Archive for July, 2009

Around the garden at the end of July

Thankfully no rain today so I had a few hours enjoying the sunshine and pottering about in the garden. Here’s a few photo’s taken this morning.

Although my Peppers were slow to start, they’re really starting to swell now.

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I love these little orange flowers that are dotted around the pond after  I rescued the bulbs last Feb during digging for the new veggie plot.

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Our wooden barrel pond. The lack on sunshine this month hasn’t allowed the solar pump do it magic to keep the water clear so I’ll tend to it tomorrow.

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We planted these giant Fuchsias last year and this year they’ve been even better.

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The Cucumber invasion continues 🙂

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Come on sweetcorn, grow grow grow!

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Finally, after thinking I’d planted to late we have Peas 🙂

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I was trying to get in close with my Macro filter but the wind was to strong and kept knowing the sunflower out of focus.

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A mass of Lillie pads in our pong. I divided the tubers in Spring apart from this one, it’s need doing next year by the looks of it.

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More pond plants

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Onion head taken with my Macro +10 macro filter

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Daisy, taken again with my Macro filters stacked +1, +2, +4 and+10

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Our seed grown Dahlias haven’t done very well this year. The one below was from last years plant tuber that I saved over winter.

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Still quite a bit more work to be done in the garden tomorrow so please NO MORE RAIN 😛

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Veggie plot update – Mid July

It’s been a few weeks since posting an update about the veggie plot and with all the mixed weather we’ve been having of late it’s really kick started the growth. Here’s a selection of pictures I took whilst watering this evening.

My Enorma runner beans are being picked every other day and are growing so fast it’s as if you can almost see them grow! I’ll have plenty to give away at this rate and any glut I’ll Blanche/freeze  for winter.

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Getting ready for this evening dinner.

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The tomatoes aren’t ready yet, put it looks like they’ll be plenty to go around, especially the Money Maker variety below.

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The ‘Roma’ variety seem to be lagging behind a little but I counted about twenty starting to appear this afternoon. The Russian varieties are pretty impressive but are they supposed to be this big?

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The sweetcorn cobs are also starting to appear. I read on a few blog’s that you can ‘help’ mother nature by transferring pollen from the top of the plant to the the silks below so I’ve been doing this over the past few days. It’s strangely addictive 😛

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Unlike the other Courgette plants, I have one that doesn’t seem to be producing anything but male flowers. To my delight, I noticed this little fella tucked away under a leaf. Looks like they’re might be another one coming on the right too.

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I’m still hoping that I haven’t  sowed my peas to late (late may) especially as my Mum seems to have a bumper crop this year. Flowers are just starting to form so hopefully peas to follow.

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My folk visiting for the afternoon with my niece, Lucy. Nobody goes home empty handed!!

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The Roaches, Peak District

I really didn’t know what to do with myself today other than wanting to get out and about into the fresh air. Over breakfast I was browsing through some of our walking guide books and read with interest about circular walk in the Peak District along the high ridges of ‘The Roaches’. A little bit more investigation via the Internet and I had my destination mapped out. I’ll be ”Johny lonesome’ on this one as Curstie is at work today.

I gathered up my camera gear (or course!), made myself a packed lunch, flask of coffee etc and headed out. I really enjoy driving through the Peak District, passing manor houses, little villages and farm cottages. On this week day the roads were almost empty and great fun twisting up and down the steep valley walls – it’s no wonder they’re favored by bikers! Passing through the town of Leek, I spotted endless antique and curiosity shops so no doubt I’ll  be back this way with Curstie.

Rounding a corner, I got my first look at the Roaches. A quote from the Peak National Park website sums them up quite nicely –  ‘they stand as a line of silent sentinels guarding the entrance to the Peak District’

Here’s a shot of Ramshaw Rocks taken at the start of the walk.

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After a fairly steep climb, I headed towards Rock Camp where parties of rock climbers were scrambling up the rock face.  I watched them climb for bit before heading on to the easier climb between a gap in the rock formation.

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Even at the lower end of the ridge, the views looking back towards Leek and Tittesworth Reservoir were fantastic.

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Following the path, I picked my way along the ridge end and stopped to take this picture. It’s a series of  bracketed shots taken at -2, +2 increments which I’ve merged as one HDR image using Photomatix. I still haven’t got the hang of it yet but I’ll keep trying 🙂

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Time to take in the views and have a bite to eat!

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Continuing along the ridge I came to Docksey pool which is the highest in the Peak District. In this picture I’ve tried to slow down the shutter speed as much as lighting conditions would allow so I could smooth out the rippling water. It’s not too bad, but I’d really like to invest in ND grad filter and try again one day.

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Keeping one eye on the darkening clouds and the other on my feet, I headed further up along the ridge to the highest point.

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Phew, made it to the the trig point, time for a cuppa and a good look around. It was very windy up here and I could hear the distant rumble of thunder.

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Enjoying the views…and the workout!

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At this point I wasn’t  sure whether to continue along the trail that led down through the heather fields to the road and back to the car or head back the way I’d come. In the end, the loud clap of thunder made the decision for me and not wanting to get soaked I headed back the way I’d came being the shortest route back to the car – besides, scrambling on the rocks was fun!

Time for one last photo before setting off again…..briskly!

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I really enjoyed this would defiantly want to come back with Curstie next time.

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Rainy day

What a complete turnaround weather wise to last week. Today, mainly heavy showers and thunderstorms. I not complaining though as it’s s0 nice to be cool again.

During a brief respite, I had a wander around the garden with my camera in hand.

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Runner Beans get a good soaking

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Condensation on the greenhouse roof.

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Every year my Hostas fall prey to slugs. This one seems to be untouched and is almost in flower.

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Birch Shield Bug.

It’s the first day of my week long holiday from work therefore time to take it nice and easy. Whilst relaxing in the garden reading the morning papers something buzzed by and landed on a nearby plant. Looking round, I spotted it was an amazingly colored bug. I’ve seen something similar before but they’ve always been a uniform green. Keen to take a photo I slowly retreated away so as not to cause it to take flight and once clear I scrambled inside for my camera.

My regular camera’s battery was still charging after Saturdays Airshow  therefore I used my Fuji 5800 this time around.

Thanks to a little research on the Internet, I’ve now found that this little fella is called a Birch Shield Bug.

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Pictures from Waddington International Airshow

Here’s a small selection of the 100’s of photos I took yesterday at the RAF Waddington International Airshow. What a fantastic day out!

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Pickings continue.

It’s certainly been another hot one this week but the fruit and veg seems to be coping just fine. Earlier in the week I picking our the first courgette and this evening, a big fat cucumber to add to our salad!

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It’s been so warm in the evenings,  I sat outside yesterday evening around 11pm and the temp gauge was up around 22c and 27C in my study. I’m glad my occupation involves time spent in a computer room kept at a very cool 15-17c – Not so nice in winter though 🙂

I’ve also been looking after my parents garden this week whilst they’re on holiday and have been visiting early in the morning before and after  work. Both my parents are very keen gardeners and have been for as long as I can remember. Everything always looks immaculate and I know they both spend nearly all there days just pottering about…sounds bliss to me! Many years ago they purchased a plot of land at the very end of the garden they use for growing all kind of fruit and veg from Gooseberries to Pak Choi. Tomorrow I’m going to take along my camera with me as they they have a few plant schemes I’d like to try myself next year.

Our own garden is looking great this year too. The mid-late summer bulbs i planted back in April are starting to appear so hopefully prolonging the show. I’ve not really had time to make up our hanging baskets this year so I’ve brought a few from a local boot sale. They’re rather large but at £6.00 each I thought they were very reasonable. Pickings on the veggie plots are increasing becoming available and it’s so nice to go out to the bottom of the garden to see what we fancy.

We also celebrate our first wedding anniversary next week so it’s my last day at work tomorrow before breaking up for the week. After a very busy June, I think we’re both ready for a well deserved rest.

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