Just about bordering on odd, I see things through different eyes.The heading says it all - I live, I love, I craft, I am me...


Ta-da(rt) garden style :)

I don't normally dedicate a post just to my painterly activities here, I usually waffle about art and coffee on my 'by kate...kjsutcliffe artist' blog but seeing it is connected to my weekly fix of volunteering in the walled garden, I thought ...  well why not!?

The garden I volunteer in has a long history of being a quite a productive little kitchen garden in it's hey day. The house itself was built in circ.1780s with later extensions and alterations in the early and mid 1800s. The garden, although I can not find a definite date of construction, could potentially have been soon after the house.

It was designed with three definite separate but conjoining areas. The first section (a) is an open three sided large square plot where potatoes were planted and grown (in the days before understanding the importance of crop rotation).  This area now acts as a sheep shelter on rough and windy days.

(Image from internet with my extra annotations in yellow)

The middle section (b) is now the allotment style vegetable garden growing traditional crops which have to be tough to survive living and growing on this rather wild moorside hill. I have anecdotal evidence that this is the highest productive walled garden in the UK, there are others in much wilder and wetter places but at a lower altitude.

I must admit not being fired up by rows of vegetables (especially when swamped by cheerfully rampant weeds) but can see a form of functional beauty in the order (or rather the potential of order - this is still work in progress!) I do find it a rather 'sterile' art form.

I am more in to the making of compost, planting in circles, square foot gardening, three sisters planting, potager, mandala and permaculture gardening. Free flowing shapes, flowers and herbs filling a space in joyous celebration of life and growing and flowering.

The top section, also fully walled, (c), used to be a fruiting area - not specifically an orchard from what I can gather but now has a row or two of stunted oak (kept due to their rarity in the locality) a couple of young apple, a recently planted meddler and a variety of herbs in planters. And weeds.
I love this area, it has a more vibrant feel to it - it is untidy and wild and optimistic and has so much potential.  I suspect that despite this part being earmarked as a base for learning and safe play for groups - there hasn't been the woman power to do anything more than keep on top of mowing the pathways and pulling up ragwort.

Hence the link to my art - I decided to leave the weeding to the other volunteers who are 'allotmenteers' and are happy to harrow in straight rows. So, with any passing help I began to tackle the 'sensory garden' (last week I had Eldest, the head ranger and his helper, and this week I had Eldest and Moss!)

What better way than to give the space credence than to give it a physical name.
I'm no sign writer - but I think that harkens back to my aversion to straight lines!


Happy? Of course silly!

Gentle reminder (to myself as much as any) that the Photo Scavenger Hunt challenge is coming up fast and is only a little over a week away (Am I the only one still not sorted??)

1. Crane
2. Ring
3. Set
4. Light
5. Bow
6. Spring
7. Open
8. Grand
9. Park
10. My own choice

A photograph inspired by a word,
words inspired by the photograph.
Remember to think laterally and interpret at YOU fancy,
be it a current photo or one from your archives! Enjoy :)

If you want to join in, please do - we'd love you too :) details HERE.  I promise promise promise knitting news next time, I have been a little busy but I do want to share my shawl with you - coz I love it and I hope you will too!


  1. No, I'm not sorted either. The sign looks really lovely hanging on the old trough and you are right, giving it a name gives it more of a sense of purpose.♥ ♥

  2. No, I only have one thing on the list so far. Really struggling! The sensory garden sign looks great!

  3. I'll admit to liking both orderly & quirky gardens, be they vegetable, flower, orchard or anything else you can throw in the mix. Just depends on size, position & climate I suppose. I know that I'd get rather ambitious given something along those lines to play with. Ooh, love your sign & the lettering is "impressive" to me who has absolutely no creativeness whatsoever. I've been gathering up a few photos, but must get my thoughts gathered for both the Scavenger Hunt on 28th & Finishing Stitches on 31st along with a very busy week coming up. Have a great weekend & take care.

  4. Ever catch yourself pretending that this is your garden?! x

  5. I'm sure because it is hand painted and so eye catching it will draw the visitors.

  6. Beautiful garden, it looks so nice and green. The are that is "untidy and wild" looks so inviting! Your sign looks great!! Of course!

  7. A beautiful space to be able to be part of. Great sign.

  8. Your sign is beautiful, hope it is properly appreciated :)
    Lovely to see you can take Moss with you; are we due for a Miss-Moss post soon (hint hint) ??


  9. Well how busy have you been, love the sign, I think I need one for the jungle lol.
    Moss looks as if he is being very busy too. Looking forward to seeing the shawl and no I am not ready yet for the photo hunt,hoping tomorrow will be fine ,talk about list minute.

  10. Oh those weeds.... nice Sensory Garden sign though!

  11. Beautiful sign! I'm with you, I much prefer a higgledy-piggedly garden than things planted in straight lines! I like the weeds in your fruiting area too!


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