Wednesday, 5 September 2012

First post for 2 months

If you live in the UK, you'll appreciate why my garden blog has been empty for 2 months. The weather has been so wet that I would just have been writing endless moans about slugs, rotting flowers, no chance to get out in the garden, and lots more negative stuff. Now it's September and the sun has come out. Time for a mammoth weeding session in the herb garden. It's out with the hoe, and if I don't get around to picking up the weeds right away I'm hoping the sun will kill them off. There's no rain forecast, but the mornings are cold with a heavy dew, so the weeds might not shrivel as much as I want.Actually , most of the herbs are pretty healthy in spite of the rain. Ayway, here's to happy weeding
Here's a flower you can always rely on whatever the weather- taken this time last year, but looking just as good in 2012, the Nasturtium. So, hoe at the ready and I'm off out in the sun. I love weeding- read all about How to enjoy weeding- my top tips, right here.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

The lavender is struggling

At this time of year the lavender should be looking and smelling fantastic, but with the wet weather we've been having, only some of the varieties have flowered. Others are trying their best, but the rain is spoiling the flowers. I'm not sure if I'll get a dry enough spell to pick the lavender flowers for drying this year. I love lavender, and I've written a whole article which you can see here all about How to grow and use Lavender Take a look for some beautiful pictures of lavender too.Here's one of the beautiful pictures of lavender as it should be.!

Lavender Fields in Sequim, Olympic Peninsula, Washington, USA
Buy This at

I love lavender , but unless the rain stops and the sun comes out soon, I'll be without any dreed lavender for 2012.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Gertrude Jekyll is doing well this year

I love the rose, Gertrude Jekyll. I planted one a few years ago in the side garden, so that I could catch it's wonderful scent when sitting on my terrace. The problem was that the deer would eat the new shoots and Gertrude never reached her full potential.

Last year I moved the rose to the front garden. It's not ideal rose ground, being pretty stony, shallow soil, prone to drying out, but this year's odd weather seems to have suited the roses, and I have some gorgeous pink blooms.The rose was named after the gardener who did so much to promote and revive the English love of roses. You can buy a copy of her 1923 book that I think would make a wonderful gift for a gardener. I would love to receive this.

Click to see this on

Here's a picture of the Gertrude Jekyll rose so that you'll know what I'm talking about- "ah , yes, that's the one !" You knew you'd seen Gertrude Jekyll roses, but just couldn't quite remember exactly which rose the Gertrude Jekyll rose was!

Rose Gertrude Jekyll

This lovely photo of the Gertrude Jekyyl rose is thanks to T.Kiya on flickr

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Time to cut the sweet cicely back

Actually, I should have cut the sweet cicely back some time ago, but it was too wet or I was too busy. I got out yesterday and cut all the foliage and flower heads right down to about 2 inches off the ground. Another crop will come along soon, and we'll be able to use the sweet cicely leaves to sweeten berry desserts, so cutting down on the sugar.

For more about sweet cicely, how to grow and use it, take a look at my article All about how to grow and use sweet cicely, with recipes too. It's a pretty herb when it's in flower as you can see here.

Sweet cicely, White Moss House, Grasmere

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Away for a few days and weeds take over.

I was on top of the weeding,then we went away for a few days, came back, and weeds were everywhere, but that's fine because I love to weed! In fact I've written a whole article called I love weeding. Is that Weird? Please take a look and leave a comment if you have an opinion.

I hate housework, but will happily spend hours weeding, which is really housework in the garden. It's really important to have the right tools, and to be organised for fun, fast, efficient weeding.!

The weather has been sunny but cool, and sadly, it's raining today. The Olympic Torch Relay comes to Grasmere, then right past White Moss House on it's way to Bowness, where there is a big event tonight. Hopefully the rain will stop. My tubs and hanging baskets are being really slow to get going. Summer, where are you?

Here's my number one favourite weeding tool- my lovely old fashioned Dutch Hoe.Buy your in stainless steel. Did you know that Spears and Jackson have been in business since 1760?

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

We had dry weather for weeks, while the rest of the UK had rain. This week we have had some heavy showers which have brought the azaleas and rhododendrons out in spectacular fashion.
If you visit the Lakes you can go to some wonderful gardens at this time of year.

You can also just enjoy the scent of the yellow azalea, and the pinks of the rhooddies in our own Whte Moss House garden.

Pictures coming soon.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Looking at lovage

I've just spent a happy couple of hours hoeing the herb garden and then raking in fish, blood and bone to give the herbs a good start.
The lovage is already up. If you don't know what lovage is, You can read all about how to grow and use lovage here.
Here is the lovage just opening up. I've photographed it by the side of the hand fork so that you can see it's only a few inches high.
Baby lovage white moss house march 2012
I'll take more photos as it grows. It's a great herb- not that well known, but really useful and easy to grow.

The chives are coming along well, and the bay has had a great winter and is looking good. We're loving this sunny dry weather in the Lake District. No worries about a drought here!

We're opening our B & B rooms next weekend at White Moss House. Why not come and stay?

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Oh No! The Daffoldils are out!

Yesterday I picked the first daffodils from the White Moss House garden. This is too early! They'll all be over by Easter at this rate!
Today is leap year day, and it's mild and sunny. I'm going outside with the secateurs to prune the jasmine. I don't know if it's the "right time", but it's something I just need to do.

If you don't know the story behind the world's most famous poem, "Daffodils" by our man William Wordsworth, you'll find the story of William Wordsworth's Daffodils here.

The little "Wordsworth Daffodils" just along the road at Dora's Field 

Dora's field, Rydal, is next to Rydal Mount, where Wordsworth lived his later years. He planned to build a house for Dora, his daughter. This was never built, and the field is now a lovely woodland slope, full of daffodils in March.

Friday, 24 February 2012

Now's the time to take a look at the herb garden

It's hard to imagine, looking at the bare patches of soil, that pretty soon I'll have an abundance of fresh herbs in the herb garden.
If you haven't already seen all the stuff I've written about my herb garden you can pop over to this page to get started.

I think that two of my favourite herbs are sorrel and lovage. Both are easy to grow, and both are easy to use to give interesting flavours to you cooking and salads.

Here's lovage growing in the White Moss herb garden.

Time to plan your herb garden for 2012 now!

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Snowdrops all out early.

As it's been so mild, all our snowdrops are out. Sometimes they struggle to get properly out by March , so this really is unusual so far north.
Snowdrops at White Moss House, 5 March 2010
I haven't taken any photos of them yet, but here's one I made earlier. By 5 March 2012 I think the snowdrops will be well over.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Spring bulbs showing far to early

Thanks to and exceptionally mild winter so far, the snowdrops, crocus ans daffodil bulbs are all well up. The magnolia is also looking like it wants to break out. I see trouble on the way when we get some hard frosts.(Gardeners always expect problems) I must say that my herb garden is looking very neat this winter, chpped back, weeded and tidied. I'll take a pic and post it in the next few days.