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Posts Tagged ‘strawberries’

The Art Nouveau Allium – a painting a day

June 23, 2010 Leave a comment

size 6 in x7 in 15cm x 17.5cm pencil on cartridge paper

So today I had some old friends to visit, they had had a hot journey and so we all sat in the shade and had some cooling drinks, a bit of lunch and so on. We went round the garden and I explained what we had done to the house in the big building project from which we are emerging. It made a real change to spend time in the garden looking at it and enjoying the bird song…well thrush song mainly. There is a thrush who has a very distinctive song and he is trotting it out over and over from several different perches very loudly. I have begun to wonder if he has lost his mate as I did find quite a few thrush feathers in the back a few days ago. They have reared one brood already so I would have expected them to be busy with the next brood like the blackbirds by the front door.

No1 son had his last GCSE and all he has to do now is find a lost library book and find his Geography teacher to hand back the textbook. This is such a relief for me but the joy has not made it to his facial muscles yet.

We picked four pounds five ounces of strawberries. This has never happened before the crop is phenomenal even the leaves are lush and tall. I think the thing that has made the difference is the black fabric weed suppressant, it must be drawing moisture up from underground, in the winter there is often standing water on the plot and the old chaps say there are springs there.

The redcurrants are ripening by the day too, closely followed by the blackcurrants.

At two days after the date to stop picking the asparagus the biggest and most tempting spears have emerged.

Today there is no painting but I have sketched the Allium bulgaricum which has been changing shape since I painted it. I am sure it must be the inspiration to an Art Nouveau motif that I have seen somewhere.

#83 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Dianthus for the Rainbow Nation – a painting a day

June 11, 2010 Leave a comment

 this painting is framed and for sale £50

.   size 5 in x 8 in 13cm x 20cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

It rained and then it rained some more, but it will be dry for the weekend and it was dry for birthday boy’s barbeque. I am certainly not complaining as the watering was showing up as water on my knee.

It was wonderful to see the winter sunshine in Cape Town and spot how they shifted Gary Linnaker around all the time to get the shots. When No1 son was a baby we went to Cape Town for a long weekend one September (Presidents Day Holiday in Botswana) the queues to get up the mountain on the cable car were huge so we decided to take a stroll up a path, found it went to the top and walked up with the baby in a carrier frame. Amazing place, there’s a different climate on the top even though it’s so close to the town, and the plants…..

The most spectacular things in this garden at the moment are Allium schubertii and the climbing rose William Morris which is heartbreakingly beautiful. It flowers on the corner of the house on the path leading to the front door. I will make an etching from one of the Allium flowers to go with an older steel plate which used an impress of an Allium flower in soft ground (that’s an etching soft ground not boggy flower bed).

I hesitate to mention it but I have not seen a lily beetle here yet this year. The Mina lobata did have a flower which was lily beetle scarlet but something attacked it and it will need to grow back from the base. I have looked for culprits but can find no clear evidence.

One other extraordinary thing, the Nicotianum sylvestris which I neglected to pull up last autumn is sprouting from the base!! I thought it was an annual. The leaves are very strong smelling-tobacco bitter-and no snail has so much as nibbled it. An amazing survivor, it is definitely listed as an annual. It is growing in a bit of a rain shadow so would have been dry for much of the winter and not quite as cold as elsewhere in the garden but I lost things only three foot further out into the same border. N.sylvestris is one of my favourite plants growing about four feet high with hanging flowers of white which perfume the evening air. It is strategically planted near the covered sitting area which can be used for breakfast or a meal on a cooler or even damp evening. Once when some friends were over we sat there drinking coffee in a thunder storm and it was brilliant.

Today we picked three pounds of strawberries. Oh and I slipped and fell over crashing right through the bird netting….damn suffered complete loss of good humour.

Alison

#73 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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Allium bulgaricum – a painting a day

June 7, 2010 Leave a comment

 a detail from this painting is framed and for sale

size 4 in x 6 in 12cm x 15cm watercolour on heavy weight rag paper

Today I picked one and a half pounds of strawberries.

I planted out about twelve late things: tender fuchsias and dahlias. Found a Canna lily that has overwintered in the ground!!

I painted this unusual Allium which is sometimes known as the other name in the tags. I think the other name means garlic with nectar or it would in Greek not sure what they called garlic in Latin. It’s quite tricky as it’s so floppy(hard to get an angle on it). I’ve seen it standing tall in other gardens but mine is coy and retiring.

Seventieth painting today! I think I shall give myself a treat when I get to one hundred.

Alison

#70 a painting a day by Alison Warner on her lemon a day art blog

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