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Life at № 42

Another beautiful day. Gentleman of the camellias revisited

wintersun

Today is winter solstice, the year’s shortest day. “The solstice is usually on 21 December, but comes a day later this year for the same reason we have leap years – the Earth’s orbit takes 365.5 days, so each year the solstice is pushed back by another six hours.”

It might be short, but it’s certainly been bright. The camellias have chosen today to come out in force and have added a welcomed burst of colour to the garden. In related news, ages ago I bought a pin at an antiques market that was designed to take fresh flowers- I’d never tried it before now, and it works perfectly with camellias. I think I’m going to make that a thing. A fresh camellia on my lapel when I wear a jacket.

Inspired by the sunny day I ordered more plants. Twenty erica x darleyensis in red. They’ll make a great winter border.

erica

We were told by the host of the New Year’s party we’re going to that as the guest list is quite international (Australian, British, American & Italian) she decided to ask everyone to bring something from “their culture” to put on a “special table.”

As the party is in France and I’m French, I’m considering just buying a block of foie-gras and saying there you go, welcome to France, have a cracker with it. But instead I might go the Spanish route and make gambas pil-pil. It’s sort of funny because I don’t have family recipes of any culture. The last thing anyone in my family would have ever done would have been to go inside a kitchen to make something. Cooking was sort of looked down on- especially for a boy.

 

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16 comments on “Another beautiful day. Gentleman of the camellias revisited

  1. roughseasinthemed
    December 22, 2015

    You are so pretentious! But, I could sink into your salon 🙂 Looks gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. clubschadenfreude
    December 22, 2015

    your commend gentlemen of the camellias, reminded me of Sanjuro, and Toshiro Mifune calling himself Tsubaki Sanjūrō. Having just gotten a new fence for my urban yard and my current plants being a bit stomped on, I’m looking for new ideas for plants. Camellias might have to make an appearance.

    Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      December 22, 2015

      They’re slow but worthwhile. Every little branch has the effect of a full bouquet of roses when it’s flowering. Beauty on steroids!

      Like

      • clubschadenfreude
        December 23, 2015

        Just found out that they can take filtered sunlight. Hurrah! My garden is a lovely place for hostas and ferns. Perhaps these will grow well and not so stressed as my roses.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        December 24, 2015

        They’re incredibly resistant. Some of ours get a whole morning of light, others are half hidden under taller camellias. They’re all happy and flowering like crazy.
        The only thing I was told to do was to add acidic fertilizer every other year. And the old fashioned way: 1 tablespoons of vinegar per 2 litres of water per plant. Double that for trees 😉

        Like

  3. acflory
    December 23, 2015

    I’m pea green with envy. The last of my camelias died a couple of years ago and I’ve now given up – too hot, too dry and too many alpacas munching away. I adore camelias. -sigh-
    p.s. Yes! You should become the ‘bloke with the flower’. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      December 23, 2015

      I’m madly in love with them. Never considered having them in Spain because I presumed they might be difficult.

      It’s sort of the town flower. There’s even a variety known as the Japonica Mazamet. And also a “circuit” so tourists can go around town seeing all different types: http://www.tourisme-mazamet.com/userfiles/files/CircuitCamelia.jpg
      The climate seems ideal for them. I haven’t done anything to ours at all. In fact I didn’t even water them during the summer. I was told to just let them be and remove dead branches and it’s working 🙂

      Like

      • acflory
        December 23, 2015

        Wow – some of those blooms are stunning, but I’m not used to seeing camelias grown as a hedge before. Rather nice, actually. 🙂

        Like

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        December 23, 2015

        Ours are all big trees. It works medium well as a hedge. I mean, it looks fine, but you don’t get that luscious flowering you get with bushes and trees.

        Like

      • acflory
        December 23, 2015

        Yes, we grow them as trees and bushes too and they’re covered in flowers. Still, it beats an ordinary hedge, hands down.

        Like

  4. tildeb
    December 23, 2015

    The floor looks great.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Helen Devries
    December 23, 2015

    I didn’t have much luck with camellias when in France…but I might give them another go when I make the new garden here – enthused by your description.

    What is it with your hostess? Does she think her guests are specimens of some sort? I’d be awfully tempted to take a petri dish with some agar agar jelly……which might explain why I don’t go out much these days…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      December 23, 2015

      I imagine almost everything must do well in your weather. I’ve never had such a refined (and long) display of flowers as from these camellias.
      In Spain I took the easy route and it was mostly oleander and hibiscus. Beautiful too, but not to this degree. I particularly like this variety:

      Like

      • Helen Devries
        December 23, 2015

        The rainy season can be a problem as can altitude and the soil around the site of the new house is vile ….so lashings of manure are going in before anything gets planted.

        Liked by 1 person

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