Time is flying, even though winter has been clinging on for quite a while this time around. We have seen snow in February.
And even before the snow came there were birds coming to our feeders. They did not do so during the previous winter. But they seem to have developed some sort of liking for our young garden. We have great and blue tits visiting, a pair of wrens, a pair of chaffinches has started coming only recently. There is a robin, and blackbirds. And the cheeky magpies are clearing the crumbs off the ground. Even some crows come for the larger bits that dropped off the hanging feeders.
We did not cut the sunflowers in autumn, but left them for the birds to feed from instead.
Can you spot the onions? I was eager to find some winter onions to put in the beed . Not only did I have an early harvest in mind. But I’m still trying to keep the root voles at a good distance. Some say the scent of onions and leeks is not to their liking. Others say the voles don’t really care.
The old oaks along the small street are utterly unfazed by the snow. They are beautiful throughout all seasons.
And right over there, in the northwesterly corner of our garden our rhododendrons wait for spring to come. Their buds are large and strong and we hope for a colourful April and May bringing out whites and deep purple and golden yellows.
One of the rhododendrons got some special decoration: a black nightshade chose to grow over the strong branches. It still carries plenty of its berries.
We have had a sparrow hawk visiting our patio. Casually sitting on the rim of one of the plant pots trying not to look to where the feeders for the little birds are. We have put up the nesting boxes regardless.
This is what the daffodils looked like in mid February. The cold has been following us far into March. Two periods with bitterly cold air from the east swept over the garden – one almost a week long the second one slightly shorter. I had wrapped up many a plant pot and some of the herbs. But the rosemary bushes still suffered and will need to be cut back. During a short slightly warmer spell in March we managed to plant a few ferns as companions for the rhododendrons.
Elsewhere people have put in a lot of effort to beautifully lay a hedge. We saw this along a road in Oxfordshire, some miles north of Burford, after staying on a few days following the Oxford Fine Press Book Fair in late March.
As I write this the sun is out again after a little bit of early spring rain. I have started digging out new beds for new flowers in our meadow. There are many lovely seeds that want to be given a space that suits them. There will be a wealth of flowers for bees and birds and butterflies – wind and weather permitting.