Zero Degrees And Getting Colder


This morning over the garden fence: frosted crab apples and brilliant sunshine. The weather people tell us there will be more frost tonight and tomorrow (temps around –5 C), but slightly milder weather over the weekend.

In the meantime, I’ve been enjoying the frost-art around the garden, and especially the glistening spent flower heads of the Smoke Bush (Cotinus coggygria). Truly a tree for all seasons.



And then there were the spider installations on the garden shed window:



We also checked on the MacMoos this morning. They seemed in meditative mood, soaking up the sunshine.





Much Wenlock’s Church Green this morning


And finally before lunch there was a quick tramp to the allotment, the wheat field iron-hard, and hard on the feet too, even in boots.


Townsend Meadow



Allotment windfalls – the robins are enjoying them



It’s Been A Long Winter ~ Thursday’s Special

At least this morning we have bright sunshine, although even before I looked out of the window I could tell from the clarity of light there would be frost too. There is. Indoors, I keep peering at my tomato seedlings and thinking, ‘why did I start you off so soon?’ They say they don’t know either. Ah well, when it comes to gardening, as with much else, all one can do is travel hopefully. Meanwhile, fingers crossed, we’ve seen the back of these wintry scenes. You can click on an image to also see these in carousel format.

Thursday’s Special: Wintry

Wenlock Snow Walk


When I left the house I only meant to go to the Post Office, this to be in time for card posting to the US. But then just as I was setting off I also picked up my camera. From the start,  then, it was likely there would be diversions.

Outside the front door I had a choice – take the five minute direct way along the main road whose pavement was now heaped with dirty snow, or step straight across to Station Road and into Snowland.


Snowland won of course. If I went this longer way I knew I could see what was what along the Linden Walk. There could be photo opportunities…P1030771


…and then next I’d take the field path known locally as the Cutlins, from where, no matter the weather, you always have one of the best views of the town. This is where I stopped to take the header photo.


The path brings you to the perimeter of Wenlock Priory. Once you are down there and through the kissing gate, you can just see the ruins through the trees…


And it was at this point that I really did mean to turn towards town…but then, when I looked beyond the Priory towards the lane that runs through the ancient parkland, it was all too beguiling.

Just a little way then…




I did eventually make it to the Post Office, where I had to wait and wait in line, all of us standing in a lake of melting snow which we had tramped in with us.

Outside again, the town looked very pretty. On the Church Green the trees were scattering their snow like confetti, and the ancestors looked well tucked up in their snow quilts…



And as the sun was still shining I decided to take another path, back up the Cutlins but diverting along the Priory parkland boundary so I would end up on the old railway line below the Linden Walk.




It was totally silent there in the cutting beneath the trees; no ghost of roaring Great Western locomotive, but I could see that things had not been quiet. There were a number of casualties – saplings felled by the weight of snow. It felt like Narnia: those first steps out of C.S. Lewis’s old wardrobe. No sign of Mr. Tumnus though. Better push on before the White Witch whisks up on her slay.

Back on the Linden Field quietness there was broken by distant whoops of joy. On Windmill Hill a family and their dog were busy sledding. It looked like fun, and I was tempted to make yet another diversion. But no. My quick trip to the post had turned into a two hour meander. He who presently binds books instead of building sheds might be wondering where I’d got to. And somehow lunch time had been and gone. How did that happen?


Jo’s Monday Walk  Please visit Jo  for magic views from her walk around Belém, Lisbon. You will be glad you did.

Frosted Apples ~ Thursdays Special


This first photo was taken in December before the blackbirds had begun to feast on the stash of windfall apples out in the field. My last post featured a shot of how the apples look now. Yesterday when I was passing by, there was a whole flock of blackbirds pecking away – at least four and twenty. I’ve never seen so many all once that weren’t in a pie or singing song of sixpence! They didn’t stay to have their photos taken.



Paula’s prompt this week is seasonal. Please take a look at her inspiring photography:

Thursday’s Special: Wintry

All Things Must Change ~ Frosted Lily


Only on December 11th did I cut down the last of these lovely shell-pink lilies. They have been putting on a good show since September, the flowers opening day after day, and new buds forming. This is pretty impressive for a plant that is native to southern Africa where its red version goes by the name of Crimson River Lily.

Schizostylis coccinea was its botanical name, but it has now been reclassified as Hesperantha coccinea.  Go to this link if you want more information on how to grow it. I have found it a most obliging plant, requiring little attention, though I gather it likes to be moved around the garden every few years. It comes in a range of coral and pink shades, and makes very pleasing clumps that can be easily divided in spring.

Here’s how it will look next September. Doesn’t it make you smile?



Cee’s Flower of the Day Please visit Cee for more blooming marvels. Or go there to post a floral link to your own.

Winter Harvest


At twilight these crab apples glow like tiny lanterns against the darkening sky. And that’s when the blackbird comes to feed. Or at least this is the time when I most often spot her silhouette bobbing amongst the fruit. You will have to imagine her. It is a piece of English winter magic.  A gift.


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