Showing posts with label Wild flowers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wild flowers. Show all posts

15 June 2016

Life in Rural France.

A little taste of country life.

The wild flowers are blooming everywhere, even though there's not much sun for June 
I love it now the commune 
isn't allowed to spray weed killer along the edge of the lanes. 

Even the lizards are hiding
and only come out when the sun appears for a few moments.

The first sighting of our green lizard.

The Jay came to visit but now its back up in the trees.

The Hoopoe bird is still about.

We hear them everyday,
but mostly see them from a distance.

The blue tits are not at the bird table as often now.

as they are busy finding bugs to feed their young.
and with all the rain there's lots of them about.

These blue tits made their nest in a hole in the wall.
Not sure if it was the same pair from last year, I'd like to think it was.

This was the last baby to leave the nest.

This year the finches are in abundance .
We think this male & female Chaffinch  were a couple, they were always together.

The Brambling  both males.

The green finch 

This male Haw-finch comes to the bird table
every evening to feed before going to roost.

He's a big bird, with a big beak.

We are pleased to see the gold finches back, we haven't seen them for a few years.

I love to see walls and gates in the country. 

I'll close the gate for now
and look forward to opening it again for you soon.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

29 February 2016

The last day of February.

Towards the end of last week we had a day with not too much rain,
 so we thought we'd make a start by visiting the garden centre.
We took advantage of the special offers on these bags of terreau.
Which we will need for the new flower beds.
However it's been far to wet to do any digging, 
so I've just been tidying up and snipping a bit here and there.
This blue glazed pot was used for an outside Christmas decoration.
I was ready to pull everything out but I hesitated 
as some of the pieces had started to root.
Don't know if it's due to the amount 
of rain and very little frost,
but I'll be leaving them
for awhile to see
what happens.
If they grow we could have some more Skimmia
like this, as this is the shrub I cut them from.

The Pieris is very early to flower this year'

this one is Forest Flame
I have three Pieris not sure which variety the others are.

The winter flowering Erica has grown very leggy,
It was fighting for the light, until I did some severe pruning.
When we came to live here a French lady who is now a friend
 gave me a few tiny rosettes of this plant.
She told me to tuck them into the cracks of a wall, and I would 
have the plant for life. Since then I have walls and pots full of them, 
and I'm always giving them away. I have since found out the name
which is Sempervivum and I've heard it called the Hen and chic plant.
It's reproducing rosettes all the time.

 I'd forgotten all about this plant Aucuba Japonica'Variegata'
It was hidden behind some Photinia, which have grown so big
this poor thing was being smothered, I'd rescued it last year,
 look at it now, the leaves all shiny and healthy, with lots of berries.
These miniature daffodils where planted in this part of the garden a few
 years ago and with a little tidying every now and then, it looks after itself. 
It joins the farmers field, so it's always full of wild flowers which I leave.
I also put some Buddleia cuttings a friend gave me and now they are massive 
If Buddleia is not pruned back each year, before you know it the shrub
 will become a tree. So the secateurs will be working hard 
this next week. Come rain or shine.
Can you see all the wild flowers already growing here?
they will fill in when the daffodils are past their best.
Looks like it's creeping buttercups shooting up there.
Further along the bank,wild violets are growing,
there were a lot more until the mouse popped out from this hole
I think he must have damaged the roots, with all the digging.

Each morning Mr France replenishes the bird table with a mixture of seeds
he then scatters some seed around this mouse hole. I've been trying my hardest
to catch him on camera, but he pops in and out so quickly.

Well after lots of patience I finally managed to get a few shots of him 

As you can see, not a lot of gardening has been done.
But I hope you liked following me around the garden
catching up on some progress I've been able to make.

Hopefully next time, weather permitting I should have lots to show you,

I have new roses to plant and one to move from last year.
which didn't like where it was. A new home needs to be found for it.

I see from some of the blogs I read some of you still have lots of snow.
What a strange winter this has been.
 I'm sure you are all looking forward to Spring.
I'll be back soon showing the progress in my garden.

à bientôt

Barbara Lilian

11 September 2014

Around the world blog hop.

Last week I received an email from Daphne  inviting me to join the 'Around the world blog hop' 

Me ! who never links up with other bloggers, mainly because I don't know how !

I needed to think about it. It wasn't easy for me to say yes. This is going to be a big challenge, as me
and links are strangers, so please forgive me if the links don't work... here goes....

I met  Daphne in 2012 not long after we both started our blogs and that was through   I've been tagged  even then Daphne guided me through the technical bits, but I still didn't get the hang of links.
Daphnes blog has grown so much since then. She shares her delightful detailed recipes, and tells such humorous tales of her everyday happenings. I feel I know her although we've never met.
In April 2014 Daphnes blog   was featured in  'Woman's Weekly' an English magazine , I mentioned that I would love to see it, but wasn't able to get it here in France, so she sent me a copy, how thoughtful is that. She has continually  kept in contact with me through out my back problem, and I  still receive emails from her asking how I am.
I'm sure if you haven't already come across her lively blog you will be drawn in by her charm. She writes as if she is talking to you.
For those who already follow my blog, you will know that I'm not someone who posts on a regular
day, or has a certain theme for my posts. I just have to be in the right mood.

Now I'm meant to write something about me,
but if you take a look at my post I've been tagged
  you'll find out a lot about me.

I thought it was about time I introduced you to my husband who is usually in the background
and referred to as Mr France. This year in August we celebrated our 52yrs. wedding anniversary.

This year due to my back problem we haven't been out and about very much, but
  now I'm feeling much better, and last week my niece came to visit us and we
went to one of my favourite places Brantome in the Dordogne.
 Now I need to answer some questions.


Now this is easy for me to answer, as I don't have a writing process...
I just write what ever comes into my head, or make a post about something I might recently have seen or done. I never plan ahead, or have a special time or day to write my post.
I try to have my camera with me or in the glove compartment in the car.
That way, if I see something that might make an interesting post, I can take photos to work around.
However that doesn't always happen, my camera has often been left on the table in the kitchen.
 I could never class myself as a writer. When I was at school, in one end of year report my English teacher wrote 'Barbara seems to have a gift for writing, if only she would concentrate in class'
I still seem to lack concentration even now.


I wrote about this in April 2012 in my first post.
Welcome to the 1st page of my new blog

I used to walk a lot, but that went on hold for a while.
But I'm back to walking along the lanes
near my house.

Picking wild flowers on a walk.

I find writing about the things I see and sharing the photos I take in my blog
 a good way to have a record of the area and see it in a different way.
Since I've started to paint much more frequently than I used to
I now have the courage to show my paintings,
which otherwise would only ever be seen by me & Mr France.
I know I'll never be a writer or an artist.
but blogging has given me the confidence to be much more adventurous.


I think we all have our own way of writing for our blogs.
Some write very little and show lots of photos.
I don't have a particular style, so maybe that's what makes my work different.
I think it's for the reader to be the judge of that question.

As I have said before, although I live in France,  Paris is not my favourite place,
I know lots of people have Paris on their wish list to visit and that's fine by me , but you won't find me writing about it. However I do love reading blogs about Paris.


I'm working on a painting at the moment.
 Not just any painting, this is to be a gift for some friends.
It's the first time I've ever painted something for someone.
It's been very challenging, at one point I was ready to give up, and go out and buy a present.
But Mr France has encouraged me all the way through.
I always feel they are not good enough, but it's just come back from being framed
and I feel very pleased with myself.
I'm not able to show you yet, in case they read this post.

Now it's time to introduce you to three very talented ladies who I have invited to take part in the 'Around the world blog hop.'
They will be showing their post next Monday the 15th September
so don't forget to pop over and see what they write about.

First is Debbie from Ohio.

I have been following Debbie
enjoying her lovely paintings here for quite a long time.

We both love spending our time outdoors pottering about in our gardens.
She is a fantastic Watercolour Artist, and shows some beautiful  sketches
 she  paints in her journal, in such a lovely delicate style of painting.
If like me you enjoy gardening and /or watercolour painting
you will really enjoy reading and seeing her blog.

Next is  Sharon Chapman from  Washington.

                                      Wildflowerhouse By Sharon Chapman
Sharon paints wonderful cards which she sells through her 'Wildflowerhouse Shoppe' 
She also shares her beautiful journals which she makes herself,
 full of such a varied array of subjects she sketches and paints.
Quite recently she became the proud owner of two adorable puppies, Max & Cooper.
She has shown a few lovely short video clips of the progress
they have made  since they first arrived at her home a few months ago.
Sharons love for the flowers she has in her beautiful garden
 can be seen here through her cards & journals.
My 3rd invitee is Shane who lives in New Zealand.
I met Shane early this year when we both joined Grow your blog party. 
and she was the winner of  my Give away gift.
Since then she has continued to correspond with me by email.
I'm sure you will really enjoy seeing her lovely blog & sharing her posts.
Shane is a self confessed Francophile and loves France, especially when she can get  to see her grandchildren, who live in France. I've yet to find out if its anywhere near where I live. She collects pretty china, loves embroidery & old lace and makes beautiful collage cards from antique lace and vintage photo cards. Shane shares the same interests in flowers and gardening as my  two other guests. Shane shows fantastic photos of flowers which she has taken herself.

So Thank you to Daphne for inviting me.
and also
and Shane
for being my guests.
I hope I've done my linking correctly ( you've no idea how long it took me ) !!!
if I got it right it's thanks to  Daphne for giving me the link to Karen  showing me what to do.
I'm a late developer and just like Daphne I need to see how to do things
especially in the world of internet jargon.

I do hope you enjoyed your 'Around the world blog hop'
from my little corner of France.
à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

07 August 2014

In the Pink.

My garden is full of pink this summer
I'm also feeling in the pink.

Almost recovered from my surgery.
 I'm  now able to do lots of things which have been on hold
Come with me and enjoy some of my PINK.

Not the usual sort of thing I put in my garden.
This was given to me last year by the Floral committee
 along with my diploma as part of my prize .
Not sure how long this will have a place in my garden !
It's now tucked in a corner till I get used to seeing it.

The only Lily I managed to see.
The Lily bug ate the rest before they were able to bloom.

Welcome to La Petite Maison our holiday rental house.



View from the sun deck. 

Echinacea  (Poupres)

Phlox ( panicilarta )
A present given to me for my new flower bed.
to be created in Autumn.

Wild Foxglove
  Which pop up somewhere different each year.

I hope you enjoyed my Pink mood

I'll leave with a pretty posy
 to enjoy what ever mood you are in.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian