Wild and Weedy Wednesday: 26th April 2023

I am continuing my weekly look at weeds/ wild flowers with a very familiar plant to most of you…

So, when you see this photo, what is your first thought?

  • Oh no, so many dandelions!  OR
  • Oh, how lovely!

So do you consider them as weeds or wild flowers? 😃

In any case, this is a wonderful sight in spring. The bees are enjoying them, and Anouk looks like she approves of them as well. 😉

Yes, this week’s wild flower is the Dandelion, or Taraxacum officinale. 

It may in fact be the most common weed, growing in lawns, nooks and crannies, fields and cracks in city paving They are masters at spreading and invading tiny spaces.

I assume these grow more or less all over the world, but do let me know if they don’t grow where you live. There are hundreds of different species of them. And, like the plant I featured last week (Wild Erodium), these are also edible. A few leaves added to a salad will aid digestion due to the bitter substances they contain, and will boost your vitamin and minerals intake. (Take a look here at Cindy’s delicious salad and her wonderful bouquet!) Or add a few leaves to soup or sauces and sprinkle some flowers on top for decoration. 😃

The colour alone makes me smile…

Why not join me each Wednesday with a post about a weed or wild flower in your garden. And leave a link in the comments below.🌱

Thanks for reading


Happy Weeding!



In a Vase on Monday: Softening the Blow

It is Monday again, and time to join Cathy (Rambling in the Garden) for her Monday meme, where she invites us to pop something in a vase from our gardens to share.

Well, after three warm sunny days in a row everything is suddenly green! The housemartins are back (hoorah!), the grass is growing (along with the weeds) and the tulips are opening. 😃

The Alchemilla mollis leaves around the edges of my vase today are to soften the blow of the shock when these yellow and orange tulips opened.

Had I planted them somewhere else, I would probably have thought them quite pretty. As it was, I have to say I was appalled… they were supposed to look like this:


I planted them in the Oval Bed, which does have yellow Narcissi in it in spring, but is primarily pastelly pinks and blues. The red, orange, yellow tulips clash horribly with some neighbouring pink ones, so I decided to pick the worst offenders and plonk them in a vase – with the help of a florist’s frog in the base of the vase to get them to sit upright. They actually do look quite nice on my table, with a pretty doily underneath kindly sent to me by Annette. 💕

Has this ever happened to you, that you order a plant or bulbs and they turn out to be completely the wrong ones?

I have notified the company I bought them from and am hoping for a refund. Am I too pernickety perhaps? Or would you have done the same?

Anyway, this was certainly a good reason to cut tulips to bring indoors, as I rarely sacrifice them for a vase. So something good came of it after all!


Have a great gardening week!

P.S. I think I will pick the remaining 4 and put them in another vase in a day or two. And then dig the bulbs out and move them promptly!

Wild and Weedy Wednesday: 19th April, 2023

I have decided to share some of the wild flowers, and/or so-called ‘weeds’, that grow in my garden and will post each Wednesday over the next few weeks. At times it may be hard to define what is a weed or a wild flower, but the Merriam Webster dictionary defines a weed as:

a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth. especially : one that tends to overgrow or choke out more desirable plants.

If anyone would like to join me, and share a local wild flower or weed each week, please do. And leave a link in the comments below. I would be really interested to see what pops up in your garden or countryside either to please or annoy you!

Today I will share a wild flower that I have noticed for the first time this year, growing here in our meadow:

Erodium cicutarium, or common stork’s bill.

The flowers are tiny, about 1 to 1.5 cm in diameter, but bright pink so immediately noticeable. According to Wikipedia, the young leaves are edible raw or cooked, tasting strongly of parsley if picked young. I have yet to try them. 😉

I haven’t spotted this pretty wild flower spreading to my flower beds yet. But I am now sure I would be able to identify it if it did attempt to invade. And I may redefine it in my book as a weed!

Perhaps you have seen this flower in your garden? Do let me know in the comments below.


In a Vase on Monday: Favourites

Choosing flowers for a vase each Monday is part of the pleasure of joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her Monday meme. And today I just picked what I like best at this time of year.

First of all, a few of my favourite Narcissi – Thalia, Cheerfulness, Tête à Tête and Narcissus cordubensis…

… and some Pulmonaria. The white one is Opal and the Blue is ‘Benediction’, which is the bluest I have found so far, albeit with a purple tinge as it fades.

I used my current favourite vase, which my Mum sent me last year, and the Easter card from my sister.

The book shown is a favourite too, and is the one I chose to share at our virtual meeting yesterday. Yes, some of the contributors to this Monday vase meme met virtually last night, and it was so lovely to see and hear them all. If we didn’t all live so far apart I would invite them round for a cuppa and a proper chat!

And in the photo below you can see my favourite print on the wall, sent to me a few years ago by artist and blogger Eunice one of my longest blogging friends! (Thanks again Eunice! 🤗)

The tulips I grow in pots each year get planted out into the garden afterwards. Some survive the mice, others don’t. But this orange one comes up each year without fail. Within about an hour indoors it had opened its petals up – it is still rather chilly outside so it is probably glad of the warmth!

Yes, April is doing its thing. You know, bright warm sunshine one minute then dark clouds, showers and gusts of cold wind the next.

The sun was warm but the wind was chill. You know how it is with an April day. When the sun is out and the wind is still, You’re one month on in the middle of May. But if you so much as dare to speak, a cloud comes over the sunlit arch, And wind comes off a frozen peak, And you’re two months back in the middle of March.

(from Two Tramps in Mud Time by Robert Frost)

But the garden couldn’t care less and is also doing its thing, i.e. growing at an alarming pace. If I blink I’ll miss it! Several tours a day are a necessity to check on the buds and blooms and to see what has or has not made it through the rather damp winter (and after the extremely hot and dry summer last year). So far the casualties seem to be minimal and my worst enemy is the mice rather than the weather.


How is your April weather? And what are your favourites at this time of year?

Happy Gardening!

In a Vase on Monday: Sloe Fizz

The Blackthorn (Sloe) in our hedges is not quite open yet, but any day now the tiny white flowers will unfold and light up the hedgerows far and wide. In the meantime I brought a few branches indoors that had broken off or been partly severed by heavy snow in the winter. I was lucky, and most of them turned out to be still alive and opened within just a couple of days.

I really like the fizzy flowers close up. And they really do ‘fizz’!

The birds love this shrub, as it provides safe refuge from birds of prey. However, I have also seen shrikes in it (alongside the robinia) … the huge thorns are used to pierce their prey. Fortunately I have never seen this process up close!

This is defintely another shrub that could be forced even earlier in the year, so I must remember that for future winters.

I am joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden again for her Monday meme, where we share things from our gardens in a vase each week. Do go over to visit her site, and maybe you’ll want to join in!

Have a great week!

(Almost) Silent Sunday: The Spring Garden 2023

Spring flowers, Easter 2023.

Ice 'n' Roses Hellebore Early Red

Ice ‘n’ Roses Hellebore Early Red

It’s still chilly, but the garden is coming to life at last.

The bees are busy, despite the cold and frequent rainshowers.

And the first larch flowers are opening. I think they are quite magical, don’t you?

Larix decidua

Happy Gardening!


In a Vase on Monday: Respecting my Elders

I have learned to respect my elders… that is, my elder trees, as custom requires. Yes, did you know it is better to ask an elder tree (for permission/forgiveness?) before you cut it?

In folklore, the black elder (Sambucus nigra) is associated with magic and witches. On the one hand it may be a witch in disguise, and on the other hand it is said to protect from evil spirits. It is bad luck to cut it, and not a good idea to use it as firewood. And if you fall asleep under it, you may never wake up…. 😮 However, the red elder (Sambucus racemosa) does not have any of these myths attached to it as far as I know. Nonetheless, just to be on the safe side, I did ask our tree if it wouldn’t mind before snipping a small sprig for my vase this week. 😉

Red Elder (Sambucus racemosa)

Red Elder is quite different to the black, and the leaves are the colour of bronze when they first appear, turning green later. In addition, the round buds appear at the same time as the first leaves. It is quite a stunning plant at this time of year, but blends into the hedgerows later on.

I chose my bronze ikebana vase, with a large florist’s frog in the base to fix the stems. I added some Hellebores at the base, also a plant with dark magic and properties attached to it.

And as a thank you to everyone who commented on my last post ‘Defending Forsythia’, supporting my defence of this cheerful spring-flowering shrub, a sprig of yellow Forsythia to lighten things up a bit! 😃

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for encouraging us to find vase materials in our gardens each week to share.

Happy gardening!