Saturday, 14 March 2020

Barnsdale in Spring and Summer

Hello lovelies,
how are you doing? What a week we have had here, with the escalation in Corona virus cases and the introduction of some restrictions. I'm sure we will have many more to come and I know the whole world is reeling at this new menace. 

 People are looking tense in the supermarket isles, as they load their trolleys with non-perishables, hand wash, paracetamol and toilet rolls. I do admit to ensuring we have a supply of these items, but I don't think I've gone overboard. 

Working in the N.H.S it feels like we are under a black cloud,  hoping and praying the deluge is not as bad as we fear. 

On Thursday, before the ramping up of numbers and concern, I took mum to a family reunion, a lunch with all her cousins. I told her not to go kissing them and left her at the restaurant while I went off to visit the nearby Barnsdale Gardens.  It's a bit early in the year for garden visiting, but it seemed a good way to pass the time. I Took loads of photos and decided to write a blog post.

Thinking about my blog, I presumed I had shared my previous visit with you. That was in June of 2016. I searched my archive in vain. Odd? In the end I found a draft post, half written.

So I've decided to combine the two visits into one post. A spring and summer comparison of this special place. The garden where Geoff Hamilton was filmed for Gardener's World in my formative gardening years, the late 80's and 90's.

Sadly Geoff died in 1996 but the gardens have been well looked after by his family

You can see from this sweet map that this place is largely a series of small spaces, which Geoff designed to inspire those of us with an average sized plot. 

Thursday was a windy day and pretty chilly, with scudding  clouds but quiet a lot of sunshine. This first garden I viewed was a seaside retreat. It's actually not one of Geoff's , but designed by the also lovely, Adam Frost.

Here it is in June....quiet a contrast. I am so looking forward to all the new growth in my own garden.

But spring is still pretty. This yellow bush caught my eye. 

Thankfully the plants are really well labelled at Barnsdale . Cornus Mass, one to remember....if I come up with a space :0)

Here's how the Cottage garden looked this week.

And a June view for comparison.....full of flowers.

Roses, Peonies and Geranium .

In June you can smell the Roses.

In March you can admire the way they have been trained over the arch.

A beautiful summer corner of Delphiniums and Lupins

Leads to the classic greenhouse.

Full of Pelargoniums 

March view, showing the plant supports already placed,  to support those tall flowers.

 inside the greenhouse it's pretty similar, but today it's a lovely warm shelter from the chilly wind.

The scent of this dainty beauty caught my attention.

Tulbaghia Fragrans Alba. A new plant
 to me.

This is the Plantsman's garden in Summer.

and early spring. Interesting to see the "bones" of the garden

Here's an area that has really lovely bones. The four quarters of this space are each examples of small courtyard gardens.

The pebble flooring is stunning here.

Here's summer for contrast

This is my favourite corner.

 Mum sketching here, back in 2016

The view from that bench.

And mum's sketch.

Here's another summer view. This time it's of the Town Paradise Garden

This is the same space in March

Oooh, another warm up spot.

Almost 26 degrees C. Lovely.

Onto another space. This is the lovely Rose garden. No roses yet

But plenty in summer

And for the final comparison...phew, I hear you say. The Japanese garden in summer.

And spring. This is one space I really do prefer with less foliage.

Time to head back to the cafe for a hot drink, past the peacock by the eucalyptus tree.

Did you spot him?

and the daffodil bed.

The Ornamental Kitchen Garden.

Through the woodland.

To the cafe, which is almost deserted. So I make a bee line for the table by the bird feeders.

There doesn't look many in this shot, but it was honestly so busy.

There was even a bird identification guide on the table.

90 % of the birds I saw this week were Blue Tits, which made me very happy.

They are usually  shy and tricky to photograph.

But through the window I had a great view and they were quite bold.

And fast moving. But I still managed some decent zoomed images through the glass.

This quiet visit, with sunshine and loads of bird life was just perfect 

There, that took quiet a bit of writing, and that's ok. I certainly took my mind of you know what for a while. I hope reading it did they same for you.

Stay safe lovelies, and remember, this storm too shall pass.

Jacquie xxx

Thursday, 16 January 2020

My Temperature Blanket Ta-Dah

Hello Lovlies,
right back at the beginning of 2019 I started a blanket that would be a year long project....because the colours in it would be decided by the temperature on every single day of the year. I wrote about how it would work HERE.

Early last January I smiled at my first bunch of Daffodils

And began making squares, joining them as I went and working diagonally. The pattern is my own and you can find it in my side-bar.

I loved the anticipation of a big blanket containing all these colours.

It took until late summer before all the shades were used. There were so many different permutations, and though the placing sometimes frustrated me I could see that the overall effect was pleasing.

I got behind with my square making during the summer but my late November I was all caught up.

I loved the warmth and weight this project had as I slowing inched towards the finish line. It was a joy to snuggle under.

When the days turned really frosty I looked forward to working the blue and purple combinations again. Those that had so pleased me at the beginning.

It was like revisiting old friends....oooh I remember how nice this was.

I made a rectangular blanket with as close to 365 squares as I could figure out (357 in a blanket 21 long x 17 wide)

The final day's temperatures made up the border. Just the highs in trebles (U.K.)  and the lows in single crochet, plus chains to join.

There were no frosts so the border is all blue. It's a big blanket so the 16 rounds of border took a while, but by the 12 of January 2020 my project was complete.

The year had turned full circle and my first bunch of Daffodils (always so special don't you think) were blooming away once more.

I put my blanket over the back of the sofa, turned my back, and this happened :0)

 Yay, quality control ...Tick :0)

 As soon as we got a bright day ( which was yesterday) I stood on a chair to take some decent photos.

 Tricky to get the aerial shot.

 The cluster of hot colours...even though they were weeks apart

Loving all that turquoise in the border ( thank you weather gods)

Another angle.

A bit of shadow

 Looking down from the stairs.

This is where my blanket is currently.

I don't think the family have really noticed the change :0)

 But I do, and it makes me smile.....lots of yarny goodness needed to disguise this worn out old friend.

This project was a joy from start to finish...well the 2888 ends were a bit tedious, but I didn't even mind them really....good job.

I loved the mystery of how the pattern would develop. I loved not having to choose any of the colour combinations. I loved the huge amout of permutations that appeared. I loved watching the weather forecast and wondering what square it would "design".

And I loved being able to share it with you here and over on Instagram.

Now I feel like I've got to the end of a really good book, what to do but start I have :0)

Stand by for my 2020 temperature Ripple. Yes I may be addicted!!

Jacquie xx