Thursday, 28 March 2013

Time Lapse Videos of the Garden (1 of 3)

I've gotten quite into hillwalking this year. In fact I even have another blog dedicated purely to that which I will shameless plug here: it is and it details me and my friend Martyn's attempt to climb 52 munros this year. (We've managed 3 so far.) As part of this new hobby I signed up to a few on-line forums to meet other people with similar interests and one of the forums I go on frequently is the one at

It was on here that a user known as Alastair S (probably his real name!) posted up a thread talking about a little computer program he had made. What it does is connects to public internet cameras anywhere in the world you point it to and downloads an image from them once every minute. When it has a large collection of these images it creates a video out of them which is played back at 20 frames per second. This hence lets you watch an entire days, weeks, months or even years worth of footage in just a few minutes. It's a technique known as 'time lapse video' and it can make for some very interesting videos. Here are a couple he has produced so far:

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Fixing the Sankey Water Butt

So given its mostly good reviews I bought a Sankey 210L Water butt from B&Q and was pretty happy with the purchase given the size of it and the fairly sturdy design. It is a bit on the expensive side and having to buy the stand separately was a bit annoying but I weighed it up and decided to go for it anyway. Big mistake!

The Sankey 210L Water butt 
After having it in the garden for a few weeks I found it kept falling over. Not sure if it was being pushed or blowing over because of the wind so I decided to fill it about a quarter of the way with tap water to weight it down a little. It was at this point I found that the water butt leaked through the tap!

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Gardening Plans for 2013

So as you can see from this picture taken today (21st March) even though we are officially in Spring it still isn't quite gardening weather.

So instead I thought I'd share my plans for this year with you.

This year is going to be all about colour! What I want to do is create a rainbow effect round the border of the garden going from violet colours on the left round to reds on the right with all the colours in between in the middle.

Really this shouldn't be too hard since I plan on purchasing plants this year rather than growing them myself. I know, I know, it's cheating, but I just don't have the time to dedicate to growing from seed just now and especially not for the amount of plants I think I'm going to need.

The plant of choice is going to be Primulas; they are colourful, readily available, quite hardy and don't cost the earth.

Other than the border I'll probably give some vegetables a try again. Most of the hard work of digging up the lawn to make space for a vegetable patch was done last year so hopefully I can give more time to the tending of the veg and actually get something to show for it this year. We'll see...

Finally I'm going to plant some roses in the little strip of garden I have to the left of the house. Putting the water butt there (which needs the seal fixed btw) isn't enough as it keep getting blown or pushed over. Some thorny roses should do the job and I'll spend the little bit extra money to get fragrant ones which will hopefully add to the garden overall.

Or at least that's the plan if the snow ever leaves...