letting nature back in

nature and nurture in suburban spaces



Bottle variations

These old bottles were all dug up in a long-disused household rubbish pit behind our house. Variations include bottles for medicines, tomato sauce, beer, lime juice, milk, hair oil, Vicks, Marmite, and liqueur. Continue reading “Bottle variations”

Silence from the radio

Stowed away in a storeroom that got flooded in a storm, this old valve radio suffered some water damage. It is now silent and awaits repairs. Continue reading “Silence from the radio”

Weathered wood and woven wire

This weathered wood was found in hot sand next to a sandy road in Botswana many summers ago. It was weathered in desert extremes, scoured by sand and bleached by the sun so as to resemble bone: the bones of a tree. Continue reading “Weathered wood and woven wire”

Another century, another country

I have been admiring photos of late-summer flowers and harvests on blogs from the northern hemisphere, a far cry from our abnormally hot and dry spring. As respite from our drought here in South Africa, I dug out some old family photographs of country living in English villages in the first half of the 20th century. Continue reading “Another century, another country”

Transmuting earth, water, fire and air

Transmuting earth, water, fire and air 

Formed by hand from earth and water and finished in the heat of fire fed by air, this pot from Inhambane district in Mozambique is created using the four classical elements. Continue reading “Transmuting earth, water, fire and air”

Waxwork Chinese chess pieces

These chess pieces in the photograph are unusual for three reasons. Continue reading “Waxwork Chinese chess pieces”

Connecting with our bread-making heritage: An easy and quick bread recipe

For me, part of letting nature back in, is acknowledging that many of us urban dwellers have become dependent on others, even for trivial things. Our grandparents or great-grandparents were likely to have been a lot more self-sufficient and handy than many of us urbanites are today.  Continue reading “Connecting with our bread-making heritage: An easy and quick bread recipe”

Living heritage: The art of basketry

Many cultures have long traditions of basket making. Baskets can be seen to embody a dynamic blend of culture, technology and environment, and traditionally they were made from natural plant fibres. Basketry continues as a living tradition and its uses, aesthetics and even materials are subject to ongoing change. Continue reading “Living heritage: The art of basketry”

Itchy feet

Wanderlust is the theme for the Weekly Photo Challenge this week, with an invitation to “share a photo that represents travel to you”. Continue reading “Itchy feet”

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