Just in case regular readers have wondered where I’ve got to, I’ve been gardening flat out since we arrived in Blois on Thursday afternoon. It’s amazing just just how quickly the vegetation grows at this time of year. I have a theory about weeds too. As soon as you plant something that you want to grow, a similar-looking weed springs up! So I have been doing a lot of weeding.
I was worried about our geraniums which didn’t look as though they were going to produce many flowers but I think they were just waiting for the warmer weather.
After spending another day gardening and packing, we’re all set for our annual one-month cycling holiday – back to Germany again. Last year we cycled 1100 K along the Danube and I think it was my most enjoyable holiday yet.
After reading about Saxon Switzerland on Travel Notes and Beyond, we decided we would cycle along the Elbe this year. However, we are stopping off along the Moselle on the way and starting with an initial 4-night stay in Koblenz.
I’ll meet your there!
Yesterday, after I don’t know how long, the sun suddenly decided to come out, so we hit the garden. The trouble about grass is that it grows and if you don’t cut it often enough, it gets too long for the mower. It’s been so long since we’ve had a garden that we’d forgotten that little detail of course. The catcher was filling up so quickly that Relationnel eventually took it off altogether.
My job was therefore to rake up the piles of moist cut grass and put them into large rubbish bags as well as trim the edges of the garden beds. The ivy is doing its best to take over as many beds as it can as well as any spare walls (and we have a few of those!) so we had to attack that as well as I’d like to plant something more interesting, particularly in front of the house. Also, you can’t let the ivy get onto the roof tiles as it stops the rain from running into the gutters properly.
We now have a a garden bed ready for planting. I’d bought some gladioli bulbs one day at the supermarket but they all looked pretty mouldy yesterday so I don’t know how many will actually produce anything. When I first told Relationnel about them, he wasn’t very encouraging, telling me that people usually plant gladiolis next to corn stalks! I don’t have any corn stalks … We have a lot of hollyhocks though and they don’t seem to need corn stalks to keep them up, despite their height.
We did find a beautiful flower up on the sloping wood behind the house though. It’s an orchid it seems. Mr Previous Owner had told us about them, but this was the first one we’d seen. Unfortunately, my photo is a little blurry and when I went back this morning to take another one, it was already beginning to fade.
We’ve also moved the bird bath so that it’s near the tree with all the feeders in it. We have this incredibly cheeky little mésange (tit or chickadee) that taps insistently on the window with its beak if the feeder is empty or doesn’t contain its favourite bread crumbs (those from my home-made bread of course). You can hear lots of cuckoos in the grounds of our local Vicomté castle across the road as well.
This morning, I am sad to say, I can feel every muscle in my arms and legs. Falling UP the stairs in my haste to put my gardening clothes on didn’t help either. I can see I’ll have to garden more regularly!