My Little Snipper

Today was one allegedly expected to enjoy intermittent sunshine. In reality this was more intermittent than sunshine.

We were conned by a bright start into taking an early drive to Puttles Bridge. In the event this was definitely intermittent.

Three-way traffic lights control gave me plenty of time to contemplate the verges on the side of the A337.

Watching a foal trot purposely across the low-flowering sward at the corner of Rhinefield and Meerut Roads at Brockenhurst I was surprised to see it latch onto a mare of rather different colouring. Equine genes in our neighbourhood seem to follow quite random routes.

P.S. I have received this very useful information from our good friend Carole: ‘Hi Derrick – couldn’t resist a little further equine info – ref your blog! In your pic, the foal is a pale chestnutty colour suckling from a slate grey coloured mother. Baby will end up grey too, and the older the adult, the whiter they gradually become. So you get the lovely dapple grey  look at around the age of 8-9 years old, gradually fading. I had 2 Arab horses. The first was born bay (brown body, black mane & tail) & the second was born chestnut (tail same colour as body more or less). In both instances Mum was grey. Both babies became grey as they grew to be 2-3 years old. Very dark grey at first, the bay baby had a slate grey mane & tail even when her body colour got paler & the chestnut foal had a white mane & tail as an adult. So not surprising you were surprised! Glad you had a good birthday! Xx’

She followed this with: ‘Three photos of my Tammy – as a foal, a young adult and a 10!year old – starts a chestnut, becomes dappled, ends up white xx’

The terrain alongside the shallow, clear, yet treacly, bubbling burbling, rippling, fast flowing, Ober Water was mostly fairly soggy and gathering reflecting pools, although beside the well-drained banks exposed lacy-veined roots writhed around water-eroded soil.

Aided by the recent winds, rose Doris Tysterman has stretched herself across the drive. Later this afternoon we righted her and tied her to one of our old stumps. I dug out three brambles while we were at it.

The pocket dead heading tool Shelly gave me yesterday came in handy. There are many more examples of this piece of equipment on Google.

This evening we dined on spicy Thai fish cakes garnished with onion rings; piquant cauliflower cheese; boiled new potatoes; crunchy carrots; and tender runner beans, with which Jackie finished the Rosé d’Anjou and I started the very smooth Signargues Cotes du Rhone Villages 2020, which Shelly had also brought yesterday.


  1. It looks like you’ve had plenty of rain, Derrick, the little crick is flowing nicely. That’s a perfect pruning tool for your flowers. ☺️

  2. Thank you for showing us your handy deadheading tool – and for all the beautiful photographs of flowers, foals and flowing water!

  3. Wonderful pics. As usual, I marvel at the ‘free to roam’ horses. The tool looks perfect for small jobs in tight spaces. I’ll look on Amazon. If I order yet today, I might get it tomorrow. As of now, my wife uses Fiskar products. Thanks, Derrick.

    It’s dinner time (we eat early) and I’m enjoying a piece of salmon, with cauliflower as sweet potato (maybe it’s a yam). And, of course, I’m enjoying our customary glass of water. My wife, Cheryl, normally dines with me but we’re having some heavy rain , a downpour, and the delicate Daisy the Dog, is having her ‘every time it rains, it’s going to thunder’ attack and Cheryl us attending her. Whoa, it just thundered.

      1. Derrick, I found the ‘Deadheader’ product in Google, first, and it directed me to Amazon. The message there was ‘out of stock with no target date for restock (if at all)’. Appât, you were fortunate to get that handy gadget. But I did buy a nice pocket knife by Husky, yesterday, while shopping at my local Home Depot store. It was an impulse purchase. But it did come in handy to cut off those nuisance tags on the underside of small rugs that always stick out when you unroll the rug ?

  4. Thank you, so much, Derrick, for the look at your “little snipper”. Very cool, indeed. I generally use my fingers, or with tough plants, a big pair of scissors which end up decapitating fresh blooms. I will check out this little gem for sure!

  5. That little dead header tool looks great. I like your water/woodland series, and that little foal is so sweet. Interesting about the coloring.

  6. The grey mare does seem to have hollow haunches – their colouring is, indeed wonderfully varied.
    Your header shot would make a great advert for your handy pocket dead-heading tool – and for roses too!
    Your path still looks superbly weed free – ours turns green again as soon as the weeding buckets are emptied! 🙁

  7. When I saw the title of your post come across my email, I thought it was going to feature Ella with sharp gardening implement (never too young to learn?). I have two favorite photos in this post: the black-and-white Woodland for aesthetics and the black-and-white Rippling Water for the creepy but really cool factor.

  8. The big black and white gnarly tree is wonderful — and your “little snipper” will deadhead a lot of roses in a lifetime!

  9. I enjoyed sharing your post this evening with our friend, Victor, who is a former wrestling student of Bob’s from the 1970s in San Mateo, CA. He has been to London many times and has studied in England. He goes back a couple times a year with a group of students – U. of Georgia system, Columbus State. He was quite interested in your blog… and I enjoyed sharing it with him and telling him about you & Jackie.

  10. That is one of the nicest driveways I’ve seen, folded rose and all. Those snips look handy. They’re the perfect size. Derrick, what causes that amber color in the water?

  11. I don’t think I’ve ever known the correct way to deadhead flowers!
    Great little tool It reminds me of the small scissors Joss and I found yesterday in a stationary box at the back of a cupboard, we wondered why there were no slots for our fingers.

    We benefitted from the sunshine yesterday and a light breeze – a perfect washing day!

  12. Our next cooking session with the local U3A is Thai fish cakes. I wonder if they’ll be as good as Jackie’s? We’ll never know, eh?

  13. I have one of those tools, and foolish me, I thought it had something to do with needlework. ? No one told me!

  14. love your snipper, simple and functional! lovely set of photos as always, Derrick. great info on how color changes as foals mature. 🙂

  15. I appreciated that info with photos from Carole. I truly had no idea that horses change colour with age, and how she talks about this phenomena, I realize it is common. You spend so much time dead-heading, this tool could potentially serve you well. Your comment “more intermittent than sunshine” made me laugh.

  16. That tool looks great and so do the photos
    Nice beautiful day out side.
    It’s storming here nothing too bad just a thunderstorm
    Have a great weekend

  17. Fascinating new info from Carole! I had no idea that horses might change color so dramatically–a literal “horse with a different color.” ?

  18. Sorry to have fallen behind, Derrick. Just catching up. That was an interesting photo of the foal and mare, and note and photos from Carole on the color changes!

    You snippers look quite handy, and easy to carry about. I will look for a pair for myself.

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