Wednesday 28 February 2018

Early Spring in the Park

Last week when my sister was staying with mum the three of us took a walk in the Botanical Gardens in Victoria Park, Bath.

It was surprising how much there was to see. This witch hazel was next to the pond.

Nearby a particularly friendly robin posed on a park bench for us. I am sure he is used to be fed and we spotted a lady stood in the bushes talking to and feeding the birds and squirrels.

We expected to take a small loop around the gardens which we thought would be all mum would feel like doing.

I think she suprised herself by walking around virtually the whole garden.

When walking over the bridge we could see a splash of the colour pink in the distance.

This was actually a very early flowering cherry which we soon passed by.

There was other blossom to see.

Then there were the spring bulbs. These crocuses have been out since my last visit a few weeks ago.

They are now joined by a few Tete a Tete.

We also spotted Iris Reticulata 


Then a few aconites.

This carving in the remains of a fallen tree is close to the top gate. I realised that I must have virtually walked past it last time without seeing it.

We shall have to repeat our walk in a few weeks time to see what else is out.

Tuesday 27 February 2018

A Library, a Signpost and a Peek Inside too.

On Sunday morning I went for a walk down into the village in search of photos for the Winter Photography Scavenger Hunt. I had to smile on way down when I spotted this house sign. Not relevant for the hunt but a great name for a house in Frog Lane.

The purpose however of my walk was this.

Not only was it another old signpost for No. 18 Signpost which looks great from this angle too. Note the sign directing simply to "airport"!

The telephone box also meets the criteria for No. 11 A bookshop/library. This box like the one I showed before has been converted to a mini library.

Just to be sure lets take A peep inside ( No.25)

The mini library looks well stocked which is great because not long after it was opened last summer it was set fire to. It's great to see that this did not put the innovator off.

Monday 26 February 2018

There is no Smoke without Fire

I have mentioned before that we have a very large log burner in the garage that has the capacity to provide heat and water for both houses. It is kept going continually at this time of year and is a great blessing in this cold weather. The chimney towers above the garage, not the most attractive but obviously essential. When it has just been filled it tends to smoke for a while and so an ideal opportunity for the prompt No. 24 Steam/ smoke/ mist.

A few mornings ago the sun was just peeping around the house and had an orange tinge.

This resulted in "orange smoke"!

I am sure that you can imagine that a lot of wood is required to keep the boiler going. I have mentioned before that it is from coppicing and dead wood from the woodland on the farm. We now have a store to keep us going for a considerable time. It also provides a great photo for No.17 Many.

Sunday 25 February 2018

A Line of.....

The end of February approaches and I guess there may well be another link up for the Winter Photography Scavenger Hunt soon so I thought I would explore No. 13 A line of...  I have come up with a few options so far. 
These pots were lined up waiting for use in the potting shed at Dyffryn Gardens.

We have had little snow but the scattering we had combined with a frost made there's tiles look a little more interesting.

Yes I know I've taken pictures of the hens like this before but they are mainly in a line.

Saturday 24 February 2018

A Tree Walk

Our outing for our monthly walk with my walking group was a little different yesterday. Despite the weather having improved and the ground beginning to dry up it was decided to pick a safer option. We therefore headed to Westonbirt Arboretum for a walk on well established paths. 
Westonbirt Arboretum was originally part of the Westonbirt House estate and was planted by the Holford family in the Victorian era. It is now a grade 1 listed landscape. The most popular time to visit is during the Autumn colours but it is an interesting and scenic place for a walk all year round. There is a vast tree collection to view of all shapes and sizes.

It was a sharp sunny day but we needed to keep a brisk pace because of the chilly breeze. I managed to snap a few pictures along the way.

The camellias were in bloom.

The rhododendrons are not far behind.

I am not sure what this flower or leaf bud is.

There are some great wood carvings including these dogs situated on the newer side where dogs are permitted. We had quite some debate as to what dogs they are.

The original arboretum has a  new children's trail including a series of wood sculptures including the greatly popular Gruffalo.

This cottage close to the cafe and shop I would imagine was originally a workers cottage on the estate.

It was definitely a lovely walk and has inspired me to explore the arboretum again at different times of the year.

Friday 23 February 2018

A Heavenly Array of Early Colour

Those of you that follow both my blog and my sister's will find some similarities over the next few days. This is because we have been almost walking in each other's footsteps. However everyone has a different outlook so I am sure our slant will vary.
The more sheltered side of mum's garden which only really sees the morning sun is a great place for growing hellebores. The whole stretch of the border is covered in them.

I have seen them described as heavenly hellebores which seems a very apt title for such beautiful flowers.

Beauty of course is only skin deep. Hellebores are exceedingly poisonous despite their deceiving looks. Harry Potter fans will be able to recount several references to it being used as a potion!

Have you ever tried to photograph this flower? It naturally drops its head down. 

I believe my sister Julie tried lying on the ground.

I'm afraid I took a more lazy tactic and gently propped the flowers in a more upright position.

Such lovely pastel colours.

This double is a new addition to her collection.

My sister came up with this very effective way of enjoying them after a suggestion from the gardener.

It certainly means that mum can enjoy her flowers without having to step outside.