Village Show

Late August is the time for Froggatt Show: a delightful way to spend a warm Saturday afternoon. There are stalls selling jam, cakes, jewellery, plants, candles in teacups… I could go on. There are horses and ponies, classic cars and tractors. And so many dogs, taking their owners for a pleasant afternoon stroll. But the main attraction for me is the show tent, where people enter their lovingly grown produce and carefully nurtured flowers in the hope of winning prizes.

To be honest, I felt a little conspicuous using my large camera in front of so many people. Would anyone object to their prize cabbage being captured for posterity? So I used my phone. The interior of the white marquee made the flash fire, of course, but I think the results look interesting in a way.

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So carefully arranged… I wish I could grow vegetables like this!
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The dahlias really caught my eye.
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Closer…
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Drama! (Complete with tiny spider.)
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Bold.
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Paler.
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Painted?

 

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Sweet pea sparkle!
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And some more!

Recommended for a traditional English day out!

Ringlet

I’ve realised with a shock how long it is since I last wrote anything on here. So I’m planning to make amends, and dip my toes back in the water, by posting pictures of some of the wildlife I’ve seen this summer. Starting with a ringlet butterfly. I’d never seen one before, although I don’t think they are uncommon, so I was very excited!

 

A Little Inspiration

A small spider lives behind the glass of my right wing mirror. Quite often, as I drive to work, I notice that the web, which it must have woven so painstakingly overnight, has been torn to shreds by the rush of air as I motor inexorably onwards (hoping that the working day won’t take a similar toll on me). But it always reappears.

I haven’t used the car much at all over the last couple of weeks, though. Holidays. A quick trip to the local shops now and again. Rich pickings for the spider, you would think. The air alive with innumerable insects, floating heedlessly past the gleaming metal giant on my driveway.

Inevitably, the spider has risen to the challenge. This beautiful creation appeared overnight.

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Far be it from me to write about the need to be persistent, resilient and just keep trying again. I’m not very good at that myself. I just wanted to celebrate the beauty of that web, to note that nothing is achieved without hard work, and that it is possible to find inspiration everywhere.

 

Aspire

Twelve days ago, in my post ‘Into the Light’, I asked myself what I would achieve in the coming week and the rest of my holiday. So, although it might not sound like much so far…

  • I’ve made time to catch up with some old friends.
  • I’ve visited one of my favourite places: Ely Cathedral.
  • I’ve made a significant start on getting rid of the mountain of clutter in my house.
  • I’ve started to plan a writing project. (Excited but nervous about this one.)
  • I’ve done quite a lot of reading.

There’s much more to do, though, so here is a picture to encourage me to aim higher!

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Progress

 

I thought it looked like a good year for apple blossom. And then, to confirm my suspicions, this happened!

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It might not sound like much, but there are nine small apples on the (container-grown) apple tree this year. Eight more than last year. Definitely progress!

Peace?

Last summer, a new neighbour gave us some (very useful) old plant pots and a gnarled piece of wood. Rejects from the previous owner’s regime. Turned out the wood had roots, and was the base of an ancient rose bush. Would it grow? Would it flower? Although it looked most unpromising, we planted it in a large container and forgot about it over the winter.

Until this week, it looked doomed, the only signs of life being a few weedy stems bearing somewhat spotty leaves and equally unappealing buds. Then the first flower appeared. Followed by the second. Different colours. And inevitably, a third, a different colour again! What was going on?

Obviously I don’t know much about this. I tried to dredge up any faint memories or scraps of knowledge about grafting or scions or rootstock. Nothing took shape. Then, one of those strange internet coincidences: I saw a picture of a rose called Chicago Peace, which had flowers of different colours! When I checked it out, I found that, in fact, Chicago Peace looks more orange or pink than this one, which is predominantly yellow. So, I think it’s probably a variety called, simply, Peace. Which I like, because I can remember my father mentioning that one when I was a child. It’s also known asĀ Rosa ‘Madame A. Meilland’.

Of course, I could be wrong, and would love to know if anyone can positively identify it!

Here are links to some information about Peace:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosa_Peace

http://www.rhsplants.co.uk/plants/_/rosa-peace-madame-a-meilland/classid.1240/