spirits..

Hard to imagine this place was once a huge slag heap from the local coal mine.. The pit head stocks can be seen over the trees, The Mine shut down years ago and the whole area was made into a nature reserve. Which just goes to show you no matter how dark our ugly things look now..

Things Can and Do change for the better…

I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright.

~Henry David Thoreau

Garden Blooms In May.

 Hello my gardening friends. How have you all been?…

Here in Dreamwalker’s Garden, there has plenty to keep us occupied. And the big bonus here in the UK has been the weather has been exceptionally warm and dry over May.  It has meant lots of water carrying too and fro on the plot. But I have enjoyed even that, as we go early in the morning..  And it takes with both of us carrying water about an hour to water completely.. 

If you click the photos they should enlarge in a new window.

Dahlia’s now out of cold frame, waiting to be planted in their permanent position

I will start off with the Dahila’s… We had several over night frosts at the beginning of May and despite us having to move the Dahlia’s into the cold frame as we needed more room in the greenhouse as the Tomatoes were getting ready to pot on, The Frost caught the tops of several of the large plants… But they should bounce back.. 

We have now moved them out of the cold frame into a sheltered position between the raspberries and where I planted the sweet-peas, as hopefully as we near the end of the month fingers crossed we will get no more frosts…  Next week we intend to plant them into their flowering positions.  

Here you can see the Tomatoes and Cucumbers now in place in the Greenhouse

The Strawberries are the new plants we bought last year, They are now getting more established this year and already lots of fruit is forming.

Strawberries forming.. I have since put straw under the plants to help protect the fruit.  

 

The Peas in stages of growth, so Harvesting them is staggered You can also see the Lupins in Flower.. We planted these all down the side of the plot, as they attract blackfly, and aphids  and I would sooner them eat the flowers than be on my veggies 🙂 

On the Home Garden, I got busy with the paintbrushes and painted the sides of the garage with wood preserver.. We had this Charcoal grey paint left over from the garden fences we did last year.. So I painted the border in the dark corner near the garage as well as sprucing up the fairy doors with a new lick of paint…  And if you wonder how those fairies climb the distance from the ground… They fly of course!!! Silly… 🙂 

Fairy Doors

And last but not least, I made a little video of the garden blooms within my own garden in flower this month of May… 

I Hope you Enjoy and  Happy Gardening as I send Love and well wishes to All… 

A Video Update of April

Hello my gardening friends..  We have been so thankful for our allotment plot as a place of refuge in these strange and trying times..  So instead of lots of photos here, I have included  a video of how the plot looks and what has been planted in it..  

The good news is that vacant plots on  our site  are being taken up and people are getting back into nature and growing their own food..  I have high hopes for positive outcomes. 

With in our own community of neighbours I am seeing people helping each other, sharing resources etc..   We have been sharing extra veggies and in return they have been sharing back magazines, books, and other things. 

We are lucky in we have a wonderful hub of neighbours who are pulling together.. 

My wish is that we come out of this more united and stronger, .. That we unite and co-operate in kindness and sharing, rather than living in fear, lack, and separation… We each have the ability to turn our communities around should we choose to do so..  

Take care of yourselves and I hope All of you are getting out into your own gardens and enjoying the calm present moments of being out in Mother Nature… The birds are singing their joy and Nature too is taking a breath… 

Happy Gardening!

 

 

Easter Creations With A Difference..

Dear friends… So how are you all doing? Have you managed to get into your gardens, have you been creative with your hobbies…

I began a new knitting project, a cardigan… Though I chose to do a different stitch pattern to the one on the  pattern below

As you see the stitch pattern is different, but quite easy only for rows to complete one pattern..

We have been on our daily exercise every morning in our plot… And the weather here has been beautiful and sunny and dry…. So dry that we have already had to start watering.. Our nearest water cistern was quite close but its broken and now dry so I counted my footsteps yesterday in strides and it was 82 strides to the next nearest and 82 back.. When you are carrying 4 gallon in two gallon watering cans at a time… My arms were more than aching..  It certainly puts into perspective those who have no water in their countries who carry every drop in searing heat over long distances… My gratitude for water took on a whole new meaning this week.. 

So I decided to give you a little treat in my other creative skills I am still learning, and that is to share a short video I made of our allotment plot… Its far from perfect and I will add below the video new pictures taken today of our planting of cabbages and where I mulched after shredding some of our conifers and cutting back some shrubs we needed to clear for repairs to our garage roof..  You will also see how this week the Sun has brought out the blossom which I didn’t think was there on our apple trees when I made the video as we transplanted and moved  both trees in the autumn to a new position in the plot as they were not thriving where they were.. 

Enjoy your time my friends as much as you can in your restricted zones of lockdown… Create as much as possible… as you try to detach from the daily news.. Breath in Nature as much as you are able… And create your own inner peace in all you do.. 

Click onto the photos to enlarge..

Happy Easter Everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

Exercise on Lock-down~ Creative Time.

Another Month has gone, and either ‘Time’ is flying for you right now, or it is dragging out… So what are you all doing in your Lock-down time? Have you taken up your artist brushes, or you ladies, sewing or knitting. Or maybe you found some DIY jobs you needed to do if you had the materials in before the lock-down… If you are lucky enough to have a garden have you been busy in it enjoying getting out in it as Spring starts to bloom. 

 Have you been creative??  Have you been bored? Why not give something new a try… 

I felt like creating something different, and found myself painting in aboriginal art form. This is just part of that watercolour painting

Or are you perhaps seeing this time as a time to reflect and put into perspective all our blessings..  Maybe you are volunteering your time helping others, or maybe you need help.  If you do need help, then do not be afraid to reach out to your neighbours, never be too proud to ask.. There are many who are willing to help right now..  I am witnessing some wonderful neighbours within my own community and a band of volunteers are organising through our neighbourhood watch scheme, and its heart warming to see..  What ever you are doing, where ever you are, I hope each and everyone of your are well, and stay well. 

Have you been able to walk the dog, keeping your social distancing? or have you found time to dig your plot and garden and prepare your gardens ready for the growing season?

We keep on Walking.

We count ourselves very fortunate in that our allotment plot is only a five minute walk away, and when we go early in the morning we hardly see anyone or meet anyone. When we do, we respect each others distance and get on with the job in hand of planting our crops..  ( If you right click the photo’s  you can open up to view larger ) 

We have been busy busy, as those of you know this is sowing time.  So In went the potatoes.. Hubby did this in gradual steps, digging two rows each morning, digging out the deep trench mucking/ putting manure it and placing potatoes in.. Covering up… Hard work, and when you are Three score year and ten plus it doesn’t get any easier.. 

Hubby has now put in Nine rows of potatoes. Two early variety is called Foremost, and seven main crop are Picasso.

While Hubby was busy digging in the potatoes, I got stuck in one morning and planted the onions and shallots..  The quality of the photo below is not good.. It was pretty cold that morning, as off came my gardening gloves to click the photo. 

Onions and Shallots setting, I planted Two rows of each and one row of red onions. Which are Turbo, and the shallots are Golden Orbit.

The next morning while the potato rows were growing, two by two 🙂  I set too and planted a row of peas.. Growing in the cold frame. 

First lot of Peas sprouting, It was the second lot which the mice ate..
These are Hurst Green-shaft.
My row of Pea planting.. I would be lost without the kneeler. My knees did take the toll. Hubby later came to the rescue with his rolled up jacket as a cushion on the kneeler.

 These I set in rows of three..  And boy did I know about it with my knees and back.

Once the row was set, Hubby helped me put metal steaks in and we put wire netting either side of them. This is for support when they grow

Peas now in neat rows with wire netting each side to help them grow up and support .

Remember the  sweater I was knitting and making up as I went along with left over yarns.. Well hubby took a photo of me wearing it as the peas we netted and I was raking the footprints we had made… 

Me raking up my messy footprints after the pea row is planted and covered with nets until they get a little bigger to flower… Otherwise pigeons and sparrows love young pea-shoots.

Another morning I put the nets in place along the trellis which was where for years we have grown loganberries.. But as these have not been there best for several years, so we decided to dig them out in the autumn.. And I had a plan to plant sweet peas along the row… Hence my dismay in my last post when the mice got in and nibble their way through them… But my new plants are now growing and in the cold frame. This is where they are going.

I mucked under the trellis work in the beginning of January, and now I put netting up for the sweet-peas flowers to climb up when big enough to plant out.

 The greenhouse on is still full of seedlings, brassica’s and leeks, lettuce etc. 

Seedlings and dahlia tubas. There really isn’t a lot of room.. But some now are out in the cold frame.
My Flower bed in the allotments.. Space for Dahlia’s at the side of the sheds.

Well my friends, that’s all for now Stay safe and well and See you next time.

Have a Wonderful Christmas!🎄

I hope those of you in the UK are not all bogged down in mud in your gardens, as record rainfall continually seems to be sweeping our country.. 

Thankfully our Allotment is on sandy soil so it drains away quiet well..

Have you got your Brussels Sprouts all in ready for Christmas Day? Ours are a small variety and I forget the name of them this year, they are tiny but compact and very tasty.. 

There has not been a great lot to report this last month as I have been taking a blogging break, except to say the Parsnips are also delicious.. 

So I will see you all in the New Year..

  Have a wonderful Christmas Holiday all of you

and a wonderful 2020 and beyond.. 

 

November Rains brings yet more Floods.

Well, hello again my WordPress friends, its that time  again for another monthly update. And oh my what a wet month we have had since I last updated here.. So much rain with the odd dry day thrown in-between..

Back at the end of October the weather broke just long enough for us to to get more of our allotment cleared and while my hubby worked on digging and clearing the top end of the plot, I set too and began to cut back the Autumn Raspberry bushes.. What a harvest we have had, both from the early and the late berries, The bushes were still full of wet soggy fruit when I cut them back.

My hubby had also dug up all the Loganberries and composted them. Because for the past several years they had not been at their best and as they are much more tart and sour than the abundance of raspberries we harvest, so I decided we would concentrate on the raspberries for next year and clear space. He also eventually in stages was able to lift out the Dahlia’s, so clogged were the tubas with sodden earth he had to dry out in the green house first before he could remove the soil from around the tuba.. These are then placed upside down with the  cut dahlia storks of around 6″ to 9″, (I still work in inches even after all these years of being metric.. So that is around 15 cms to 22 cms..)  The storks facing downwards to allow them to drain… When completely dry these are then stored in straw… Our Home Begonias and gladioli are stored in sawdust..   These are kept frost free covered in the shed.

Here is a previous image of stored Dahlia tubas from 2017.

Hubby made a metal grid in the allotment greenhouse, where you place the stalks side down and tuba side up, This helps to drain the moisture out of the stalks .. And here they will stay for a couple of weeks until the soil has completely dried and can be shaken off.
Then they will be stored in the shed

Here below is the Before Photo where I weeded and cut back the autumn raspberry canes. The Red foliage leaves are the blueberries these I leave alone.. Sadly we hardly had any fruit on the blueberries this year due to a late frost which caught the bushes in flower…. But the raspberries made up for them.. You always win some and lose some when gardening and you have to take it all in your stride.. Some years are good, others not so good..  Like our Leeks, this year because of the rain many have rotted and have been composted..

Cutting and clearing Autumn Raspberries

And here is the after photo… I have to say my back was aching when I had finished and I left some of the grass and twitch to be weeded out the following day as my bones had had enough for the day.

Raspberries pruned back and ground partly cleared I went back the following day and cleared the patch you see  left of grass and twitch.

I also collected all the finished sweetpea seeds. My idea for next year it to plant many sweetpeas along the trellis where we dug out the Loganberries  and place a net for them to grow up, The frame work is already there.  You can see the stakes and framework in place on the above photo.

Sweetpea seeds

As the title says November has been almost none stop rain too, and many low lying areas not far from us have been hit by floods.. And I count my blessings daily for living on a hill, and even here outside my window  at the moment the water is around ten centimetres in puddles that are no longer soaking into the ground.

Rivers have overflowed their banks and I feel so sorry for all the residents of FishLake  near Doncaster as their streets and homes have literally been turned into a lake, More on their plight can be found at this  BBC news link. The whole village is under water..

So while nothing outdoors can be done I have been spending more time on my  indoor projects and have completed these items you see below as well as I am midway through another knitting project..

And I have been less and less on technology and on the internet  So I have spent less time in WordPress, though I do hope to try and get back into my WP reader and catch up at some point.. But as the Autumn days get shorter and as  winter approaches I am finding I am hunkering down into my creative space more and more as I try to tune out from the bombardment of negative news and tune into my own creative, harmonic creative space..

 I hope you are all Keep safe out there..

So many things going off in the world, Fires, Floods, and Elections!…

Keep your own Balance!..  And create your own Bubble of Peace..

Keep safe and hold each other close..

Until Next time.. 

 

October Already

Hello again, well October has arrived and with it many places have had flooded roads and rivers are running high to overflowing here in the UK,  as for the last few days its done nothing but rain, rain, rain day and night.. 

Click on Photos to Enlarge . 

Cleared out the sweet corn and general tidy up The sprouts are now clearly visible standing to attention

 But thankfully before the rain set in last week, we had a wonderful week of sunny warm weather. Which my hubby and I took advantage of as we got stuck into more chores of clearing on the plot.. The sweetcorn came out and we cleared a space ready for the delivery of  manure which we order later this month.  You can see by the picture below just how the lettuce is growing and we have picked quite a few now, and the swedes are also filling out as are the carrots growing which will be weeded out once they get much bigger.

Lettuce on left, Swedes, and carrots, leeks, January Kings Cabbage and Sprouts far right

 We also reaped in our Butternut Squash and have stored around 24 largish Squash so we are very happy with our harvest of these as you see below. 

Butternut Sqaush

I also cleared out the borders on the front garden of the summer flowers which had gone past there best and also took down the hanging baskets and replenished the wall containers with winter pansies and cyclamens..  Which I forgot to take photos of.. Maybe next time..  I planted lots of chrysanthemums in various colours as well as dwarf daffodil bulbs. My intention is to fill the front border with more perennials next year so as to help with lower maintenance of Summer and Autumn planting..  

But there is still lots of colour in the  back garden and these fuchsias were made into standards by my husband are now three years old taken from one plant as cuttings. They have now been moved into the greenhouse as we have a pending forecast of frost for Wednesday..  

Rainbow light from hanging crystal

Since my  husband cleared and cleaned the pond in the spring its done really well, the fish are happy and the waterlily he cut back hard, and its produced many more flowers this year.  I think in total this year we have had nine or ten  blooms in total, where as in other years we have only had a couple. 

Water Lily in our pond.

You may remember a few months back I began knitting an Aran sweater, It got shelved in July when I went on holiday and upon our return we then started decorating our home and then had to catch up with the neglected plot, so this now knitting project has been completed. And I am very happy with its fit.

My hand knitted Aran sweater .

Have you any projects unfinished? Or have you about to start some..  I am being urged by my inner prompting to start painting again now the garden chores  have been caught up with.  So I will leave you with a gallery of some of the flowers still in bloom and the Dahlias are still in wonderful flower until the first frost hits them on the plot. 

 Until Next Time

  Take Care and Enjoy All you Create

Be it in the garden or in arts and crafts. 

💚 ENJOY! 💚

 

 

September Harvesting

September evenings are now drawing in quickly, much quicker than I remember in my childhood days, but then again the Summer holidays from school seemed to last and last when we were children, and now it seems within a blink of an eye  they are gone, as children break up for the Summer and now already they are back at school again.

So while the temperatures brought an unexpected Late August heat wave on a holiday weekend here in the UK, its now dipped back to normal with a clear chill in the air first thing in the morning.

So before the rain set it Hubby and I got to work in harvesting the potatoes, along with  the ripe sweetcorn cobs, and clearing out the litter of spent brassica leaves and weeds.

Click onto any photo to enlarge.

Just two rows of potatoes dug up here.

So while Hubby got digging the main crop of potatoes up, Picasso, I got busy picking sweetcorn and also pulling up the spent dwarf beans, collecting the pods for next years seed.

While Hubby dug I sorted into sizes and any damaged with the fork will be used first.

 

 

 

Gathering dwarf bean seeds, the rows covered in weed ..

 

 

 

There were also the Dwarf Beans which had finished to pull up and collect seed pods  for saving next years seeds. The rows had got covered in weeds and so this area of the plot needed a good weeding and clearing out.

It’s very satisfying when  its all cleared and raked, I also went under the Brussels sprouts clearing out decaying leaves.

Cleared area after pulling up the dwarf bean rows

Ladybird bug feasting on the aphids and white fly

Look closely for the ladybugs on the  left photo, making a meal of eating the aphids.These little creatures are a gardeners friend, although the invasive species of the Harlequin Bug are now wiping out our UK Ladybird bug..

 

Sweetcorn ready to go into freezer.

Our sweetcorn has done exceptionally well this year, with the heat and often heavy rainfall which would fall in the night. On the left here you see 40 cobs ready for the freezer. There  were cobs still ripening ready to be harvested. Quite a lot, but when we went to collect today it seems our thief had got there first leaving only six small ones..

We are having problems with produce being stolen again on the plot.. We had onions go, and the odd cabbage, broad beans we knew were ripe also went.  You do not mind the odd thing missing but when they take a  lot.. or a whole row.. It can be quite soul destroying when you put so much time and effort into your plot to grow your own veggies..  We have thought of putting our Motion camera on the plot, but as this was a gift we do not want this stolen, as we get a lot of pleasure watching the hedgehogs roam on our garden during the night via watching the play back.

Hedgehog out earlier in the Summer on our patio

I have no problems sharing, we always plant more than we need and give family and neighbours that which we cannot store.

I would gladly give produce away rather than someone think its there right to take it..  Though I am under no illusions people have no qualms with taking what is not theirs..  I just hope they enjoyed what they have taken.. They obviously must need it more than we do.. So we keep planting more than we need .. And are thankful we can do so.

So until next time.

Take care.. and be thankful for what you have, for there are always those less fortunate than ourselves..

Through the Sweetcorn view of plot

Happy Gardening!

Sue