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alp

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Very mild today - 17.9c in the living room. Read that Alan T attacked people for buying out of season fruits and vegs and paved front garden while gobbling down 250g of blueberries which cost me 75p! Yummy and delicious. Quite right that people should not pave their front yards as when it rains heavily, small puddles are everywhere. Someone pointed out that some people's livelihood depends on us buying fruits. It's like being vegan is now trendy. I told my friends whose family are more or less all vegans that her children might suffer from lack of certain vitamins and minerals. That probably enraged her! She said they would be alright. But how about her grandchildren? I asked. In the papers, a lot of farmers keeping livestock are also worried about their livelihood because of veganism. For me, life is boring without meat. I was enjoying my sirloin yesterday. The creamy flavour was out of this world. Son said there was no greater pleasure than eating meats! LOL! Finally, we got some organic flour from Waitrose as parking was eased because of the festive season in this borough. We parked the car on the road and got our flour. Felt so much better having them and they make nice bread.

Nothing much in the allotment. Only thing looking good was the achillea. At home this double blotched hellebore is just about the only flower smiling, and even that was a sorry one.
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Now you know why gcs are selling hellebores with captivating photos and when you see them flower the following year, the flowers look a bit funny!

Enjoy another lovely dry day!
 
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I don't envy you alp looking for a new car , I remember when I got the bike years ago now you look and look and I still got a Lemon ( the bike ) I call it a lemon cause it were nothing but problems except for the past 3 years . Its frustrating when you bought something and you think you've been ripped off, I suppose its the same for most things really.

I not a big meat eater myself ( very fussy eater ) I could live without it but I do like a bacon butty or a sausauge roll from gregs now and again. I mad on dairy though love cheese etc.

Went out the other for one of my mates 30th birthdays even though its his birthday today , none seems to bother otherwise with it being so close to new year eve . I found a new found love pf Strawberry & lime cider it didn't even give me a hangover (y)

Washed my pots today so I can start sowing some seeds when I am ready , I may have to adjust my seed sowing dates for some. Need to clean the plant labels next I normally just use a rubber but I can't be bothered do you think if I leave them in a tub of bleach it will clean them ? Its been quite a nice day today but it started raining about an hour ago .
 

alp

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Had a bit of tummy upset and woke up to broad day light - er, no; but much brighter as I woke up at 10 to 8! A record!

Did someone say a heat blob for yesterday! Fog blob envelopped my whole area with very low visibility! Apart from that, it was glorious at this time of the year. I planted several hellebores. You remember my Fritillaria Persica? It was dug up by Mr Fox, I replanted it and put a bird cage over it. No, it was out and so I put in inside the middle of a big pot and it has tulips and irises for companion. I planted a hellebore root inside its place. 3 times, Mr Fox did the deed! :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: even though I had a brick to stop it valiant effort. No, I have to replant it.

Didn't know you had had such a lot of hassle with your bike, Perki! Think it looks handsome and an objet de désire on the avatar! Our previous car was making a racket, deafening noise like a perpetual tinnitus before it broke down. Now we can't get the car today as it's not ready and today, we have to cure my withdrawal symptoms. Got to go to all sorts of places to see what is on offer. Last time we went, dahlia bulbs are out in full force in my fav gc. Need to return the courtesy car by Saturday!

I love Chedder and parmesan Reggio - I nearly wanted to help the waitress to grating the cheese in a certain restaurant, but their parmesan never tasted that strong. Love it with pizzas and spaghettis. The nutty flavour is driving me nut! LOL! Bacon: I'm a bit gross here as I love the crispy fat of bacon. Someone said dry cure is cleaner as it doesn't have the slimy grime, but they dry cured version doesn't have enough fat and is a bit DRY! Love bacon fat. As I get older, I do think vegs and fruits are really good for health. The benefits are manifested nearly instantly.

Most of my pots are washed. Labels are now everywhere all over the lawn. Every time I bought a new hellebore, I said to myself, now be careful with the label! Tie it to the plant. Tied it I did, but they are invariably errant testaments to their displaced owners, lying on the border, walkway .. some even had a broken green serrated tie attached to it. Cheap green serrated tie with a slot in hole! Never buy them as they break in no time! Wilko, can you hear me?

Cider, especially Apple ciders are said to be good for you. Cider vinegar is said to be very good as well.

I'm in 2 minds about this Ford. I so miss the roomy Nissan Note which helped us to ferry single bed mattress, horse manure, gate ..This one is soooo small! The horse manure is what irks me most. People would laugh thinking that horse manure is the last thing to want to put in their newish 2nd handed car! it is what it is - I love my horse manure! LOL! This can open a floodgate of tears!:cry::cry::cry::cry:
 
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A very cold day heavy frost first thing but nice and bright later ,went for a walk along Blyth beach this afternoon loads of people out walking, Thornton’s e mailed me a sale on there chocolates was very tempted but didn’t give in ,but today they sent me an extra 25% off sale items they got me and I placed a order.
 
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alp

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Oh, dear! The temptation of a discount! I can't blame you. I also went out scavenging, but we were too late. The dream of having a big piece of lamb, duck all vanished. Heard that Sainsburys was reducing chocolate on 26th and of course, we never saw any of my fav. Just as well, tons of stuff over the Christmas was laced with sugar, so sweet that it's repulsive.

Went out plant bargain hunting. Got 4 x pyracanthas at £2. Some galanthus £5 each x 3. One Josephine £3 clematis and another one Group 3 like a blue bell. 1 dwarf conifer and 1 Juniper £1 each. The best is that tulips, daffs reduced to 50p.

Bought some promise - a diseased plant £5 reduced - bought it because it is yellow
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It is now 3 plants. Whether they flower or not remains to be seen.
 
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alp

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Zenj Anything with nuts in them please? I don't want caramel? Hope you wake up early enough to tell me! LOL! Something not too sweet! Let me send this to wake you up. I'm tempted, but I spent £50 yesterday!
 

alp

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Woke up just in time for the central heating to kick in. Judging by the weather, I could sow something, but the idea of having trays everywhere is just driving me mad.

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So Scotland enjoyed 18.7c on Saturday! Whoa! And I was in perpetual drizzle yesterday! The British Garden Centre ex Wyevale has reduced their bulbs, ranging from 50p to £2.00. Very good value, I got an daff and a tulip. Both come out in April to May! Might get some more.

First time I have seen horticultural grit in BQ - ,more expensive and smaller than those in Homebase. In Wilko, I got a box of 950g of mealworm for £6.50. A bargain. My chickens are very fussy. I bought some new Mr Johns for them and they still turn up their nose. I have lost all my love for them. I have tried this and that and yet, they are like fussy teenagers! Talking about that, my millennial is driving me mad.

He would go to bed with his headphone on and cough and cough, making it impossible for me to sleep. What irked me most was that he should use vapor rub to clear this cough so that he could have good night's sleep. I shouted his name and he couldn't hear. After shouting his name 20 times, I got fed up and up I went, armed with the rub. I literally slapped it on the back of his throat and told him that from that moment onward, he had to sleep without his headphones on and the phone must be downstairs.

The night before yesterday, I forgot and in the morning whilst having breakfast, he was looking at this phone again. I told him that he should have left his phone downstairs. He said he did. Then pointed to something under a memory story unit. There it was! Right under the memory extension unit; but at the same time, I saw TWO phones: one smaller one hidden before and one he was staring at. I asked him why he had two phones. He then told me that he had TWO iphones. I didn't know whether to be angry or laugh. Rather stupid to let me know that he actually has two phones. One is a free phone from work.

Talking about work. He would never have got this job had it not because someone he knew was working in this place. It was a meagre £7 something an hour and after the first month, we had to extract the wages from these people. He worked from 4 to 7 and the petrol cost on the credit card my cost heart to lose its beats as it was very expensive. Gradually, this zero hour slave labour became intensely on-demand and he would go there sometimes from 2, 12 or even 10! He's now earning on par with what I earned 2 years before he was born.

My friend's daughter worked as an employment consultant and her bonus was £3000 a month! She said she wished her daughter hadn't gone to university as that job doesn't require that qualification. A degree from Oxford Brooke! And she has debts of tuition and accommodation fees. I am not after that money; I just hope my son's not going to throw away his skills. He is happy there, feels appreciated and some very nice children showed him gratitude.

Going to mark out some areas for planting. A lot to do. It's jetblack outside. Last night's fireworks were like universal rumblings ... People do have money to burn and foul the air! Glad that the old neighbour had gone - they always had earth shattering bomb-like fireworks at the stroke of midnight! I wish they sold their place next door. As it is, there seems to be a foul spectre hanging over my house!
 

alp

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Thornton: Local pick up is nearly £4! I thought I could go down to town centre to collect for free. Can't run up more than one box, so will give it a miss. Was going to order nut and praline! Well, hunt for Ferrero continues.
 
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Morning all very cold and frosty dog minding overnight so took her for a early walk so three beautiful dear lovely site running in the field with the frost shimmering .
 

alp

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LOL! Still dog minding!? Forgot to say

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

To all, humans, birds (tits (not that kind!). especially my fussy :ROFLMAO: chickens!), plants, dogs, cats!
Foxes and slugs and snailso_O? Er, no!​
 

alp

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Spent yesterday fencing the garden with chicken wire to stop foxes playing with my plants. They killed quite a few such as the lobelia tupa .. and of course, some of my beloved chickens.

Then I dug a ditch for my cuttings. Now that it's done, I regret it. Eating into the lawn .. I just want to have a big lawn with no encroachment, but my plants in pots are increasing in number. I might just cover it and return them somewhere else. The whole day was grey and then drizzly. Mild, but funereal! Today, we're going to have a roasted aromatic duck. Too much to do preparing this dish! Going to take more cuttings.

Label saga! My trees have lost their labels. One is a gala, the other ??? :ROFLMAO: I nearly confused my Cornus Kousa Wolf Eyes with my China Girl. In a podcast, a man extolled the presence of a Cornus Kousa in people's front garden. In my front garden, I have now one Viburnum Mariesii, one dwarf conifer, callicarpa profusion, some self-seeded wallflowers, might put some peonies there. Trying to take some Cornus Kousa cuttings. Saw another vine for sale for £3, but it says for wine making and dessert, I didn't really want to risk it. Could be tiny but full of seed fruited type, just like the one in the allotment. Meanwhile, the cuttings from Mary's lovely sweet desert is still a cutting. Cuttings with no root.s Very sad!

Another grey day for gardening!

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Hellebore single
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Hellebore Lily
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This could be an Anemone
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and I
 

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alp

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Planted out another dwarf conifer at the front and a Cornus Satomi as well. It absolutely had done nothing and there is one stem, same condition as it arrived 2 years ago! I'm such a failure. Same as the controversa variegata, but it had had more leaves before it shed them for winter. Couldn't even find the seller on the internet. They were bargains.

Black single hellebores are on sale again. So tempted. One picotee with pink/red edges framing the petals, but doesn't seem to be perfect - might have blemishes on the petal - slight spots and not pure white! I could be wrong. Someone I should have one of these.

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A Stained Glass is flowering, but the bloom is just deep maroon. Wish the sunshine would come out and make it smile, with stained glass magic!

Well, the morning is a washed out!
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But compared with the Australians, we are very lucky! Imagine the terrible smoke and the extreme heat! I feel so sorry for all those caught and the animals that had to be euthanasised. :cry: o_O:inpain:

Have to share this lovely phenomenon with you! Scottish Highland river
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Morning all a bit milder today no frost, yes very bad in Australia the youngest son who now lives in Sydney says some days the smoke is really bad and 42c .
 
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alp

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Australia looks like a living hell! :inpain::cry:But my sis-in law seems to be OK. I think she lives near the coast in Cairn, Queensland, with daughter in Sydney, but last time I heard holidaying in Indonesia. Glad that the Australian whose relative perished in the fire told the PM that he wouldn't vote for him and a fireman snubbed him. He's a joker. They really should start thinking of capturing solar energy rather than relying on coal. New Zealand PM, on the other hand, is a heroine! She sent firefighters to help ease the situation! When you see animals, firefighters and citizen die, or suffering, you realise that it's a serious humanitarian crisis!

I hope the powder keg is not going to explode .. Innocent people's lives can be destabilised so easily! Loose canons can cost lives!:banghead::cry::inpain:

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Nice day for gardening! :cat:

One of the many violas on show! Really lovely! But I just don't have time to tidy them up and it seems to be they just can be compact enough to add a bit of umpf!

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According to the label, this is Stained Glass?? :unsure:
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I have to say, this Lily is a real beauty!
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The poor basal red has been trodded on by me! What a specimen bloom, well, apart from my footy contribution

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As you can see, I am very happy - a new hellebore which is actually a real beauty, on top of other beauties.

Before I read about the virus black spot, and I sneezed at the idea. Now, I shudder at the thought as my hellebores seem to be suffering big time.

Another thing is that I have scattered hot chilli powder all over that hole where I tried to plant the Fritillaria Persica and hellebore. Yesterday, Chilli powder 1 Fox 0! Hurrah!
 
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alp

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Got my chickens out for a stroll round the garden yesterday and the day before. Freedom excursion, let's call it! They loved it. At first, they kept together like a married couple. Then, the became a bit more adventurous! Blackie has become very thin.

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Another dry day and it's great for going out. Took in quite a few dahlias and some have formed new shoots about 4 inches. Mid January, I will turn on the propagator. It's a shame that I didn't take the Manhattan Island cuttings or the Natal into the living room. It had just formed root, but the cold killed them. :cry::banghead::inpain: I'm such a dummy!

This double looks confused!
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Dark maroon
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My first snowdrop this year! I'm afraid all the yellow ones have not developed buds! Dummy me! Again! Galanthus year ruined!
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Harvington Single yellow
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This is the real Stained Glass
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At least, I can tag a correct name to a bloom! It's a beauty!
 
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Well I've recovered from the festive / new year period but my sleep pattern is shot at can't sleep till 4 or 4.30 am then up at dinner time.

Bit of rain today but its quite mild for the time of year . I've been in the greenhouse today and sow a few seeds - Begonia - Geraniums were going to sow some more like Cobaea but I think I'll wait a couple of weeks, had to give the propagator a clean out and the windowsill .

Nice Hellebores Alp your Harvington yellow much nicer than others I've seen. I wouldn't mind a dark maroon / black myself but they look difficult to place in the garden with the flowers being so dark would have to surround them with snowdrops but make the colour really stand out.

Its really sad about Australia all them animals and people lives, when you put it in perspective that most of Europe ( except russia Europe ) would quite easily fit in Australia and the burned area is bigger than Belgium
 
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alp

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Yes, my ex said the UK is small and to think of Nicola Sturgeon screaming for independence all the time, I wonder how much smaller we would be. On top of that, the Irish and the Welsh! The UK would be laughably minute.

I nearly bought 1 single back and one white double picotee with red edges. Emailed the seller asking him the total postage and also seeking assurance they would come with buds. He said it was too early to see buds! :unsure: :ROFLMAO: So I held back. Then later, I saw a dark mauve or black double going to open IN MY OWN GARDEN. I really remember buying a black single. But the way I have messed with them, they are all over the place. All my labels are everywhere because I had to dig up a huge clump of Edinburgh Dahlia. Strong winds have added to my pain. My fruit tree labels have been split by winds and they are all over the garden.

Sad that you can't sleep until 4 or 4.30am. You could try mindfulness or deep breath - inhale and exhale and relax your every bit of your body. It's seriously bad for health if you can sleep. If I do gardening, I will sleep like a log. I just relax mentally and physically and wait for the mind to drift off. My son is autistic and he had difficulty falling asleep. When he was about 6 or 7, he would come into our bedroom, telling me that he couldn't sleep. I just told him to take deep breaths. He later told me that he wanted to sleep between us. When he was young, he slept between us. When I woke up in the middle of the night, I was horrified as he was not there. It turned out that he slipped to the edge of the bed. I was so horrified. Don't ever sleep with your kid as he/she could be suffocated.

I went round gcs and the hellebores were so boring - Dutch white/pink big clusters or pure white Lantern rose. Very disappointed. But today is the last day I can go out in the car. Son has to return the car on Tuesday, which is not funny. The car I placed a deposit on is not yet ready. I reckon the manager wanted to torment me as he wanted me to pay for the continuing benefits with 36 x £161. No way will I do it. But it's awful that they can't even tell me when it would be ready. He must be thinking of £10k, with 3 years or 30 installments round my neck like a millstone. I wonder where I can find report to make sure that cars being sold on the streets are clean and safe.

I have tons of purple/mauve ones. If you REALLY FANCY one, I can send one to you. The black one or double black/mauve one will just have to wait. But you're YOUNG! LOL! I wish I were that young and I would do tissue culture. I remember a primary school teaching its charge how to propagate orchid using tissue culture. I would love to learn from that school. Too old, but small enough to pass as a primary school pupil! LOL!
 

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