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Diary 2014 April

 

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1 April

Inside red tulip  Inside parrot tulip
I have been playing with the new camera which takes very good closeups. These are the insides of tulips. the second one is a Parrot Tulip which is yellow and red stripey. I prefer to look inside them using the photos rather than kneel on the concrete path!

Dandelion
I am really pleased with this dandelion closeup and I was surprised to see all the little curly bits. Dandelions would be really good garden flowers if only they didn't spread so much and take over the flower beds. I like to see them on the grass verges, especially when they are mixed in with lots of daisies.

2 April

Butterflies cushion  Robin
Someone had a good time designing this cushion. The butterflies are as good as flowers. This robin was following us round the garden as we were digging, waiting for a chance to dive in for the worms.

5 April

Almond blossoms  Crab apple blossoms
We went back to Hall Place to get photos of the blossom trees. This is my favourite, a double almond. Even the trunk is flowering! Brown Teddy's favourite is this flowering crab apple, with dark red buds which open to pale pink flowers.

Double almond blossoms
Here is more of the double almond blossom. Most of the other blossom trees were very nearly my favourites as well and I am glad that I didn't really have to choose between them. When you have got a field, you can put them all in! If I had these trees at home, I would sit under them all day and never go indoors until it was dark.

Daisies on grass 
These daisies looked like the remains of a heavy hail shower. The overflow channel was still full and quite colourful with all the different browns and greens. In summer it is dry and you can walk across.

  Topiary peacock
This is a dunnock in the flower border. He didn't fly away as we walked past. I am not sure if he was about to have a dust bath or just settling down where it was warm. This is the best place to sit, as it is difficult to spot him when he not moving. I checked out the topiary again and now I am sure it is a peacock, with its eyes and beak.

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8 April

Priory Park
The big storms and rain stopped quite a few weeks ago, but it is still all coming out of the ground in the park, and flowing into the pond. There are new little water channels all over the grass, and everything is very muddy. There are big holes at the side of the paths and I think the parks people are not going to repair them until everything is dry.

9 April

Daffodil roots
I had to dig out some daffodils and this is what they do when they are not planted deeply enough. Just like the bluebells, they grow big thick roots so that all the goodness is stored deeper down in the ground where it is not going to get dried out. I put them back in a lot deeper of course!

11 April

Double almond blossoms
Some more double almond blossoms in Priory Park. I could look at these all day.

13 April

Pink daffodils and mixed tulips  Fishpond netting
This is the best pot in the garden at the moment, with white and pink daffodils and mixed tulips. Later on we put lots of criss-crossing wires over the pond to hold up the sagging netting. It looks really neat now with no sags collecting dead leaves. We put the netting over last year when some ducks visited.

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14 April

Filling fountain pens  Working in greenhouse
It was my job to fill up the fountain pens. I had a lot of trouble filling this black one as the bottle is nearly empty. I had to hold the pen upside down, move up the plunger and suck up bits of ink up several times. I don't think I can get every drop out of the bottle, so tomorrow I will get a new bottle of black. Later on, we all sat and worked in the greenhouse, and stayed warm even when the clouds came over. It is a bit difficult to work when there are so many flowers all around and fishes to watch.

15 April

Bedding and box balls  Wisteria pergola
This is the bedding at Well Hall Pleasaunce with pink bellis daisies and forget-me-nots. I have box balls like that in my garden, but not as big. The wisteria pergola was in full flower and I have been looking forward to seeing this since last year. The leaves appear after the flowers have finished.

Mown path  Bluebells
This is the woodland glen part, with some mown paths and either side are bluebells and primroses, with the daffodils all finished now. I like paths and I always want to know what is at the other end.

Moat  Crow
Brown Teddy likes the moat and there are always a few ducks about. This crow was sitting in the tree as we walked underneath and I think he thought he could not be seen, as crows usually fly away.

Lawns, hedging and blossom tree  Waste bin hidden in box hedging
This is my favourite part at the moment, as the greens are very brilliant and the blossom trees completely covered. Inside the low box hedging the parks people have hidden the waste bins and I was very pleased someone had that good idea for hiding them.

Bear's Breeches plant  Mossy rocks
This is the boggy pond corner and this plant is called Bear's Breeches. It is quite decorative in the park but not for a garden as it puts roots and shoots everywhere. Up the slope the boggy corner has lots of mossy rocks and pondy bits, but there was only a little bit of water. It is supposed to overflow and trickle down to look like a little mountain scene.

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16 April

Romanian decorated Easter eggs  Azaleas is We went to Hall Place. We saw a display of Romanian painted Easter eggs with lots of tiny detail and very colourful. The best part of the gardens at the moment are the rhododendrons and azaleas and I now have this picture on my computer desktop.

Last daffodil clump  White blossom
I think this is the last daffodil clump, all the others have gone over. Brown Teddy just loves this white blossom tree, especially as the branches are drooping down so we can see it close up.

River nettles  Ducklings
This is an edging of nettles, a good idea to stop people going towards the edge of the river. These little ducklings were swimming as fast as they could, but with the fast flowing water they were getting nowhere. Eventually they found out that the water was flowing more slowly at the edges. Their legs must have been quite tired.

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17 April

Blue ceramic bird  White ceramic bird
Today is definitely a bird day, and I wonder what my real birds would think if I brought one of these home. I think it might frighten them away.

Blackbird  Blossom tree
This blackbird was eating whatever was left in the little tub. I am sure he enjoyed the food but I am glad I was not there when the person left all this rubbish, I might have had to hand it back to them to take home! Brown Teddy had a good time admiring this blossom tree, which is just like his favourite one in Hall Place, with the red buds that open to pink flowers.

Duck and ducklings feeding
This duck family in Priory Park were feeding on the weed in one of the corners of the pond.

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18 April

Duck and ducklings  Blossom tree
The same ducklings, all having a rest in the early morning sunshine. I like to visit this tree in the park, especially when the petals are blowing down in the wind and making pink snow on the ground.

19 April

Starling in birdbath
We have had a few starlings visiting our lawn recently, and this one is making the most of the new clean water we put in the birdbath. We have to replace the water regularly, as it can get murky quite quickly which I would not want the birds to drink.

21 April

Easter egg decorations  Easter nest cake
These egg shaped decorations in a shop window would look good any time of year. I really like this nest cake, and I am sure all the twigs are made of chocolate. I wonder how long it would last in our house - not very long at all I think.

Blackbird  Blackbird in birdbath
Here is our very handsome blackbird who is nesting in another garden nearby. He works hard getting food for his family, but he found time for a bath in the shallow birdbath that is by the fence.

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22 April

Sleeping pigeons
We went through the park quite early in the morning, and all the birds are just sitting around and sleeping. I don't think the pigeons are bothering to count the daisies.

23 April

Ducks asleep  Jack By The Hedge, and Bees Borage
Another early morning walk through the park. The ducks seem to stay asleep but I think that many of them just open an eye to check up on safety as people walk past. On the way home, we saw lots of these hedgerow flowers at our countryside bus stop - the white one is Jack By The Hedge, and the blue one is Bees Borage, which of course had a busy bee on it.

24 April

Robin  Wood pigeons eating cherries
This robin has been watching us work in the garden, and he got a few more worms than usual as we were digging a hole and moving things around. Later on we saw two young wood pigeons eating the cherries off the tree next door. Sometimes one or two of the cherries turn red but most often they get eaten before they can ripen.

25 April

Robin with worm
More gardening today and here is the resident robin with his prize worm. He came very close and did the usual thing of sitting on the fork and spade. He is very pleased with the gardening that is going on!

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26 April

Wood pigeon in birdbath  Starling in birdbath
Today started very wet and rainy but our birds still prefer the birdbath to all the puddles. The wood pigeons like to sit and soak for a bit, although he did have a splash after a while. The second one is a starling being very energetic. He will find a warm chimney top to sit on and dry out. Sometimes loads of starlings all have a noisy bath at the same time, and then I have to be quick to get the camera. The weather dried up and the sun came out, so we went on a walk and came back via the river pathway.

27 April

Ipod and shorthand  Wallflower
Rain again, but it soon cleared away, and we were able to sit down the garden in the sunshine. Someone was testing the shorthand dictation recordings and I was helping to find them on the Ipod and press the button to start. When they are tested, it is my job to put them on the website and I am very careful to make sure the right files get transferred. Brown Teddy found a wallflower in the garden left over from last year, which we were all delighted with, as we didn't plant any new ones last autumn. This year I am going to plant as many wallflowers as I can.

Sparrows in greenery  Bird bread
We moved to the more comfortable seat in the greenhouse. The sparrows like to sit in the greenery, watching and waiting. I threw some bread but one or two pieces bounced off the doors and back under my seat. They had to wait while I found it. They come quite close, as they have learned it is safe in our garden.

Brown Teddy looking for spots of rain  Sparrow
Later on, Brown Teddy thought he saw some spots of rain on the glass, but it was not much. We were all hoping it would be quite heavy, as it is fun being under glass when the rain is beating down. The sparrows flew off when it started raining, but they don't stay away for long, as they have nestlings to feed.

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28 April

Robin on plastic bag  Fuchsias
This robin landed on a black plastic bag which began sagging under his weight. He looked quite surprised as it slowly collapsed and he had to fly off in a hurry. We planted these lovely fuchsias and I can't wait to see them all in flower. They will be hanging over the edge of a brick wall, so we can admire the flowers which will stay dry and not get dusty or muddy.

29 April

Robin
Same robin staring at a piece of ground that has just been dug over. He is waiting to see a little something move or wriggle, and then he will go straight down to get it. He eats little things straight away, but if it is bigger, he grabs it and flies away very quickly to somewhere safer.

30 April

Foggy morning  Blue Parrot with amaryllis flower
This morning was very thick fog and I thought I might have to cancel my plans to go out, but by mid-morning it cleared and brightened up. Blue Parrot is delighted with the double amaryllis flower, and there are lots more buds to come. It was a Christmas present of a bulb and pot in a box, so now we can enjoy the last part of our Christmas four months later!

Hedgehog garden ornament  Flying pig garden ornament
In the garden centre they had hedgehogs and flying pigs planters made of wood and twig scraps.

Owl garden ornament  Duck and ducklings
The owls are my favourite, but really I prefer the real birds in the park. The ducklings are now getting much bigger. This is the first early batch, due to the very early spring weather we have had.

 

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