The Bilberry Cottage Chronicles
Spring has sprung at Bilberry Cottage. If progress on the house has been slow, the garden has more than made up for a lack of building activity. The magnolias have bloomed beyond our expectations, a star turn admirably supported by daffodils, primula and tulips against a back drop of burgeoning bluebells. A cornucopia of seeds, foxglove, delphinium, hollyhock and sweet pea, have been planted and we await developments. The crab apple has broken out in an array of unexpectedly lovely crimson blossom, with lilac, laburnum and a slightly sorry -looking wisteria poised to follow suit. Hostas, peonies and pinks are scheduled for planting this weekend with some fruit bushes to keep the very healthy-looking Aldi fruit trees company and if I give you their label description – Himbeere, Johannisbeere und Stachelbeere – you’ll have a good idea where these came from. Sir W has enjoyed all the new horticultural developments although his favourite perch is still in front of the railingless French doors in our bedroom. Little House on the Patio has been persistently scorned despite attempts to re-locate it to the rose bed or the bluebell grove. Why his erstwhile beloved retreat has been so summarily abandoned, he will not say but any attempt to lure him within is treated with a stare of withering contempt – usually directed at Brian as I have long since given up out of respect to Sir W’s plainly expressed wishes which, as ever, Brian has failed to interpret correctly.
The front porch has been complete for some weeks now and has mainly been decorated although I am still waiting for the specially commissioned front door to turn a fetching shade of Farrow and Ball grey-green. Still the walls are now a pretty shade of Pale Kahki and the floor rustically tiled as specified. Good Friend and I are still non-plussed by the re-installation of a hanging basket bracket (originally on the outside of the house) in a corner where it is impossible to hang anything more robust than a particularly long and pendulous runner bean. However, the situation has been retrieved by the installation of the house-guarding Cat-woman fairy, a felicitous birthday present from Houston friends. The installation of the new hardwood hall floor has finally been booked for mid May, the balcony balustrade is ready and waiting on the construction of the gazebo which is to provide support so with a bit of luck the end of next month should see us well on our way to completion. That only leaves re-installation and decoration of the downstairs cloakroom, decorating the hall, finish decorating the porch and ensuite bathroom and painting the front of the house not to mention my own pet project , the renovation and transformation of the greenhouse into a ladies (and felines) only Salon de The - ou de cocktails, naturellement.