Last days of Spring

Bandida and Rio grazing on our land below the house on Saturday morning

May is coming to an end and now is the time of transition from spring into summer. The countryside is still full of colour but the grasses are turning brown and the wild flowers will soon be past their glorious best. Nevertheless, the poppies still bloom in great swathes of red, as the photo taken early on Saturday morning shows.

Shade is now needed on our front terrace

The poultry and Suki the cat seek the shade of an olive tree

The  temperature has risen considerably and it is now very hot in the middle of the day. Last week we bought a pergola for the terrace to give us more shade as one large umbrella was insufficient. Even the chickens seek the shelter of the olive trees to escape the midday sun.

Flowers of the caper bush

Caper bushes, with their attractive blooms which are not unlike passion flowers, flourish in abundance here.  Salsify plants produce giant cuckoo clocks, while immense umbellifers display florets of brilliant yellow.

Umbellifers with olive, fig and almond trees

Our poplar trees are inhabited by countless nesting birds and the dawn begins with the singing of nightingales, quickly followed by the melodious whistling of golden orioles. I enjoy watching the goldfinches feeding their fledglings on the lower branches of the great tree in front of our terrace. Swallows swoop continuously over the river while from the treetops, a magnificent marsh harrier watches silently.

Next weekend is the Feria Chica de Loja. We are going to the Flamenco show in the football stadium on Friday night.

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About Margaret Merry

I grew up in Falmouth, Cornwall, England where, after leaving Falmouth High School, I spent a year at Falmouth School of Art. Then followed three years at Hornsey College of Art in London where I obtained a Diploma in Art and Design. I then spent a post-graduate year at the West of England College of Art in Bristol where I gained an Art Teacher?s Diploma and a Certificate in Education of the University of Bristol. I lived and worked in Truro for over 30 years and became one of Cornwall's most popular artists. My paintings have been exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Paris and London and have been bought by collectors from all over the world. I have published 4 books which became local bestsellers - 'The Natural History of a Westcountry City', 'Margaret Merry's Cornish Garden Sketchbook', 'Sea & Sail' and 'Tidal Reaches'. In 2002 I moved to Spain and now live in the little coastal village of Las Negras in the heart of the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata. I now get my inspiration from the dramatic scenery of Andalucia and its old cities, towns and villages which I usually capture in watercolour. I also enjoy figurative art, particularly nudes and dancers. For these paintings I use artists' soft pastels. I have written and illustrated 3 children's books - The Wise Old Boar, The Lonely Digger and The Adventure of Princess The Pony - which have been published in the USA.
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