Trip to Tokyo for the Cherry Blossom

In April 2018 we were back in Tokyo to see the fantastic cherry blossoms.

Our Koi Pond

Regular readers will have followed the progress of our Koi Bond build, heres the finished result

Singapore Botanic Garden

Whilst in Singapore we visited the botanic gardens, a fantastic explosion of tropical and exotic plants.

Colourful pots

The summer of 2016 saw the addition of a number of colourful pots tp the top patio

Phoenix from the Flames

After the fire came rebuilding and our new Jungle Hut is better than ever!

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Perfect Pots

Although we are keen outdoor gardeners we had often had a poor success rate with house plants, sometimes joking that rather than having green fingers we had the touch of death. This probably came from concentrating our efforts on the garden outside rather than those in the house.

In recent years however, this has changed. The main reason was the addition of a conservatory in the summer of 2013 and a new interest in growing plants in doors. Typically we have steered away from the more usual house plants, opting to grow several agave and aloes.

Of course with house plants, comes the need for pots. In the garden we have used a number of unusual pots or repurposed other objects for something more unusual. However in the house we have not always been able to find the perfect pot.

I'm sure we are not alone in wanting something a little different from the typical pots available, and neither are James and Eleanor at plant.furniture who fell in love with the styles from 1960s Germany. They have set out to bring back a number of these classic designs from the same factories as the originals.

They very kindly sent us the Fernand, amodern plant pot manufactured in Germany by Otto Keramik exclusively for them.

The Fernanda names means 'Adventurous' and features a very bright orange glaze poured on top of a light summery matt blue base as the glaze is applied by hand, each pot is totally unique.

Fernanda from plant.furniture
An instant hit in out kitchen, with the vivid orange complementing the orange bull from Habitat.

As well as a number of other contemporary interpretations of mid century German style they also have a number of retro pots available for sale.

A selection of the pots available
This really is a lovely piece, very well made, with great colours echoing the 60s, I'm sure one or two more of their pots will find a way into our home, and with prices from just £12 these instant classics will not break the bank.

Gaz
 

Friday, July 06, 2018

Garden Miscellany

Looking through some of the garden photos we've taken recently, there are those odd photos that roused our interest but not so much to dedicate an entire post about them.

So it's best to combine then in one post instead. A few of our garden miscellany...



Not many gardeners nowadays would recommend or deliberately plant running bamboos near fences or in such a tight space (gardening shows here in the early noughties seemed to have the penchant for doing just that).

Well we have several of such and as part of our maintenance of these plants is to leave surrounding paving stones loose so they can be lifted every so often, to check on rhizomes bidding to escape. Any rhizomes that do just gets cut off then the stone put back into place, easy peasy!




As well as growing plants we also like growing koi from small fish and these lot were maturing inside our growing on pond all of last year right up until a few weeks ago when most were already big enough to be moved to the big pond. And with space created in the growing on pond....



We just had to buy new ones to grow on. Eat up and get big boys and girls!



The Schefflera rhododendrifolia we have on the first raised bed near the koi pond always does this every spring. Not all of the buds survive though but it's a fascinating phenomenon and keep the plant looking 'lush' rather than umbrella like.

And to finish this miscellany...



The first time flowering of this Yucca recurvifolia, fantastic isn't it?

Mark :-)

Thursday, July 05, 2018

Hong Kong: Goldfish, Flower, and Bird Market

We spent a week in May exploring the urban jungle of a city that is Hong Kong. Suffice to say that we took so many photos and even more potential topics about our visit that it's almost too daunting to start this series. But if I get the ball rolling...


Perhaps if I begin by featuring our visit to three quirky markets that were adjacent to each other: The Goldfish, Flower, and Bird Market.

I first heard about the Goldfish market many years ago so when we pencilled in a trip to Hong Kong this was one the first ones I've jotted in as part of our itinerary. Despite the name 'Goldfish' they sell so much more than that but practically anything that is alive and can be kept in an aquarium. So it's an aquatics market, but there's something very quirky about this living pet fish market...

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Post Mortem Embrace

As I was tidying and removing some of the dead plants still dotted around the garden last weekend I noticed this in our utility area (i.e. where some dead plants are also stored to be sorted out later):




It's like the long dead Cyathea australis giving the newly dead Yucca thompsoniana a cuddle,  a post mortem embrace. Perhaps it is giving it commiseration or a welcome to plant hades.

The Yucca came to us many years ago bare root and needing TLC so it stayed in the greenhouse for quite some time. Not long after being repotted it flowered which took up a lot of energy from an already ailing plant. And instead of re-rooting, all pre existing roots that it had rotted away instead. It was a slow death for the poor plant as it lingered in the greenhouse for years, finally succumbing this spring despite being given special care all through those times. Nevermind. And so the remaining trunk is now stashed with other architectural lifeless plant bodies in the utility area.

And speaking of demise after flowering, one of my favourite bamboos in the garden, a very slow growing one yet so beautiful with its bright yellow culms with green stripe on its sulcus is flowering...

Tuesday, July 03, 2018

In Beautiful Brugge

This is going to be a bit of a retro post, rewinding back to the 5th of May when we spent a long weekend in the beautiful medieval city of Brugge.



It is one of those cities that is achingly beautiful and truly lives up to its hype of being breathtaking to behold.

Monday, July 02, 2018

Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2018

On the 23rd and 24th of June was the wonderful Woburn Abbey Garden Show. A show that is familiar with us, having been to several of its previous editions, we always had a great time, plus it was on our 'neck of the woods' so we were just all too happy to go again.



To quote their press release:

Woburn Abbey is delighted to announce that BBC Gardeners’ World TV presenter Adam Frost and BBC Radio 4 Gardeners’ Question Time panellist Pippa Greenwood are headlining this year’s remastered Woburn Abbey Garden Show on 23rd and 24th June.

Now in its 9th year, the ‘Gardeners’ Garden Show’ attracts around 5,000 visitors and has become an important diary date for gardening enthusiasts. 

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Happy Caturday

Knickers
Twinkles, who will be seven this week.
Cotton