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STEPHEN BRADBURY BLOG is hopefully back again !
SNOW has come ! Mullion Cove. Cornwall
The calm before the storm ! Mullion Cove. Cornwall.
Stephen Bradbury Blog is back !
WILLIAM BRADBURY . My Father.

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STEPHEN BRADBURY BLOG is hopefully back again !






























































                        Hello everyone. Like this chap in my picture, I'm trying to post something !


       I've complained to my website provider again, about the Blog not working !  Let's hope this one works !



                                            If it does, I will,  literally , keep you posted !


                                                   
                                                                         Stephen






SNOW has come ! Mullion Cove. Cornwall





































This was Mullion Cove, this afternoon. It started snowing about 9 o'clock this morning. We also, had thunder snow, which was quite scary ! And extremely loud !

The wind is howling outside at the moment and the temperature is 24 F. Tomorrow is apparently going to get worse !

But by the weekend it is going to get mild again and rain. Which is more normal weather, for down here on the Lizard Peninsula.

However, just to show how the weather can change dramatically here ..........................................................



















                          YESTERDAY                                                                             TODAY





















                              YESTERDAY                                                                         TODAY


Isn't that amazing ! The difference a day makes !  It took an effort to trek to the cove through the snow to photograph it, but I couldn't resist the idea of showing before and after pictures of the same view. Also, in the 30 years I've lived here, it's never been this bad. Mullion Cove in the snow photographs are quite rare.





































Odd to see the sea so still. It had this amazing bluey , green colour. If you've got an iPad or iPhone, you can download the CornishCams app from the App Store. It has a live feed cam from Mullion Cove and other Cornish harbours and coves.It's free. You can look at Mullion Cove anytime of the day from the comfort of your home, wherever you live in the World.

I check what's happening at Mullion Cove every morning, using the app.

The rest of the U.K. is covered in snow too. So, wherever you are, keep warm and safe.


Stephen



The calm before the storm ! Mullion Cove. Cornwall.




































Looks can be deceptive !

This was Mullion Cove today, about 10 o'clock, this morning. A bitterly cold morning. So far, we've escaped cold weather and snow, this Winter and as I said before in my last blog, it's just been mild, and rained and rained and rained !

However, the temperatures went below zero today. My pond froze for the first time and the forecast doesn't look good for tomorrow and Thursday. They've gritted the roads. I've got fleece around my sub-tropical plants. Snow may be coming !

Looking at these photos of the cliffs at Mullion today, the Sun is shining, not a cloud in sight and it looks glorious. 
The rest of the U.K. is covered in snow and there's chaos with dreadful, disruption to road and rail travel. But it looks like we are in for it too ! The forecast isn't good.



































The sea looks so still. Not a wave to be seen ! The hill in the distance that looks like a mini volcano is Tregonning Hill.
If you climb to the top of it you can see right around Cornwall.



































It's now nighttime and I've just checked , and outside, at the moment it's 27 F.  It's gone below freezing, but hopefully won't stay as low as that too long, The Echiums and other tender plants in the garden will be hit hard and killed if it lasts too long. The weather forecast for the end of the week here, is a return to mild wet weather.

Anyway, if it snows, I'll take some photos and post them on the blog !

For now, keep warm and take care

Stephen


Stephen Bradbury Blog is back !


























































                            It's been a while, but, at last, the blog is useable again !

Last Autumn, my website provider, suddenly announced to me that they were having technical problems providing 
the blog page on whatever platform this website is based. It now seems to have been solved and so, here I am !

Firstly, once again, let me say thank you to all of you around the World who look at the site. I hope you enjoy it. And, I hope you will now, continue to enjoy the blog again.  As you know, my father died last August. It's been an odd , strange time, since then. Hard to explain.

Here in Cornwall, it hasn't stopped raining , all Winter !..........................that is ! ..................until today !           And hey presto, here's Mullion Cove today ! The Sun actually came out and said hello !





































It's rained so much, that the land at the side of the harbour has slipped and you can't walk along the harbour wall anymore. The National Trust has fenced it off. The headland just above the harbour, in the picture above has become unstable.

My garden is a quagmire. I'm hoping to start getting back to work in it soon, when it dries out a bit. 

But Spring is coming and once again it's Daffodil picking time again. I stopped at the local shop on the way back from the cove and bought a couple of bunches.






































































They say, time goes faster as you get get older !

Hard to believe a year has gone since my blog last year showing the Daffodils for sale outside the local shop.

It's been a blur !




Anyway, The Lizard,  Cornwall in Winter tends to be mild, hardly gets below freezing but is wet, windy and never stops raining.  I know lots of people around the World love Cornwall and I hope to carry on, giving you some glimpses of the places and elements that make Cornwall, such a special place, in blogs to come.

For now though, take care and see you soon.



Stephen







































WILLIAM BRADBURY . My Father.
















































                                                            WILLIAM BRADBURY


                                                                        1932  -  2017


                                                                              R.I.P.


                                                                           My Father





































                                                                    Peace finally came

                                    His light still shines and my memories, of him, will remain, forever cherished


                                                                    My Dad  .....................  Bill

                                                                                  With Love


                                                                                    Stephen



In a Cornish Garden. Summer - Gladiolus Byzantinus






































My house and garden were owned by the same family for generations, before I bought it. The house is over 400years old. I don.t know how old the garden is. It was pretty derelict and mainly grass, brambles, bracken and weeds, no trees and exposed to the Westerly winds blowing in from the sea. Poldhu Cove is just over the hill from the garden. In the old days the land in the garden had to sustain the family that lived here. But in the years before I moved in , it had become very neglected. There were some pig sheds and  an old dunny (outdoor toilet). At the beginning of the 20th Century, they grew Anemones to send to London. When I first moved in here, Anemones would pop up here and there ! A relic from the past life of the garden. I've just planted hundreds of Anemones, to bring back the tradition of growing them ! Some of the old apple trees, that are over a hundred years old are still going strong and produce fruit.

































Anyway, what I did inherit in the garden was a naturalised colony of Gladiolus Byzantinus, commonly known as 'JACKS', here in this part of Cornwall. They've been here a long, long, time. There are hundreds of them. They are very hardy and spread freely from cormlets. They are truly wonderful ! They think they originally came from Spain and Italy (Sicily).





































The whole end corner of the garden was full of them, when I moved in.   I had to dig some of them up and move them -            ( which they quite happily do - The corms are quite deeply down in the ground), when I dug out the large pond. I dug the pond by hand ! It took me a long time ! ..... years ! My poor old dog used to patiently sit at the edge of the huge hole I was digging, waiting for me to finish for the day, and anyone who came down to the garden would only see my head ! The soil from the pond was moved to the far corner and became a man-made hill. Which I called Silbury Hill . My theory is that the ancient man-made , Silbury Hill at Avebury in Wiltshire is the result of digging a pond somewhere !

The Jacks (Gladiolus) that were moved,  naturally colonised, as you can see from the photos and from May to June give a spectacular show.
































Meanwhile the Aeoniums are multiplying. I leave them out all Winter here. They are very easy to propagate. You just break off one of the rosettes, leave it 24 hours for the end of the stem to dry off, so it doesn't rot when you put it into a pot with good mixture of soil and horticultural grit.





































A new thing I've introduced to the formal part of the garden, is some wooden obelisks. Painted in Farrow and Ball , Studio Green. They are about 2 metres tall and on each side I've planted different Clematis. Mainly Class 2. Each Clematis flowers at a slightly different time. So the obelisk will always have flowers through the Summer.


You can order Gladiolus Byzantinus from plant growers online. Give them a try !

I'll blog again soon

Stephen


MANCHESTER bombing


































































































Last night 22 people were killed and 59 people injured by a suicide bomber in Manchester. Thousands of young people had gone to see an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena. As a teenager, I used to go to lots of concerts in Manchester. A bomber has turned what should have been a happy event for these innocent, young people into an awful nightmare. My heart goes out to all who have been affected by this dreadful, cowardly, act of terrorism.

As a person, who was born and brought up and raised as a child in Manchester. A Mancunian ! I can only offer my solidarity with the people of Manchester., on this unhappy, very sad day.




Stephen 


BLUEBELLS at Godolphin. CORNWALL




































Just thought I'd give a quick mention and show some pictures of the Bluebell festival at Godolphin. I know lots of you around the World follow the blog because of the Cornwall aspects and elements. Also, if any of you get a chance to go and see the bluebells at Godolphin, you won't be disappointed. The intense blue and scale of the amount of bluebells within the woods at Godolphin is astounding.......and very hard to capture on photos !






























Every year I go to look at them and every year I come away pleased . The other place to visit,which really is spectacular for bluebells is Enys at Penryn. You look across a massive sea of blue to the far horizon. Millions of bluebells !


































































The Godolphin House and estate began life in Medieval times and the Medieval garden can still be seen. In later years the Godolphin family made their wealth from tin mining. Evidence of this can be seen if you walk up to Godolphin Hill. Work is currently being done to restore the gardens. You can visit the gardener's potting shed for more info.

Here are some pics of Godolphin House.



























































































Do go and visit the bluebells at Godolphin. You won't be disappointed.

Finally, here's a glimpse of Enys at Penryn, near Falmouth , Cornwall. It's pretty spectacular !




































Hope you are enjoying Spring, wherever you are in the World.


Take care

Stephen


WHITE CHERRY TREE. Mullion. Cornwall





































It's been a little while since I last blogged. I do apologise. I've not been very well. Anyway, here's a little update ! A subject that uplifts and heralds the arrival of Spring !

I planted this White Cherry tree about 25 years ago. It was a tiny sapling, now it's a huge tree, that when in full blossom can be seen across the fields and valley. A real landmark ! In fact, in full blossom, I reckon it can be seen from space !

The International Space Station often goes across the sky. I use to get emails from NASA telling me what time to see it. Literally to the minute, the space station would glide across the sky,  above my head, glowing eerily, moving silently from the West to the East.

And I bet the astronauts were excitedly, peering down, seeing this great white object from space ! Yep ! my wonderful White Cherry tree in full blossom !






































I was talking to my neighbour across the road about how people like us plant little saplings, not realising that if you live there long enough, they become huge, hulking trees !

The conversation came about after my other neighbour (next door) , who has a Scot's Pine tree in their front garden, decided ( cheaply ) to get a local, idiot with a chainsaw in ! So the local,hillbilly,turned up, equipped with just a ladder and chainsaw and started lopping branches. Not content with this ! He then decided to chainsaw through our telephone cable too !
I can't tell you, the ensuing chaos that caused ! The idiot !  No telephone, no internet and no T.V !  British Telecom , a few days later sent out two blokes and a cherry picker to put a new cable up ! They just shook their heads, rolled their eyes, telling me it happens all the time. They said he was lucky ! The cable he missed had 13000 volts going through it ! My next door neighbour, they said, looked sheepish and  is due a hefty bill !





































Anyway, no fear of chainsawing my White Cherry ! The birds love it and when the blossom falls, it's like snow !







































The wonderful blossom , set against a clear blue sky !






































































AS USUAL, i try to include a piece of my artwork.

And here we are ! It's literally a painting of some twigs with blossom taken from this tree and placed in a vase on the windowsill, sketched  and painted. A moment in time !  A lovely momento of Spring !
























































Oil on canvas.


Spring in Cornwall is a great time to visit.


However, wherever you are in the World

Take care



Stephen



GORSE at Predannack Cliffs. NOT SUCH A STILL LIFE ! Painting.





































                                                                             Predannack

Today, I did the fairly short , circular walk from the National Trust car park, by Windyridge Farm, at Predannack, down the narrow green lane to the coast path, followed it along the cliffs to Ogo Dour Cove. But before crossing the stream at the bottom and climbing the path back up  to the top and taking the path inland again towards the car park at Predannack Wollas, I stopped along the way, to look at the view, but also to look at the amazingly, vibrant gorse.

The flowers on the gorse, this year are vivid yellow. 
































































 



It's such a unique colour, and is part of the Cornish black and gold, emblem.









Predannack is a couple of miles along the coast from Mullion, heading south, towards the Lizard.  Rare plants grow within the rocky outcrops. The rocks are covered in lichen. The same colour as the gorse !































































Some of the wonderful, rare plants and lichen to be found at Ogo Dour.














































































Sometimes, if you are lucky, you might spot Choughs , flying around the cliffs or feeding on the cliffs. 

The cliffs are grazed by Dexter cattle and Shetland ponies, to help the unique fauna that grows here, survive and encourage the Choughs to feed on the short, grazed grass.

Anyway, taking the path inland, I'm heading back to the car park.






















































Looking back, you can see the path I came  down the cliffs on. On the other side of Predannack.



















































Along the path as it goes inland, the hedgerows are full of Black Thorn, flowering at the moment.












Well, as usual, I try to include a painting that has something to do with the subject or place that I'm writing about. And here is today's !


































                                                                            NOT SUCH A STILL LIFE

It's called ,  NOT SUCH A STILL LIFE !   It has the cliffs and landscape of Predannack in the background, and the colours of the gorse in the foreground. 

Here's a description of the meaning of the painting.



Facet 4  -  Not such a still life

Imagine two people standing on top of a 300ft high cliff looking along the coastline with the turbulent sea crashing against the rocks below them.

The first person standing there looking at the scene, who internally is together, controlled and serene and at peace with themselves and life finds the external violent action of the waves and wildness of nature in the scene that they are witnessing very disturbing and is fearful and beginning to freak out.

The other person next to them is completely the opposite. They have a mind full of the troubles of life, full of anguish and with no peace of mind whatsoever. Yet they look at the scene below of nature's power and beauty and think, 'How wonderful', and for that short moment in time they are surrounded by the sense of place and magnificence of the power of nature and forget the shit (pardon my use of English, I seriously can't think of a better word that sums up the crap (oops) people sometimes have to face)  within them.


Predannack is a wonderful, special place to visit. It's off the tourist track. It's only a couple of miles from Mullion via walking or car. The Serpentine cliffs are spectacular ! In late Spring the cliffs are covered in blue, Squill. You might if you are lucky, even spot a Seal or Basking Shark ! Well worth a visit.


Take care



Stephen



St Michael's Mount. Cornwall.The Mists of Avalon .23rd February






































                                                                    St Michael's Mount

Once a month, I have to drive to Penzance, which is about 20 odd miles away to the West of here, heading in the Lands End direction. Today, was that day !

On my way to Penzance, I took a detour, through Marazion.  Just off Marazion, is St Michael's Mount.  A small, tidal island, reached by a causeway at low tide. Part of the National Trust, it is still home to the St Aubyn family. They've lived there since about 1650.

On top of the island, is a castle and chapel. It's quite a steep climb to the top, but well worth it for the views towards the Lizard and Lands End. The earliest buildings at the top , date back to the 12th century.

The National Trust have in recent years opened up the gardens around the island. There are sub-tropical plants and many kinds of succulents. It's worth a visit, if you are keen on gardening.

The castle and island are very special and I'd encourage anyone to visit it.

At high tide, a fleet of ferry boats take people to and thro , to the island.

I went on one such occasion to the island at high tide on a boat with my Mum and Aunt. It was quite stormy, blowing a hoolie, raining and lots of sea spray. As we set off across the water, my Mum was convinced we were all going to die !
She didn't like it. I could see her eyes looking up to the sky, muttering, praying for safe passage !

I said to her, that I was sure they wouldn't lay on boats, if it wasn't safe ! Anyway, as the boat heaved up and down, she wasn't convinced ! I actually loved it. The boat rocking, the spray, the adventure ! The artist J.M.W Turner used to tie himself to the  ship's mast, so he could sketch in rough, stormy seas, for goodness sake !

I didn't have my sketchbook ! I just had my Mum and Aunt, quivering, under the boat's hood, convinced it was the Titanic.
Anyway, we obviously did reach the island safely. With the two of them, muttering, " Bloody boat !  Never again !"




































On another occasion, that I went across to the island with my Mother, we started off ,walking back along the causeway to the mainland, just as the tide started coming in. But oh ! the shock ! horror ! Halfway across, the water had covered the causeway, and we had to start paddling !  The look on my Mum's face ! It was classic. "Be brave", I said.( It was very funny !) But I don't think I was ever forgiven. That and the boat trip !




































The picture above is looking back East, towards the Lizard direction. As you can see at low tide there are lots of rock  pools.

























It really is a landmark. You can see it, away in the distance, looking from the top of Mullion Cove, here, across Mount's Bay.













































This is looking towards Penzance. A great, long, sandy beach, stretches from Marazion to Penzance. Driving a bit further along, I stopped and took a photo of the castle, looking back to Marazion.



































Can you see the couple walking along the beach. Looks like a travel brochure pic !

Well ! St Michael's Mount makers an appearance in one or two of my paintings. Here is one! It's on the book cover of a novel,called,  The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley. It's a sort of pre-history version of the Mount in pagan days.

I'll probably talk more about The Mists of Avalon artwork at greater length in a future blog. But for now, here's a taster !




































For people who love Mullion, here's how Poldhu Cove looked about 12 o'clock, midday today. A fairly rough sea ! I took the pic on my way back from Penzance.




































Take care


Stephen




DOLPHINS . Rinsey. Cornwall - Shadow Realm artwork.

































                                                                                     
                                                                DOLPHINS

I found myself, like many people, quite upset and deeply saddened by the recent news and pictures of hundreds of whales beaching themselves in New Zealand and dying. Thanks to the kindness of volunteers, some were re-floated and saved, but hundreds , it seems, died.

This blog,today, is actually about Dolphins.

A few weeks ago, whilst walking around Rinsey Head , I was very fortunate to see a pod of Dolphins swimming and hunting for fish about half a mile out at sea. It was a wonderful and mesmerising sight ! It was also, very hard to tear yourself away from watching them . You just keep wanting another, and another  glimpse ! They are magical creatures ! Apparently, they'd been seen quite a lot that week in Mounts Bay, and some people had organised pleasure craft for people to go out and see them. There are some films on You Tube, if you want to have a look.

I remember a couple of years ago, seeing some Dolphins in Coverack Bay, just off the harbour. It was a wintry day and they had probably followed , and were hunting  fish in  the bay. 

Unfortunately, the other times that I've seen Dolphins, is when they've been washed up dead ! Usually victims of fishing nets, or maybe, some times, stormy seas.

The picture above, which I made, some years ago, is of one such sad creature !  A Dolphin that was washed up on Poltesco beach. You can see the very defined shape of the fin  ( blue) in the picture. The border, surrounding it, is a close up of the lacerated skin of the poor creature. A striking , colourful, picture of a very sad subject matter.

In my long career, I've painted many things, and I was wondering about Dolphins ! Had I painted one ? Well, yes, It turns out I did ! And here it is !















































The Dolphin appeared on a book called SHADOW REALM by author Marc Alexander. It was the third book in a series of four, called THE WELLS OF YTHAN..






























I liked the idea of the Dolphin, safely guiding the hero's ship through the deadly rocks.

I actually got a lovely letter from Marc Alexander, telling me how much he loved my artwork for the covers. It's nice, when that happens.

Sadly, reality bites ! The poor creature below was washed up here at Poldhu Cove, Mullion a couple of weeks ago.
















A very sad sight !






Rinsey, is about 15 miles along the coast from here. You pass the signs for it, as you drive towards Penzance. It's owned by the National Trust. There's a fantastic beach at the bottom. Great for paddling and swimming. At the top of the cliffs, there is an old, abandoned engine house. Here are some pictures from my photo archives to give you an idea of Rinsey.





































































































You can see the Lizard Peninsula, and Mullion in the background.

































There's lots of rock pools to explore and
investigate too !







I hope you liked the pictures of Rinsey. Do go and visit, if you get the chance. 

I remember, when I was painting the quirky, Garden Series of paintings, thinking that on one, I was going to paint a Dolphin leaping out of a garden fountain ! To expect the unexpected !

Looking out to sea, here in Cornwall, it's good to get that unexpected view of something like Dolphins from time to time.


Take care


Stephen


AFTER THE STORMS. Poldhu Cove. Mullion to Gunwalloe . Sunday 5th Feb




































Today has been a welcome break from the stormy weather of the last few days. It's been wonderfully sunny !. Anna Downing, from Sancreed, my spiritual mother, who  sadly died a few years back, use to call them " Given days ".

In the midst of Winter, with the storms and rain,  you'd get a beautiful, sunny ,  heart-lifting day !

If she was still with us, she'd say, " Steve, love.........just enjoy it. Enjoy the moment, bask in the sun of this 'Given day' ".


So here are some moments of my walk today from here in Mullion, Poldhu Cove to Gunwalloe , Church Cove and  Dollar Cove.

Starting from the car park by the marshy valley at Poldhu.     Poldhu Cove is owned by the National Trust. It's become very popular, and there is a beach cafe, which opens all year round.







































You cross over the little road bridge then follow the  road up the right hand side of the cove, to get on to the cliff top , coast path.





































On top of the headland is Poldhu Nursing Home. It used to be a hotel, and the actor, Clark Gable and other celebs  stayed there in the past.

Poldhu is quite a deep inlet and I love the way the waves go rolling past you , traveling inland. You just watch them going past you. It's quite special !

I'm following the cliff path round the headland and soon Gunwalloe Church Cove will come in sight.



































And there it is !  You can just make out the little, church on the beach, on the lefthand side of the beach, nestling under the headland. I'm now going to start dropping down in to the sandy cove.
























The cliffs by the side of the path are eroding badly. Since I've lived here, they've had to move the path further inland several times. Sand martins nest in the cliffs here and at Poldhu during the Summer. It's quite mesmerising watching them skim over the sand.

Dropping down , following the now, diverted path, you come to Gunwalloe.



































I'm walking across the beach to the tiny church of St Winwaloe. It's right on the beach. The headland shelters it from the storms. In fact it's called the Church of the Storms. The church has appeared in many films as a location. Most recently in Poldark. It has a separate tower.






























































Walking past the church, my final destination, before walking back to Poldhu, will be Dollar Cove. The cove is named after the  coins that have been found on the beach from the wreck of a Portuguese treasure ship in 1526 and the wreck of a ship that went down carrying silver coins in 1783.

And here it is. Dollar Cove !




































































There seems to be quite a few people with metal detectors, trying their luck today ! I don't know if people still find treasure here. Mostly can and bottle tops, I would have thought !

Anyway, Dollar Cove has the most wonderful rock formations. The rocks on the beach have been weathered by the waves and form these terrific undulating patterns and the cliffs, above the beach have very distinct, tectonic layers. 





































Aren't they fantastic ?

The power of the sea !






Well, that's it ! It's a really nice walk if you ever get the chance to do it.  I'm going to retrace my steps back to Poldhu.
 
The weather forecast tomorrow is for heavy rain, but for now it's all about enjoying this ' Given Day'.

Take care

Stephen




STORMS - Mullion. Thursday . 2nd February



































Thought I'd just quickly share with you, what's been happening today.  These photos were taken about 4 o'clock this afternoon.

The wind has been blowing a complete hoolie today. I had to hold on to a bench at the top of the cliffs to stop myself from literally blowing over !  Dramatic , though, isn't it !

I believe the road along the seafront in Penzance was closed off today because of the waves and the trains couldn't get past Dawlish.  I can still hear the wind outside the house, as I'm writing this. When I first moved to the Lizard 30 years ago, the Elm trees had all died from Dutch Elm disease. So there was nothing, anywhere to break the fierce winds. You would lie awake at night, listening to the wind blowing towards you across the peninsula. Worrying if the thatch was going to blow off the roof !

I remember when the children were young , they kept rabbits in the old sheds in the garden. I went down one night to feed them and close the shed doors. I was in the shed with my Border Collie dog, Harry, and we heard a noise coming towards us. Harry the dog looked at me and I looked at him. the noise got louder and louder. It was like the noise of a jet aeroplane. Suddenly the building was  blasted, and shook,  the door blew inwards off it's hinges and we were covered in debris and rain. It was gobsmackingly scary ! 

Other trees have grown up to replace the Elms and there is more windbreak now. Living at the end of Britain, sticking out in to the sea, you have to expect this sort of weather. And today, it came.

Take care

Stephen

Here are a few more pics.








































































Here's another photo I took. It shows the power of the wind. The waterfall falling off the top of the cliffs at Mullion Cove is being blown upwards,  back over the top of the cliff edge, making a plume of spray.





















































First daffodil !


























































                                                              First daffodil


                                                Yep, I know it's just one daffodil !


But, it's a sign of many more to come, in the garden.  The large drifts won't start for a while yet. There's been a cold,  chilly wind from the east today.. It's been cloudy all day.  This photo was taken yesterday, when the sun shone all day. The weather on the Lizard Peninsula changes from day to day, sometimes from hour to hour. You can stand on the cliffs in beautiful sunshine, watching the rain falling a few miles away up the coast. We can have sunshine all day, but ten miles away, Helston and other places inland have rain !

As I said in my recent blog, they are picking the daffodil crop in nearby Cury.  The garden centre at Trevenna Cross, in Breage has just started selling Summer bulbs. I've bought some Pineapple lily bulbs, Turban lilies, Dahlia tubers and Ginger plant rhizomes to put out in late Spring.

Seems a way off yet , but they sell out quite fast.

Anyway, here's a picture of my lonely daffodil, in situ.  Next to the old bench, by the pond.


























































Spring is coming !

Take care

Stephen




FROST ! - Wintry Sun. Mullion . Cornwall . 23rd January



































                                                                      A  wintry sun

                                                        It finally came...................frost !

In fact it's come a couple of times, recently.  In my blog about orange trees recently, I said we still have to get through January and February, hopefully without it getting too cold for my sub-tropical plants.  As a precaution , I recently put fleece around the bananas and succulent plants etc. Good job I did !  The frost doesn't last long and it still hasn't got cold enough to freeze over the ponds, but it's best to be safe, than sorry..

The picture above was taken early this morning from the garden, looking back towards the house. The sun looks quite wintry. It's still giving enough warmth to make the frost disappear though,  as soon as it touches it.

We certainly haven't had any snow yet ! 




















































The sun in the picture above  is piercing the undergrowth at the base of the white cherry tree, illuminating the Phormiums/ flax plants and Hart's tongue ferns. Quite atmospheric and magical. Within minutes, the sun rose, the frost disappeared and it's been a really nice cool, but sunny day.

Here are some pics of Mullion Cove and Polurrian cliffs taken about 4 o'clock this afternoon, once again highlighting that wintry sun.






































Looking away from the sun, towards Polurrian cliffs, it was good to see a much more spring-like scene.............the gorse is flowering. Spring isn't too far away !







































































Here's a letterhead design I did a few years ago.The light and weather today reminded me of it.

Take care. Keep warm !


Stephen




































Mullion Cove. Cornwall - today. 13th January





































                                                           MULLION COVE.  CORNWALL  -  Today

                                                                             Friday 13th January


Thought I'd share with you, a walk I took today, back from Mullion Cove, here on the Lizard Peninsula, along the cliffs, on my way home.

We seem to have escaped the storms and snow etc that are affecting a lot of Britain at the moment. Although, I have to say, it was really windy on the cliffs. Trying to hold the camera still was pretty hard. I thought there might be more shake apparent in the images !

Anyway, I started off from Mullion Harbour, and climbed up the path and steps to the top of the cliffs.






































It's quite a steep climb, but quite rewarding looking back down on the cove and harbour. Giant rocks rise from the sea
and outside the cove lies Mullion Island. The island is home to lots of seabirds.



















The cove and harbour are owned by the National Trust. In Winter, the waves crash over the harbour walls and during the 30 years, I've lived here, the harbour walls have been really damaged by the waves quite a few times. The poor old National Trust , has  to then laboriously rebuild them.

Climbing the path and the steps, you come to Mullion Cove Hotel. It was pretty windy at the top ! The next picture is taken from the top looking west, along the coast to Porthleven, Marazion, St Michael's Mount, Penzance and Lands End.





































Considering what awful weather, the rest of Britain is having today, it's been a bright sunny day here !

Looking back towards Mullion Cove, you can see Mullion Island and the headland.





































Walking along the path, away from Mullion Cove, I now come to Polurrian Cliffs, and a rock formation called the Love Rocks.




































Looking out to sea, there was an amazing blue, sky and cloud formation.




































I'm now, just about coming to Polurrian Cove, where I turn inland back to the village. If I carry on walking along the coast path, it would take me down into, sandy,  Polurrian Cove, and then on to Poldhu Cove. Mullion has 3 distinctive coves. But today, I am turning back inland to the village.





























Immediately, in front, is Polurrian Cove, and behind, where the white building is, on the headland, is Poldhu Cove.








So now, I've left the cliffs and am walking back home, through the village, and outside one of the local shops, I came across these for sale. Freshly picked, from fields , a couple of miles away in Cury. Freshly picked daffodils ! Cornwall is famous for daffodils. They can grow them early here, before the rest of the country, because of the climate.

What a wonderful sign in January, that Spring isn't too far away ! And £1 for a bunch, what a bargain !





































                                                          Hope you enjoyed the walk


                                                                          Take care


                                                                            Stephen






HAPPY NEW YEAR





































                                                               HAPPY NEW YEAR

                                                                           to you all 

            Greetings from Cornwall. I wish you all a  happy,  peaceful, fulfilled, prosperous year to come in 2017


                                                                             Stephen



Oranges......Cornwall ! December !





































                                                               Oranges in December !

                                                             Well !  Can you Adam and Eve it !

                                                               Sorry ! ...... Can you believe it ?


It's certainly wowed my family and neighbours !   My mandarin orange tree, growing outside,  in the garden is producing ripe oranges .in late December !

It's pretty amazing. We've had a really good, mild,  Winter so far, it's been fairly warm. Hasn't really got near to freezing. 

The Lizard Peninsula, is as far south as you can go in England. With sea on both sides, and warmed by the Gulf Stream, it's very temperate and it's possible to grow sub-tropical plants quite safely. We barely get frost. Hardly ever see snow. In fact, I've lived here 30 years and can probably count the times I've seen snow on two hands. 

Now I've said that, we'll probably get blizzards and 15 feet snow drifts. ( which, incidentally, we used to get in the High Peak of Derbyshire, where I used to live , before coming to Cornwall )
































They look good, and they taste OK too ! I've also got lemons and limes just about to ripen too. I did my research, before setting about growing citrous trees, and I came to the conclusion that, they really do prefer being outside, you need to feed them citrous food regularly and most of all, they need as much light as possible. If you grow them inside, they struggle for light, central heating isn't good for them, and if  they do produce fruit, they need to draw up water to swell the fruit. The leaves will drop off very easily indoors. I've seen some very sad, sorry,looking examples on You Tube films.

Cornwall in Autumn and Winter is a very wet place. We get a lot of rain, Very often , horizontal ! They don't seem to mind that.

I have about 5 varieties of banana plants growing outside too. I haven't wrapped them this winter yet, to protect them. Maybe as January and February Approach, I might have to, but I check the weather forecasts each day to see what  the temperature is going to be. So far, so good !





































Daffodils are starting to flower here and there. Cornwall is famous for growing daffodils early. They are picked, just after New Year and sent all over the World.

Anyway, back to my oranges !

Oranges have appeared in many of my paintings. In fact, my brother, who I stayed with, when I had to go up north and sort out my Mother's house and funeral arrangements, famously, after looking at some of my pictures,, became exasperated looking at them, and came out with the phrase and these eternal words as he looked at my pictures......................

                                         " WHY THE BLEEDING ORANGE ?"

It became a  chapter title in my book , FACETS .

I said, " Gary, it's going to remain a mystery ! I'm not going to tell you, or explain it to anyone. Work it out !"

So there we are, the mystery continues !


Here are some examples from my sketchbook and paintings.



























































































                                                       Hope you all had a good Christmas


                                                                          Take care


                                                                           Stephen





Merry Christmas




































                                                I wish you all a very happy and peaceful Christmas





                                                   Best wishes to you all, wherever you may be in the World






                                                                                       Stephen