Friday, February 19, 2021
We started the year with bitter winds sweeping in from the north and the east, tracing frosted patterns over the grass and freezing the leaking pond over – anyone for skating? R and S were not daunted and made an impressive start on the entrance stretch leading from the gate to the polytunnel, clearing teasels and weeds from around the trees. J and I planted bulbs around our beautiful new sign so with R and S’s help, we are hoping that a casual glance over our gate will look more like an inviting garden and less like an abandoned wilderness (although we still value our ‘wildlife corridor’, or, the bit we have failed to keep under control).
Although the aspect is bleak, there is still plenty to do. F and I plant another couple of rows of garlic, regretting that the frosty weather is almost over – garlic does well with a cold bite. We transplant more gooseberry bushes, mysteriously growing in the woodland area – it looks like someone threw them over the fence many years ago and they have rooted but not thrived in the deep shade. We barrow compost from the orchard to the polytunnel – we got some poor soil from a garden in town so it feels right to cover it with a blanket of goodness.
Lockdown is quiet. The birds on the other hand, are not respecting this and are filling the silence with endless excited chatter – starlings, clouds of goldfinches, great tits, blue tits, a sudden flash of emerald suggesting a green woodpecker. But beautiful though you are, please keep away from our bee hives – green woodpeckers have a way of pecking their way into bee hives in the winter and consuming the honey and even bees.