Tuesday, 30 April 2013

...Happily Ever After...

We’re often wrong at predicting who or what will transform us. Encountering certain people, books, music, places or ideas… at just the right time can immediately make our lives happier, richer, more beautiful, resonant or meaningful. When it happens, we feel a kind of instant love for them that is both deep and abiding. Now and then it can be something as trifling as a children’s book, a returned telephone call, or a night at a seaside bar in Antigua...
Jonathan Carroll
Ok, I confess in the original text the bar is in Mykonos, in our case it was Antigua. The picture at the top of this post was taken 2 days after we met....who knew?
Happy "Ivory" Anniversary to my lovely boy...
my throat is tumbling full of all the words, I can only sing my song because of you...

May I thank you so much for being so kind in your good wishes ~ Claire, Lilac in May, Greenthumb, Jayne, Sheila, Lisa, Daisy J and Jen. 

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Great Dixter

On a damp, soft, overcast day almost a year ago we visited Great Dixter. It was luminous in the heavily saturated air, the greens were greener and heavily laden with droplets...the flowers were singing their colours...from their nests and bowers the birds chimed in...like an orchestra in full triumphant flow.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Pots of charm at Perch Hill

You could be forgiven for thinking that on a rather bleak April day there would be nothing to see at Perch Hill. But a useful nudge, courtesy of  F.B,was all it took to get me Down the Lane and up a hill to visit Sarah Raven's cutting garden yesterday afternoon. Whilst we are definitely a good 6 weeks behind in terms of Spring, there was still much to enjoy. In actual fact, I rather appreciated seeing the architecture of the garden, the bones of it....support structures and evergreen muscles in the shape of box hedges.

There are brave artichokes making their first frond like forays and some purple sprouting broccoli that made my head swim with pasta possibilities...

Once inside the greenhouse the thrill of spring colour! And it is a thrill after this long winter and our abnormally naked landscape. Singing, glorious primroses with egg splotched centres and their friendly petal faces, luminous in the weak sunlight.All in generous groups made sensible by Sarah's lovely colour combinations.In a way, these early Spring flowers are heralds...we keep the faith that Spring will be along and they both cheer us and trumpet what's to come.

My very favourite still life of the day was this...delicate lilac lined shells in a beautiful glass container paired with a purple glass vase tumbling with green and mauve hellebores...delicious...oh, and the cacti...fuzzy, spiked perfection.

Perch Hill will be open again on April 27th, more details here. You can read more about my previous visits to Sarah's garden here.

Reports of a fine and warm weekend to come!
Along the drive way, towards the Cowshed, the cherry trees are heavy with bud and longing to burst open...the hawthorn hedge is finally tinged in the freshest of green...I think of this...
As the month draws on, there is a sudden rush of warmth and in a day or two the garden is a changed world, as in a fairy story where a spell has been suddenly lifted. Barely budding trees thicken with green, the spinnach is rampant, and the rhubarb, that a few days back was pale and stubbly, is like an enormous tropical plant. The cherry trees that should have been in bloom for Easter, now burst into festoons of hanging blossoms....
Extract from Four Hedges by Clare Leighton

Here's to festoons all round!