sunshine

Bloom or bust is back!

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Hello, it’s been a while!

It’s been a busy few years; but having finally achieved the ultimate dream. Having our very own garden! If you follow my Instagram you will know that we said goodbye to my lovely allotment (as we moved areas). We also sold our flat and bought a house… funny how I focus on the allotment and garden. We are now ready to start the next part of our journey!

This is my first photo of the garden. We had the sunniest moving

So the real task begins to ‘get to know’ the garden and to make it ours. I loved using this blog for every stage of my garden adventure from balcony-to my allotment -and now ‘grown up’ garden! Marking my ideas, thoughts, trials and tribulations!

My focus has shifted from my allotment for the past few years when our son arrived. And he became the ‘project’ and will obviously always be the ongoing master project! So the gardening and growing obsession has taken a bit of a back seat, but…. it has never stopped. Having started him at the allotment from a young age he is a good trainee in the making and is not afraid to get his little hands dirty! If only they made gardening gloves for 2 year olds!!

Here is my assistant.

I love being outside and working hard to achieve a goal, it’s probably the challenge I enjoy the most. ‘Cheesy’ I know but I’m excited to see what we can achieve in our new garden.

The new, not new garden:

We looked and looked ….and looked for houses, and it was not easy to get our flat sold in the first place. But I think we got lucky and found a gem of a house with a good sized garden!

We have only been ‘in’ a few months, moving at the end of last year. Although we saw the garden in the middle of summer it had been hot and the garden was understandably a little neglected. But you can see it’s been loved and nurtured by the previous owners.

One of my favourite plants is a mature wisteria. Which has been trained over an arch. I have tried to give it an ‘over winter’ prune, without being to brutal. It would be great to get some advise please.

Now it is getting warmer we are starting to see the signs of spring. Lots of bulbs and shoots are popping up all over the garden. But at this stage my knowledge is seriously lacking on ‘garden’ plans. So I am trying a soft approach in some areas ; whilst I learn….combined with heavy handed approach in more forgiving areas of the garden. It’s not an easy balance. Also finding the time to really give the garden attention is really a challenge. I’m looking forward to lighter evenings and lots of bbqs!

Garden treasures:

We had a few in the garden!!! A rusty lawn roller, wheel barrow and various paving slabs, bricks and sand… not to mentions large pots were also left as garden treasure. Being an allotment scavenger at heart… this made me pretty happy! I now have 3 compost bins!!! Not to mention a gnome, mermaid and a duck garden ornament!! And a garden bench which has already been well used.

The unlikely couple!
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Easter weekend: plot visits

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I made it down the plot on Easter Sunday! I had a good dig and got one potato bed all set. Just waiting to add the all important potatoes. I did some weeding; this time of year they pop up so fast! But I did have time to admire the welcome weeds…

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Nice weeds

I fixed a path (removing evil weeds that spread under our paths (when we first got the plot I recall how we thought this was asparagus!… Makes me laugh every time!). It’s one of those necessary but very boring jobs.

Finally finished organising my strawberries! I decided to remove the old aged plants at the end of the bed. And I went back on the Monday and put onions in. (I’m not sure they are exactly companion plants..  But a space is a space… Right?!)

On Monday I went back. And got the remaining onion and garlic in… Just one box left. I am searching for a suitable empty spot.

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Garlic and onions in

Greenhouse:
-Sweet peas. Ticking along after the re pot.

Seedling trays:
-sunflowers. In hiding still
-borage. Germinated
-lettuce. Germinated… Just about

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Seedlings

-cat mint… A few tiny seedlings have appeared
-lucky dip. Some little seedling have emerged… Still no ideas! I will have to post photos for help!
-Beetroot. Germinated

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-Nasturtium. Germinated it’s virtually a weed… But a weed tgat
-tomatoes. Germinated and potted into larger pots
-My back up beans sprouted, and I popped them into the plot yesterday… I had dug up a few poor bean seeds by accident… But a few sown direct into the ground made it! Which was good news!!

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Beans and tomatoes

Seeds at home:
-Cucumbers… I have about 4 growing away happily. I will move these out to the greenhouse soon!
-Chillies. Growing away happily. I’m going to keep half in the flat and half in the greenhouse as a mini experiment

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Chillies and Cucumber

-Courgette… Still no shows. This is the one veg I struggle to get going every year. I’m sure it should be easy!!?
-Soybeans. In hiding
-Caped gosberries. In hiding

And then I went home and scoffed lots of chocolate!

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Easter treats!

Marrakech weekend away

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So we are back after 4 fabulous days in Marrakech! It was a blissful 30c with blue skies every day! (apparently that is unusually warm for this time of year, so feeling super lucky!)

This was our first trip to Marrakech and I cannot recommend it enough!

We stayed in a tradtional riad in the median. Which I mainly choose as it was named after a plant I like… Riad les Bougainvilliers (and the great reviews helped!)

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Inside our Riad!

And it did indeed have lots of bougainvilliers. Every colour imaginable!

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Bourgenvilliers in the roof terrace

We went prepared with 2 guide books, and great suggestions from seasoned visitors, a mini map, and some offline apps on our phones. We both downloaded the trip advisor app for Marrakech… Which seems a bit boring (i know!) but used together with a rough guide works a treat. My phone was actually better for this and I directed us to a few tiny cafe gems…. that we would otherwise have missed! And it’s all offline! We saved a wish list of to do things and then we could easily see what was in each area. Also it saves you being miss directed by the locals. 🙂 and we walked all holiday. Just cabs to and from the airport. Comfy shoes are a must!

On our first day we walked through the souks to get a taster… After the heat it’s like going into a nice cool pool…. Out we popped in the northern part of the medina. Clearly we have a better on board compass than we realised….or it may have just been luck! We didn’t use the map app fully until the final day… After all it is fun to get a bit lost! And we did our fair bit of that!

Day 1:
-souk wander…
North medina tourist hot spots:
maison de la photographie
medersa ben youssef
musee de marrakech

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Plants on a rooftop

Day 2:
-Cooking course at Amal Women’s Training Center & Moroccan Restaurant
This was recomended by a friend and was great! We learnt about the centre and how they work to improve women’s lives through education and training. And we also learnt how to cook a great tagine! And after our hard work… We got to sit and enjoy it 🙂

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Amal

-I got to indulge my ‘plant passion’ at Jardin Majorelle I will post some photos soon… Just need to edit!

-Souk wander: mission cushion! We haggled, but we both agreed we were ‘had’!
– for the evening we walked to cafe clock (no 2# food place in Marrakech) it was great and we went back for lunch on day 3! (The trip advisor map came into its own here…as we walked the winding dark ally ways like experts!)

Day 3:
South medina tourist areas
-Saadian tombs
-El Badi Palace
-Bahia Palace

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Watching the sun go down

Day 4:
-a quick visit to get some pastrys (to take home!🐖) although we did get a few free tasters!

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Sweet treats

-souks… To find a lantern!
-lots of breaks for drinks and lunch in roof top cafes. We found a new ish place called ‘nomad’ we found this from another rooftop… And after some wandering we found it at ground level. It’s not very traditional, but it was great food and very trendy!!

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-stopped for a juice on the market then slowly wandered back to our riad.

Loved it! Next time we hope to do a few days in the atlas mountains!

And then back to reality! I can get my allotment seeds sown now!

Hens and sunshine!

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So I had a lovely Saturday hen do with my girlies and lovely ladies,much relaxing, cake and flapper styling was had! Followed by an yummy, but very filling breakfast at breakfast club Soho. Which fueled me to the plot for a good few hours of much needed digging in the lovely sunshine!
The exciting plot update is; my first pea has appeared!

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And my sweet peas look like they have tiny flower buds forming… One month to go little sweet peas! You can do it!!

Otherwise my strawberries are looking super this year. So I might cage them…hopefully Mr squirrel doesn’t scoff the lot again.

My potatoes and cracking on.

My onions and garlic have a nasty bug. Maybe rust? I need to do done research on how to treat it, but they don’t look happy at all.

I planted in my green flowers seedlings into the green house border, and my outdoor tomatoes!

And I need to get some late sunflowers in, so I can compete with miss Corben in our tallest sunflower competition!

Sunshine

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It’s been a while since my last post! Yesterday I made the most of the lovely sunshine. And got a slightly scorched back. Time for sun cream obviously!

My sweet peas are doing well

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Also;
-tomatoes potted up
-stocks potted up

-larkspur shooting
-lysimachia ephemerum shooting
-stocks incana (Cinderella) shooting
-gypsophila shooting (outside)

Also I got some more seeds in;
Cosmos sonata
Borage (summer skies)
Poppy (angles choir mixed)

I have one lot of seeds that have not shooted, but I have lot track of what’s what, so perhaps it will all with out ok.

Also got some leek seeds and onion sets in.

Worried that I do not have enough space for my plans this year. So I might need to dig up the tarp area at some stage.

Lovely to see some sunshine and lots of lady birds!