Sunday, 6 May 2012

All the flowers of the field - and a lemon tree!

The Lemon Tree - after a couple of accidents!

No Italian home is complete without a lemon tree.  Our little 'casina' in the olive grove didn't have one and it was too late in the year to plant one when we moved in last July, so the lemon tree remained a spring promise.  Yesterday we headed down onto the coastal plain to find a small tree for the terrace and a terracotta pot to put it in.  Because it's a rented house, anything we grow has to stay portable.

 Early summer is in full bloom here, flourishing in the warm temperatures and the rain showers.  In another month 'il gran caldo' will be upon us and everything will be burnt brown in the drought.  But for now the olive groves are knee high in wild flowers and herbs. They don't use herbicides here and it shows.  There are probably at least a hundred species, if I knew how to name them - orchids and bluebells, ornamental grasses, chervil and clover, wild garlic, daisies and dandelions, small red poppies (corn cockles?) and dozens of plants I'd have to buy at the garden centre in England - pink and white oxalis, canterbury bells, hellebore and irises. 
The Wild Meadow
 The whole landscape has suddenly been turned into a flower garden, but some areas are more intense than others. Driving down to the tree nursery, we suddenly passed a wild meadow beside the canal and had to stop.  It was awash with flowers of every kind, but particularly poppies, irises and a froth of  yellow over the top from wild rape - like a Monet painting.   I just had to get out of the car and walk into the field with my camera.  These are just two of the dozens of photographs I took.





Afterwards I managed to buy my lemon tree and it's now carefully installed in its pot on the terrace.  If it looks a bit lopsided, that's because we had a bit of a struggle getting it into the car, then out of the car and down our steep track.  Some pruning was required by the time we got to the front door!





7 comments:

  1. Breathtaking - wild and beautiful is such a combination. We have bluebells & yellow aconites & grasses. And those three again, And again. Very pretty but not breathtaking, w

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  2. I agree with Wendy, simply breathtaking!

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  3. "A Lemon Tree Grew In Italy ..." (Realised I wasn't quite sure whioh region you were in!) Very nice though!

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  4. Ah, that's what I'm doing wrong. I've been buying and then killing lemon trees for the best part of 10 years. I managed to get them to stay alive (indoors) in SW Scotland but now in NE Scotland it's impossible. (until we build that conservatory) On moving we built an 'italian garden' and killed a few olive trees which had previously survived further south. But I do still have 2 x coffee plants (INSIDE) which are my pride and joy in the stakes of achieving the impossible. I dare not post pictures of any of the above for fear you do yourself an injury laughing. Moral of the story is - North East Scotland CANNOT masquerade as Italy EVER. But we do a mean line in PRIMULAS.

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  5. Oh, Cally - I mourn your lemon and olive trees! Living here I've begun to realise the folly of trying to grow things that simply aren't at home (one or two cherished UK plants don't thrive here).
    Glad you all enjoyed the wild flower show. Photos simply can't tell you how beautiful and spectacular it is for northern eyes. Presumably our hedgerows and meadows used to produce a similar display before the widespread use of herbicides. Now it's just uniform green with a few hardy individuals.

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  6. Simply beautiful and I would love a lemon tree!

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  7. Wonderful colors and organic natural forms. Reminds me of a painting like Rainy landscape, by Russian painter
    Kandinsky, http://EN.WahooArt.com/
    A55A04/w.nsf/OPRA/BRUE-8EWL66
    , that I saw at wahooart.com, from where one can order a canvas print of it.
    Really good place to browse the painter’s work and other work similar to your style of painting.

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