September already! And while we are still having a fair share of sunny days and even some rather unseasonal temperature highs, the general trend is heading towards a much more autumnal feel, especially noticeable in the early mornings and late evenings.
It’s been a great summer, full of all sorts of weather and I’ve been out and about taking lots of long walks this year. I’ve made trips down to the river and to local parks nearly every day unless I’ve been kept inside by outbursts of torrential rain and I’m definitely feeling the benefits of exercising regularly.
Stretching the legs and the lungs, and soaking in the local scenery is a great counterbalance to the reclusive and sedentary nature of a self employed, work from home, crochet obsessed yarnoholic. I’ve been especially enamoured of the flowers, wild and cultivated, around the riverside and in the many parks we have around here.
My garden is a disaster zone, as usual, so I get my flower fix when I’m out and about.
The green fingered council employees obviously know what it takes to put on a good display.
Though I must admit to having a special soft spot for the natural sprawl of the meadow plants – just getting on with it and doing their thing.
I only wish they would be more inclined to do their thing in my garden as well. Most of my flowers have been reduced to stumps by the slugs and snails – again! The withered brown twig, hardly visible in the middle of the pot is the very last remnant of a tray of 18 dahlia plants, brought home from the garden centre with great hope, in anticipation of a colourful display. The lobelia plants aren’t looking anything like my neighbours frothy tumble of bright colours either, though they are at least still green!
I don’t mean to infer that the snail in this photo is the actual culprit, here…
…I think it was more likely to have been this one and his horde of hungry pals, along with a bunch of big fat slugs that can often be seen crawling all over the walls as soon as we get any hint of rain or generally damp and foggy weather…
So cute though. Yeah, I know, I’m a pushover and let them walk all over me!
As it happens, I’m no better with growing grass either, but I’ve got around my lack of skill in getting a turf lawn to take hold (three times a failure over the years) by investing in a strip of astroturf. And if you don’t look too closely you can’t even tell it’s all a fake! No mowing to worry about, just a quick sweep with the broom to keep things neat, which leaves more time in my life for the things I really love to do.
Oh the joy of a little green patch to lounge about on! The perfect spot for sharing a Pimms and some snacks with an amigurumi buddy on a Saturday evening.
Now there is one plant that I have had a good measure of success with. It seems the creepy crawlies that live around here aren’t too keen on geraniums for breakfast, lunch or supper, and with a bit of gentle pruning these robust and vigorous sprouters have bounced back from an onslaught of neglect and are about to put on a great show of fresh new flower heads. It seems they can even survive when I forget to water them – which I shamefacedly admit happens much more often than not.
I’m going to try and give them a bit more attention from here onwards to reward their loyalty, even though they have so far survived rather well without it. Things can only get better with an added bit of TLC, and if they’re the only thing that I can keep alive I might as well try to make them the best.
I may not have the greenest of fingers but I do have other talents that can be put to good use and if I can’t grow a garden full of beautiful blooms I’m happy to crochet some instead. I’d much rather be working with a hook than a trowel, truth be told, and have had great fun teasing woolly blooms from balls of yarn in all the colours inspired by the flower beds and meadows of my regular riverwalk…
…with the addition of a bit of turquoise (artistic license!).
I’m earmarking these pastel pretties for a scarf, but I turned a few into little flower pots too. Now this is the sort of horticulture I really love!
No matter how lovingly Shelby the snail looks at them, I know they’ll come to no nibblesome harm whatsoever!
Still on the flower theme, I also made some daisies this week. A friend wanted one to sew onto a jumper so I got experimenting and came up with these designs
The petals came out a little bit curly so I had to resort to blocking. I say ‘resort’ because, along with darning in ends, it’s one of my least favorite parts of the crochet process and, luckily for us amigurumists, is largely avoidable for most of the time. But sometimes it’s just has to be done to bring out the true glory.
A bit of pinning, a squirt or two of water and they’re ready to be put outside to dry in a little patch of sunshine.
They’re the only sorts of blooms I’m likely to see in my garden until those geraniums start to blossom, but in the meantime I can always visit this patch, just a few minutes walk away, when I feel the urge to commune with the real life daisies.
Or closer to home, I do have several healthily abundant patches of weeds. I’m good at growing things that I didn’t plant as you can see from my front step. Pogo loves hiding out in them, waiting to ambush passers by for a fuss and a chat, so I haven’t the heart to get out there and pull them up. That’s my excuse anyway, and I’m sticking to it!
After all, weeds are flowers too, and I have to be grateful to nature for compensating for my lack of cultivated garden prowess.
I may have been at the back of the queue when gardening skills were being handed out but so far as growing flowers is concerned, fortune gave me a hook and some yarn, plenty of weeds and unstoppable geraniums.
That’s plenty to be grateful for!