To And From the Allotment: Seeing Things In Black & White

Last week Cee at Cee’s Photography challenged us to go out and take some new black & white photos. This happened to coincide with my notion of doing a series of  ‘to and from the allotment’ posts, since at some point in the day you will see me trailing through the field on the back route path to my vegetable plot. And then the Daily Post’s ‘on the way’ prompt seemed to fit as well.

Given that everywhere is now bursting with sap-filled greenness, and we’ve waited a long time to see it, it is perhaps perverse to snap it in black & white. On the other hand, doesn’t it make you see things with a fresh eye? These photos were all taken in the early evening, when the sky over Wenlock Edge is always interesting, and the allotment gardens take on an abandoned and mysterious air. Even the plant life looks other-worldly. See what you think.


The bean field…



My old shed under the greengage tree with sunbeams and artichoke…



Dandelion clock by the shed…



Wreath of barbed wire and Queen Anne’s Lace…



Phoebe’s insect motel for overwintering bees and bugs…



Shed with a view…



Welsh onion flowers and globe artichokes…



Sheds and allotments go together…



The path home by a sea of Queen Anne’s Lace…

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge

On the Way

To And From The Allotment: Finding A Beautiful Blue


Readers who have been visiting my Edge for a while will know that at Christmas I mourned the loss of my Kodak EasyShare point-and-shoot. It died on a beach in Anglesey, and its last image was of me peering into the lens, though I’m not sure what good I thought that would do. Anyway Santa Graham had bought me a Lumix replacement, so I wasn’t without a camera for long, and I was quickly enamoured of its dynamic monochrome facility.

But then some people are never satisfied. And the thing was, not to be ungrateful, I still missed my Kodak. And since the Kodak company is no more, this led to a little trawl on Ebay, and the purchase of a rehabilitated, slightly upgraded version of my original digital (more zoom), and all for the princely sum of £17.50. It is thus the camera I mostly take to the allotment, because you never do know when you might want to snap the portrait of an especially fine cauliflower, or record progress of the lettuce in the polytunnel. (I am not joking. Just you wait).

But first things first. The butterfly. This was spotted yesterday in the corner of field between our house and the allotment. I was carrying a big blue IKEA shopping bag of kitchen waste for the compost heap and a bunch of 6 foot bean poles, and it was very windy. Nonetheless, despite all these handicaps, trusty Kodak captured this gorgeous, if tiny, Common Blue butterfly. In real life it is probably less than half the size of the first photo image. You can see it more in context of this next shot. It is about 1”/2.5 cm across:


See how wonderfully it posed, and with great gusts of wind too. Here’s a shot with  breezy blast thrown in:


I thus dedicate this post to blogging chum, Ark, at A Tale Unfolds. In his Leading you up the garden path posts, he has been treating us (among other things) to dramatic entomological scenes of ambush and slaughter inside a yellow gazania; and all from his garden in Johannesburg. At different times he has also captured some splendid shots of butterflies, birds, more spiders and several praying mantis. He apparently does this while roaming his domain with a mug of coffee in one hand. For some reason this makes me think of the Mad Hatter, though I don’t think he wears a hat, and certainly not a topper. Or do you, Ark?

And now to conclude this inaugural series of to-and-from-the-allotment, here are some more dandelion clocks (broken and intact) because I’ve decided to consider them wonderful instead of a curse on my plot:


and followed by the cauliflower, which is what I really wanted to show you all along, and is also a thing of beauty, produced on my plot without pesticides, but overwintered under enviromesh. And just to boast, it was at least twice the size of the photo, and tasted delicious with kamut pasta in a goat’s cheese, parsley and onion sauce. And no, I do not do takeaways. Sorry. Though I do share excess, uncooked veggies, but you  need to come to Much Wenlock to get them.


copyright 2015 Tish Farrell