Yoda, hellebores, fuchsias, take a break – Six on Saturday 22 December 2018

Yoda, hellebores, fuchsias, take a break – Six on Saturday 22 December 2018

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it’s been a weird weird week, a weird month, and most definitely a weird year – in some ways I’m ahead of myself, in other ways I’m not.   In many ways, I’m feeling much better and more myself than I was a year ago.   I think I’ve got my head around managing, and living with the pain from my osteoarthritis, but gosh it interferes with gardening.   Find I can do less and less in the winter now than a few years ago. It’s mostly potting up in the porch, pruning standing, and not much sweeping or hoeing before my fingers ache intolerably despite wearing suitable gloves.  I long gave up the heavy work, digging etc – my awesome Chap does all this now.  As a result, I’ve gone big on the bulbs this year so let us see how they turn out next Spring.  I can’t garden all day anymore even in the Summer, I need to take a break regularly – recharge my batteries.

However, I do get outside for at least an hour every day – it isn’t always in my garden but it’s somewhere green – the canal at the end of our street, the local woods, the urban parks and squares of Manchester City Centre – and onto the hills, reservoirs and beaches if it’s the weekend 🙂

I’m really focusing on what is happening in the garden, and sometimes photographing it – being ‘in the moment’.  Doing this definitely helps my wellbeing.  I’ve realised over the last few years what a difference it makes to my health generally.  Getting out every day, photographing and looking back over the same day in different years definitely reinforces that this has been a weird weather year.   So much is still growing or flowering when it shouldn’t.


As usual, I am joining in with JJ from www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com – he’s got plenty of plants popping up through the soil, some destined for Christmas Dinner and some arriving early ahead of Spring flowering. He’s got a gorgeous Cornus (with a bright red stem), sadly my garden isn’t big enough for Cornus :-(.  I loved the Cornus in the light show at  #ChristmasatDunhamMassey last week.


So here’s my #SixonSaturday – some plants hanging on, some flowering early (or late depending on your perspective) and some things to get you in the Christmas mood…

1. Salvia Armistad

purple fronds salvia amisted

salvia amisted –

Still flowering – looking a bit soggy and fed up. This shrub has been flowering continuously since August – it’s grown about four foot since then too. It’s appeared a few times on Six on Saturday.

2. Rosemary – flowering when it shouldn’t

small lilac flowers on rosemary bush

rosemary flowering December 2018

This is a huge bush in our front garden which acts as a wind break – I’ve never seen it flower at this time of year – it’s been very mild, if rather wet in Manchester, mostly at least 8 degrees

3. fuchsia Winston Churchill

pink and ourple fuchsia winston churchill

fuchsia Winston Churchill – 22 December 2018

I’ve got three fuchsias in the back garden still flowering, and a big hardy one outside the kitchen window in the front garden.   This plant is about two foot high and is in a pot at the moment –  It’s not even a hardy variety – H2 so I’ll need to move it to the porch or the garage if a cold snap comes.

Weird name for a fuchsia too… 

4. Hellebore

Pink Helebore buds in the rain

Hellebore buds in the rain

This one is in a pot because we didn’t get around to planting it – I’ve got another in the border which has one or two buds, but no flowers yet – I’m sure they’ll both appear on a Six on Saturday soon.

The common name for hellebore is Michaelmas Rose – so it. It’s appeared a couple of times on the blog.  They’re one of my favourite early flowering plants and if the weather’s right, they’ll flower for months.  A hassle to photograph in situ as they droop – but practise makes perfect.

5. Cotoneaster – red berries still!

red berries on contoneaster


Showing bright red berries still, are helping me get in the Christmas spirit – they’re far too fragile now to put on door wreath though.

6. Yoda

Wishing you a Merry Christmas, I am, and Happy Hogmanay Earthlings.

BTW the lavender isn’t flowering – now that WOULD be really weird… though I’ve got crocus plants popping up through the soil.


Childhood memories – Dr Seuss

I read Dr Seuss when I was a child in the 1970s, and later to my nieces and god-children.  I’ve always loved the books with the rhymes and cartoons.  I watched the ‘How The Grinch stole Christmas‘ (2000) film for the first time this week – I enjoyed it 🙂  Not from the film but this quote sums up Christmas planning for many people.

How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon? Dr. Seuss

I don’t know about you – but as I get older, I’m less inclined with all the ‘faff’, rushing around and overspending around Christmas.  Kids seem to have very different experiences now, elf on the shelf, Christmas eve boxes and what not – which highlights wealth difference. Very tough on parents struggling financially – I’ve done my bit to support the local charities and groups helping disadvantaged families.

For me Christmas is about spending time with those I love, relaxing and slowing down.  Reflecting on what’s occurred this year, thinking and planning for next year – and just ‘being in the moment’

Since most of my family are in Australia I send presents in early December so they arrive in good time – and as my nieces have got older, the packages get smaller and more expensive 🙂 One day, we’ll get out there again for Christmas – it’s so very different on the surface but in the many ways much the same 🙂

We order and collect our Christmas food from Booths Supermarket in a timed slot so there’s no fighting our way around supermarkets.   I’ve got the Christmass films, books and crafting ready to make – ideas for photography too. My Chap has a list of recipes he’s making, he’s planning on running every day 🙂  We’re down in Berkshire to see my Mum so next week’s Six onSaturday will be from her garden not ours…

Take a break – or selfcare matters

So on the weekend before Christmas, I hope you’re getting to do what you want, spend time with people you love and/or time by yourself if that’s what you want… I thought I’d make some suggestions for relaxation and selfcare, so check back on Monday.

And as I’m reminded again – life isn’t a dress rehearsal…

As they say around here  have a ‘reet greadley’ Christmas 😉 Take a break too 🙂

Carpe Diem

Love Bec xx xx xx


  1. 23/12/2018 / 12:18 pm

    Being outside almost everyday is what keeps me moving. I, too, have some gardening chores done by someone else, but I’ll keep doing what I can as long as I can.

  2. 23/12/2018 / 9:40 pm

    My rosemary flowers now too! Ive been gardening in my garden for ten years and feeling my strength and stamina fade away each season( I have MS) is one of the hardest things to explain to anyone. Gardening is vital but also such a bench mark of progressive weakness.
    Keep enjoying it in All weathers.

  3. 24/12/2018 / 9:09 pm

    One of the things I miss about living in a flat is not having a garden because these are looking really beautiful!

  4. 29/12/2018 / 4:32 pm

    Its lovely to see so much colour in the garden this time of year. The Rosemary looks beautiful – definitely my favourite of your selection. Hope you had a lovely Christmas.

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