Harvest Time

Saffron Crocus

Exciting times.  Today, the inaugural saffron harvest was undertaken at Chez Nous.  There was no  need to employ seasonal staff to help with the workload.  We took full responsibility for the task at hand.  Three beautiful stamen are now drying in their own tiny Tupperware box, nestled on some plumped up kitchen paper, for their regal comfort.  Thanks to Lora for top tips.  I’m planning a paella for 2025.


I don’t know if it is the autumn sun accentuating the vibrancy of the garden, or perhaps my new medication, but at the moment I am slightly obsessed with colour combinations.   Looking from each and every angle, however unlikely and impossible for anyone who is not allowed to stomp around the borders, and exclaiming “have you seen the alonsoa against the Salvia atropurpurea!” or”just look at the coronilla next to the delusional azalea!”.

What I did not shout when I saw the perfect marriage above was “How fine the Symphyotrichum novae-angliae ‘Andenken an Alma Pötschke’ appears in conjunction with Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’ .  I well may have fallen off the front garden at Max’s, where I was tettering to take the photo, into the road below.  Still, it is a rather fine match.


Dahlia australis

I have begun to repeat myself.  Most stories are prefaced with “please say if I have told you this before”.  Perhaps it is an inevitable phase of life.  It is not really that important unless, I suppose, you are the victim.

This is Dahlia australis, but it isn’t really.  Grown from seed as such, its semi-double flower indicates that all is not well.   I think that the milkman might have been a-calling.

I am depending on the fact that is that you have all forgotten that I have mentioned this before.  That too is an inevitable phase of life.  Which works for me.

Second Time Around

Choisya ternata

A day of mizzle and murk, that is until the moment I clocked off when the sun came out in all its glory.  Life is like that sometimes.

I arrived home to find the scaffolding complete and a quartet of builders in deep debate.  I am not absolutely certain, but I am pretty certain I overheard the words “metaphysics”, “bain-marie” and  “sledgehammer”.  Then I reversed into the drive.  My favourite occupation, reversing with an attentive audience.  You will be pleased to know that I didn’t hit the bins. Close, but not quite.

This Choisya ternata, the fragrant Mexican Orange Blossom, is having another shot at flowering.  Great idea.

Vital Seeds

Maianthemum racemosum

Today has been all about seeds.  Not any common or garden seed either.  We are talking about organically raised, locally grown by good guys seed.  They are soon to open their virtual doors for business, when they will share this angelic seed with us lucky folk.  At a (no doubt very reasonable) price of course.  Free seed would be too exciting for my delicate constitution.  We know what happened last time.  I am still having nightmares.  Or perhaps I am thinking about the poor unfortunates that I mowed down in my frenzy.  It is all a blur.  Anyway, keep an eye, ear and nose out for Vital Seeds, they are on their way!

These are the berries of Maianthemum racemosum, false Solomon’s seal, a very handsome seed carrier if ever I saw one.