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K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge…

Greetings to you all and welcome to this summertime edition of K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge, today bringing some sunshine into your Monday, via my prompt; How does your garden grow?

As I said in Friday’s post, we shall be moving house (well, flat) in a week or so, meaning that we will have to start again with a clean slate in a new garden (which we have been able to start work on already, for reasons that will become clear soon) and say goodbye to the green-bordered patio area that makes up the majority of our current outside space.

But mostly I will miss The Mound.

The overgrown, weed-choked, sloping flower bed in the corner, which we transformed into the ever-changing tapestry of colours and textures it is now over the last two years, has been a constant source of pleasure and satisfaction, not to mention the many stunning photo opportunities it has provided.

So it seemed only right that I feature it in at least one more post before we bequeathed it to its new custodians.

I’d love to take a look round some of your gardens, why don’t you give us a tour?

K’lee’s photos from across the pond are now to be found HERE, why not go over and check them out.

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To get involved with the challenge, post a photo to your blog on Monday, add a pingback to this post (or to K’lee’s) and don’t forget to tag your post #CosPhoChal.

Alternatively, add a link to your blog in the comments of either mine or K’lee’s post and we’ll come and check out your entry.
Any and all effects, editing, Photoshop, Instagram, morphing, collages or whatever other post production techniques you fancy are permitted, (in fact, they’re actively encouraged!) so get creative and turn your photos into artworks for the Cosmic Photo Challenge.
#CosPhoChal

 

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(Not) Stream of consciousness Sunday, part one: Easter in the garden…

It’s Easter Sunday, there’s a live Grand Prix on TV and I’ve got tomorrow off, so the question you have to ask yourself is this; Can I be bothered to spend the day writing, when I can just as easily do it tomorrow, or would I rather be sitting in the garden, taking some photos, watching the race and drinking cider?

Ummm…

So, SoCS is tomorrow, but I thought I’d make the effort and share some of the springtime progress in the garden.

I hope you all have a pleasant Easter and I’ll see you tomorrow for the main event, so to speak.

 

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March of the Internet Nobody, day twenty seven: Nature photography week…

I think I’ve done quite well so far, in my attempt to post something interesting, entertaining, or at least different, every day for a month, and without resorting to simply posting a daily photo, too.

Well, until this week, anyway.

So for each of the final five days of my March marathon, I shall try to capture some original images of nature for your viewing pleasure; starting off with a regular subject of my photo posts, The Mound.

The area around the sloping corner bed in the dappled shade of our back garden has provided us with variety, interest and seasonal splashes of colour since we cleared the overgrown mass of weeds which covered it when we moved in. Now, with a few days of sunshine and warmth, the garden in general and The Mound in particular, is coming back to life.

And here’s a tune that ties in rather nicely.

 
6 Comments

Posted by on March 27, 2017 in Blogging, Photography

 

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K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge…

At first I thought K’lee’s choice of theme for this week’s edition of K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge was a case of wishful thinking, when he picked; Signs of Spring’s Return.

But after a quick perusal of our small garden in yesterday’s grey winter light, I concluded that K’lee’s optimism was well founded as there are many new shoots and indications of returning life.

See for yourself…

K’lee has sprung into action and his gorgeous post is now HERE for your viewing pleasure.

Now it’s time for you to show us your green shoots of inspiration…

*****

To get involved with the challenge, post a photo to your blog on Monday, add a pingback to this post (or to K’lee’s) and don’t forget to tag your post #CosPhoChal.

Alternatively, add a link to your blog in the comments of either mine or K’lee’s post and we’ll come and check out your entry.
Any and all effects, editing, Photoshop, Instagram, morphing, collages or whatever other post production techniques you fancy are permitted, (in fact, they’re actively encouraged!) so get creative and turn your photos into artworks for the Cosmic Photo Challenge.

#CosPhoChal

 
7 Comments

Posted by on February 13, 2017 in Arts, Blogging, Photography

 

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More from The Mound…

I thought I’d share some colour versions of the pictures I used in the Cosmic Photo Challenge yesterday, showing the recent additions to our garden from the weekend. These are shared from my photographic blog, Photo Sans Frontiers, please pop over and visit if you haven’t checked it out yet…

Photo Sans Frontiers

The burst of Summer over the weekend generated a flurry of activity in our rented garden, including adding some colour to The Mound.

I know I’ve posted many photos our one, sloping corner of unpaved loveliness, but it is interesting to watch an island in a sea of patio slowly evolve.

We also got a great deal on some planters on Sunday(because they’re actually cheap galvanised buckets from Homebase) and by the end of the afternoon the garden looked like this…

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5 Comments

Posted by on August 9, 2016 in Arts, Photo Sans Frontiers, Photography

 

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Garden evolution…

The perfect end to a gloriously hot and relaxing long weekend; capturing the changing face of the garden in the sunshine…

Photo Sans Frontiers

It’s good to have a document of how our garden has grown from the unkempt and overgrown blank canvas that we began with, to the oasis of colour, form and texture that we have made for ourselves.

I’ve posted many photos of The Mound, both here and on Diary of an Internet Nobody, but it’s a continually evolving part of the garden which started off like this…

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…a dead tree stump, overgrown with bluebells, wild garlic and long, unidentified green things, along with a few stems of ash and hawthorn (from seeds of the trees which used to overhang the patio).

And in the last week or so, leading up to today and the glorious bank holiday sunshine, the garden now looks this…

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Finally; it might not look exactly like this, but here was Audrey’s fairy garden, beneath the fiery red canopy of the pieris, after a little…

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4 Comments

Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Arts, Personal anecdote, Photography

 

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Picture this. Autumn colours at Arlington Court…

This weekend I’ve once again been playing host to my old friend Ho, who has been taking a well earned break from a frantic work schedule to join me for a spot of relaxation in the beautiful autumnal Devon countryside.
This time we decided to take a stroll around the extensive grounds of Arlington Court, ancestral home of the Chichester family for over 500 years.

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The house itself is an imposing stone built mansion, surrounded by rolling lawns, lakes, and woodlands, criss-crossed with pathways that lead you to various viewpoints overlooking not only the gloriously varied vistas of the estate but also the picturesque church of St James (not owned by the Trust, but adjacent to the house) which just happened to be staging a flower festival at the time of our visit.

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We began our tour on the front lawn of the house, heading down to the ornamental lake, stocked with lazily cruising carp and topped with a proliferation of water lilies, pausing on the way to admire the splendor of an ancient oak tree that has stood on the site since well before the house or grounds existed.
The tree is preserved primarily for the scientifically important and internationally recognised variety of lichen, moss and fungi that festoon its gnarled and twisted trunk.

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The church is just visible through the trees that overlook the lake, providing a focal point for visitors, an invitation to investigate the hidden beauty of the peaceful sanctuary as you make your way round the estate.

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But before we headed into the cool vaulted space of the flower-strewn chapel we made our way down the shady path amongst the trees to discover what the woods had to offer.

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Before too long we came upon a small camp in a clearing, complete with a traditional clay oven beneath the billowing folds of a parachute canopy, along with rustic huts constructed from sticks salvaged from the woodland floor.

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The woods have the quiet atmosphere of a primeval forest, rotting trees left where they fell, allowing the verdant moss to take hold and making perfect burrows for small animals and insects, creating shapes that look for all the world like the backbones of long-dead dinosaurs or mythical dragons.

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Occasionally a gate or stile will allow a view across the cattle grazing fields of the deer park, to the densely wooded slopes of the valley, the trees starting to display the muted tones of autumn foliage.

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We retraced the path back to the lake and made for the tower of the church, immediately seeing signs of the floral attraction within…
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…already catching the scent of the expertly designed bouquets before we even entered the light and airy space of St James’s, the vibrant colours of hundreds of flowers perfectly complimenting the stained glass windows and ornamental carvings on the walls.
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Our final two stops were at the formal and walled kitchen gardens, the latter of which provides fresh produce for the house and its cafe.
There was even an imperious peacock to welcome us to his domain, although he didn’t seem keen on me taking his picture and I required several stealthy attempts to capture him in all his iridescent glory.
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There is even an “insect hotel” high-rise apartment block for bees and other pollinators…
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…and there is always something intriguing around the next corner or through the next inviting door.
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…and of course the Chichester family symbol, a heron grappling with an eel, is in evidence everywhere.
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All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable visit to a place that I’m sure I’ll visit again and again, because there is always something new to discover.

Arlington Court house and gardens are open until the end of October, I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys relaxing amidst spectacular scenery, basking in the more genteel atmosphere of days gone by and leaving the stresses and strains of modern life behind for a few hours.

 

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