Tag Archives: National Gardens Scheme

A period of recreation and rest is here:

For those who engaged in gardening for recreation not profit, according to the Gardener’s Almanac. Certainly we are beginning to wind our efforts in my garden, but still our Yellow book (National Garden /scheme) doesn’t happen until mid July, so we need to keep up our efforts and maintain the peak of perfection (!) we have achieved.

According to St Phocas, a gardener from the 3rd century AD the so-called dog days are 3rd July to 11th August and are the hottest of the year. So clearly we need to keep a wary eye on our plants and ensure they are well watered. there is an argument raging about whether you water in the evening or  the early morning – ie about 6am or even 5am if you can get up. I guess it all depends on whether or not you can get a mildew over-night. Just how susceptible are your plants?

When we open again for visits we have decided to open in late May or early June as our garden is really beautiful now. so here are some of our flowers –


White clematis and Bleeding Heart (Dicentra)

20150415_153729 20150421_155238 20150421_155253 20150421_155314 20150421_155518 20150421_155531


Anemone Blanda


Phormium and artwork

begonia and nettle


Flowering pear and crab apple


Red perennial wallflower

Elayne Coakes urban garden in North Lonodn featuring clematis integrifolia herbaceous

Elayne Coakes’ urban garden in North London

hellebore double yellow speckled


Freckles: winter flowering



Clematis Wessleton


Black Tulip magnolia


Orange tulips and Euphorbia









and the roses are coming out too….


you can see more of our flowers on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/gardening4bees

and come and see our garden if you are in London on July 5th in the afternoon.

My Challenges: Zero to Hero

Day 2: Edit your title and tagline.

Make a Text widget of new tagline.

Looking agian at my blog title it makese sense to me but not to anyone else until they read my home page, So yes, I agree it needs changing but what to? I still want Tigger in it so… I did as was suggested and looked for a relevant domain name and found tiggerbouncing.com and tiggerbouncing.net and snapped them up. So my new title must have Tigger and Bouncing in it. But in what combination? Is it the Bouncing Tigger? or Tigger Bounces? or The New Bouncing Tigger? So I am going to have a short poll here for my new name and other suggestions welcome:

Now I need to decide what my tagline should be, I think something like ‘Bouncing her way through all things enjoyable: Gardens, Arts, Travel and Life’. do you agree that this sounds good?

I need to add a new Twitter link and a Facebook page – to come…

Day 3 Challenge:

Writing the post that was on my mind when I first decided to write a blog.

I think I have already written this on my Home page but here are some of the initial thoughts:

I started a blog initially for a very simple reason – We have a garden that had recently been accepted into the Yellow Book of gardens in the UK. For those of you who don’t know about the Yellow Book, it is quite prestigious to be accepted into this and means that you have worked hard on making your garden interesting to people who might visit. I wanted to try and publicise the garden and encourage people who had not heard of the garden to come and visit. And so I started a garden blog on a specialist gardening site. Now that site closed down and so I thought I should move my blog elsewhere and had heard of WordPress and so moved the blog. Unfortunately many of my posts were lost in the process or were no longer relevant. I started again and renamed my blog in the process because I thought just writing about gardens on a more ‘open’ blogging site was limited and thought about what I could write. I therefore wanted to write about the things I like doing – visiting gardens of course!! but also going to the theatre; going to exhibitions of all types from Art to Jewellery to History; books ; cooking; tea (shops) and cake (!); and travelling – of which I was doing quite a lot and we have more lined up if my health can manage. I did not want to make this too personal and about my family or too much of my personal thoughts – rather a more critical and reflective view of the things I had been doing.

The garden aspect may have worked a little as the garden has now been featured in two Japanese publications – a magazine and a book and has been photographed in the hope of a UK publication too. As for the other things I write about I am not sure that I reach a wide audience as although those people who have read the blog last year gave me some really nice awards, my reader numbers are relatively small – hence undertaking this challenge. It would be nice to have more readers just for the feedback and comments and the nice chatting that results… a feeling of being part of a community that appreciates your point of view I guess.

So here it is my Day 3 Challenge completed and published! And as a reminder here are two  photographs of our garden..

Pergola and Vielchenblau Rose: our Garden

Pergola and Vielchenblau Rose: our Garden

Treats for the sweet of tooth

As I need to bake some cakes for when we open our garden on the 30th June for the National Gardens Scheme (for those who don’t know about it, we open for charity through a central agency and support, in particular, MacMillan Cancer) – see the website http://www.ngs.org – I have been practising my recipes on people who visit. These two have gone down well, so I thought I’d share them… I have been using a sweetener to cut the sugar ration – a new one made from plants – I mix half and half with natural cane sugar. I do find that even if you use white natural cane sugar it adds an extra flavour. The sweetener is Canderel made from Stevia plant extracts not aspartame as I don’t want Alzheimer’s!

Oaty apple crumble cake

Use cooking apples or dessert apples if these are not available.

I am giving the recipe as it was given out in the newspaper (The Star, 1994) but I find it a little sweet even using half-and half sugar, so I would suggest reducing the sugar amount to taste.

Note this is very crumbly indeed and if eaten as a cake rather than a dessert needs forks!

150g soft brown sugar

150g porridge oats

150g wholemeal  sr flour

1 tsp mixed spice

150g butter (unsalted is best)

225g apples (I weighed this after peeling and coring)

Mix together in a large bowl the sugar, oats, flour and spice.

Melt butter and stir in.

Sprinkle half mix in a greased 18cm tin. Press down. Arrange apples in slices on top. Fill with remaining mix and press down again.

Bake at 180C/350F/gas 4 until top lightly brown.


The sticky favourite!

Crispy cakes: use rice Krispies or corn flakes but not sugar coated cereals as it will be far too sweet!

3oz marg/butter

2tbs golden syrup

1 mars bar or galaxy caramel

3tbs coca

3 tbs sugar

Melt butter with syrup. The best way to ensure you get the right amount of syrup is to heat the spoon in a cup of hot water until hot itself. The syrup will then slide off it.

Melt the mars bar in the pan if used. Add rice krispies /corn flakes until all the liquid is used up.

Spoon into paper cases to the size required and then cool and place in a fridge to harden.

  • You can also use 3tbs highlights instant drink instead of cocoa and then add some plain chocolate drops.
  • You can add some almond flakes for a nutty version and generally play around with it. The mars bar/galaxy caramel add an extra stickiness.