One Small Apple

Snapped on my phone one evening a few weeks ago – in great excitement. I had an apple!

Some progress since the great discovery, but not much, though some of the pictures make it look rather like a minor moon orbiting a distant planet.

There’s only one small apple. It’s a better crop (cue laughter) than last year’s, when the blossom was blown away overnight. I don’t think it will win any prizes, but I’m going to make a point of picking and eating it when the moment is right. Not sure about that little spot I can see on it though…

The common theme in my garden, of course, is unintended chaos. However, as a reward for producing this little gem, I will definitely re-pot this apple tree into a more suitable container and try to prune it properly. One good turn…

Link to RHS website page on growing fruit in containers:

Geranium Rozanne

After being treated very badly (left over the winter in a small container), this hardy geranium is now looking strong and beautiful.  Here are some pictures of it in sun and after rain.  I think it looks amazing whenever.

It’s a prize-winning plant, voted Plant of the Centenary in the public vote (RHS Chelsea Flower Show).

Link to the Royal Horticultural Society page on Geranium Rozanne:


The Ceanothus in our garden has been a pleasure to look at this year.  All the other ones in the area seemed to flower a few weeks earlier (perhaps different varieties, or just in sunnier spots). So I wasn’t expecting such a wonderful show. Bees adore it, as do a host of other insects. I found it quite difficult to photograph the bees because they were just so, well, active!  But here’s my attempt…

There’s another one on my Instagram (katkarradz).

Canterbury Bells

I always think this is a wonderful name for a flower. I hadn’t seen them for years (or perhaps I just hadn’t been looking), but noticed these in a small local garden centre. They immediately brought back memories of my dad’s garden. He certainly grew them one year; I don’t remember seeing them there regularly. However, I do have a somewhat unpleasant memory of looking inside one of the perfect, bell-shaped blooms only to recoil at the sight of a thickly woven web with a crabbed black spider crouching inside it. That could explain why they disappeared off my radar.

Their appearance is astounding: rich, blue, glazed flowers and that impressive (I nearly said striking) shape. They need a name which combines tradition, beauty and joy. And they have one: Canterbury Bells (Campanula medium) also known as the bell flower.  Apparently they were supposed to represent gratitude, or faith and constancy. I’m grateful to have found them again!

I hope to grow some next year.  That spider has frightened me for long enough!


The common foxglove: Digitalis purpurea, often seen growing wild but here towering in a garden.

This was an impulse shot taken on my phone. I fully intended to post it on Instagram, but the height of the plant and the vertical nature of its growth just didn’t work somehow. I’m fascinated by the sheen on the flowers and their wonderful rich colour. So here they are!

A Gooseberry Afterthought…

… and an excuse to post another photo of a gooseberry.

As I was checking on the way dictionaries expressed the pronunciation of ‘gooseberry’, I found a few interesting uses of the word.

It is, or was, possible to have gooseberry eyes, which are, so they say, dull and grey, like boiled gooseberries! Or how about a gooseberry wig, which is large and, apparently, ‘frizzled’. Most people have heard of playing gooseberry, but to play old gooseberry was to cause havoc or mischief, ‘Old Gooseberry’ being the Devil himself!

There are also still a few gooseberry shows around the country, such as the famous one at Egton Bridge in North Yorkshire, which started in 1800.  Somehow I don’t think the ones in my garden would qualify, but they still look good to me!

I seem to recall that the single gooseberry produced by my plant last year turned a deep red, so possibly more gooseberry ramblngs to follow…