Sunday, 31 March 2013

Glorious Hellebores

Back in February, I mentioned how much I was looking forward to the flowering of the hellebores. Sure enough, they have been a great source of enjoyment this month. Here are a few of them:

Death-defying Phlox

Before construction next door began, I had planted a small phlox that was extra to my needs outside our back fence at the very corner of our lot. During the construction, workmen trampled it, poured gravel and dust on it, ran over it in large trucks. I thought it would never survive. I was wrong. Here's the inhospitable bit of wasteland in question:

Look v-e-r-y carefully to the left of my pathetic barrier of two stones, and coming up through that gravelly ground is this:

It gives me some faith that other life forms will somehow survive the worst that we humans continue to throw at them.

New neighbours

Sadly, during the last year we lost the vacant lot next next door to us. For 10 months we've had to put up with the noise and general intrusion of construction. The worst day was the first, when a massive machine tore down a lovely old apple tree in full bloom. The next worst was just a week ago when the new house got a coat of very dark blue paint which makes our rooms facing that way feel as if we forgot to raise the blinds. Fortunately, there's only one such window on the main floor, but it's a big one. In the basement we have three windows facing that way so it is now very dark down there.
The house is attractive enough, but shades our front garden much more and extends further into the backyard than ours does.
Here is how it used to be in 2010, with green space and the old fruit trees to the left of our house:

Those orange barriers intended to protect at least a couple of the old fruit trees didn't last long. The lot was scraped clean of all vegetation.

Here is how it looks today, making our house look quite small:

Sunlight makes the colour look paler than it actually is. In the shade along the side wall, it is the colour of a thundercloud. Michael's room, which faces it, used to look like this:

And now, on a similar sunny day, looks like this: