|Posted by micky brown on June 25, 2020 at 6:35 PM||comments ()|
The Hollyhock Fairies
After a storm you can see their colourful skirts hanging out to dry at the back of the orchard in the park.
Gertrude Jekyll said that "the loosely-folded inner petals of the loveliest of Hollyhocks invite a wonderful play and brilliancy of colour. Some of the colour is transmitted through the half-transparency of the petal's structure, some is reflected from the neighbouring folds; the light striking back and forth with infinitely beautiful trick and playful variation, so that some inner regions of the heart of a rosy flower, obeying the mysterious agencies of sunlight, texture and local colour, may tell upon the eye as pure scarlet; while the wide outer petal, in itself generally rather lighter in colour, with its slightly waved surface and gently frilled edge, plays the game of give and take with light and tint in quite other, but always delightful ways."
All photos below taken in the park
The Hollyhock Child
|Posted by micky brown on November 16, 2019 at 11:00 AM||comments ()|
Une Escargatoire ou Surfeit
By Margaret Sheppard ( volunteer in the park orchard)
Found huddled together in the Orchard yesterday this escargatoire (and the French should know) of snails wasn't so much a nursery as an extremely large collection. Perhaps a surfeit of snails would be a good name. They were clustered together in a large bag of stones so had to be individually detached by hand. Fortunately I got to them before they got to our lovely orchard plants. I was so shocked by the sheer volume of the mass that I bagged them all up and took them home to weigh:
7 lb 7oz! And I'd already dealt with a few on site!
The collection of terrestrial pulmonate gastropod molluscs.
Michael Brown posts-
It has been raining a lot for weeks now, that steady fine drizzle that comes in from the sea and off Dartmoor. And now there are a lot of snails. I have been lifting my cascading aubretia on the garden walls and scraping them off with a dustpan to collect them – several at a time. They are everywhere, especially in my dahlias. The ones that escaped the dustpan fell to the floor and accidently ended up under foot.
I quite like snails. I have eaten them with garlic butter and they are good food for hedgehogs and blackbirds. But they are a nuisance; they eat the plants and leave slimy trails everywhere. But looking at them in the photo, I noticed how sleepy they look, have they been up all night galavanting?
Margaret, they would make great house pets, they aren’t noisy, can’t run away, they don't bark all night or rip your nice net curtains. You could keep them in your food waste bin at night and have them in an escargarium during the day where you could watch them. It would be very calming. You could charge people to come and be de-stressed.
Well Margaret, you haven't said what you did with them after you weighed them.
Will I be reading about a mass murder in the Teignmouth News?
Facts that you should know - The olfactory epithelia of terrestrial pulmonate gastropod molluscs have modified brush borders with long branching plasmatic processes and a spongy layer of cytoplasmic tubules which extend from the epithelial cells. !!!
But you probably already knew that.
|Posted by micky brown on July 31, 2019 at 2:25 AM||comments ()|
Congratulations to the small handful of volunteers that work so hard in all weathers fighting off the weeds in The Dell and The Orchard.
Teignmouth in Bloom have awarded the Friends of Eastcliff Park with
1st prize in the Best Community Group category,
1st prize in the Best Newcomer category,
Winner of the Film Makers Choice and
Winner of the Masterclass Trophy
Brilliant - well done
|Posted by micky brown on July 31, 2019 at 2:20 AM||comments ()|
Just arrived in the park a lovely carved statue of a dog. Not sure of the breed. But he looks lovely. He's dying to get at that squirrel up in the tree.
|Posted by micky brown on July 2, 2019 at 5:25 PM||comments ()|
Painted Lady Vanessa cardui
Wingspan Male: 58 - 70mm Female: 62 - 74mm
After feasting on thistles, their British-born offspring are programmed to return south in the autumn, seeking sunnier climes to continue their lifecycle
In some years, the migration can be spectacular. In 2009, it was considered to be one of the greatest migratuions ever.
Unfortunately, this species is unable to survive our winter in any stage, but it has a strong flight and can be found anywhere in the British Isles, including Orkney and Shetland. This is the only butterfly species ever to have been recorded from Iceland. A butterfly may travel south from northern Europe to Britain where it will breed and die, the next generation will carry on the migration back to Africa.
The extent of the annual journey undertaken by the Painted Lady butterfly is astonishing. This tiny creature weighing less than a gram has no opportunity to learn from older, experienced individuals, but still undertakes an epic intercontinental migration in order to find plants for its caterpillars to eat.
Scientists did not know if the Painted Lady made the return journey at the end of the summer, like the closely related Red Admiral, or simply died in the UK.
A radar in Hampshire has revealed that around 11 million Painted Ladies entered the UK in spring 2009 with 26 million departing in the autumn. The butterflies fly at altitudes up to 3,000 feet, which is why they were never spotted by humans, at speeds up to 30mph.
|Posted by micky brown on April 9, 2019 at 1:30 PM||comments ()|
We have a new Mosaic, created by Michelle Greenwood Brown
The old one was getting a bit weather worn and pieces were becoming loose. It showed a compass in the centre with fishes and sailing boats around the edge with the inscription " BLESS THE SEA AND ALL THATS IN, BUT BRING ME HOME TO KITH AND KIN"
The whole area of the Lookout Point has now been levelled and cemented over with level access added for the disabled, and new steps at the front. There is a carved seat and the new mosaic is on a theme of the North Star to guide our sailors and fishermen on their journeys.
The new mosaic created by Michelle Greenwood Brown
In the centre is a swallow coming home to welcome spring, surrounded by fishes and waves. Around that we have elements of the park with Ivy and berry laden twigs, and of course the points of the compass to guide us home safely. Around this we have sea themed cartouches with sailing boats, seagulls, dolphins, shells and starfish on the beach. Another has a crab, shell, and anchor. Seperating these we have elements of the park with butterflies, flowers, birds, bees, dragonflies and violets.
The inscription surrounding all of this beautiful detail reads "BRIGHT STAR WOULD I WERE STEDFAST AS THOU ART"
This is the first line of a love sonnet by John Keats.
Before anybody complains about the spelling, it was written circa 1818/1819. The old spelling of 'steadfast' originally was without the 'a' (stedfast). Other old versions are 'stedefast' or 'stedefæst'.
Michelle tells us "The inspiration was the two views from the plinth, looking back into the trees and meadows and looking forward to the sea and beach. The swallow has always been a significant symbol for sailors and a traditional subject for their tattoos. I chose to use the original Keats spelling of steadfast. The mosaic is made using a heritage porcelain tile made for over 200 years by a French company called Winckelmans. It is twice fired and extremely weatherproof and non slip. The same material is often used in the old mosaic shop doorways, a few of which remain in the town."
Bright star, would I were stedfast as thou art—
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like Nature's patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors—
No—yet still stedfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever—or else swoon to death.
Addressed to a star (perhaps Polaris the Pole star, around which the heavens appear to wheel), the sonnet expresses the poet's wish to be as constant as the star while he presses against his sleeping love.
The poem came to be forever associated with his "Bright Star" Fanny Brawne – with whom Keats became infatuated.
Some of you may remember some years ago the lookout had a shed and a shelter on it but a 12 year old vandal decided to set it alight.
The old shelter
The new works begin - Hank inspects the old mosaic and seat. He doesn't look impressed.
In with the new ramp New kerbing
The old mosaic disappears under cement Some new steps
The final touches to the base to make it non slip Finally Larry inspects the new Lookout Point.
There is a new fishy themed seat and table
A bit about Michell Greenwood Brown
She was born in Teignmouth and has lived here for most of her life. She is a full time professional mosaic artist and a member of the Devon Guild of Craftsmen in Bovey Tracey. She also teaches mosaic and will be exhibiting in Devon Open Studios at TAAG gallery in September if people want to come in and chat to her and see some mosaic demos. She has a series of mosaics permanently displayed around the arts quarter area in Teignmouth and is currently working on a big project for Totnes town council.
|Posted by Ian Cannons on February 12, 2019 at 2:05 PM||comments ()|
Friends of Eastcliff
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Wednesday, 27 February 2019 from 19:30-21:00
TAAG Arts & Community Centre 4/5 Northumberland Place, TQ14 8DD Teignmouth
All are welcome. If you are not a member you can join on the night
WE WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM YOU BEFORE THE MEETING
Do you have any comments or suggestions about the the work we do in The Dell or The Orchard? Do you have any planting suggestions? Is there anything we're getting wrong?
Would you like more information about the agenda?
Do you have any nominations for the committee?
I would also appreciate it if you would let me know if you are thinking of coming to the AGM, just for an idea of numbers
|Posted by Ian Cannons on January 30, 2019 at 11:05 AM||comments ()|
27 January 2019
This was something different for The Friends of Eastcliff Park: we don't usually work in the Rowdens, outside of The Orchard. The aim was to uncover the big rhododendrons on the lawn.
I can just about remember how it was when I was a school there nearly fifty years ago. There was a big island of rhodies without the brambles and scrubby trees. We won't be able to wind the clock right back but there should be a much better show of flowers this year.
A big thank you to everyone who turned out.
Below: working on Sunday, 27 January 2019
|Posted by micky brown on January 15, 2019 at 12:10 PM||comments ()|
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If you are walking past the 5 oaks in the middle of the park, look across the path to the other side and you will see a couple of damaged trees. These are badger scratching posts. The tree at the front has much fresher damage. I took some photos.
You can clearly see the claw marks. There have been badger sets next to the fields above the park for many years and this may be a way of marking their boundary.
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|Posted by micky brown on January 14, 2019 at 4:05 PM||comments ()|
Just had this message for a snake spotter-
Whilst walking today at 1pm in Eastcliff I nearly trod on a snake at least 3ft in length, green in colour, maybe a grass snake but looked online only 2ft in length this snake was at least 3 ft and 30mm thick, never seen anything like it in uk, please inform dog walkers as it may not be native to uk, looked online all day nothing like this native.