Showing posts from January, 2021

Botanical books & beauties

Hello m’ blustery barnacles, It has been a soggy, cold week here at Long Mizzle, so lots of time's been spent indoors, chain drinking tea, browsing botanical books and attempting some watercolour painting.  Look what’s popped out in the last few days – Monsieur gave me this Moth Orchid (Phalenopsis) a few years ago for valentine’s day, saying it was "the runt of the litter and the last one in the shop". Immediately I loved it. Some people chop off the stray, fleshy aerial fleshy roots, but I  think they just add to its weird beauty. Plus, these plants photosynthesize from their roots, so it is best to leave the aerial escapees intact and allow them to party, whilst the lower level roots are best kept in a clear pot. [Regarding root condition, green = good, silver = de-hydrated, brown = dead] In the wild, Phalenopsis would be perched in the crevice of a tree (epiphytic) or clinging to a rock face (lithophytic). This one has long been due a re-pot, but I will wait until i

A drop of snow?

  Hello, m’ snowy jollies,   With the January lock down effect, it sometimes feels like life is on PAUSE in addition to FREEZE. When I start thinking about my weekly Long Mizzle correspondence, I find myself saying, “I haven’t got a single thing to gossip about!” But then I sift through my photo journal and realize, actually, nature marches on regardless and we have been garden busy in our own little way. Just today I squeaked in delight upon finding one simple, tiny snow drop. These bulbs came mixed in a pot of sedum that a neighbour gave me and I wasn't sure what they were. This is the same kindly neighbour that regularly pushes packets of seeds with hand scribbled notes through my letter box.  I can't remember what I planted in these pots, meaning more lovely surprises on the way...   One thing we have especially enjoyed this week is working on projects to encourage more wildlife into the garden. The kids got some construction kits for Christmas, so we picked a nice dry da

Chilli when it's chilly

Hello from a chilly Long Mizzle, Brrrrrr, please come through for a virtual cuppa in the garden. We have tea, coffee, herbal or hot chocolate? ... The traffic at the bottom of the road has finally settled down and the frosty nights leave the pink River Lilies sugar coated. As the day progresses and the sun lazily stretches out, the crisp ground softens, sending quick ascending vapour over the old town and tidal river. This week I've been sowing chillies and, shock horror... bird watching ( I never ever thought I'd say that!) amongst other things. I had to dig out my 'Pat Butcher' fake leopard fur coat. I just need the big earrings and fag hanging out my mouth now. In the vintage orange vase: dried Agapanthus flower heads. The sticks, jars and green orbs keep the cats' furry bottoms off the vege beds. Frosty River Lilies (Hesperantha coccinea) - The Camellia at the top end of the garden won't be too happy about the frost but it'll survive (if this particular