Thursday, 19 February 2015


Rake off the banking, cart the stuff to the far end of the garden beyond the bonfire, barrow muck, barrow compost, barrow well-rotted horse manure - phew - and the brambles go beneath the hands of the mighty brambler.

Here by the dead tree - allowed to rot as a habitat for wildlife - all used to be blackberries and now nothing but leaf mould.

Spring is sprunging and a cacophony of crows (actually rooks but a little alliteration goes a long way) greets the dawn as they scatter in the ash tops. We have no frog spawn yet but then we may not have any frogs as the heron is here every day for breakfast. It is a good thing we do not have any fish in the pond.

The snowdrops are magnificent and form a carpet in the upper garden. Lower down by the path to the Wendy House are more though every year we heavily harvest these for other places. Now R has cleared the brambles we will need plenty for the newly opened area. They should love the deep leaf mould and we will also be spreading our wild bluebells there.

Colour in the winter can be more subtle than at other times and the bark of trees becomes important. Here, left to right, brown birch, white birch and grey poplar.

 Having mentioned trees we are getting low on logs so I have tidied out the woodshed. The sacks contain dry sticks from the garden for kindling.

I am back on my diet having put on a bit (a lot I hear) of weight so no recipe today. We had pancakes on Monday - I know it should have been Tuesday - Shrove and stuff - but son came for supper.

Still odd flowers in the garden like this rose.

Then there are the winter specialists, the scented sarcococcus by the back door and this orange hamamelis (witch hazel).

 So we are in recovery mode after a few days in Herefordshire with grandchildren - wonderful but it can be tiring. They are doing wonderful things with their house and 4 acres (planted a wood and an orchard area) with views to Skirrid and Sugar Loaf Mountain.

5 squirrels on the feeders this morning - too much - trap out, caught one in 5 minutes, cannot kill them though so off into the wide outdoors for a distant release.
One or two is ok but 5!

I hear a voice, "Do you want a cup of tea?" 
Yes, please.

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