Life with “The Beast from the East”

beast from the east cornish garden and view

The garden gripped by “The Beast from the East”

We’ve experienced life with The Beast from the East here in West Cornwall for the last couple of days and gosh it’s cold! But it was a chance to see our normally sub tropical garden in a very new light and so I took a few snaps in between rescuing our horses from the blizzards that swept across our corner of Cornwall.

The Beast from the East arrives

The morning the beast from the east arrived

Blue skies before the “Beast” arrived

The day started so well with clear Blue skies and seas and despite the freezing temperatures it was a beautiful morning. In the back of my mind a small reference to “The great Blizzard” sprang to my mind – a day that started of as beautifully, with the farmers cutting Broccoli in the fields and ended with the horses freezing to death pulling a coach up through Madron. Still premonitions, or half listened to weather forecast are easily dismissed, and I took a few sunny snaps for our Facebook page – idly working my way around the garden in the warm sunshine cocooned of its own micro climate.

snow blanket in the garde as the beast from the east arrives

“Have you looked outside”


An hour later as I sat at the computer in our office draped with cosy cats, Charles came back indoors and said “have you looked outside?” – Well no the cats and I were immersed in face booking, quite warm and cosy thank you. Wow!! I couldn’t believe it! In an instant our world was wrapped in a thick blanket of white not the fat white flakes that we saw the other day when I reminisced about previous snowfalls but those small dry determined ones that you see on Arctic survival films.

thick snow in conrwall brought by the beast from the east


As the day went on I took a few snaps of the garden as it was transformed by the blanket of white into an unseasonably late or early Christmas card and our normal life of spring in Cornwall vanished in an instant to a new Arctic existence.

Arctic life

ednovean farm in the snow

Days when the temperatures plummeted

The Beast from the East has come as no surprise I suppose as the temperature had started to plumet on previous mornings and the first time in years the stable tap has frozen and the car has been declared dead until further notice. So we pushed the car out of the stables into the sunshine; broke the water on the horse’s troughs this morning before pouring hot water into the bird bath; listened to the horses feet rattling gingerly over the ruts in the gateways, as they made their way out to inspect the frozen grass in the fields and finally with everybody fed went indoors for a steaming bowl of porridge.

powdery white snow on branches life in the snow


We soon adapted to our new reality, wearing two pairs of everything as we set out at intervals into the sub zero temperatures throughout the day to feed and care for the horses. Feet were banged on the doorstep to dislodge the clinging snow in a half remembered childhood ritual; kettles ferried out to free the frozen stable taps and by the second day excepting the tyranny of carting the water, two buckets at a time out to the horses in the yard and across the lane to the far block.

snow falling as the beast from the east arrives in conrwall - view to Perranuthnoe church


The yard and stables soon became a focus for the wild birds to forage and have they have become as tame as hens scratching in corners or feasting on our offerings of birds’ seed, oats, barley and the occasional helping of cat meat.

 Time for spring to come home

each day brough more snowBut Cornwall looks quite glamorous I think as she embraces the “Beast from the East” for a final flurry of winter but all in all I think Spring can come back now don’t you?!

Watch out for February’s garden diary I think you will find a christmas card that came to life for  few days!


About Christine Taylor

Christine has written a weekly blog about life at Ednovean Farm and interesting places to visit in West Cornwall for over ten years now, concentrating on those off the beaten track places that only the locals find. Charles and Christine Taylor have hosted Luxury Bed and Breakfast at Ednovean Farm Nr Penzance in West Cornwall since 1991 and live there with three cats and five horses, including a Spanish Stallion called Danni. Ednovean Farm has been awarded AA five star gold for Bed and breakfast and is included in The Michelin Guide and The Alastair Sawday Guide . The Farmhouse and gardens has been featured in BBC Homes and Antiques, Homes and Gardens. Period Living and 25 Beautiful Homes as well as being used as a film and photo shoot location.

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