Tuesday, May 27, 2008


This is the shape of my Bay Tree. (A Golden Bay.)

(I was given it (in a pot) as a housewarming present fifteen years ago. The bay was nine inches tall and I lived in a flat.)

(Lucky I moved!)

And it's so tall, I'll have to draw it in sections.


(The first branch is about five foot from the ground.)


(The branches are cut back on one side so we can open the shed door. On the other, the lower ones are sawn off completely, making a one-sided arch we can walk under (about six foot high).)


(I am eye-level with the uppermost leaves when I look out of a first-floor window.)

Disaster may be striking.

Scale insects have arrived on the trunks.

They are a quarter of an inch long and shaped like shield bugs.

Each one sits separately on a tall white cushion - the cocoon of a single maggot.

They (the scales) are the same colour as the edges of brown crisps that have gone wrong. (Same texture too.)

I noticed them yesterday.

I'm planning murder.

Unless someone tells me not to, I'll scrape them off.

* * * * *

Victoria has been watching my mother-in-law through a telescope and is thinking she might wave.

Which arm should she use?

Ming's worried.

Why was his mum not in her cave?

(Martians are troglodytes.)

The M.O.D closes for ten days towards the end of June - Ming thinks we ought to visit her then and check she's ok.

(His mum.)

(Not Victoria.)

_ _ _ _ _


Victoria said...

Oh, dear, I do hope Ming's mum is OK. She probably just popped out to see what all the fuss was about.
Love your paintings, by the way

Esther Montgomery said...



Anonymous said...

I use a toothbrush to scrape off scale - on plants. Oh! and a different toothbrush to scrape of scale on teeth!


oh! I hope that you can save your tree! Please let us know how it turns out

garden girl said...

Esther, I hope everything is ok with Ming's mom. And I hope your bay tree will be ok.

VP said...

Esther - I had scale on my bay tree about 5 years ago. Murder's the very thing to do - I just scraped them off with my fingernail

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

I had a bad scale infestation of my Magnolia a few years ago. I read somewhere that they don't like rubbing alcohol, so I rubbed that on them. I also bought some Ladybird beetles. The scale hasn't returned. Good luck with your Bay & I hope Ming's mom is all right.