The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Tulips

Posted in Flowers | 4 comments

Tulips

I love flowers that open in the day when they are touched with sun and close when in shade. Somehow it seems as if they are even more alive. I was unaware that tulips do this as, until this year, they were just an occasional visitor in the garden. Last autumn I splashed out on tulips. I bought some rather pricey Thompson and Morgan collections. I know that tulip aficionados are a bit sniffy about ‘collections’ but I wanted a good show of early, mid season and late tulips. Basically I just needed to ‘Look and Learn’. If you don’t...

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Ranunculus

Posted in Discoveries, Flowers | 22 comments

Ranunculus

This afternoon I fell in love. I was in Waitrose with my mother. Standing beside the flower stand. I don’t buy flowers for the cottage anymore but my mum often buys me flowers when we go shopping. “Why, these are beautiful.” She picked up some soft yet elegant flowers that we’d never seen before. We examined the label – Ranunculus. Such a clumsy name for an exquisite flower. Apparently it comes from the Latin and means little frog. As both the amphibian and plant enjoy a little damp. I’ve spent the evening getting acquainted with...

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Snowdrops and aconites

Posted in Flowers | 11 comments

Snowdrops and aconites

A beautiful postcard stands beside my computer, showing drifts of woodland snowdrops. It’s an advertisement for four snowdrop weekends at Chippenham Park. One day I hope that there will be bountiful drifts of snowdrops and aconites in front of our cottage. At the moment there is a patch of grass. The south westerly aspect means sun all afternoon. There have always been small patches of snowdrops in spring, a few aconites and a little later, pale blue crocuses open like stars on bright days. The gravel driveway takes up most of the space...

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