Monday, 14 December 2009

Countdown.











Christmas draws nearer and I am slowly working through my mental list of things to do. I do the same things each year, much to the amusement of some of my friends (you know who you are!) and get great satisfaction from getting everything done by Christmas eve. I am not sure why I do this - we always have a quiet Christmas with just a few family and friends, but I do like the whole place to look festive.

One of the things I do is to make sure that the house is full of plants - mainly flowering plants. Often Christmas Day here in the UK is damp and dismal and I like to see flowers everywhere to cheer things up. To this end, today the farmer and I set off for our local nursery straight after lunch.
It is a very wet, dismal, cold day here. Perhaps somebody can explain to me why this should be so. Our weather forecasters say that a ridge of high pressure sits over the British Isles, forcing the Atlantic storms to be deflected into the Mediterranean area. So why, with high pressure (and the barometer confirms this), is it very cold, very wet and very dismal?
However, the journey, whatever the weather, is a lovely one = ten miles of beautiful scenery, hills, rivers, forests, very little traffic and at the end of it greenhouses full of plants. I have taken a photograph or two so that you can see them. There were the conventional poinsettias, but also ones with pale pink or cream bracts. (after deliberation I chose the conventional red one). There were bowls of hyacinth bulbs grouped in threes. There were miniature cyclamen and there were azaleas. What a feast.
The top photograph shows what we chose to bring home. A large, pale pink azalea in bloom but with lots of unopened buds; two bowls of hyacinth bulbs - one blue, one pink; three miniature cyclamen - all pink; one poinsettia with red bracts.
Now they all sit on our wide window sills in South facing rooms where they get the maximum light - so near to the Winter solstice there is not a lot of light available up here in the North.
For the benefit on UK readers - the whole lot cost only £18. I can assure you we shall get far more value from them than that.
So now it is on to phase two of my mental list - wrapping the presents and delivering the local cards - shall start that tomorrow.

18 comments:

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

That sounds—and looks!—like a bargain in beauty to me. Flowers truly help make the season.

BTW, I can never think of hyacinths without thinking of those wonderful lines…

If thou of fortune be bereft,
And in thy store there be but left,
Two loaves, sell one, and with the dole,
Buy Hyacinths to feed thy soul
—Muslih-uddin Sadi

I trust you didn't have to sell your other loaf…but I know you've now fed your soul.

Cloudia said...

I love the flowers and nature you share with us.



Aloha, Friend!


Comfort Spiral

ArtPropelled said...

Hyacinths to feed the soul .... I like that. Your home must look so pretty and inviting with all the flowers, Weaver. Its still raining here .Over a month of rain! Usually December is sizzling so I'm not complaining, though everyone else is.

Heather said...

An excellent idea Weaver, and guaranteed to lighten up the dark and dreary days. I love hyacinths in the garden but find their perfume too strong for me indoors. Azaleas and cyclamen are favourites of mine too but for some reason I've never taken to pointsettias. I still have presents to wrap and cards to deliver, and this week is being devoted to serious housework. Everywhere is going to get a good 'bottoming'! Forgive me if that is a Lancashire and not a Yorkshire saying!!

C Hummel Kornell a/k/a C Hummel Wilson said...

Such lovely flowers and at a bargain! What a wonderful idea to go to the greenhouse instead of buying plants at the grocery. I may follow your lead and see if I can find a retail greenhouse in our area. It would be lovely to stroll amidst such beauty. Our weather is a bit dismal as well. A skift of snow last night and today it's simply cold and cloudy. I really want that snow!!

Titus said...

Lovely Weaver, and I must say I was rather smitten by the ones with the pink bracts. But you made lovely choices, and plants in the house a bit of a Christmas essential for me too when it can be so very drear outside.
Like you, we are having the cold and wet at the moment, and pleasant it isn't!

Poet in Residence said...

Weaver, you are just so organized that I feel almost ashamed and guilty. This place is a tip. I can't be bothered to tidy up. Someone please organize my books!And as for Christmas shopping, I haven't given it a thought. It'll all be last-minute as usual.
On the horticulture front I've today sawn, axed and dragged in an Xmas tree of sorts. It now stands glaring and trembling in the room corner.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thank God it wasn't the channel four quiz!

Golden West said...

Ah, cyclamen, one of my all time favorite flowers. You picked a lovely group, Weaver, and once the hyacinth bloom, their heavenly scent will remind you that spring is just around the corner.

dinesh chandra said...

Hi nice flowers.

Regards

Dinesh Chadra

Sara said...

Apologies for not popping by for a while. It felt lovely to trip through your posts & catch up! What beautiful flowers you chose & what a bargain too. I have this really quite silly ability to get very attached to my plants & have kept the same poinsettia plant going for 3 years. It now bears no resemblance to the magnificent specimens you can buy at this time of year, it has much smaller leaves & only a handful of them are red in colour, but I cannot bear to just cast it aside! And , yes, I know it's ridiculous.

Dave King said...

I'm not amused,I also do the same things each year - although they are well behind this year. Thanks for gee-up! I sure admire what you have done.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Hyacinths feeding the soul - I like it. Thank you for that lovely little poem Scribe.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Seems you all love flowers at Christmas - even if some of you prefer your hyacinths in the garden as they smell too strongly for in the house.

The Weaver of Grass said...

TFE = sorry I gave you a scare with the title - I wouldn't inflict that on you.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Poet - I love your description of your tree as standing in the corner "glaring and trembling" - I always like to think of trees as living things and I suppose you have done it an injustice chopping it down, so it has a right to glare and tremble.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Must get on with phase 2 of the preparations but shall have to look at my list to find out what phase 2 is.

Derrick said...

Hello Weaver,

A nice selection you made. I like the pink and cream poinsettias too but don't think you can beat a really rich red one with dark green leaves. Cyclamen is also a favourite.