I left you a couple of days ago with news of what happened before I went on holiday. Now time to tell you what has happened since then.
I had a great trip with my long time American friend Diane. We went on a five day cruise to Mexico and Grand Caymen and then spent a few days at her house in Tampa before I came back.
After 10 sunny days, I found myself on the platform at Gatwick airport, waiting in the early morning mist for a train back to the South coast. After two changes, and a bit of standing around, I received a wonderful welcome from Jim and Gibson at the local train station.
By now I was missing the garden and wondering what had happened whilst I was away. Clutching my first decent cup or tea for nearly a fortnight I wandered down to see what was what.
Oh No,, Call Unesco,, A world heritage site was in a serious condition!!
The Leaning Tower of Barton had fallen over....
Without my daily interventions to keep it standing , the sheer weight of the plants had finally caused the bamboo teepee to collapse. It was looking a right mess and at this time is still laying where it fell.
Elsewhere, apart from lots of oak leaves, from the 8 trees that overhang our garden, but don't actually belong to us, everything else seemed to be doing ok.
The chard had been attacked by something but not enough to cause too much of a problem. These were the first things I planted when I received seeds from my Seedy Penpal.
My late planting of Kos is nearly ready to eat
And the broad beans are now a decent size and sending off side shoots.
Only three of my christmas potato collection have grown any greenery so far. I dont think its sunny enough in the spot I have planted them. I Will have to wait and see if any more grow. The parsnip tops are now all collapsed, but I can see there are some quite big roots, so hopefully they will be in a nice condition when I dig them.
You can't see too well on this picture, but my dwarf beans in the greenhouse, now have nice lilac coloured flowers on them. Not too long until we get something off them as well. (These were also from my seedy penpal)
The remaining unblighted tomatoes in the greenhouse are still producing lots of lovely fruits. The Alicante seems to love my garden so I will be growing them again next year.
I have a great collection of very red chills, and as I have a dinner tomorrow at which I am planning to make a curry, they will come in very useful.
Judging by the amount of water in this old bath, its been raining a lot whilst I have been away..
Now all I have to do is tidy up and remove the fallen sweet pea tower.
Now to Florida. Of course was on the lookout for bits and pieces for the garden, whilst I was there. So my first stop was the local equivalent of B&Q where they had a garden section. The plants were all pretty much the same as we get here, and packing a living plant wasn't an option, so it was into the seed section for me. I wanted to try and find some things we wouldn't normally see here. These were for my benefit and perhaps whoever is my next Seedy Penpal.
After much sorting, I found this selection
Hot Halapeno Peppers, WInter Spaghetti Squash, Multi Coloured Beans, Multi Coloured Peppers, and some Pumpkins that the label says will be good for pumpkin pie.
So thats the edible selection. Now those of you that have been to florida will probably have visited some of the numerous shops that sell all sorts of odd bits and pieces for the home and garden.
I knew exactly where I could get what I wanted, so off to Johns Pass, in Madeira Beach we went.
I found a selection of tastefully tacky items for the summerhouse and garden.
These Jelly birds should be nice on the summerhouse windows
And then two more Birdy residents for the raised beds.
And finally a nice sign for the summerhouse which pretty much sums up our little bit of the world.
Jim has been working hard to get it painted whilst I have been gone, pictures next time.
So thats us caught up. In the last few days, our first anniversary of living by the sea has passed. I can certainly say, this has been our best ever year. We both love it here and hopefully as time passes it will only get better.