Sunday, 31 July 2011

The Gardens of Delargo Towers - July

Welcome to the Garden here Delargo Towers.
Its now the end of July, the garden is bursting at the seams and we are enjoying the results of a little hard work in the spring.

A reminder of what things looked like at the start of the year -
and how it looks now.

July was the month of cosmos and sunflowers.

The sunflowers were inspired by passing through schiphol airport where they have a massive and wonderful display every year, our window boxes by Monty Don's ' jewel garden.

When we moved in there was a lovely but massive honey suckle taking over half the garden. We cut it back to 3 foot from the ground during the winter and crossed our fingers. You can see the result of that in the first picture.
Here it is at the beginning of July

It's now being well behaved clothing the nasty wall and is not swallowing the pear tree.

By the end of the month it had almost covered the wall and stretched from the border to the kitchen wall.

The sheer amount of growth between early July and the end the end of the month is amazing!
Here we are in early July.

The very end of the month.

Nastursiums are incredible plants.
We have used them to give quick bulk to the garden and to run over the bare concrete which is our patio / terrace.

The bees love them and so do the caterpillars and black fly. This works really well all the nasties are on them and not on anything else. There is so much it don't matter. We have a garden full of bees and hover flies which we love.
 As you can see the sunflowers have gone over now so its the nasturtiums that are giving a bit of colour to the front border

Hooray for pots

Hope you enjoyed having a look!
Here are a couple of gems to end with.


Saturday, 23 July 2011

Tony's singular adventures - Euston, an opportunity to rebuild the Arch.

Hello me dears.
I was about to post my adventures on the 59 bus from Euston going ' south of the river ', when I came across Michael Palin's campaign to rebuild the Euston Arch.
The proposed redevelopment of Euston Station now presents an opportunity to rebuild the Arch.

Wow ! How fab would that be?
The loss of the arch in the late 60s was an act of outrageous out-and-out vandalism. 'Would any European country allow such a landmark of architectural history to be removed, on economic grounds, without some attempt to raise the money for its preservation?'

Despite John Betjeman’s battle to save the Euston Arch it was demolished amid widespread protest.
As always the wonderful Dan Cruickshank has all the information you could ever want and its well worth the read:

Demolition kick-started the conservation movement. Betjeman and his friends were better prepared when it came do battle to save St. Pancras Station.

Thank you Sir John.

Now its our turn to do our bit for London. Follow the link below and see what you can do to return the romantically majestic Euston Arch – the first and greatest emblem of Britain’s mighty railway age.

We will have to wait a little longer for the blog I actually was writing but I thought this so interesting and important that it had to come first.


Tuesday, 12 July 2011

My kind of Diva - Greta Keller

A darkened room, a small stage, a single spotlight, cigar smoke and the hint of absinthe.
Welcome - Greta Keller!

I stumbled on her music while on a rather esoteric YouTube search.
I thought then that I had never heard of her before.

Loved her voice! Greta was definitely worth a further listening and a little research.

It turns out she was responsible for one of the most touching songs in the film Cabaret. in It was she who sang the beautiful song "Heirart" (Married).  ----

Also it was her version of 'Blue Moon' recorded in 1935 that was included in the BBC TV series Pennies from Heaven starring Bob Hoskins:

First called "The Great Lady Of Chanson" in her native Vienna, the nickname followed her to London and America.
In fact Greta was the role model for how Marlene Dietrich developed her own voice.
She also appeared on stage with Marlene Dietrich on Broadway and spent many years in the United States, notably in the club room at the Waldorf.

While living in America her husband was murdered in 1943, two weeks after finishing a major role in the Republic serial The Masked Marvel. The murder was never solved.
No stranger to scandal and gossip, there were rumours of of affairs with Howard Hughes and an unknown actor during her marriage.  It must have been a very difficult time for Greta and unfortunately not long after the murder of her husband their child was stillborn.

It took some time for her to recover from these events, but she restarted her career in Switzerland, then moved on to Vienna, Berlin and then back to New York.

Rod McKuen met her in Vienna in the 70s. He wrote the English lyric "If You Go Away" to Jacques Brel's "Ne Me Quitte Pas," which she always sang in her stage appearances after that.

Greta lived, worked, and traveled with her last partner, Wolfgang Nebmaier until her death in November 1977
Her records are still selling - I checked today and Amazon has four pages of CDs on sale by Greta.

Well I did say that 'My kind of Diva' might be the beginning of a series!
Hold on to your hats - 1950's France is the next stop.