Thursday, September 30, 2010

Colours of September

Once again, I am joining in with Sue's Colours ....
Here are a few views in our garden, taken with my mobile phone, which is nearly always in my jeans pocket.
Spartan apples ripening - these will keep for a long time, with some windfalls keeping the blackbirds happy throughout the winter.
 The greenhouse tomatoes are keeping us well fed this month, while the outdoor tomatoes are beginning to give up.

This strawberry surprised us, as we rarely get a second crop, and seldom any this size.
In windy weather in the middle of the month some trays stacked near the greenhouse fell and put a dent in the back of a frog. I didn't find it until too late. Within a day, slugs had reduced it to this! I failed to photograph the one I saw in action.
The Cotinus cogyrria in the front garden gets out of hand each year, and a week ago I had a session trimming it back. This was to coincide with having an empty council composting wheelie bin. We don't have enough space to compost all our garden rubbish, so we let the more difficult bits go to the local council.
Tthe view from the front room, bright red Cotinus branches in a vase in front of the trimmed bush.
For some time we have attempted to establish Verbena bonariensis. This year we were pleased to see that it came up in the same position as last year. We also kept finding rogue seedlings, particularly growing between the paving in the path round the lawn. After wet weather many of these have been transplanted, and it looks as though we should get a good show next year.
A group of yellows: pears, Solidago and a tall yellow daisy that has been slower than usual to flower this year.
Birds drop seeds, and we keep on finding odd bits of this cotoneaster around the garden, particularly under trees. We trim or remove it depending on how much it gets in our way.
Near the house this pot contains a rhododendron purchased some years ago, which is slowly appearing to look a bit happier. In with it are a couple of self- or bird-seeded items, making a harmonious combination. If anyone can hazard a guess at the name of the red leaved plant, I'd love to know it.
We have a few patches of this sedum, which comes into its own at this time of year. Sue has an almost identical picture at the top of her entry for this month!
A handful of blackberries, nearly the last for this season.
Windfall apples and pears waiting to be cut up for eating, stewing or juicing.
Morning glory on the fence near the house.

Other climbers and fuchsia on the same bit of fence.
Our repaired rainwater gathering system, filled up now after recent rainfall. We put these tanks in 10 years ago when we had our extension built, and collect rainwater off the roof. The original holes for the linking hose were too near the frame, and as the tanks settled over the years leaks developed. A few recent visits to local plumbing merchants and research on the internet helped us to replace the parts. Wine corks have been used to seal the previous set of holes.

 A bee in action as on the self-seeded morning primrose up near the house. We dug up loads of ordinary pink geraniums in order to put in a few herb plants, and these grew up on the cleared ground along with some white campion.
Our purple podded climbing French beans got off to a slow start this year. We had the ash trees at the bottom of the garden trimmed in late July as they were becoming hazardous to the neighbour behind us. Now with the cooler weather and having had the overhanging ash trees trimmed, the plants in the bed nearby are going great guns.

And finally, some wool yarn that I dyed recently. It started out in an off white colour. The pink was dyed with raspberry jelly during the Online Guild May workshop, "Eat or dye". I tried to dye the cream balls with some foodstuff or other without success. The two remaining balls were put in a jar in the greenhouse with some water and deep red hollyhock flowers at the end of June, and left unchecked until last week. The flowers had started to ferment, and it took a lot of soaking in Eucalan to make the yarn bearable for use. Given that there are such small amounts, I'm not sure what they will become.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

5 years on

Today is my 5th blogiversary (is that how it's spelt?)
No time to say more, as a brief power cut and no broadband for a while mean that I am only getting on line in time to go to bed.
Colours of September due tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Trips in 2010

This year there has been so much on.
Back in July, shortly after we had returned from Canada after I attended the Knitting and Crochet Guild in Leeds, running a brief wire knitting workshop.

Next on the agenda was the Association for Contemporary Jewellery conference held at West Dean College in Sussex. Ian and I had a brief weekend in Midhurst beforehand. I took part in a couple of workshops, one with Michael Brennand-Wood, the other with Robert Ebendorf  from the US. In both we worked with waste materials, exploring connections.

 The resulting pieces in Michael's session were projected onto the wall. This was one of mine.

 Out of habit, I was knitting with wire in spare moments, attracting some attention. This little oddity knitted in stainless steel with turquoise coated copper wire ended up going home with another delegate.
The following week, I took off down to London for KnitNation. At the marketplace preview there was a mad rush of people to view the Wollmeise stand. Here is someone choosing which Wollmeise skeins to purchase.
On the Saturday night I managed to attend the first 20 minutes of the Ravelry party, then headed home. Seen on the tube, a Japanese girl sporting a lacy knitted hat.

 Next, at the beginning of September I headed north to the Shetlands for 5 day "In the loop II" knitting conference  in Lerwick. Seen on the ferry on the way out, a bright sky. This is one of many images taken on my phone.
 First impressions on landing in Lerwick - plenty of transport for animals lined up at the docks.
- anti gull netting for rubbish bags draped elegantly on a gate.
Seen at 07.40 the next morning, a delivery of fleeces to Shetland Wool Brokers. I was taking a stroll while waiting for the Co-op to open so that I could buy some food for my breakfast.
 People visiting the Shetland Museum. The boy and girl were both wearing interesting knits.
Some typical Shetland scenery taken on a trip on a local bus service. I had a few hours in hand before taking the ferry home, so looked to see where I could travel in the available time.
 The seas were just starting to get a bit bumpy on the return ferry service.
 This is all I saw of the Orkneys when we docked round about 23.00. On the way out I was already in bed by this time.
 The next morning it was still a bit choppy as we came into the harbour at Aberdeen something like 3 hours late.
I got home that Tuesday night , and then almost immediately afterwards it was time for the IKnit London weekend. Waiting for the RHS hall to open there was plenty to keep the eye happy!
So, one day I was in London, Melton Mowbray the next. I took Ian with me to see the Rare Breeds show. Here is a new take on hair brushing!
 There were good things available for lunch.
We chanced to meet our plumber, who was there to buy more laying hens. Here you see the sturdy packaging they travel home in, with other visitors.
And, bringing us nearly up to date, recently some of us from Long Eaton Art Room took part in the Harvest Moon festival in nearby Kirk Hallam. I took along a spinning wheel, and during the three hours managed to interest 6 youngsters in having a go.

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