Monday, 1 January 2018

In my January garden - Sweet peas and ultra violet

It’s such a feast for my tired eyes to walk from my garage through my laundry into my house and view sweet pea blooms through the laundry window. It's an instant lift after a stressful day. The scent of the sweet pea certainly is sweet as its name suggests. It is fresh and unmistakable.

Sweet peas were so popular in the early 1900s in England, that the Victorians started the English National Sweet Pea Society. And why wouldn’t you - the varieties and abundance of flowers at that time would be nothing like today and such elaborate botanical design and fragrance most certainly needed celebrating.

This climbing rambler has tendrils to help it wind its way through neighbouring plants. Providing a climbing frame is a way to help train the vine upwards and to be able to show off the blooms. New varieties now include a shrub-like sweet pea for which you do not need to provide supporting structures and en masse or in a border, look spectacular.

Sweet peas are like clematis in that they like their flowers to be in the sun and their roots cool and shaded, so covering their roots and surrounding soil with pea straw enables them to flourish. If you want information about cultivating sweet peas, The Old Farmer’s Almanac site has some useful tips and advice.

Now that I’m on my summer holiday, I’ve cut some of my little crop of sweet peas and they are sitting on my dresser in a vase for me to enjoy their distinctive fragrance every time I walk by.

These butterfly-like beauties are very similar in colour to the Pantone colour of the year is PANTONE18-3838 Ultra Violet. 

I have noticed over the years that I wear more mauve and pinks as I grow older, but I am not so sure I am ready to wear this heady purplish-violet colour yet. 

What about your wardrobe, do you like these bright striking violet colours? According to Gogol Bordello, it’s time to start wearing purple my friends! This You Tube clip made me smile and I hope it will make you smile too. 

And finally, since it's my first blog post of the year, I felt it called for a little poetry and I was rather taken by this poignant poem by E Clearfoster Sheppard (Nov.2014).


You mesmerize
With eyes like the Sun; But
blind me, just the same.

For now I'm left in darkness, clueless
In Oblivion. The world
is now Invisible. So

You are all I see;
And You are all I can. So
more I stare in

Pain & Wonder

How you hypnotize
My mind. Now I stare and
wonder how I'm happy
Being blind.


I hope to be more regular with my blog posts this year and intend to do a post every month, inspired by a plant in my garden. I hope you will follow along.

Have a wonderful year and I hope that only good things will come out of life's trials and tribulations -  that with every sorrow there will be joy, and with every hardship there will be release. And keep on being creative - Claudia x


Julia Jones and Barbara Deer. 1989. The National Trust calendar of gardening lore. Dorling Kindersley, London.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac. 2010?. Sweet peas - how to plant, grow, and care for sweet pea flowers. Retrieved 2 January 2018:

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