May the (good weather) be with you

weather october

Here’s two great tunes to get the supposedly sunny weekend off to a flying start.

The first is from Roots Manuva with Don’t Breathe Out on Big Dada featuring a nice Barry White sample.

Number two is the work of Greg Morris from “the land of wood an water” (as the Rt. Honourable David Rodigan says) with a great dub of the Real Rock rhythm in a 2015 style.

Stick these two on loud when you’re out in the garden tomorrow tidying up and when the sun goes in, light up the bonfire and put the tunes on again!

Be afraid, be very afraid

Shannons tweetEarlier this week I received a great tweet from the good folks at Shannon‘s telling us that the Eremurus tubers (Foxtail Lilly/Desert Candle) had arrived. I had a shock when I picked out two of (the very strange looking) tubers today as these were huge (nearly a foot wide) compared to the one I had last year. I  even had to put both of them in a bin bag just in case they’d scare the neighbours! The tubers are very out of this world looking and wouldn’t be out of place in “War of the Worlds” either.Be afraid very afraidThey were £7.99 each which may seem a bit steep but what you get for it, a giant of a plant with a huge coloured flower spike (some varieties grow up to 3 metres), it’s well worth it! Here’s what it was like earlier this year. Roll on next year!foxtail last year

Sunday morning nightmare

squirrel thiefWoke up at the crack of dawn this morning and went downstairs to make myself a cup of tea to bring back up to bed. Looking out of the kitchen window I was greeted with this little sunflower seed thief.

Rather than bang on the window I laughed, and had to admire the nimble robbing git! I’m sure this is the same one that had the bud off another sunflower two years ago (post here). A description has been taken and the details passed on to the nature police.

We’ve had more than our fair share of trouble with squirrels in the past and one instance is covered in this Sounds From the South podcast from last year.

It’s the gnome service of course

The Lloyd Pack – Itchy Gnomes – Amish Records

I heard this on the Tom Ravenscroft show the other week. It’s lo-fi in the best way, a bit afro-beat, the keyboards reminds me a little bit of the Blue Orchids, and it has some well-mad lyrics too. “Spring has sprung, itchy lungs” and we love the sample of someone talking about a scrabble set. Say children, what does it all mean? Who cares, as we love it here!


Talking of the Blue Orchids, one Saturday years ago, myself and a good mate hitched it from the Midlands to Manchester for a gig of theirs.

After the gig we spent most of a cold night stuck on a motorway junction just outside Stoke-on-Trent. Come dawn we were picked up by a chap who had a dashboard full of boiled sweets; packs of barley sugars, humbugs and butterscotch amongst many others which littered the leatherette. While he wolfed down boiled sweet after boiled sweet, he told us he was on his way to the Birmingham marathon and was in need of a chat after driving for hours on his own.

In that lovely warm car we both nodded off straight away and came to just as he angrily shouted we were approaching the junction for Birmingham. He was well fed up with us, but you know what, we were more fed up with him, as he never even offered us a sweet, the tight git!

What a carry on!

I popped into Shannon’s this morning whilst the sun was out and on the way round deciding what to treat myself with, I noticed this delightfully named passion flower.

silly cow

While we were there, we bought a bag of coarse grit for my daughter’s cactus collection. On the way out we noticed a few people doing a double take at the bag my daughter was carrying. And this is why…

Coarse gritIn the background while writing this, we’re listening to this week’s fitting tribute to the late Joe Maiden “the godfather of soil,” by Tim Crowther and friends on BBC Radio Leeds. It’s a mixture of happy and sad and a show worth listening to on play again here. R.I.P Joe Maiden.

Respect is due…

Sad news as another great gardener goes to that big greenhouse in the sky.

Joe maiden RIPThis week the great Joe Maiden from Gardening with Tim and Joe on BBC Radio Leeds passed away with prostate cancer. Very sad news indeed, as he was a man who knew his onions… (and carrots, and brassicas, and beetroots, and chrysanthemums, and dahlias, and roses, and agapanthus, and foxgloves, etc, etc.) He’ll be sorely missed. R.I.P Joe Maiden.