Thursday, 30 May 2013

Fairy Dells and Archangels

We have been for a stunning walk in the rain, in the countryside around our home (and of course close to Freshwinds garden.) The fresh green growth on the verges, woodland and field edges is a joy to see.
The sky was black in places which has given great contrasts for the photos.
The wild flowers are prolific.
Here are a few of my pictures.

 This crop is just showing...it is corn.

It`s possible to see Mabel across the field from the lane, keeping watch over the garden when we are not there.

Further on down the lane, we came to the area where the old watermill once was. Our lane is named after this mill. The water still rushes down the gulley.

 
The Freshwinds Campsite is a very short distance from here.

In the woods the bluebells are finishing but the holly is in full flower which means that we might get a good show of holly berries for Christmas.

A little further round the lane is a very beautiful undisturbed area where many wild flowers grow.


Orchid


More orchids


Red campions and buttercups.


I love these little paths leading to who knows where.....fairy dells perhaps.

From there we crossed into a more open area with lovely views.


The edges of the fields were banked with buttercups glowing bright yellow against the dark skies.



The corn made prominent concentric circles in the damp earth.


Bees were busy on the ajuga.

From there we cut into the rather dark and gloomy Guestling Wood. 
Amongst the gloom, shield ferns stood out starkly. I had to use a flash.
There are more of these this year than I have ever seen.
I have been visiting this woodland for over 55 years.



There was plenty of yellow archangel around.

When I was a little girl, my Mum told me that the fairies kept their shoes in these flowers....the deadnettle.


When you turn the flowers upside down you can see why.

No wonder I believe in fairies.

 
More inspiration for fairy gardens.
A perfect miniature landscape.

The rain came five minutes before we reached home. What a good idea to wear our wellies.
Tomorrow is going to be a much sunnier day.


Wednesday, 29 May 2013

More Fairies and Bags of Birds

It`s been a funny old day weather-wise. We made a quick visit to the garden today and I planted statice and four cucumber plants in the greenhouse. This year they are in pots and protected by fleece.
Steve was busy spreading chipped bark and assessing what`s needed to improve the fruit net.




The pear blossom has set. Some may drop later.


The guinea pigs were all playing with their toys. They are not quite so nervous.


This bumble bee was hard to follow with the camera but I included this photo because ofthe incredible amount of pollen on its legs. It`s just loving the comfrey.


The chives are looking good.


Bruce is happy with his new(ish) hat.



We have aquired some new patioware. Anne, Steve and I have plans to brighten it up a bit.
More later!!

On the way to the garden we saw a buzzard on a telegraph pole.
On the way home we saw a green woodpecker.

At home it is a frenzy of planting too, in between showers.
The greater spotted woodpecker has been visiting regularly, for peanuts.






 The rose garden looks lovely.


 A lot of people enjoyed the fairy garden pictures so here are a few more.



I planted the tiny rockery plants from the boot fair.



 This one has tiny star flowers.
They are perfect in the setting.

When it began to rain this afternoon we had a good tidy up in our shed, throwing out lots of things we don`t use any more. It was a good job done










Sunday, 26 May 2013

Blue Skies, Boot Fayres and Bride(s)

The weather has been fantastic for two days, 
unfortunately not for the poor bride 
who was married on Friday. 
All the yurts were booked for wedding guests and the whole woodland area given over for the reception.
I hear the Workmax was decorated with purple ribbons and that the bride wore a purple dress and wellies.
Good luck to the happy couple.

Saturday was a good day for cobbing and yurting.
With Anne and my brother`s help, we managed three mixes.


I planted achillea grown from seed in the butterfly garden and Steve put in more cabbages.



The willow arch is holding out well against the prevailing winds.


The little orchard is looking very pretty.


It`s an unusual time of the year to find fungi, but these are growing on chipped bark.
I`ve bought a new mushroom guide but haven`t managed to identify it.
"Identification guide to Mushrooms of Britain and Northern Europe" by Josephine Bacon

Finally I went to a boot fayre at the end of our lane.
I got a fantastic stash of crafty bits from two people who were closing shops down.


The battered cowboy hat was 10p. It`s for Bruce, the scarecrow.
I am particularly pleased with the green garden pencils.
They are for writing on plant labels. I have been unable to buy them in any shops.
I hope they will last for ages.
I also found some tiny rockery plants which will be perfect for my fairy garden.
Can`t believe I actually bought plants!!







Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Posh Paths and Weeds

We`re not exactly having typical May weather! I am still wearing three layers, but at least the local frog population isn`t too worried. Their raucous calling can be heard from Freshwinds Garden.
This evening my hands are very rough from being in soil nearly all day. 
Lashings of handcream before bed I think.

Today Tim has brought a few loads of chipped bark round to the carpark. 
He has raked it around our hornbeam hedge.
Many thanks Tim.
The next idea is to enclose the plants in netting to keep rabbits from nibbling the trunks.
The new leaves are a bit confined in the rabbit guards. 

The nursery table is in a different position.


The car was loaded up with things to plant, helichrysum, French marigolds, 
four more tomato plants (St. Pierre,) broccolli, rocket, calabrese and spinach.

We have had to cover everything newly planted. The rabbits have even eaten the new roses. 
I can hardly believe it. It was a bit sad to see the newly formed flower buds scattered around the base.






This hardy osteospurnum is looking good.

















Aquilegia just opening.













A welcome splash of colour in the wallflowers.


The strawberries are starting to flower. I have some new ideas this year 
after last year`s problems....I am ever the optimist.

BEFORE
This was how I found the raised bed for carrots, radishes and spring onions under the fleece.
Good job they were in neat rows and good job I know what the seedlings look like.
 The ground was perfect for weeding.

AFTER
Actually the weeds were very interesting. This bed was filled with our own compost from the heaps. 
Obviously it did not get that "hot" because there were a lot of really good seedlings in it, such as hollyhocks, poppies and a white daisy. Next time I weed I shall be saving them all.



Here are the newly replenished paths, narrower and now with carpet underneath.


Some of the dahlias have survived the winter.

 
 The herb garden looks great.


This is a panorama of the garden. I think I need to be in a better position next time.