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This is my favourite new echinacea, not done full justice here. The colour is a string mauve pink and it's about 8 cm across.

No blog last week as I was too busy. We had a socially distanced gathering in the garden and M was able to show off his wood roasting skills with delicious chickens- 2 as all the chickens from the farm shop are small. Since the big storm a few months ago blew down the chicken house they’ve not been able to keep pace with demand do the birds don’t get the chance to grow bigger.

We had toasted buckwheat with beetroot and labneh and a salad with fennel, radish and pickled peach. And a sweet and sour apricot upside down cake, so that all took all day.

Then the week went by in its usual blur with the odd highlight of a trip to the post office or pharmacy.

Doing the art exhibition at Cley every weekend takes that time up and although nice to do is exhausting. I’m not used to getting up early and spending the whole day active. Most of the visitors this weekend were tourists mainly on weekend breaks. Apparently the local beaches and seaside towns like Cromer and Sherringham were packed. It’s nice at the end of the day to go back to our quieter part of the countryside.

We are planning to extend until the end of August which is good. I get more motivation to paint when I can display them. Although motivation is less of a problem than inspiration but I have plenty of both at the moment. I've just sent off these little postcard sized paintings for another show at The Old Lockup Gallery:

I’ve made a few sales so I am perfectly happy with that. The flowers in the garden at the moment are perfect for painting. I filled in some gaps with orange and yellow sneezewort, pink and orange echinacea, hot pink larkspur, a new red dahlia and some pink penstemon and it is all full and lovely. The Veronica - I seem to have three types- with its tapered white flowers is one of my favourites . I’ve got some stupendous pink Pom Pom dahlias which are really showy in the garden but not much good for painting. They’re too symmetrically formed to be of interest.

So I’ve managed a couple with I’ve been happy with. The one with the dark pink echinacea went at the weekend and I was sorry to see it go. I may do another one today. Although I can never replicate a painting and if I try it will certainly go wrong. I still want to do some landscapes but I’m torn with the flowers being as they are. Perhaps I’ll wait until the flowers are less tempting.

The vegetable plot is turning over and we have a few borlotti and runner beans showing and I’ve put new lettuce in. M’s tomatoes are looking good but need some sun now. It is depressingly wet and windy today. Ralph is all tucked up and doesn’t look as though he intends putting a foot outside. I am itching to paint having been at the exhibition all weekend.

Here are some still life paintings by the great George Braque:

......and until next week:

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