Flowers in Bloom Brightening up La Giraudière

La Giraudière Springs into Life

Here at La Giraudière, we take great pride in our landscape and we try to ensure it is always well maintained. As part of this, we have numerous flowers that bloom at all different times throughout the year of varying colours and sizes.

For you avid gardeners out there, we’re always looking for volunteers to help with the garden maintenance and we thought it would be nice to document the current flowers in bloom in Spring around LG.

We would like to bring you a follow up to this post of the other plants that bloom later on in the year to show you the wide variety of flowers we have here!

Garden Rose

Garden Rose

Garden rose

Garden rose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These Garden Roses are often hybrid roses that are one of the most popular flowering plants throughout the world. Most of the older types of hybrid roses only flower once per year and require very minimal pruning.

Floribunda

Floribunda

Floribunda

Floribunda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Floribunda” is latin for “many  flowering” and is again a hybrid rose. During one year, these plants can flower numerous times but never a specific amount of times as it depends on the temperature and frost of the country.

Ranunculus Repens

Ranunculus Repens

More commonly known as a Buttercup, this flower can be classed as a weed by some gardeners but here at LG we love the colour they bring to the garden! A little fact about Buttercups that many people don’t know is that they are actually poisonous hence cattle and other animals avoid eating them!

Oxeye Daisy

Oxeye Daisy

Another plant that is often marked as an invasive species is the Oxeye Daisy (sometimes referred to as the Penny Daisy in the UK). In plant symbolism, the Oxeye Daisy represents patience.

Oxalis corymbosa

Oxalis corymbosa

 Another name for this plant is a Pink Woodsorrel. This plant is the only plant on the list that is edible but only in small quantities as there is a high quantity of oxalic acid in the leaves. This quantity can be reduced by cooking the leaves.

Unknown

Unknown

We found this plant in the back of the garden and after hours of googling and asking our friends, we still don’t know what it is! If you could help us identify this plant then please get in contact with us as we would love to know!

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A Change of Plan for the Volunteers

A Last Minute Plan Change for the Volunteers

A panoramic view of the coast at Talmont.

A beautiful view of Talmont.

Friday the 11th of May, a working day… Right? WRONG! The 4 remaining volunteers and Paul took a day off to enjoy the sunny weather while it lasted (not very long) and went to the seaside!

A very fast turnaround was in order after breakfast on Friday as everyone received a 15 minute warning before we were due to leave to start our day out. We started off by driving 45 minutes to the local town of Pons. Paul acted as our tour guide during the day, providing us with lots of information about the Donjon de Pons whilst we sat drinking hot drinks and eating croissants at a café that overlooked the donjon.

After our 30 minute break, we set off on the road again to our second destination of Talmont – One of the most beautiful towns in France. On arrival at Talmont, we were greeted by a mass of kites in the air and as we soon found out, it was the day of the fête du vent! After exploring the beautiful little town for an hour (and also doing some shopping), it was time for well deserved stop for lunch. Whilst some volunteers had salads or sweet crepes, John tried his first ever savoury crepe and loved it!

It was then time to drive to our final destination of the day, Saint-Palais-sur-Mer. During the drive from Talmont, the weather took a change for the worse as the clouds started to cover the sun and the temperature dropped to 18°C compared to 23°C when we set off. However, this drop in temperature didn’t stop Lily and John taking a dip in the freezing Atlantic sea!

Two of our volunteers swimming in the Atlantic sea.

Lily and John taking a dip in the Atlantic.

After a very long day, the car journey back to La Giraudière was a quiet one as most of the volunteers took a nap the whole way back. We’re excited for our next trip out!

There is a very simple process to be part of the team at LG so check out The process of volunteering in France

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A Successful Weekend at La Giraudière

Flyer

A Tahitian Night Flyer

This past weekend the Volunteers enjoyed a vibrant Tahitian dinner that the local activities committee put together here in Brossac. Between the three course meal there was dancing by local citizens who had taken time to train with a Tahitian woman. They wore a grand variety of costumes and danced with traditional props. The sense of community was strong that night as people danced of all ages in celebration of Tahitian culture. The audience clapped along and danced in their seats as the dancers filled up three hours with traditional music and moves, meanwhile the audience ate. The first course was a delightful dish that included rice, meat and vegetables mixed together, it was followed by a salad and banana dessert that filled us all up.

Emily and Lily Eliza

Volunteers at Bingo Night in Brossac

Bingo night was another fun taste of the Brossac Community that our volunteers had. None of our volunteers won, but they enjoyed every moment of the close calls and learning more french numbers. The Volunteers also attended a Flea Market held in the middle of town where over 50 stands of locals stood selling new and used goods. Some volunteers purchased new clothes, other bought books to practice their French, and even some vinyl records! It was a successful weekend here for the volunteers of La Giraudière.

bingo card

bingo card

You can more find photos and videos of the activities on our Facebook page- https://www.facebook.com/LaGiraudierePage/

written by: Lily Eliza

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An Emotional Goodbye to Angel!

Our 5th Volunteer of the Season Flies the Nest.

Angel, one of our volunteers, leaves La Giraudière to return to Paris.

Angel, our very first Puerto Rican volunteer, sadly leaves us this evening.

During his three week stay at La Giraudière, Angel has been a great help with decorating our lobby, removing and revamping our window shutters and doing LOTS of work around the garden. He also cooked two meals for all of the volunteers for two consecutive weeks, the first meal being a Sunday roast with a Puerto Rican twist to it and the second being a creamy chicken pasta. He showed initiative every day and always kept himself busy (even working on our days off!)

We want to thank Angel not only for his physical help around La Giraudière but also for his constant positive attitude and unique way of looking at life that really rubbed off on the other volunteers. It was a pleasure for all of us to see his guaranteed smile every morning and his sense of humour continuously had all of us in stitches.

As one of his main aims for coming here was to learn French, after weekly French lessons and lots of homework, we hope he now feels a bit more confident in speaking French to his current neighbours and new friends in Paris where he currently lives.

La Giraudière appreciates everything you have done over the past 3 weeks. You will be missed, Angel!

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Sporting activities for volunteers in France – Tennis Club Brossac

Sporting activities for volunteers in France

On Tuesday of this week, two of the volunteers, Colin from Australia and Rhona from Scotland joined some of the villagers at the local tennis club in Brossac village. We cycled from La Giraudière and arrived at the tennis Club where there are two tennis courts with good surfaces and flood lights.

Tennis club brossac

Marc, the President of the tennis Club who is also a member of the nearby Chalais club was very welcoming. First of all, Colin and Rhona knocked up together and then Marc came to join us. He then sent two of the young people to play a game of doubles against the volunteers. The La G team which consisted of a joint age of over a century did not let the side down winning by 6-3. Some of the other volunteers came down to watch and enjoy the sunshine and we took varying routes back to our home base at La Giraudiere.

There are a variety of sports and activities in Brossac and tennis is just a part of what is available to the volunteers when they become part of the LG team.

Interested in volunteering in France this year then visit Volunteer in France for further information how you can be part of this unique experience in France.

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