Saturday, 28 July 2012

Torquay 7 Miles

Of all the places in the UK that I’ve visited, my favourite has to be Shaldon.

That small Devon village is set on the tidal river Teign - pronounced Teen - just as it joins the sea at Teignmouth – which is pronounced Tin, so I was informed by the sunburnt boy who helps to ferry a small boat from one side of the river to the other, as people have been doing for hundreds of  years
Teignmouth to Shaldon Ferry

Whether the journey is long or short depends on the state of the tide.  But in either case it is always atmospheric; open to the weather and wonderful to be amongst the mass of other small boats that use the river.
Dogs travel Free
There is no pomp and circumstance.  Simply go down the beach from either side; walk the narrow plank with a helping hand from the boy and choose your seat, then take stock of the characters and the dogs that share the experience with you.
Comparing their catch.
Waiting for the tide.

Shaldon village consists of wonderful, picturesque houses; some dating as far back as 1620.
It has a village green where the game of Bowls has been played for centuries; gardens that offer tantalising glimpses of the sea and public house signs like The Ferryboat and The Clipper.      

Rain or shine, the Game goes on.

View from a Private Garden
With a Post Office and a small shop; a primary school and a bus service as well as a Botanical Garden and a small Zoo it must be a very desirable place to live but perhaps we’d need to win the Lottery first.  

Monday, 9 July 2012

Ten Minute Gardener.

A Scented Rosebud

Giant Clover

Like most people,I enjoy looking at gardens.  But ask any of my friends and they’ll tell you I am not a garden person.  I bought my house because its garden was small, although well-stocked and blessedly hidden from the neighbours’ perfect ones. I know the more ordinary plants

Iceberg Rose
 but I can’t reel off their Latin names. I rarely sit in a garden and I certainly don’t work in one for longer

An Old Standard Rose
 than it takes to mow the lawn or pull out any obvious weeds.  So this morning, when I ventured forth with food for the birds, who must have chicks, judging by the speed at which they’re eating, I was surprised to discover that there were 13 beautiful flowers and bushes – all blossoming amongst the dripping greenery.
Healthy neglect obviously works!

Wedding Day Rose
Orange Blossom
Pink Feathery Flower on Tall Bush.
Peony Rose
The Orange Blossom bush has not flowered       for years so its amazing to see it now.
First Wild Strawberry
  The Peony is beautiful but short-lived.           But of all the flowers in the garden, the white lupins were
the most 

spectacular until a sudden, massive storm  flattened them all. So sad!