Latest posts by Obelixx

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 07/10/2016 at 09:40

Morning all.  Bright and sunny here again but a very fresh breeze blowing.  I need to unpack some warmer clothes but we'll get to 16C later on.   

This morning we're off to collect 3 big wooden compost bins from the local council.  30€ each and flat pack but they should set us up for some good composting for the new veggie plot.   Our neighbours have horses and want to know if they can put them in our paddock - gladly - so I'll be getting horse muck too.

Other than that - more unpacking and sorting every day till it's done.  We've decided mornings have to be unpacking and pms are free to unpack/sort/think or go out as we please so it doesn't all become overwhelming.    We've been and bought a whirlygig so we can hang washing out to dry.   Couldn't do that in the Belgian house as it either was blown away, rained on or decorated by the birds.   

Need to train the local birds to come to feeders which will be well away from the washing.  I think we have some sort of redstart and there are brown thrush-like jobbies and owls and a few sparrows and tits.   We'll get to know them all in time.  The swallows have long gone but should be back next year.  

Hope everyone's having a good day and gearing up for a great weekend.

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 06/10/2016 at 23:15

Hi Joyce.   Owners very keen to retrieve their cat so I'll keep her in tomorrow to be sure she's there.  I just hope they keep her in long enough in her new home for her to like her new home and not try and make her way back here as there are all sorts of hazards - roads, dogs, foxes, hunters...

Our plan is to spend mornings unpacking and pms doing what we fancy.   It has all been extraordinarily exhausting but now we have no deadlines and are sleeping better.    The plants have all arrived safely and are now gathered together for easy watering with the sprinkler.  No rain in sight for the next few days.  Very dry here so no prospect of gardening to distract from unoacking....

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 06/10/2016 at 22:29

Hello again.  We have internet!

Interesting week.  The removers arrived early - ie mid pm on Monday and were unloading the plant trailer as we returned form shopping.   Worked till 7pm then slept in the trucks and spent 5 more hours on Tuesday unloading and then scarpered.   OH went out at 7am to fetch them croissants and baguettes...... no visible bakers in the nearest village and the next one said of course she didn't have 12 croissants or change for a 50€note.   We won't be regulars!

Since then, registering at the local council for residence, at another for refuse collection and composting bins, buying light fittings and a washing whirlygig, walking dogs and caring for a cat.   She knocked very insistently on the bedroom window above the single storey parts on Monday morning.  Gorgeous ginger cat, clearly starving but very friendly and cuddly and not at all shy.   Been getting through 4 sachets of food a day plus biscuits and milk.   Turns out she belongs to the previous owners and disappeared in mid July just after we'd bought the place.   They're coming to fetch her tomorrow evening.

Meanwhile, we're carrying on with the unpacking.   Gardening and cookery books sorted today, amongst other things.    Lunch out in Luçon - very good.  

Clari - hope the breaking is soon over and the making and creating starts soon.  

Dove - rest!  It's a short term frustration for a long term result

WW - your month will fly by.

DD - your OH's role in life is to frustrate and control you.   Don't let him and don't be fooled.   Good luck with your projects.    Someone is our new village is advertising sessions of English tea to "improve your English" at a local hall.   Wonder if he does cakes.

Good to see everyone else chatting and pottering as usual.  Hope all nasty bugs go away soon. 

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 03/10/2016 at 13:46

Hello all.  Am sat using a hotspot at a supermarket at Luçon so haven't read back far.   Get our own connection next Tuesday if all goes well.   We arrived just after midnight on Saturday after a 10 hour schlepp including doggie pitstops.   OH very stressed by the end so we've "forgotten" a box of bathroom essentials.   The neighbours will bring them when they head this way in 3 weeks' time.

Furniture and other goodies arrive tomorrow - 2 trucks and a trailer for the plants.   Hosepipe is ready connected for watering.

Bright and sunny here.  We have lots of wee cyclamen naturalising at the feet of some sort of prunus which I have crown-lifted to let them have more sun and rain.   Some tiny golden yellow crocus jobbies near the terrace.  Monty had some on his bench when he was planting those stone plants a couple of weeks ago.   Any ideas?   Two dwarf conifers dead in teh drought and another dying which will make removing them easier - must have heard me saying I didn't want them.   Baby clem doing well.

Doggies and cat settling down well and we've been visted by a young, purry, cuddly ginger mog.   Scarpered when he saw Bonzo Dog.

Sorry about Tigger Busy.   Hope you're better soon Dove and anyone else with sniffles of hurties.

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 29/09/2016 at 15:28

About to lose my internet and TV connection.  "See" you all again in a few days.   Be good and have fun.

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 29/09/2016 at 15:02

Wow Wonky!   Well done.   You have every right to be pleased with yourself.  Enjoy.

Busy - I see the new garden as it is but also with all the possibilities.   We know some things we want - fruit and veggies, trees and shrubs, perennial borders - but we need to live with it a while to see where and how wind and rain come before w e do major plantings.   There's also a lot of clearing and pruning to do and checking of fences etc plus a lotof painting walls in the house and probably a new kitchen....

Chappies have just been to take away the second truck with its trailer of plants.   I shall see them again sometime next week.   Now to carry on cleaning, have dinner in Namur with Possum, finsish cleaning tomorrow morning (bathrooms last) and then sign the contract, grab the dosh and dogs and cat and head south.    We'll be out on Sat am trying to get phone and internet organised but otherwise a quiet weekend of clearing cobwebs before the furniture arrives and a holding area for all my treasures.

Dove - be careful.  Sorting can become therapeutic, especially when you find things you love and had "lost".

Windy here too but dry.  I hope all the wet people get some dry soon but we could really do with some rain.

Third budding of climbing rose

Posted: 29/09/2016 at 14:38

Stop feeding.   Normally you shouldn't feed after mid July as any new growth doesn't have time to toughen up before winter and then, in heavy frosts, it can be damaged.  

Roses can continue flowering right into December if the onset of winter is kind enough.  You need to tie in any loose stems that you wish to train on the support.   They don't need pruning until Feb/March except that now is a good time to remove any long, whippy stems that will be blown around in autumn gales and may cause it to loosen the roots. 

Next spring, remove any dead or broken stems and any growing in a direction you don't want.  Feed it with a general purpose NPK fertiliser such as pelleted chicken manure or blood, fish and bone and give it a good mulch of compost or well-rotted manure.    You can then carry on the comfrey feeds until mid July.

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 28/09/2016 at 16:37

I found some mincemeat - bought and home made - which are now sat in a crate somewhere.  Must remember to do a wee raid on the patisserie wholesaler for decent quantities of raisins and chocolate chips.   Nearest in the Vendée is an hour away and pricey!

New house - it's a Tardis despite no attic!   More room downstairs and less up but that's what we wanted.

Front view.  3 years ago. That hibiscus in the grass has disappeared under a sea of yellow honeysuckle.

Rear view - grass mowed by neighbour's tractor for pics but usually by 2 sheep, now gone

Back garden nearest house - gravel with occasional beds and very very weedy!   Beth Chatto here we come?

Hen house sitting in fenced off area which may become a veggie patch.

Lots of grass, a few trees, 2 ruins, very tall bamboo, a cherry, a plum and a walnut plus a grapevine, loads of weeds, 2 wisterias and one sad, solitary clem.   No roses!   Ropy lavender and a campsis vine on a world takeover bid.   Loads to clean up and plan and plant........

The dogs love it and the cat has explored some of the "garden" and decided it's OK too but she prefers indoors.    6 years she's been with us and still worries she might be abandoned again.

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 28/09/2016 at 15:11

Liri - I have always been busty even when a very slim hourglass so took to making my clothes for work and play - so much easier than altering!   Recently I have found Pepperberry which does clothes for curvy ladies but the dresses are too short for people my height (5'6 and a bit) and age (27+).   Tops are good though it's hard to find cotton.  Don't like man mades.   Longer dresses can be very cool and comfy but I usually end up in loose fitting 3/4 length pants and strappy tops.

We're on the cleaning and last minute errands phase now.  OH has been to the dump with more crud and I have been to stock up on pigs' ears for the doggies - treats on the journey - and some bags of bulbs leapt into my hands - two kinds of scented white daffs, allium Christophii and leucojum Gravetye Giant.   Then I went off to look at new kitchen lights - on sale here so 45€ for 3 sets of 2, 3 and 4 spots whereas similar seen in France in summer started at 40€ for a 2 spot.   Then another shop to buy a weed gun cos there'll be no more glyphosate.

OH is sweeping the attic before I go in and dust and vac.  Seems redundant to sweep but he's decided it needs doing.   Then a quick dust and vac of the rest of the house, floor wash and car clean before we start loading up for our little convoy.  OH gets the dogs and I get the cat.   Last garden jobs will be taking rose cuttings, just to see, and lifting one or two last plants and watering them all ready to go in their transporter tomorrow.

Best crack on. 


Victorian front garden ideas wanted

Posted: 28/09/2016 at 14:40

Way back on the Beeb they did a series on Front Gardens with Gay Search helping the owners of a row of Victorian terraced houses renovate their front gardens.   All sorts of ideas for designs and plants in keeping with the traditional tiled paths with those "rope" edgers.   

She has a book available from Amazon (or the library) on front garden design which includes a chapter in Victorian gardens - https://www.amazon.com/Front-Gardens-Gay-Search/dp/056336713X  If you don't want to buy, this will give you the ISBN number you need for a library to hunt it down for you.

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