May is the best month of the year - you have my word for it - at least here in England. There are tits nesting in the boxes in the wood and a blackbird in the logshed -
The molecatcher has been and gone - we are three moles less and hopefully that is the lot - we shall see.
The house is looking good as is the garden though I have had to cut down the dead Eucryphia and Hammamelis.
The bed here used to be part of the old rose bed before the building and I have now deposited and dug in two trailer loads of well rotted horse manure. The big grey plant is a cardoon.
Up in the wood all is glorious, woodland flowers at their best bathed in sunshine and birdsong.
The scent from the three yellow azaleas is heady - I planted them by a path out of the wood deliberately. Unfortunately the hawthorn covered in May blossom smell of rotten meat to attract flies - not so pleasant. At least we are (not yet) inundated with the St. Mark's flies (or hawthorn flies) - small and black they fly with their legs hanging down. They are harmless.
We have been to Gresgarth Hall, the home of Arabella Lennox-Boyd the famous garden designer and it
was a perfect day.
After a picnic by the car we walked through the glorious gardens and past the pond. There is a magnificent Crab apple - Malus baccata var. Mandshurica, below, and now T wants one. We have a John Downie, on the right, but that is clearly second rate.
I have sown yet more carrots and hope these will germinate as the first sowing, and those of parsnips, did nothing. I have also pruned hard the weeping silver pear to raise the canopy away from the grass and tidied the willows.
R is in the kitchen making a compote of rhubarb and strawberries - our rhubarb, bought strawberries - the rhubarb is struggling with the dry weather and will need dividing and spacing out in the autumn - too crowded.
It is May and the best time of the year - how do we get through the winter?