Another week speeding past! I hope you’ve had a good one! No trips on trains for me this week, although I have been out and about in the car quite a bit – sadly, no knitting on the move for me this week, though, as I’ve been driving!
One of my out-and-about trips was to meet up with one of my oldest friends (oldest as in I’ve known her a long time, not that she’s ancient!) and we always end up talking gardens; we took our gardening qualifications at the same time many years ago and both set up our own businesses at a similar time so we have a close gardening connection as well as having been close friends for many years. This particular visit saw us both be-moaning the fact that our gardens are not as beautifully kept these days as we would like and making plans to do something about it.
I’ve come home full of inspiration and good intentions, and found these dahlias flowering in the textured pot that I bought specially to foil the snails. Hooray, it looks like it’s worked! I haven’t grown dahlias for years and I am so happy to see these. It looks like there are some smaller ones coming through at the bottom so it’ll be interesting to see if anything comes of those too.
I tried for years to grow teasels and they refused to germinate until one year, they popped up in the vegetable garden (just where I didn’t want them) and I couldn’t bring myself to pull them up. Now, I have teasels everywhere (including all the places that I still don’t want them) and these particular specimens are surviving in a bucket outside the door. Why a bucket? Well, when I pulled them up from my raised bed, I knew that they wouldn’t be very happy being transplanted and they were the only ones I could see in the garden at the time so I put them in a bucket to make sure they didn’t dry out. Of course, they’re now huge and spiky and there’s no way I can plant them anywhere so I’m letting them live out their summer in the bucket because the bees love the pink flowers.
There’s a very loud buzzing from our shed whenever I open the door so the bumble bee nest must still be inhabited; I’ve got no problem with them being there over the summer but should probably speak to the man at the farm shop who keeps bees as I think they may need to move on at some point or I’ll never be able to go in there again if their nest keeps getting bigger! I don’t know very much about bees and their nest or hives but I don’t want to hurt them so I think that getting some advice would be a wise plan!
There’s good news about the raised bed that the Something had been visiting: the Something appears to have moved on and my sweet peas are coming out. What is it about the scent of sweet peas? It transports me straight back to the gardening show that was held in my village every year and was as fiercely contested as any show on a bigger scale. I can clearly remember the sweet peas carefully arranged by colour and size in special showing vases and rows and rows of huge showy chrysanthemum heads and the brightest of dahlias with their winner certificates proudly displayed next to them. I always used to enter a miniature garden into the children’s section (I was a child at the time, I didn’t cheat! 😀); I wasn’t interested enough in growing show-worthy flowers at that age and I don’t think that my Dad would have wanted me to take over his vegetable garden with sweet peas either!
The gardening show stopped being held many years ago; lack of interest, perhaps, or lack of volunteers to organise it – lack of gardeners, even – and I know that many shows in many villages will have stopped over the years for similar and different reasons, but I do think it’s a bit sad. It’s probably because I’m getting older, but I do find myself being nostalgic for things that I remember but my girls will never experience – like the gardening shows. That’s not to say that I want to bring back everything from my younger days – I’m very happy being able to search for things on the internet instead of having to go to the library for a book, for example, and there’s plenty about the 1970s, 80s and even early 90s that I wouldn’t wish on anyone – but there were good things that have gone too, that would be difficult to reinstate because of the way we live our lives now. It’s just how it is, isn’t it?
These have brightened my day, however. Pea pods. Oh, I LOVE eating peas straight from pea pods – so much so that I would get banned from helping to shell the peas that my Dad grew because just as many (if not more) would find their way into my mouth rather than the pan! I say that they’re for eating and it doesn’t matter if you don’t cook them first …
And having stirred myself up with happy garden moments, I’ve been ready to tackle the jungle in the flower borders. This was a concerted half-hour effort which just goes to show that it doesn’t always take as long as you think it’s going to, to get something done. It still looks quite a mess but the borders have been overgrown for longer than I intend to tell you and they’ll take a while to recover. I just need to clear them out and then that can be the next part of my plan!
I saw some wildflowers in the garden recently …
|Source: June Middlehurst|
Winwick Mum Wildflower socks in June’s garden! These look so pretty, like they’re meant to be there!
It’s been amazing to see projects in Winwick Mum yarn popping up all over social media and I did intend to save all the photos for one big blog post – but I can’t wait! And there are so many photos now; I am doing my best to share them when I see them on Instagram and I’ll show you more on the blog too, but there are just too many for me to keep up with for just one post. (Nope, not complaining at all 😀) Thank you to everyone who’s bought the yarn, knitted it and shared your photos – I am LOVING seeing them!
I like that the projects aren’t all my sock designs too – Barbara’s Hidden Gem socks are shorties, ideal for the summer. (If you want to make a pair of these, you can use the Sockalong pattern but work a shorter rib, a couple of rounds of plain knit and then start the heel flap.)
|Source: Barbara Harding|
Gráinne’s cable socks feature a short row heel which works very nicely with the Seascape yarn (and I do love a cable!)
|Source: Gráinne Doyle|
and what about this stunner knitted with Brightside? Wow, I think this looks amazing!
|Source: Instagram @moonwm|
The pattern is the Pincha shawl (free on Knitty – I told you they had some fabulous patterns!) and I think it looks stunning in the bright colours which work so well with the feathered design. Just gorgeous!
All these project photos have been used with permission.
There have been pairs of socks arriving for the Yarndale Sock Line already, which is some speedy knitting!
Thank you very much if you’ve sent me socks, or you’re knitting socks (I’ve been tagged into lots of sock progress posts and that’s very exciting!); they will be very much appreciated and I’ll be adding photos of the ones that have arrived already to the Pinterest board for this year’s Sock Line later today.
I’m knitting my Yarndale Sock Line socks in Wildflower and as promised, they’re going to be a TAAT (two at a time) tutorial and I am getting on with it. Progress is a little further than this …
so hopefully it won’t be too long before I can put the tutorial up on the blog for you. In the meantime, it’s absolutely fine to knit socks one at a time!
I’ve also been super-organised and finally got round to putting my needles into some kind of order. I’ve been planning to do this for far too long, and the final straw came when I knew that I had spare needles to start another pair of socks but couldn’t remember which project bag I’d left them in. How frustrating – especially as I couldn’t remember where I had tidied the project bag I had last seen them in away to either! Anyway, the problem is now solved as I have this nifty storage solution … ta dah!
All made by me (well, not the wooden box, I have to draw the line somewhere) and only taking an hour or so of my time. Want to make one for yourself? I will be posting all about it very soon!
Now, however, it’s time for a brew and piece of shortbread. Lynn has sent me one 😀.
Thank you, Lynn, you’ve made my day! xx
Have a lovely rest of the week, I’ll be back soon to tell you more about my organised knitting needles!