Tuesday, November 28, 2006


My favorite tree in the Phoenix Park near Dublin is this oak, which I have named "Taranis". I lived near this park, and used to visit Taranis regularly to sit against its warm trunk and just think, feeling its sense of calm. I felt it had some kind of magical energy, and imagined there was an oak fae living among the tree's branches.I found the name "Taranis" in a book about tree wisdom:
In legend, Taranis is the Celtic thunder-god, and the ancient people used to worship this god within oak forests, where they formed holy groves. Growing so close together, the trees would often be struck by lightning, visibly and audibly wrought with fire from heaven. In the eyes of these ancient people, the oak was a channel for the sky-god to reach down to thier own world.

I used to cycle past this tree almost every day on my way to work, watching its change of seasons.

According to Nature mystics, the oak is a doorway to other realms, spiritual and psychological. Within an oak grove is found protection and warmth. Oak dryads have a strong presence whick brings us a sense of release, showing that every problem can be solved if we take nourishment from the earth.
So it's no wonder I loved visiting this magnificent tree. And even in winter, the trunk was warm against my back, or when I was hugging it!

Visit Arboreality, who is hosting the Festival of Trees this December, for more posts about trees!

Monday, November 27, 2006

A beautiful day

These pansies seem to never stop blooming!

The primulas have begun thier winter blooms.

And Malcolmia maritama, which is aslo called Virginia Stock, has just started blooming from its self-seeded plants. They should hopefully look pretty all winter.

It was such a beautiful day yesterday, I finally was able to do some gardening chores. I took down the sweet peas and beans, and collected all these seedpods! Two little blooms were still on the plants, so they went into a vase.
I decided to mow the sunny areas of the grass, that part of the lawn was not as boggy as the shady areas. Good thing too, we had a big storm last night, and the whole back garden is now under water! I should take some pics when it gets brighter.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

It's a jungle in there!

The jungle plant in our bathroom has reached the ceiling. I love having this plant in there, you have to duck under it now and then, it's like being in a jungle. The leaves of this plant are strong, they push the door closed when you enter or leave. Roots hang down looking for a hold onto something. I've no idea what this is called, but it's slowly taking over the whole room!
Annie in Austin has identified this! The latin name suits it perfectly: Monstera deliciosa, delicious monster! Otherwise known as split-leaved philodendron. Thankies, Annie!

Take a look at more plants and gardens on Green Thumb Sunday.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


It's my first Green Thumb Sunday! I thought I would show my schlumbergera in bloom. I put it up high so we can all admire the hanging flowers. Just below it, my Thunbergia is still blooming nicely:
I got this Schlumbergera years ago. It was sitting in someone's office on the window sill, apparantly abandoned from a previous owner. It looked a bit shiveled up, and even a little ugly. I felt sorry for it, so took it to my own office and gave it some loving care. Looked like a cactus to me, I didn't know what it was. This was in the summertime.
A few months later, during November, it put on this most gorgeous show! Well, at that time, there were maybe 4 flowers blooming. I was so surprised and happy to have found and rescued this amazing plant. And it has been with me ever since.

Seeds for friends

I am making seed packs! See more on my Art Nook blog.
I have also put up a tutorial, on how to make these using Photoshop. Hopefully it's understandable ;-}

Friday, November 17, 2006

Tree people!

Oh my goodness, look what I found yesterday! These people at Pooktre grow trees shaped like people, and they grow furniture and houses and decore as well. Amazing stuff! I am going to try this too, how whimsical!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Leaves of gold

Autumn has finally given us some colors!

My sweet Rowan with his golden leaves.

Amber Salix, swaying in the breeze.

And Twisty Hazel in honey colors.

I think we needed a bit of frost before the leaves decided to turn color. A lot of the trees have already dropped a lot of their leaves without turning yellow, or orange or red first.
I'd like a bit of red color, I might look around and see which trees are red these days around here.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Tinkerbelle and William

William Morris rose in the early morning.

Tinkerbelle, a neighbor's cat, comes to visit me as I wander around the garden.

The last flowers of William Morris, looking very sad..

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Molly in the Sun

Molly sits in comfort in a sunny spot by the back door.
See the little scotch bonnet hot pepper at the top of the pic? It's the only scotch bonnet plant that actually produced a fruit. This seed came from a pepper my son brought home last spring. I will plant the seeds from this one next summer, and hope it will produce more plants and more peppers!
My pinochio's noses peppers are quite hot, I made tomato sauce with a half-inch of one cut up, and it made our eyes water and our noses sniffy! Scotch bonnets are meant to be even hotter.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Chilly Pixies

The little pixies living in these mushrooms must have been a little chilly yesterday morning!
Posting these fungi, because my blogs have been reviewed
( See it here ) by Laura of Fungi Thinking and Name that Mushroom. She has beautiful pictures of all kinds od fungi, go have a look!

Friday, November 03, 2006

A frosty morning

It was a frosty morning yesterday and also today. But very warm during the day, I was outside yesterday in a sleeveless dress, and put my hot peppers in the sun against the house.

I finally named my orangy-red rose, "Mirthful". I could not identify it, so now she has a nice and happy name. Here she is dressed in lacy frost.

The weeds looked pretty as well, edged in sparkling white.

Graham Thomas rose dusted in frost.

The chamomile leaves looked especially pretty decorated in icy crystals. Later in the day, they straightened themselves up to soak up the warm sun.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween Bonfire

Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen,
Voices whisper in the trees, "Tonight is Halloween!"
~Dexter Kozen

At least the calendulas are colorful!

Lovely bright calendula, I'm happy you give me so much color!

I chose this little maple to grace our garden two years ago. It was then colored in oranges and yellows and reds. This year, it was feeling rather down, and dressed itself in browns. Not sure why this is, was it not sunny enough? Too cold? Too hot? Bad soil?

Even the big beech tree next door has mostly brown leaves, here caught by a giant nasturtium leaf.

Part of my indoor"garden" by the dining room glass doors. A few hot peppers still ripening. My schlumbergera just budding, which always blooms so nicely in November. Impatiens taken as cuttings from a garden in Holland.