Paniversary at the start of spring: six on Saturday

It’s about a year ago that the pandemic led to lockdown. I won’t talk politics much on this blog, but I am curious why more don’t seem as furious as I am with how it’s been handled in the UK. The vaccine program and the NHS are fantastic, but our scary clown prime minister said ‘you’ll be pleased that I’ve been shaking hands’ after visiting covid patients around this time last year, which was so terrifyingly stupid that I just can’t even…

Here’s a pickup if you need one, from a book called “The world made a rainbow” by Michelle Robinson, narrated by David Tennant. Michelle is a Frome based children’s author. I sometimes dance with her at the MojoMoves.co.uk comedy dancercise class, and can confirm that as well as writing wonderfully reassuring children’s tales, Michelle also has some exceptional moves on the dancefloor.

Anyway. This is not a politics blog. So here are six things in the garden on Saturday, just about a year since everything went even weirder than usual.

I’ll start with the beloved forsythia. I know that the Propagator, who hosts the Six on Saturday garden blog, says he is not a big fan of forsythia, but I’m sure deep in his heart he appreciates a splash of straggly custard yellow stems at this time of year.

This morning, the garden was alive with birdsong, and the a blackbird just visible in the centre of this picture is a frequent visitor to the birdbath.

As regular readers of this (now occasional) blog will know, I hope to encourage wildlife into this garden. And so we purchased ten rolls of wildflower meadow turf, or ‘weeds’ as my mum might say. The turf apparently includes…

Autumn hawkbit
Betony
Birdsfoot trefoil
Cat’s ear
Common knapweed
Common toadflax
Common sorrel
Common vetch
Cowslip
Dame’s violet
Field scabious
Kidney vetch
Lady’s bedstraw
Meadow cranesbill
Meadow vetchling
Meadow buttercup
Meadowsweet
Musk mallow
Oxeye daisy
Pepper saxifrage
Primrose
Ragged robin
Red campion
Ribwort plantain
Rough hawkbit
Salad burnet
Sanfoin
Selfheal
Tufted vetch
White campion
Wild carrot
Wild marjoram
Wild mignonette
Wood sage
Yellow rattle
Sheeps fescue
Crested dogstail
Yellow oatgrass

We shall see what emerges from this new wildlife patch! As soon as it had gone down a robin popped by to check it out, which seems encouraging.

In other exceptionally exciting news, the cover has come off the garden table. Husband and I enjoyed/ endured a sunny alfresco lunch of sausage rolls and piccalilli at that table, and yes it was a bit too cold really, but it was nice to eat outside for the first time this year. FYI – the new wildflower patch is behind the bench. We’ve not taken the cover off the bench yet, it’s definitely too chilly for sitting out.

I managed to plant out just a few daffodils in late autumn last year, and they’ve brightened up a few corners.

This is a ‘rip van winkle’ daffodil, and one of my favourites.

This is common lungwort. We have a lot of it in our front garden, and a patch under the apple tree. One of the earliest spring wildflowers, it’s a delightful little flower, with blueish and pinkish flowers.

Next, I have a couple of photos of things to be done. The spot where that overgrown christmas tree once grew has a retaining wall that bows so much, we have to lift the wheelbarrow over it. I’ve booked a landscape gardener to come and sort this out, it’s not something me or my other half have the expertise or energy to tackle.

There’s also a bit of work to do at the front garden. We’re on a bit of a hill, and need to stop everything slowly sliding down the garden… The front garden is south facing, so we’ll be putting more of our favourite veg and flowers into this sunny spot, hopefully with a few new planters this year.

Well, I think that’s six (ish) things from the garden this week. Visit the Propagators blog or search the hashtag #SixOnSaturday to see more!

J x

9 thoughts on “Paniversary at the start of spring: six on Saturday

  1. It’s a funny business catering for wildlife. I keep seeing bumble bees on my Camellias and wondering what they’d be feeding on from our native flora. They don’t seem interested in primroses, which I have in abundance.
    Re Boris, I see his ratings climbing in the opinion polls because of the perceived success of vaccination and despair.

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  2. English laurel, English holly and English ivy; how . . . English. The ivy is the most aggressive weed here, and climbs high into the redwoods. Holly is somewhat naturalized too, but not aggressively so. Laurel rarely self sows. The climate here is very different from that of the Santa Clara Valley. English laurel does not like arid warmth. English holly does well there, but must be planted.

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      1. English holly is so handsome though. Although I would not plant any more at work, I will likely eventually add at least one small shrub or tree of it to my own garden, just because I like the foliage so much. I could get a cutting from a female specimen at work, but I do not find the berries to be as appealing as those of pyracantha, and the foliage . . . sort of looks better without them. (Is it okay to say that?)

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  3. Iā€™m looking forward to seeing the wildflower garden when it establishes, as well as seeing what wildlife are attracted to the garden! Hopefully you will get the retaining walls sorted out soon so you can move onto your next projects!

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