Friday, November 29, 2013

This poor collared Dove was sitting on the shed roof watching the sparrows on the feeders trying to work out how to get to the feast.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Strange apparition

Found this in the garden when I went out this morning. It appeared overnight and is made from hair from my horse's mane and mud. I left it alone even though it's in a very exposed position by the front gate. 

Has anyone got any ideas who made it? So far it has been suggested that it could be a wren or a harvest mouse or a dormouse but as you can see from the picture above it is really small and I will be really surprised if I have a dormouse in my garden.

bribery and corruption

I'm using the stump of the Ash tree as a bird table now. Got to bribe the birds to stick around now.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

weep for the willow

When they cut my poor Ash tree down they did the Willow in the back garden as well. I have been trying to get them to do something about it for almost as long as they have been trying to do the Ash tree as it was shading half the garden and interfering with the telephone lines. Finally they agreed to do it and it was a good job they did as it was going rotten inside. The children climb in it in the summer when they think I'm not looking, just imagine if it had fallen on them .
 I know it looks a mess now, but hopefully it will shoot out again in the spring and I can plant a clematis to climb up the stump.
The whole character of the back garden has changed now as well. I hope I can get the magic back again.

Monday, November 18, 2013


This was my Ash tree last week.
 This is what the council have done to it now. All because my next door neighbours didn't like it. No matter that it was perfectly healthy when Ash die back disease is sweeping the country. No matter that it was home to a whole host of native wildlife. No matter that the sparrows found shelter in the ivy growing up it at a time when we are supposed to be helping protect them.
 I tried to put a preservation order on it but the only response I got was that they wouldn't go against another government department.
Now my garden has a big gaping emptiness in the corner and a lot of homeless birds. My house is depressing as the light is harsh and unfiltered whereas before it played through the leaves and made moving shadows on the walls. It is also un protected from the weather and feels vulnerable.
I will no longer be able to sit in bed on a Sunday morning with my cup of tea watching the birds flit amongst the branches. Instead the sun will shine straight into my eyes and dazzle me.
But it's alright. neighbours are happy!

Has anyone got any ideas how I can put the magic back in the garden? ?At the moment I am feeling rather dispirited.  

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A little blue tit came knocking on the window yesterday, so I washed the feeders and hung them up today. These 3 I can see from the kitchen window. 
 This 1 I can't see from the house at all but the bluetits like it here as the sparrows don't seem to use it as much as the one by the front door.
 This 1 is right by the front door and usually has flocks of sparrows on it.
I haven't forgotten the Robins and blackbirds. I scatter Robin food and windfall apples on the front lawn for them.
There are still quite a few butterflies about. Although the Buddlea has almost finished the ice plants are in flower now to keep them going for a while longer.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Look who I found munching his way through my fuchsias a few days ago. Who would have thought he will turn into this

The Elephant Hawk Moth .
 He will have a wing span of 65_70mm and will live in hedgerows, rough grassland, woodland clearings and my garden. As well as my fuchsia he likes to eat willowherb and will fly from May to June. 
Why don't I mind him eating my fuchsia but not slugs? 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

My August Garden

Finn by the front gate. The roses have been spectacular this year.
Last year something ate the flowers on the lilies. This year only 1 out of 3 survived and has been quite tall and leggy.
The fuchsias seem to like this spot by the coal bunker.
Looking towards the front gate. The stonecrop has done well this year.
I've seen more butterflies in the garden this year than I have for quite a few years now. There have been lots of Red Admirals, Peacocks and Cabbage Whites. Not quite so many small Tortoiseshell and quite a few of the brown one's who flit by too quickly to be identified properly.

They all love the Buddlea but seem to prefer the front garden to the back.

The Jasmine seems to be taking over the back garden this year. But I don't mind, I love the smell as I sit here with a book and a glass of wine.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Breakfast Time this morning

There was a Red Admiral in the garden this morning while I was having my breakfast. I didn't see any last summer, let's hope he is the first of many. Unfortunately he didn't stay around to have his photo taken. I did manage to photograph this one though.

 And now for a quick tour round the garden today.
 This is Lady Emma Hamilton. She was a birthday present and has a lovely peachy smell. The first flower started to go over a couple of days ago and was the first to go in the rose petal wine along with some Rosa rugosa and another of the old English roses whose name I can never remember.
 Looking towards the bottom of the garden.
 Evening Primrose, the first one to flower.
 Maltese cross, Cape fuchsia and a pink geranium.
 Yellow flag iris.

 That rose whose name I can never remember.
 The remains of breakfast. Isn't it lovely eating in the garden, it gets the day off to a good start.
 Red honeysuckle.

Meet Ferrero and Roche. They moved into my garden about a month ago. They seem quite happy in the old water butt and have grown quite a bit. Smudge doesn't know they are there! 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

An afternoon in the front garden

At last my front garden is recovering from the effects of the builders mixing cement on the lawn earlier this year.

When I came home at lunchtime today this little person was sitting in the middle of the lawn
I didn't think much of his chances if Smudge

saw him there so I moved him to a spot under the hedge near to where I have seen his parents looking for food. A little while later I thought he was reunited with his mother when I saw her feeding this little person in the ivy on the Ash tree
It turned out to be his brother. Altogether I found three little baby blackbirds. I hope that their mother manages to find all of them.
Later on while I was weeding under another hedge I found this nest

It's made from hair from my horse's mane, fur from my dog and is lined with moss and clematis seeds. It is very small I think it must either belong to a wren or a mouse. It was attached to some goose grass and I disturbed it when I pulled the goose grass up. Luckily nothing was in it and I put it back as near as I could to where I found it. 
And finally some views around the front garden. 

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Food for thought

Once again I am starting the season off full of enthusiasm, ok I know it's a bit late but every thing is a month late this year anyway. I went to the car boot sale yesterday and got a few runner bean plants, broad beans and peas. I have planted them in pots and drenched them in garlic tea to try to keep the slugs at bay.

To make garlic tea take a few cloves of garlic and crush then cover with boiling water and leave to cool. When cold dilute and spray over plants. Do this weekly or as needed. I am still testing to see if it works but it is meant to be a stimulate for the plants any way.
I also got a couple of tomato plants and a chilli plant for the window sill. I wanted some courgettes as well but apparently it's too late for them, good job I planted some seeds a few days ago!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sunny days in my garden

At last we are having a summer! The sun has been shining for nearly two weeks now and the garden is loving it. The Aquilegas are a mass of purple and the bees are busy buzzing from plant to plant.                  
 The clematis is in full bloom, although I don't think it's quite as prolific as usual.

 Two spiders fighting over one web!
 An Aquilega looking down on me as I lay in the sun
  Smudge sunning himself on one of the chairs I have just re oiled. I have managed to get the rest of the chairs and the coal bunker lid repainted as well.        
 And lastly Smudge and Finn enjoying the sun...just what my garden is all about.