Friday, 4 April 2008

Post Renovation - This & That (3)

What a wonderful Friday we have had.

For the first time in ages, Richard and I saw the girls off to school and then jumped in the car and went to Beziers for the flower market.

First we walked up the Allée Paul Riquet looking at all the stalls and stopped at the top at our favourite café/restaurant for breakfast. They were SO busy - all locals popping in with either paperwork, babies & buggies or indeed groups of 'ladies who breakfast' catching up on the gossip. I bet there are a lot of restaurants who would be delighted to have this amount of custom - all before 10:00am!!

The top half of the market is garden plants and cut flowers - this particular stall makes up the most fantastic bouquets for you, to order. Just pick your stemmed flowers and they do it there and then. Lower down you get all the fruit/veg/bedding plant stalls - where we were heading. It is time to start planting out our terrace! This is where you come to buy your quail..... .....or chickens. For your chicken run, of course, not the table!!! We then spent the afternoon planting out our purchases. Three pepper plants. One aubergine. And I started clearing out the pots and putting in the pansies, and tidying up the palms. It is too early for the geraniums and the tomatoes - because we still might get a late frost unfortunately, like last year.

Richard spent the time setting up the watering system, and we are all set now. Tomorrow, I must put in the two courgettes, the two mures (blackberries) and the new herbs.

Nic was helping me - and we both ended up with sun tans on our backs! It was 20 degrees in the shade!
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Spring is bursting out all over our area. Down on the plain (the flat area between us and Beziers, and the Mediterranean) it was surprising how further advanced they are - many of the vines are already dressed in new leaves. You can see our line of hills as we drove back home and stopped off to buy some vrac rosé at Schiste- we live just behind the hills, in the first valley! As we drove up the hill to towards the turn off to our village, the acres of cherry and peach blossom was as pretty as a picture. As far as the eye could see. Shame I could not do them justice!! As we drove into the village, we saw Robert's recently trimmed vines with glorious yellow between. The very, very old cherry trees just beyond Jean-Paul's old-type vine field on the right. Continuing towards home, on the left, we passed Robert's 'special' cherry trees that he never treats with chemicals - producing fruit just for family and friends. And we could look across the valley and see blossom appearing here and there in the garrigue - where fields of fruit trees are almost invisible to outsiders. Can you see Jacquie's peach trees in the distance?! My photo is not very good I am afraid. Nature at its finest!

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