Thursday, 28 June 2007

Pernicious

Thanks to my Mum and Andrew for their comments on the weed quiz. Looks like we've got some pretty pernicious weeds to contend with between the Japanese Knotweed and the Ground Elder. Oh well - we'll do as much as we have to to keep them in check, but won't go to the time and effort of actually fighting them - that sounds like a job for the house's owners to me. David's talking about getting an incinerator, which is probably not a bad idea - more efficient and neighbour friendly than lighting a fire in the middle of the garden.

I finished the yellow baby booties for Jen and Neil's baby.

Here they are being modelled by Lille Bamse:

And here they are by themselves:



They're certainly yellow. So that's two down and maybe three or four to go. Our next friend that's pregnant is due in the middle of July, so the next pair can wait a week or so.

We're off to Bergen this weekend to visit Mina, Arild and Lauritz. We're going to be going to Voss to the extreme sports weekend - I'm looking forward to seeing and not participating! Arild's the extreme sports nut.

Saturday, 23 June 2007

Plant Quiz - weed or not?

I spoke to Helen and Simon last night to find out how everything went - they had a baby boy on June 11th. They've named him Jacob James, although on the phone it sounded as if they were referring to him as "Little Monkey" quite a bit. Mother, baby and the rest of the family are doing well and are adjusting to their new addition. Helen said she'd send some photos soon, so I'm looking forward to seeing them.

So I'll send a package to them including the finished pink socks for big sister Anna:




And the booties for Jacob:

It's not long till the next our next friends are due .... Jen and Neil are due on 27th - again they don't know whether it's going to be a girl or a boy, so another non-gender specific booties have been started - yellow this time:




And now for the plant quiz....
Weed or not?

This is the front garden to our house along the entrance path - nice roses and poppies - but what is everything else?

1. Is this worth keeping?

2. Keep or compost?


3. Should this be given root space?

4. This picture is actually taken on the other side of the road to our house, but we did have some to the left of our front door... it was growing out of the paving stones etc so I have decided that it's something weed-like, but am curious to know what it actually is.



5. Is this ground elder?

6. This seems to be really popular in Norway - I'm sure it's fine if you're the kommune and are wanting to stabilise a bank next to a road, or something - but in a garden it goes rampant and spreads along and basically smothers everything else.


7. Some sort of bush that's in bud at the moment - I think the flowers are going to be white.

8. And last but not least - another something that has sprung up by the side of the house.

A couple of things:

  • if you need another photo of any of them ask;
  • all answers or suggestions of what things might be gratefully received; and
  • I'm not interested in the "a weed is just a plant in the wrong place" mantra - would you give it garden space!?

And I guess as it's a quiz there should be prizes - but I'll have to think about what they could be!

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

First visitor

We had our first visitor this last weekend - Liz from Bristol. We know Liz through the walking group we both belonged to back in the UK. Luckily we had really good weather here on Saturday and Sunday, so went out for a hike both days. Liz was overwhelmed by how light it was - it is pretty crazy. It's 10:15pm now and the sun is streaming in the window.

So, with all this light we were able to put our guest to work and persuaded her to help us a little bit in the garden. Shel helped us cut back to a sensible height the thorny-est hedge possible. And also helped in the veg garden digging. This is how it's coming along:



We planted turnip, cabbage, celeriac and spinach in the bed that Liz and I dug, and I started a third bed this evening while David was at work. With all this light the plants can't do anything but grow. And we're planning on buying a lawnmower this weekend so we can get the grass all neat and tidy - in order to show off the veg or course.

So, with all this walking and digging there hasn't been a huge amount of time for knitting. The only progress has been with Anna's second sock - I've managed to turn the heel - so I'm on the homeward stretch now.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Multiplying boxes

June seems to be flying by.

We moved on June 1st to our new house - which went fine. Then we abandoned all the boxes and mess on June 2nd to travel to Spain (not quite Syden in the Norwegian sense, as we weren't on the coast) to visit David's parents. We had a lovely time - nice and relaxing. It was pretty warm, but most of the time there was a bit of a breeze, which kept it nice. We went to some pretty places and went to a couple of ex-pat parties and generally had a good time. Nothing too strenuous - we almost managed to forget that we would be coming back to boxes and stuff everywhere.

I managed to do a bit of knitting while I was away. The first of my pregnant friends was due on June 11th - I haven't heard if she's delivered yet, but I'm sure I'll hear soon. While we were away I knitted these:

Helen and Simon, have a daughter already, Anna - so I thought I'd better knit something for her too. She loves pink, so I thought some pink socks would be good. I used the stitch pattern from this pattern, but sizing as for the smallest size for this pattern. I think Anna's 3, so I hope they (once I've knitted sock two) fit.


I've also been continuing with David's not grey socks using magic loop - they're progressing, and I quite like the technique for a change.

Since we've been back we have had a bit of a go at the garden - we've mown the lawn and made sure the veggies are behaving themselves - although I'm itching to dig another bit for planting some more vegetables. We've also been enjoying some of the flowers and blossom that are around the garden:

We have three, or maybe four lilac trees/bushes around the garden that are all flowering at the moment - they smell lovely.

We also have a hawthorn tree that is looking very pretty at the moment. There's quite a lot of work that needs doing in the garden - it's been allowed to become a bit of a jungle and is now growing really fast with the long days and abundance of light.

We still have loads to do in the house, so I'm not sure how much time I'll get away with spending in the garden!