Giving It Some Welly



This morning’s dawn promised a better day than forecast.

And so it proved, at least for the first hour or so. I took an early ramble round the garden on which more light was cast than yesterday. This brought forth an open-mouthed gape from a bespectacled gentleman atop the skeletal honesty in the Weeping Birch Bed.

Camellias and hellebores were nicely backlit in some areas.

Garden view from Fiveways

Here is the view from Fiveways;

Daffodils, hellebores, allium, and bergenia

bergenia, daffodils, and hellebores in a corner of the Dead End Path;

and more hellebores, alliums, and vincas.

Daphne odora Aureomarginata

Jackie is particularly delighted with the daphne odora Aureomarginata that she put in last year. It is apparently quite a fussy plant.

When shopping at Lidl this morning, Jackie had spotted that the supermarket was selling very reasonably priced wheelbarrows. She drove me back there to buy one. After this we travelled on to Friars Cliff for me to post, into one of the beach huts, the prints I had made of photographs taken of two little girls on the beach on 24th February.

On one side of Christchurch Road stretches a number of extensive fields which, at this time of the year are occupied by hundreds of ewes and lambs. On the other, in front of a farmhouse, is a much smaller rectangular enclosure, not much more than a fold, really. We have always thought of that as the nursery for very newborn lambs before their decanting across the road. Today we saw confirmation of this.

The most recent arrivals and their mothers could be seen through the fencing bars. The rolled folds in the babies’ skin demonstrated their newness. Already, just like the grown sheep, they were stamped with identification numbers.

Even so young, some of the lambs were as inquisitive as the ewes,

whereas others and their mothers were not quite so sure.

As we arrived, a farmer drove a large tractor and long trailer from the farmyard, around a bend in the road, and through an open gate into the field opposite. He proceeded to unload his cargo of ewes and their lambs,

Ewes and lambs 1

which were very soon suckling fit to fill out those rolls of skin.

Unloading ewes and lambs 7

The farmer was very gentle with his charges, even when offering a whole new meaning to the phrase, ‘giving it some welly’, as he encouraged a reluctant little one to join its patiently waiting mother.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s pasta arrabbiata, sugar snap peas, and rocket salad, followed by tiramisu. I drank more of the Fleurie and the Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden.


      1. Obviously you’re not English Jodie; it comes from being smacked in the mouth with your own hand.
        Gob = mouth OE slang.. smacking ones hand across the mouth, which is open in shock or astonishment,

        And if you can follow that load of codswallop you have come far! 😀

  1. Loved this post, Derrick! The sheep and lambs may be common to you folks but not to this urban center dweller. And finding the “bespectacled gentleman” was a treat–good catch! Ah, yes, daphne–we have it in abundance around here and you can smell its cloying sweetness from many feet away. Love those flowerlets. I am excited to see your garden change once more!

  2. A lamb nursery seems like a metaphor for spring. They are adorable.
    I can’t say I’ve ever heard anyone say ” giving it some welly.” 🙂

    Your dinner sounds delicious, though I had to look up rocket salad.

    1. We use the expression to mean ‘making a lot of effort’ – not sure of the origin, but it is a reference to Wellington boots, which the farmer used to good effect 🙂 Thanks very much, Merril

  3. Daphne is such an unforgettable scent and always brings back memories of springtime when my children were young! I’m on owl look-out duties, but as I can’t enlarge your photos any more have only my not-so-keen eyes to rely on. Hence I counted one!

        1. When you get to the gallery, scroll down and click on view full size – you get the larger individual image which you can enlarge even more with another click. Try that. X

  4. They have the cutest little legs. They did seem to be checking you out, as well, with their inquisitive faces. Great post, including the gentle boot…

  5. As my old mate Percy once said, “O Wind,
    If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?”
    And when Spring comes it comes with a flare of trumpets. (I said that )

  6. Image aside (which I loved), the phrase “skeletal honesty” has some intriguing potential uses. I have decided to plant some Daphne this year, with some trepidation, so am happy to see that Jackie’s is doing well.

  7. The Culinary Queen, Jackie’s precious and particular flower was gorgeous!
    I liked the open-mouthed bespectacled gentleman is really a great one to spot. At first I just saw circles and bubble shapes. The baby lambs are sweet and cuddly looking. 🙂

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