Sometimes, I just potter. Days without plan, without purpose,
days when I can land on any activity I fancy, at any time, suit me well.
They don’t come around very often but this weekend was a real treat.
Digging around in the ‘spare’ freezer I came upon two bags of last year’s plums.
This year’s crop is all but ready to pick, so what to do with them?
Why, make a few pots of jam, of course.
And then there’s the garden, an hour here and there is always a pleasure. It’s neither hot nor cold, fairly dry, perfect weather for some pruning, chopping back and even a touch of weeding. The clumps of daisies, faded now and wilting, have gone, weeds have been pulled from cracks in the paths and a few shrubs have been thinned and pruned. The currently freshly filled compost heap is gigantic; it’s needs turning and shovelling into the one next door, which is still filled with ripe and ready compost. That’ll be a job for Paul when he next comes.
But there’s been a lot of standing and staring in admiration as well. The flame bush is out, the shrub border which has lost all its flowers is looking very interesting and the flower border proudly presents an attractive display of late summer flowers.
Yes, for once I am pleased.
Just look at clematis ‘Abundance’, climbing high up into the plum tree. It’s name is a fitting one. In one season, after being cut right down to the ground the preceding autumn, it climbs and rambles and spreads itself without thought for any other plant in its path; even a tree doesn’t stand a chance. Up and over it goes. The flowers last for weeks, right until the early frosts. Anyone who has a tree that looks better dressed up could do worse than try ‘Abundance’. It’s fully hardy too.
Not a bad show for late summer.
Yes, I am quite pleased, for once.
I complain too much about weeds and mess and disorder,
I should take a step back and look at the overall picture more often,
forget about weeds.
A neighbour came to collect Millie for an hour’s walk this afternoon.
That meant that we could take our time over Sunday lunch
and enjoy the best part of a bottle of Merlot with our meal.
But I didn’t want Millie to feel abandoned by her mum so I gave her a very thorough brushing in the garden when she came home. That is a big pile of dead fur. During her last illness, which was most probably due to a deep seated infection caused by mites getting into the skin and erupting into small, bloody, craters all over her nose, she was on steroids and antibiotics and parasite repellent for her coat, all of which came with nasty side effects, making her feel a bit sorry for herself. The medication didn’t improve the condition of her coat either. But she’s getting better and the thoughtful expression on her face is mainly due to the close attention she is giving to a large treat in her mouth, which takes some serious chewing.
The rest of the time I have been reading. A never ending yarn of 832 pages, ‘The Luminaries’ by Eleanor Catton, a hugely entertaining novel about the New Zealand goldrush of the 1860s. It’s a fascinating story of hardship and skullduggery, a consummate literary page turner, intricately crafted and beautifully written. But it definitely requires staying power. I have reached page six hundred and fifteen. An awful lot of words.