It was very hard following my dad's death. The one thing I find can pick me up when I'm down is a trip outside the house. It doesn't have to be far, just a walk around the neighbourhood can make a difference. It may be a small difference but I'll take that when I'm very down. Before my dad died he'd come into contact with someone on the ward who had later tested positive for coronavirus. My dad had tested negative immediately after his admission but wasn't tested again and though he never displayed any symptoms, because we'd visited him, we were told to isolate for a period of fourteen days. It was extremely hard being cooped up in the house with my grief during this time when all I really wanted to do was have a trip out, anywhere would have done, just a change of scenery. I found myself wandering round the garden just to give myself that change of focus. Here are a few photos I found on my camera from that time.
Not a photo from the garden but a beautiful bouquet of flowers which were sent by Eleanor's work. They're the Rose & Seathistle Bouquet from Marks & Spencer. Such a thoughtful gesture, and beautiful words on a card accompanied it.
The first of the blueberries started to ripen.
I couldn't concentrate on much at this time but I could tackle small jobs like repotting the tomato plants. This is a bush variety named Maskotka, my favourite tomato and one my dad was very partial to too. The cherry sized fruit is sweet and tasty.
I've also grown a couple of cordon tomato plants this year too, Bloody Butcher. This is an heirloom variety and produces medium size fruit. The leaves of this plant are what is called Potato Leaf, you can see how different they look to regular tomato plant leaves, more akin to the leaves of potato plants, hence the name.
The potatoes started flowering. I'm growing Charlotte, a second early. I also had a volunteer, a potato from the batch I grew last year which I hadn't removed from the compost, it had started into growth so I repotted that into another container filled with fresh compost and that's growing well too. I grew Jazzy last year so it will be fun to see how well it does and do a bit of a taste test between that and Charlotte.
My small Stella cherry tree has produced its best harvest for many years. Unfortunately, as usually happens, the birds got to most of them before I did.
I did get the first few cherries to ripen though, they were delicious and sweet, and the first four blueberries too.
I don't know what's happened to the apples this year, there isn't a single fruit on either of the two trees. The only thing I can think is that the blossom succumbed to frost earlier in the year. I've never known it happen since I've had my two trees though. The plums are making up for it. I lost a lot of immature fruit in the June Drop but there's lots of plums still on the tree.
My poppies are now finished for another year but I like to leave the seedheads for a little while to enjoy them. They can be dried out and used in a dry flower arrangement but I've never done that.
My roses were very slow in blooming this year, I think it's because I left the pruning to Mick and he tends to cut things back to within an inch of their lives. I was pleased to see them get going though. I have four rose bushes now, Golden Wings, a beautiful almost single yellow rose which Mick bought me one Christmas, The Birthday Rose which is a creamy colour and grown as a half standard. I picked this up for half price when my local nursery was closing down some years ago. I've got an unnamed red rose which Daniel bought me one Mother's Day, and I've recently bought a floribunda rose called Sheila's Perfume in memory of my mum who died last year, but I'll show you that one another time.
I was very glad to get out of isolation after a fortnight, and the restrictions eased to coincide with some good weather. We had some business to take care of the first day, a visit to the funeral directors and the building society, and a trip to the vets for them to give Archie the once over and his annual booster, but then Mick took a couple of days holiday from work so that we could spend a bit of time out and about and get our breath back after the events of the previous three or four weeks. It was very much needed.
What would we do without our gardens, I think we manage at home alright, but as soon as we are told we can't leave, it heightens everything, we enjoy huge freedoms in our daily life. I love your garden, so much colour, soft fruits are having a bumper harvest this year. Be kind to yourself, allow healing time, it's not a straight road. Nice to see you back.ReplyDelete
I'm glad you're able to get out and about now, Jo. I know Archie will love being able to get out too - unless it's too hot! Continued hugs from me.ReplyDelete
We have a tree in our garden with fruit on it that we weren't sure about. It didn't blossom or fruit last year (we've only been in this house about 20 months) so we were really surprised when it did this year. The fruit looks a lot like your plums so maybe it's a plum tree! Who knew?
Goodness, I can understand how hard it was having to stay in for two weeks, walking helps soothe the soul. Lovely to see your garden, the roses are gorgeous and your produce is coming along wonderfully. Blueberries already? You are way ahead of me.Take good care of you Jo.xxxReplyDelete
Oh how awful on top of everything :( As I was on the 'at risk' list I had to stay in self isolation for 3 months, only being able to walk around the garden. It was so good when I was finally, by degrees, allowed to venture out. The garden was my haven and I felt so sorry for those who didn't even have that. Take care. Sending virtually love to you and your family. Jane xReplyDelete
I feel for you. I lost my Dad when I was only 27, too young to lose a Dad you loved so much. It changed my whole outlook on life though and a lot of things changed for me.ReplyDelete
My Mum went on to 85 so I was in my 40's and able to cope much better.
Just know that you Dad would hate to think that you were unhappy and miserable, be cheerful for him, he would love that.
Thank goodness for our gardens - providing much needed solace and distraction. I don't grow potatoes, but Charlotte is my favourite salad potato so it will be interesting to hear what you think.ReplyDelete
Your garden looks most splendid. We nurture nature and she nurtures us.ReplyDelete
How difficult for you Jo, that on top of everything else, you were confined to your house and garden. Going out for walks is such a good way to lift your spirits when things get too much, isn't it. I am so glad to hear that you didn't get the virus and you are now able to go about and about when you want to. Your garden looks like it is doing really well. I am on the hunt for some blueberry bushes myself after reading about you growing them, I have a place for them in the garden now.ReplyDelete
It's been such a difficult time for you and I totally understand the need for a wander around the garden, a breath of fresh air and a need to gather your thoughts. You have a lovely garden, beautiful roses and produce. I mostly leave my cherries for the birds and it was indeed a good crop this year. Lovely to see you posting again but take things easy, it can be a long road sorting out everything you need to do xxReplyDelete
Our apple tree follows its own cycle. Every third year there is a scant crop, followed by two years of an excess. This is an excess year.ReplyDelete
My plum tree is officially dead. Oldest son will remove it for us.
It must have been torture for you, thank goodness you have a beautiful garden to escape to. I can't believe how much produce you have, my garden efforts have produced practically nothing so far, I had lots of flowers on my blueberries but didn't get one single blueberry! my tomato plant has just produced it's first flower truss so if I do get any tomatoes they will be very late, even the flower seeds I sewed have just started flowering and they don't look that great.ReplyDelete
Gardens have been a haven throughout lockdown and I feel for anyone who doesnt have one. You've got some great photos there. Sending hugs xReplyDelete
I think a walk can lift the spirits, so being confined to barracks must have been hard. I hope you have enjoyed some freedom since and the change or scenery has helped. Lovely flowers and goodies in your garden to enjoy. xReplyDelete
I am so glad that you are now able to get out and about a little. Hopefully this will help to lift your spirits, you remain in my prayers Jo and sending you a big hug. The cherries look amazing such a shame that the birds get to them. Take care.ReplyDelete
Thank goodness for gardens or simply going on a nice stroll, it always seems to be a good thing to do.ReplyDelete
I enjoyed seeing the lovely flowers and vegetables that are growing in your garden, everything is looking good.
My good wishes.
All the best Jan
I'd not realised you were in that sort of isolation for a fortnight, but yes, a walk is definitely a good clearing of cobwebs type of thing. Your garden is evidently producing well, even though you lacked time there for a while. We net our blueberries as soon as we see the first tiny little berry & hope the bees have finished their job, although our netting is not so close a weave to keep them out, but mainly as bird protection. It would work for your cherries too. Thanks for the catchup, take care, stay safe & huggles.ReplyDelete
Aw gardens are a refuge aren't they? My goodness those potato flowers are GORGEOUS. I've never seen them before.ReplyDelete
That bouquet is gorgeous, Jo. And you have a lot going on in your garden. It's hard being quarantined I know, and our gardens are a blessing at difficult times. Thinking of you. P. xReplyDelete
Looks like your garden is coming along beautifully. Your roses are so pretty. I've tried to grow them a couple of times with no luck so I envy those who can achieve that!ReplyDelete
What a year this has been. I'm glad you're now able to get out and about to get your breath back but at least you have your lovely colourful garden to enjoy. What an unusual tomato, I haven't heard of those before.ReplyDelete
I think that it must be hard to stay indoors for two weeks under normal circumstances, but at least you have a garden to wander round and get some fresh air.ReplyDelete
Glad to see that everything is looking good and doing well.
Take care. xx
It must have been really hard having to stay home after all you had been through and also difficult to concentrate. Thank goodness for the garden. You have a lovely lot of produce. We have no apples this year. Weather conditions have been so changeable - perhaps that's the reason. We've managed to grow some potatoes in the veg plot and in a container. Gardening more than ever has been something to focus on these last few months.ReplyDelete
I'm sorry to hear that you had to isolate for two weeks at such a hard time.ReplyDelete
Our gardens provide us with so much more than plants and grass don't they? Each plant has a memory attached and a tale to tell.
Take care Jo
Everything in your garden is looking great. I'm so glad you have been able to find some sanctuary there. XReplyDelete
SO hard to have to stay home when all you want to do is go somewhere to just forget your worries for a few hours. I am sending you love and healing thoughts my friend. Take care of yourself.ReplyDelete
I am just catching up, Jo. I am so sorry. It is hard to lose a parent no matter age or illness. Praying for sweet serenity for you. xo DianaReplyDelete
What a lovely variety you have in your garden!The roses are so pretty. A nice get away and close to home, lol.😉ReplyDelete