Thursday, 18 July 2013


This is the crambe in full flood (the big things in front are Cardoons). The crambe is now going over, as 

are some of the roses - how the year marches on. It is 29C here today and humid. Too hot for me and my implants. I just have to think about movement and break into a sweat.

I still have not put anything in the Vietnamese Pot. It is sculptural in its own right. R has been hard at work as I split my M&S shorts from stern to - you know - so another pair of trousers has been cut up to size and hang, hemmed, to my knees from my pot.

I found a big toad by the old well yesterday but the big news is the Buzzard that was not! I could hear it but not see it. I was hoping it would chase off the blackbirds, well the hen bird, that was dive bombing me as I stole her blackcurrants. Then I saw the bird singing in the big cherry tree by the Wendy House. It was a jay doing an impersonation. I have heard starlings do such a thing but this was the first time I have seen a jay do it.

Sorry, cooking, off to cool off for a moment as my room gets the afternoon sun and, despite an open window I am braising.

Back again, not much better. Here a pic of a wasp chewing our oak posts. They have been at the sheds as well and they leave 1" marks where they have been. In another five hundred years I may have to replace the wood that is left.

I have been reading, in the cool of the day, ha-ha, Don Howarth's book, Figures in a Bygone Landscape. (He is the man who discovered Fred Dibnah.) (Now that will totally confuse most of my worldwide audience.) (Enough to say that Fred was a CHARACTER who loved bringing down factory chimneys and driving traction engines.)

Anyway, the book is about his childhood in Lancashire in the 1920s and thirties - an alien world, well, not quite for I can remember clogs and stuff. I can also remember horrible medicines. One he describes is Cascara - a strong purgative made from the Purging Blackthorn, Rhamnus purshiana, a shrub from western North America.
Once I had a patient (yes, I was a medic) who was on regular Cascara Evacuant and Liquid Paraffin for constipation. Every time they asked for separate prescriptions.

One day I had the great idea to mix both in one bottle and the pharmacist duly obliged. On my next visit I was greeted with a look of dismay.
The mixture was standing on the mantlepiece but there was no bottle!
The stuff, mixed, had set like concrete and they had broken and removed the bottle to get to it.
Back to separate prescriptions, but, it  always made me wonder what happened when the two laxatives came together inside the patient!

I have several herbals and hope that they never have to be used - it would mean a collapse of society had occurred - and anyway most of the remedies have dubious actions. Gerard and Culpeppper made up a lot of the plants' supposed 'virtues'. There are exceptions - digitalis from foxgloves, rhubarb (enough said), willow extract (salicylic acid), rose hips - vitamin C and itching powder.

To move on - these are Knifofias - red-hot pokers - and I grow them because they were a favourite of my father. They do not go with any other plant in the garden but what the . . .

Despite the dry spell parts of the garden are still boggy and sodden. Perhaps, as it is so hot, I should go and lie down in the pond to cool off.
On the other hand the pond is 20% water 80% mud so perhaps not. A shower will do.
As the ponds have to be kept going for their plants and wildlife I will be helping.
The water from the shower runs into the septic tank, overflows into the soak away, from there to the ditch by the lower hedge and into the two ponds so, by having a shower, I am topping up the ponds!

And - I am loving dining in the garden - we did it twice in the whole of last year.

Time for a g and t and some nibbles al fresco.

No comments:

Post a Comment