The first-ever flower on my winter jasmine! It’s from a self-rooted bit I took from my Mum’s about 18 months ago, so is still a youngster. Still, it’s a cheerful sight when I look out of the French windows.

winter jasmine flower

coffee table flowers

Somewhat battered, and the leaves are turning colour and falling off, but the Etoile de Hollande is still producing flowers for the coffee table.

It’s much the latest I’ve managed to have real flowers, as opposed to dried ones, since I moved to Worcester (nine years ago tomorrow), though the magnificent rose I had in the front garden when I lived in Tottenham occasionally produced buds as late as Christmas Day.

two roseflowers in vase


I failed to make parkin at Halloween (which is the traditional time for such indulgences).
However, this afternoon caught me in a “sod-the-diet” moment, and having the ingredients to hand I made a half batch. It needs to be stored for three or four days to achieve proper squidginess, of course, but an early sample showed that it tastes OK.
squares of parkin

at last !

The whole house is shaking! A rattling from the crockery cupboard, leaves of houseplants waving gently, and a bone-throbbing vibration in my chair … I hope the house’s Victorian foundations (such as they are) can cope.
It’s not an earthquake, though. It’s the very long-overdue resurfacing of the road outside. Yes, after years of temporary repairs, me filling in the “online pothole report form”, watching pigeons pecking grit from the sides of the assorted “repairs”, it’s finally happened.
workers in hi-vizjackets
road roller


A pleasantly mild afternoon, with spells of glorious sunshine. I’m gradually getting some mobility back, after having been housebound with flu for three-and-a-half weeks, and managed a gentle mile-and-a-half stroll along the canal.

canal in sunshine


canal lock

A quick trip up the garden to pick kale. Shortening days and a light frost a couple of days ago has killed off most of the cosmos, though the small pink one carries on gamely.

The wonderful “Etoile de Hollande” on the rose arch still has flowers (and one picked for a bud vase on the coffee table), having been in bloom continuously since the last week of April.

Falling leaves revealed that I’d missed one of the Black Pears when picking them, so that’s something for supper time.

small pink cosmos flowers


rose blossom


Worcester Black Pear

rose arch

The Etoile d’Hollande on the rose arch is still struggling gamely on. It’s been flowering since the end of April – sometimes a magnificent flush of blooms, sometimes just a couple. I reckon that six months of roses from the one plant is pretty good!

flowers on rose arch