Watching nature take its course, from the top of a hill in northern England

Quietly Content.


Home the place to be, I’ve got a fire lit, music, even a scented candle for goodness sake* and the for the first time in what seems like a long while, the chance to play about with all things creative. I’m quietly content.

The day got off on the right foot with a sunny start, Spud and I went down  the field to the copse, I wanted to check everything was OK where we buried Dacy the cat. The remaining berries on the Buckthorn caught my eye.

buckthorn -1

I  planted Buckthorn in the place where we’ve chosen bury our pets, for very sentimental reasons.

As a child my Dad always used to dose the dogs, we had Border terriers, with syrup of buckthorn if they were unwell. I’m not sure it was the right thing,  it was probably a very antiquated idea even in the 1960’s; from 1891 the Lewis Lloyd collection

"Occasional Physic for dogs

1 oz Jalap
1 pint of syrup of buckthorn

Dose for a full sized dog.
A large tablespoon twice a week, in hot weather more especially.

Jalap "consists of the dried tubercules of Ipomoea Purga, Hayne (N.O. Convolvulaceae), a climbing plant indigenous to the eastern slopes of the Mexican Andes." (The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911). It was used (in humans) as a purgative, as was Buckthorn syrup (The Physiomedical Dispensatory, William Cook, MD, 1869).

But there worse things to give a dog, see the prescription for distemper

For distemper
outward application

½ oz White Hellebore
½ oz Black Brimstone
1 Pint of old milk (1 quart for a very small dog), mix together and sponge the dog well all over (particularly the chest and underneath parts). Shut the dog up in a warm place, it makes him very sick and purged for some hours – when recovered sufficiently feed for the first 24 hours on slops and no meat, afterwards keep him well. Tho’ the hellebore is poison, dog need not be muzzled. The above is a capital dressing for Sporting dogs once a month during the summer and hot weather."

I think it would take more than a scented candle to mask the smell of a dog drenched in sour milk

*The candle is very nice, so much so, that Mr Uphdd, who is not a fan of such things does not protest, it’s by Neom,  and if you wanted to buy buckthorn hedging  plants, I’d recommend the very nice people at Weasdale nurseries  their fine plants have featured here before


Author: uphilldowndale

Watching the rhythm of rural life, from the top of a hill in northern England. Having spent most of my life avoiding writing, I now need to do it! I am no domestic goddess, but if I were expecting visitors to my home, I would whisk round with the duster and plump up the cushions and generally make the place look presentable. I hope that by putting my words where others may see them it will encourage me to ‘tidy up and push the Hoover around’ my writing. On the other hand I may just be adding to the compost heap. Only time will tell! Pull up a chair, sit yourself down, I’ll put the kettle on.

8 thoughts on “Quietly Content.

  1. I really enjoyed this post! Lovely photo, too…

  2. Quietly content sounds blissful 🙂 Wishing you more of the same ~

    Quite fascinating information re various treatments for doggy ailments. I’m sure Spud and the rest of the canine population are glad times have changed! What an artistic photo of the Buckthorn and interesting to learn about the reason it is planted in that particular area.

  3. I’m always happy to be quietly content so I can certainly relate to this post, which is interesting and informative. xx

  4. Ah peace, ah quiet . . . I believe I’ll go find that nice candle and light it.

    If I were to dose the Duo with such things I would have to go hide in a buckthorn hedge. Although the Cowboy does think that a nice roll in spoiled milk would be just the ticket.

  5. How wise to have border terriers. They are my favourite dogs.

  6. Pingback: Double Time | Uphilldowndale

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