Monthly Photo Challenge: April Again

Well, April has been a surprise. Practically a whole month of sunshine, though sometimes accompanied by a chilly north wind, but I can’t complain. It has been glorious weather and much dryer than normal. Which isn’t necessarily a good thing for everyone.

There have been some beautiful sunsets and I even managed to go out and visit a couple of spring gardens, though a little late for the magnolias and camellias. Next year I will do better and make the effort in March.

Reflection in the conservatory

Coming back along the coast road from one of the gardens we stopped to visit the Lanyon Quoit which has been avoiding us for years, and Carn Galver Mines which are located in ancient field systems and overlooked by a Neolithic settlement

The Belted Galloway cattle you see in the header are grazed around the old mines, so you need to take care driving along this stretch of the road; probably my favourite drive in Cornwall as the narrow road meanders through farms and hamlets with the hills and tors on one side and the Celtic Sea (Atlantic) on the other.

I finished painting the bedroom and office/music room and the flooring was fitted and the new window units too, so it is all looking rather nice in that end of the house. After much huffing and puffing we even managed to move the furniture back into the correct rooms and the OH is happy to have his guitars back by his side.

Whilst in the DIY mood we even assembled a wood store that we purchased a couple of months ago. It is now in the courtyard and even has a few bags of wood inside. We haven’t actually used the woodburner at all this month, but it is there for the autumn and one less job to do.

After all the painting it has been lovely to get back outside and do some gardening this month. Mostly weeding and some rearranging of borders. I aim to get rid of the lawn, but since I have to do all the labouring myself it is going to be a gradual process as my back (and knees and any other joint you care to mention) aint as good as they used to be.

My Kilmarnock Willow with its frilly dress on

I finally removed some of the forget-me-nots that rampage throughout my garden in order to plant the sweet-peas, some parsley and chives and salad leaves. Not sure how much will survive the slugs and snails though. I am trying out different things and those that survive the onslaught will be grown again. I have even been successful in raising some squash and courgette seedlings, but now worried that they will engulf the entire garden when I plant them out!

Venetian Collection

A huge success has been my pots of tulips, as those of you who follow my garden blog, will know. What can I say? I just love tulips and can’t help but indulge myself. And after chopping the jasmine to the ground I have levelled the side access and gravelled it, hoping that a climbing rose has more success this year. I have noticed that the jasmine is sending out lots of new shoots though so I shall have to keep my eye on it.

New gravel area

Finally, all has not been great on the broadband side this month despite getting yet another router. It is all very much up and down and often down more than up. Our neighbour has the same issue and they have called out the Openreach engineers at least seven times so far. Much scratching of heads has gone on, and now the conclusion is that it could be REIN – some sort of electrical interference – but the jury is still out on what! Although, on taking a photo of the sheep in the field at the back of me I was astonished to see a wind turbine! Now when did THAT appear? And could it be the cause of our problems?

Fat Bums and an unexpected addition to the landscape

Another tragic event this month has been the death of my laptop’s screen. Without warning the screen went white and a hot patch grew in the left corner. Worried the thing would set itself on fire I switched it off. Connecting to an external monitor worked and I figured that would be OK, until I realised that even though I wasn’t using the screen it was still getting hot. Very hot! So I took it in to be repaired. Hopefully they won’t mess up the system, but just replace the screen. But I am a tiny bit anxious…

Meanwhile spring continues its rapid journey towards summer and there is plenty of evidence out in the lane and fields, even Alice is looking pretty with bright egg-yolk yellow gorse and white blackthorn surrounding her. And wrinkly lambs who always look as though their coats are too big.

Cherry Blossom

We are away for the last week of the month and I won’t be blogging on any of my sites as we won’t have a connection. In fact we are going to have a week off-grid, but hopefully I will get to visit some lovely places to write about on my return.

The Cardinal is continuing his photo project throughout 2017 – a blogging event, a monthly photo challenge. Read his blog for the new rules this year (he is running two versions) and to view his interpretation and those of other participants.


  1. beetleypete says:

    That’s a great round-up, Jude. The willow is looking good too. We have sun here today, but it is very cold for late April. The local news on TV was lamenting the lack of rain, talking about crop failures, and possible hosepipe bans. Makes me wonder where they stored all that water that fell during the past five years.
    I have to presume that they just let it all run away, as usual.
    Enjoy your week away.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    1. Heyjude says:

      Haha… just after this post went live we had very dramatic hailstones! Much cooler and windier today. I hope it doesn’t stay like this for the next week!

      1. beetleypete says:

        I walked Ollie in hailstones this afternoon, Jude. And I am wearing two jumpers! x

        1. Heyjude says:

          Yes, the temperature has definitely dropped!

  2. Gorgeous pics and blooms Jude and sorry about your Tech woes. That said, being off the grid can be surprisingly liberating as I have discovered on my last two trips 🙂 I hope you are going to print those tulip shots btw – they would make gorgeous postcards !!! #justsaying

    1. Heyjude says:

      I do have one or two more to publish, but they will have to wait until next week!

  3. Tish Farrell says:

    That is a very fine willow, Jude. As to lawn eradication, was watching Charles ‘no dig’ Dowding on last Friday’s Gardener’s World. He just whopped a raised bed onto a piece of lawn, filled same with compost and started planting. Am thinking you could do the same for your lawn – bit by bit – moving the raised bed as and when, but getting the benefit of some planting as you go. The hard work version was covered by Monty Don the week before. He had a turf cutting implement, which you can hire, and then rolled the lawn up like pieces of carpet. He also made a turf stack – which eventually makes fabulous compost. A lovely April round up from your neck of the woods.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Slowly does it Tish. I will do a bit at a time, but the raised bed idea does appeal.

  4. I appreciate that you are re-claiming your yard solo – it will be a labour of love, emphasis on labour. I look forward to seeing the outcome of that project.

    As regards your connectivity problems, there have been intense solar storms lately too – and I wouldn’t be surprised if the windmill factored into the equation either.

    Happy trails!

  5. Sue Slaght says:

    I am soaking up all of the colour and warmth from your gorgeous photos Jude. We are in the midst of a full on blizzard and any plant that was considering making a run for early appearance is shivering under a blanket of white.
    Sorry to hear about your issues with internet and laptop. Hope both can find resolution. Have a wonderful week off the grid! Best wishes. xo

  6. Sue says:

    Have a great week offline, Jude….most relaxing, I find! Love the engine house, is that all that is left of Carn Galver?

    1. Heyjude says:

      There are two buildings, I’ll do another post when I get back 🙂

      1. Sue says:

        Oh, good 😊

  7. What a gorgeous willow! Loved looking at all your photos. I think I would also stop in there for tea. We may be in Cornwall in June. Such a beautiful place you live in. Enjoy the break. 😘

    1. Heyjude says:

      Ooh, if you are let me know and maybe we can meet up for a drink!

      1. That would be really wonderful. 😘

  8. Lucid Gypsy says:

    Hasn’t it been a lovely spring? But today I watched hail/sleety stuff through my office window and it was too cold to stay outside for long at lunchtime. Have a lovely trip and I hope to see you soon 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      Well I am coming to your part of the world, but with the OH. I think it best we meet on our own as we won’t stop chatting! Are you popping up to Bristol at the weekend then to meet Jo?

      1. Lucid Gypsy says:

        Ooh naughty, how could you not tell me where you’re going? If it’s Exeter I shall be cross because I wanted to show you some of it! Only joking, you’re forgiven, but I really, really hope you love it – wherever ‘it’ is!
        Yes, Jo and I are meeting on Saturday and I’m really excited. Looking forward to June as well x:-)x

        1. Heyjude says:

          Didn’t make it to Exeter. Further south near Kingswear on a NT property – Coleton Fishachre – have you been there? I’d love to visit Exeter though and have you as my guide.

      2. Lucid Gypsy says:

        Yes, I’ve been to Coleton many times, it was one of the places I took Christine when she visited in 2014, just before she died. It’s a stunning garden in all seasons, the house isn’t bad either!

        1. Heyjude says:

          Yes, I could easily live in the house – what a fabulous lounge. And the views from the main bedroom aren’t bad either!

  9. Elizabeth says:

    We have had torrents of rain. “April showers bring May flowers,” but all my joints are out of sorts with the damp. Cornwall looks lovely, thanks.

    1. Heyjude says:

      My joints have suffered this winter with the damp. Perhaps moving here wasn’t the best idea regarding that aspect!

      1. Elizabeth says:

        At least we can complain with others!

  10. Joanne Sisco says:

    Your corner of the world looks so lovely with its spring colours on. I wish for a speedy and painless recovery of both your internet and laptop. I’m still waiting for technology to make my life easier 😉

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