Sunday, April 25, 2010

outdoor terraces : forced pause

Incredible, but very true : Instead of being able to finish the outdoor terraces we've been waiting for the jointing filler, colour ton pierre, already for more than a week. All the great entreprises in the Cahors region who sell building and construction materials ran out of stock of jointing fillers last week and couldn't get new supply immediately. Very strange.

In the vineyards the activities continue : after controlling the wire posts in the last week the left branches of the vine were attached to the wires.

The next thing to do is the ébourgeonnage which normally takes place in May.
This work consists in cutting off, eliminating the young shoots that are useless and even harmful for the vine because it takes away extra juice (sève).

Because of the beautiful warm weather - third week in a row without rain and temperatures about 20° and more - it seems that the springing of the vine leaves is ahead of other years.

This week I amused myself with taking pictures of the catkins:
* of the walnut tree and
* of the Corkscrew or Curly Willow (Salix matsudana 'Tortuosa'), a tree coming from China and which I adore in every season.

The palm tree is most beautiful this year - I don't know why. Perhaps because I trimmed it on time.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

outdoor terraces II

We worked very hard this week on the terraces outside.
Apart from one day in mid-week with Siberian cold wind - we had to put three pullovers and even then we had to stop early - the weather was again on our side - beautiful sunny weather : highest temperature measured on the front pavement : 28° at 7 pm.

The 'round' terraces at the back of the house are finished now. The jointing is ready. So the planting of flowers, bushes, etc. can really start now.

The terraces in front of the house are nearly tiled as well:
- the private one is finished except for the jointing,
- the big one for the chambres d'hôtes is tiled except for the borders.
So still some work to do next week.
The tile is called stone of Jericho, made in Italy, three formats and colour ton pierre.

Nature is getting greener and greener and more colourful - apple tree blossoms, wild tulips, rosemary, etc. all around.

And every day after work Stefaan and I sat on the terrace for a well deserved aperitif enjoying some nice local viognier.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

outdoor terraces I

As I told you last week this week great works were started, esp. the preparation of the pavements outside.
Apart from one day in mid-week the weather was on our side - beautiful sunny weather.

The terraces in front of the house were levelled with a cement coating.

The 'round' terraces at the back of the house were prepared and are already tiled. The jointing is for next week.

- before                                        - afterwards

Working outside this week was lovely - blossoms and flowers everywhere around.

In between we even got a glimpse of one of the hares.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter

We wish everybody a Happy Easter. May the (chocolate) eggs this year be of an extreme fine quality - as we say in Flanders where poppies (coquelicots) blow.

PS Great works are being prepared. Come and see next week.