Hester Winterbourne

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since Feb 12, 2014
Joined site because whilst browsing for permaculture ideas for my new allotment (it's too wet to garden) I couldn't resist the plant ID challenge...
West Midlands UK (zone 8b) Rainfall 26"
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Recent posts by Hester Winterbourne

Hi Edward

Welcome to Permies!  There is just about everything you could wish for on these forums, and folks are generally extremely nice as well!

You can edit your profile so people know whereabouts you are when you make a post, which helps put your questions or answers into context.

Have fun exploring.

6 days ago

John Wolfram wrote:

Dc Stewart wrote:At the risk of diverting the topic from dating to marriage, recall that in past generations "till death do us part" usually meant a few decades at best. At current life expectancy, even a delayed marriage can mean a 50-70 year commitment.

In 1850, a person who made it to the marriageable age of 20 could expect to live about another 40 years. These days, if you make it to the marriageable age of 30 you can expect to live about another 45-50 years. That's a bit longer than in 1850, but not a huge amount.

That's the thing, "marriageable age" is a lot older now.  So people have experienced a lot more of the world, and their expectations of a partner, rightly or wrongly, are higher/more complex/different.

Anne Miller wrote:Why not go ahead and make friends with that guy at the local ship?  He probably may have guy friends that you might find interesting.  And those friends might have other guy friends, etc.

OK, I went to the theatre with him once, because there was a play we both wanted to see and he doesn't drive.  It wasn't a date.  He invited me to a Shakespeare quiz night he was organising, I've seen him act, he's seen me act, we are friends on fb.  I know enough about him that I don't view him as potential partner material, and I assume the reverse holds true.  We could dig into those reasons and decide whether I'm being unreasonably picky, but it comes back to I don't NEED to consider him as a partner, I'm not that desperate, to put it bluntly.

He may have friends I would find interesting but I actually have other friends of my own with whom I have more in common, so I hold out hope that maybe one of them will bring an interesting friend along, but they haven't yet...  I wonder why not.  

Anne Miller wrote:The internet.

I have not dated in a long time because I have been married a long time.

Why is it that folks have to use the internet to find dates?

My recommendation is to look around and find someone that is real to ask out.  This person could be someone at work or at places that a person visits.

This is just my opinion as to "What is wrong with dating today?"

I've thought about this myself.  I want to agree with you, and trot down the local shop where I know there is a single guy about the right age who I have a passing acquaintance with, who is pleasant enough company until you get him onto politics, and ask him out. I think he's gay actually, so it might not work out in the long term.  So there are a couple of reasons I think this doesn't work so well these days:

People don't NEED to get married any more.  A few generations ago, there was certainly a perception that you needed to be married, especially as a woman you would need a man to support you, deal with choosing which car to buy and tell you which way to vote etc, and as a working man you needed a wife to cook and clean etc.  So people can afford to be pickier and stay single longer.

A few generations ago, yes people worked at their marriage and learnt to love the person they had ended up with, and sometimes this worked wonderfully but there were also many people who lived a vaguely miserable rest of their lives, or much worse.  Case in point the guy above who is probably gay but in times gone by would have got married anyway to decrease his chances of ending up in jail or in an asylum being chemically castrated.

For better or worse, we have so much more choice and mobility and illustrations of "happiness" (whether real or fictionalised) it is almost paralysing us in trying to find the right person, just because we can so why settle for living vaguely miserably?

We have more leisure time to go out and find alternative companionship, so the itch to find one special person isn't so urgent.

Similar things have been discussed on the "50's singles thread" but I think they are just as applicable to younger age groups.

And to add to that, I could still "date" without being any part of that dating "scene".  I could meet someone whilst out with friends and like them, engineer another encounter and arrange to meet up again after that, explore what we have in common, decide to spend more and more time together, etc etc... all without knowing what a Chad or a Pick-Me is, in blissful ignorance.  I don't even have to call it "dating".  In fact that might be one of my criteria for a successful courtship, to never think of it or call it "dating"!
What is wrong with dating is that like so much else in modern society it has become globalised, and industrialised.  The internet means you can watch in great detail how other people do it, and there is the market for people to commercialise on that and SELL voyeurism and how to do it.  It's become a lifestyle choice, like weddings have, people feel compelled to be the best at it.

Whilst thinking about the language of it, however, I was amused to reflect on weird dating conventions and etiquette of the past, like how in Victorian times you could communicate with your intended partner by waving your fan in a certain way or sending a posy of certain flowers to convey a message.  So I think it is human nature to make a ritual of seeking a partner!


Nancy Reading wrote:We're about 500 miles North of you Hester, and unfortunately that makes about 2-4 weeks difference in most Spring dates - our elder flowers end of June, Apple blossom end May early June (about the same as common Haw). We've had a cool summer so far (unlike the South!) and it is the trees' first year of blossom - all of these may make in unlikely to get ripe fruit. One reason why I've planted several varieties of Haw, I know from seeing them at The Fern's field in Cornwall that some ripen earlier than others, but I can't remember which was which! If the fruit hang like the common Haw I may still get ripe fruit in December (or not).
The good news is one of the trees does seem to have set fruit, early days yet but the C. Shraderiana seems to have some of the blossom bases hanging on. The C. Arnoldiana unfortunately seems to be dropping all it's blossom, but there are one or two still open so you never know.....I did try and hand transfer the pollen from Arnoldiana to the Schraderiana. The Schraderiana only had one bunch of blossom so didn't seem worth trying the other way. The pollen did seem kind of ...dry so maybe wasn't viable.
It's early days and there's hopefully next year which may give us a better summer.

That's a good point, it might not be so much about self-fertility per se, as insect availability.  The bees love my C. sch, but if they get blown away by the Skye breezes...

And I'd like to say that the haws hang on the tree into December here and the birds don't really seem to bother with them.  They grow in bunches and I leave one berry from each bunch for decorative effect.  But your birds may be hungrier than mine!
2 weeks ago

Nancy Reading wrote:Over several years I have planted various different Hawthornes that are supposed to have bigger fruit than our native Crataegus mongyna (common Hawthorne or Quickthorn). For the first time this year I have flowers on two of my trees (yay!): C. Arnoldiana and C. Shraderiana.

Hawthorne flowers Skye

I was expecting that they would flower at the same time as the local Hawthorne, but they only started to open as the common Haw was over. I'm now hoping that they are self fertile. Does anyone have any experience to share on this? If not, I'll let you know whether I get any fruit later in the year - my trees are too far apart to be likely to fertilise each other

I have C. schraderiana so my comments are based on this!

1.  It must be self fertile, because it flowers after the native hawthorns here (south staffs).  I have to say though, only JUST after (as in, June), so I'm not sure what yours is playing at and whether there will be time for the berries to ripen before winter.

2.  Mine only flowers every other year.  Although this year there seems to be a bit less fruit than usual, so maybe it won't exhaust itself and we might actually get a crop next year too.

3.  The fruit has a large cluster of pips, a bit like a Terry's chocolate orange.  This renders it suitable only for recipes that will involve sieving or straining, even though the flavour is quite palatable raw once you've spat the pips out.  It makes excellent wine or jam, and can also be used to flavour vodka.

4.  The seed is hard to germinate, but you may get results from dropping it in muddy gravel and driving a car over it twice a week for a year or so.

5.  I am quite evangelical about this tree, but I do get fed up with saying "I've got a hawthorn, except it's not a native hawthorn and it doesn't actually have thorns."  I've toyed with calling it a Schrader's Haw, but it's not catching on yet...
3 weeks ago

Sas Gardener wrote:

PS:  I love Morris dancing although we don’t have it in Scotland....and I do dig that look!πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚

Ha ha that made me laugh, thankyou!  There are a couple of Morris sides in Scotland.  Banchory-Ternan Morris Men dance Cotswold, and Border Reivers Morris are a Border side in Glasgow.  There may be more!  Of course it's not traditional to the country, but there are non-traditional dance display teams in England (some amazing belly dancers), so why not.  Maybe the anti-English sentiments are too strong?
1 month ago

Catherine Carney wrote:having one consistent person to come home to.....Beyond continuing to cultivate and nurture my circle of friends, anyone have any ideas for how to address the loneliness factor? Besides becoming a crazy cat lady?

This is it in a nutshell, isn't it.  Having one person who you would never feel guilty about demanding time from, because you are each other's priority.  I wish I had the answer.  I think the only way is to continue to cultivate the circle of friends.  It is possible to have a platonic best friend, and having more/better friends (and being a good one) has to be always a good thing, surely.
1 month ago

Daniel Arsenault wrote:I have some apple trees on my property and was walking around recently and found I have about ten nice saplings (scattered around) which look a lot like the little saplings right under one of my known apple trees. I'm wondering what is the best way to determine whether or not a sapling is a young apple tree? I don't much care "what kind" of apple it is. I just want to know if it is an apple sapling or not. Are there tell-tale signs? Are there good field guides for saplings? I wouldn't mind being able to ID saplings in general, but, for the moment I am most curious to find out if these saplings are apple trees in the making.

Or you could post pictures on here.
2 months ago