Friday, 29 February 2008


I love the owl, always have done from a small child til now. My Nanny and Gramps lived in the countryside. Living in London with my parents to go to see them for two weeks in the summer holiday was a dream. No mod cons, outside loo, no bathroom, but do you know it was one of the best times of my life. I had endless freedom and places to explore. Gramps grew all his own produce and Nanny cooked like a dream. Every evening, as dusk started to fall, Gramps would say "Come on time to walk the dog" Before he had finished I was up and out the door ready and waiting. The reason I was so keen is on that walk without fail we would see the barn owl, he would fly right over us. I was absolutely fascinated by him......I never tired of that walk. My Gramps died many years ago now and whenever an owl visits the garden here I think of him. I have always beleived that when we lose someone they always leave something of themselves with us. Gramps left his love of nature and I am always grateful for that. By the way the owl is called George, after my very dear departed father-in-law who generously bought him for us.

My goddess.

I saw this lovely statue in a garden centre, I was really taken with her. Before I knew it , that lovely man of mine, had paid for her and she was in the boot of the car. In the summer the sun beats down on her all day, and she really seems to enjoy it!!

1930's Potato Plough

This old plough was given to me by a very dear friend. It would have been pulled around the potato fields by the shire horses. This takes me back to a bygone age, when things were quieter and a lot slower, an age where I think I would have fitted in. In the summer the plough is surrounded by meadow flowers.

Wednesday, 27 February 2008


This tiny flower is such a beauty. Whenever I see one it is pure joy to me. I have three out at the moment and count myself lucky. The reason I say this is that rabbits love them, with the warren in the garden ,what chance do I stand of keeping them until they finish flowering. So every day I will visit them and treasure the moment.

Lesser Celendine.

This lovely wild flower is just beginning to carpet the grass in the wood. They only grow where it is cool and damp. I let them spread every year. When they are all in bloom I will take another snap. They look amazing.

Old and grubby.

No I am not talking about me! I have lots of notices and signs in my garden. People have given them to me through the years, and as they begin to age I treasure them even more. I am not one as you may gather for anything looking a bit too new. I like old and a bit battered around the edges. Somehow it seems more me!

Virus Alert.

You may have noticed that I now approve my comments before they appear on my blog. The reason for this is that somone I know had a virus in one of the comments left on her blog. Fortunately her swift reactions stopped it. I have since seen it on two other blogs in the comment section. It normally says something like:- Marikesh here. DO NOT CLICK HERE because you will upload the virus. So for your protection and mine I will check all comments to make sure they are safe, if suspicious I will delete them. Happy blogging, stay safe.

Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Robins nest.

If you enlarge this photo you will see a Robins nesting box in the centre of the ivy. It is well hidden, in the right position and on a huge dying tree trunk. Its also in the copse so nice and quiet but will the robins use it, no they will not. Last year to my horror the robin built the nest at the base of the old apple tree. When you have two dogs and a roaming neighbours cat, not a good idea. So I built a fortress around it and she laid three eggs. Unfortunately with the heavy rain last year the nest got very wet and she eventually abandoned it. I am hoping the robins will do better this year.

Ornamental Cherry

Some of the flowers on this tree were damaged by frost last week. Since then new buds have opened and I'm just hoping and praying we don't have a frost tonight. Fingers crossed.

New bird box

I put this new bird box up in January. I've sited it in the copse, it is surrounded by hawthorn and I have placed all the hawthorn and blackberry prunings below. I have done this to try and deter cats and squirrels getting near the box. Once the trees come into leaf it should be well hidden. I did have an old box there and the great tits always used it.......hope they like the new one.

My favourite Hellebore

Just had to show you this bloom, its only just flowered and is my favourite.

Monday, 25 February 2008

Mason Bees, I just love em.

These are just some of my mason bees overwintering in the shed. I will put them out into the garden, in a south facing position, around the middle of March. Come April, they will start to leave the units, tumbling out of the tubes, covered in pollen. The little red velvet bees are a dream for they are passive. They do not sting, I have kept them now for five years, and have never had a problem with children or animals. They only live for 6 - 8 weeks and during that time pollenate all my fruit trees etc. They lay their grubs in the empty tubes. I put them in the shed in September and the cycle starts again

Nature does it best.

This is the trunk of my old apple tree (around eighty years old), what a perfect place for a bird to go in and make its nest. Old and ancient trees are wonderful, for as they decay and die, little holes and hollows appear, making them useful places for many creatures to use.

Who lives here?

Over the years this box has been well used by the blue tits. They are going to get a surprise if they start building a nest this year because there is a wood mouse living there. Good luck to him, thats what I say.

What is this flower?

Can anyone tell me what this is. I bought it without a name tag on it. The person who sold it to me also didn't know what it was, strange! Is it some sort of anemone I wonder?

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Bees and Butterflies.

I hope that you all like my header, I think it says everything about me and how I garden. I took the photograph in the garden last May. As you know the creatures that interest me most are birds, bees and butterflies. I have tried in the last six years to help these creatures thrive, by ensuring their habitat is right in the garden. You will see buttercups in the header, all wild flowers (weeds to others) are welcome here. They allow the bees and butterflies to have a constant supply of nectar and pollen. I also find that wild flowers help moths. I have a lot here but photos are lacking as they mainly fly at night, there are exceptions of course. I have uploaded seven beautiful photographs of some of the bees and butterflies that came last year to share my space. I was honoured that they came.

Friday, 22 February 2008

Five things I love about where I live.

This is the view that greets me every morning across the lane. Lambing time is nearly here, and if you really want spring photos you must come and visit because I will be taking pics. My house is surrounded by farmland and I love it. I am at heart a city girl, born and bred in London. I will always have a place in my heart for that great capital of ours. BUT this is where my soul is, in the peace and quiet of the English countryside. It is a totally different way of life that I have fitted into very nicely.

The jewel in the crown.

This is ancient woodland (over 800 years old), and is a 10 minute drive from where I live. This is rare habitat as most of our old woods have been lost to road building and felling for agriculture etc. This woodland contains Saxon mounds that stretch the whole length of the wood. When the King was out shooting, the deer would have to slow down to tackle the mound and the King would then get his kill. In around 4 weeks time this will be covered in English Bluebells, woodland anemones, and aconites. I will be taking a photograph.

The darling buds of May

I love this view and never ever tire of it. Every changing season brings something special to this scene. The darling buds of May was filmed here and it was once voted the prettiest village in Kent.

St. Mary's Church

This old ruin is what is left of St. Mary's Church, it was built between 1200 - 1500. During the 2nd World War it was hit by a V1 Doodlebug (flying bomb). It is beautiful and is a truly spiritual place. It is about 15 minutes from our house.


Gorse is a shrub that we see a lot of alongside roadways. It has a long flowering season, and at this time of year when the days can be dull, the lovely bright flowers cheer you up no end.

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Primula Candelabra

Most of the blogs that I visit are still waiting for signs of spring.......most of you are tired of cold winds and snow.......the following three photos are for you. When my spring flowers start to fade, I will be looking at your beautiful flowers and your springtime, I will look forward to that.

Hazel nut catkins, they always look so elegant.

No matter how many photos you see of daffs they always make you think of spring.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Nella and the grandchildren.

Nella loves it when Riley and Poppi come. She loves children. Everywhere they go she follows. In fact they all wear each other out. We had such a fun time playing monsters, hide and seek, and just digging dirt. By the time they left I don't know who was more tired. If I really think about it, its me, but its that wonderful mellow tired when you have had such a special day.

Great garden Nanna.

Hide and Seek. Where is everybody?

Isn't it lovely to see a child with rosy cheeks. They will sleep well tonight.

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Help I'm blogging mad.

Why am I standing in my garden at 7.00a.m. in my dressing gown, with temperatures well below freezing and fog. Yes you have guessed, taking a photo for my blog. Despite the fact that it has damaged the blossom and blackened the new shoots, somehow getting this photograph is paramount. I have become an obsessional blogger, and the word obsessional does not come into my personality. Every moment I get I dash from one blog to another to see what is going on.
So is there anyone out there who can help stop this problem....the trouble is most of you that visit have caused it because I love your blogs so much.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Hooray I've found some

Anyone who follows my blog will know that I have been miffed by the disappearence of my snowdrops. Low and behold while in the copse today, I found these. be it only a tiny clump. Can't tell you how pleased I was to do so they are such a favourite of mine.
There are five posts today, got a favourite, please leave a comment. It gives me such a lot of pleasure to read your views.
Quote: I like trees because they seem more resigned to the way they live than other things do.

The Green Man

A friend gave me the green man as a gift. He is often put into gardens and houses for protection. He can be seen in Gothic churches all over Europe. He hides in my copse amongst the ivy. Great place for him don't you think?

Pampas Grass

It gets a lot of bad press pampas grass. Against the blue sky today I thought it looked beautiful. It is also useful for the birds to line their nests with and they eat the seeds. Good job done.

Sunday, 17 February 2008


Like fungus, lichens fascinate me, I think they have a beauty all of their own. I know that lichens are a unique combination of fungus and an alga living as one unit. I have also read that you only find them where the conditions are absolutely perfect. We inherited this tree when we moved here, it is a maple, its leaves are pink and green and it gets the most beautiful seed pods hanging from it in autumn. Does anyone know what type it is?
Quote: True peace of mind and complete tranquility are only to be found in solitude.

My quiet moments.

My husband gave me this seat a few years ago now. It is carved from the roots and trunk of an old tree. I am actually against the felling of trees but the company that produce these only take them out if it is absolutely essential. I have several trees in my garden that are dying but would not entertain felling them. As they die, they give life to others. Insects and fungus will live on the tree. The birds will eat the insects, and nest in the hollows. Everything has a purpose. I am as you might guess a bit of a tree hugger. I am absolutely, totally and without doubt passionate about them. When I take my grandchildren to a park or walk the garden, more often than not we will hug a tree. They are life giving. Quote: In peace there is nothing so becomes a man, as modest stillness and humility.

Saturday, 16 February 2008


I love this plant it always looks so dramatic.
I have created five posts to show you just a few things in my garden today. Pick the one that you like the most and tell me what is in your garden that you really love. I would love to know.
Have a great weekend.


Brash, aggressive and ruthless opportunists
............ give them a break their in decline.
Got an opinion?

Mrs Blackbird

As Joseph Addison once declared: I value my garden more for being full of blackbirds than cherries, and very frankly give them fruits for their songs.
I could not agree more.

Friday, 15 February 2008

Feathered friends

This pair of Mallards have adopted our neighbours pond. I am lucky because the pond edges our copse so I can see the coming and goings of all the water birds. We had a pair of mallards last year, they had ten ducklings and used to bring them into the copse to feed. It was lovely to see them.......they grew to a fair size. The whole family disappeared overnight. Where they went or what happened I don't know.
Beckie at Dragonfly Corner won the caption competition so she will be receiving the six packets of seeds. I hope that she enjoys them. Its good to get something for nothing. Quote: Cherish the simple things.

Thursday, 14 February 2008

The Blue Tit

Decided today that I would try and take some shots of birds in the garden. It is really cold and damp, so it wasn't a really good idea. I did manage to get four reasonable photographs, although I do find birds quite difficult to capture. We have lots of this little bird in the garden, and he certainly is colourful and brightens even the dullest day.
Our local Sparrowhawk also loves him. I have seen many a blue tit in the claws of these fighter pilots. The cries the poor little creature gives out haunts me for days. But then that is the way of things and I accept that, I just don't need to see it.

The Great Tit

We do quite well for this little bird and they are often found on the feeders. They do nest here, so I am fortunate to often see their young and a lot of them do survive.

The Chaffinch

This lovely bird is one of my favourites. It is a very gentle by nature and gets an awful lot of bullying from the other birds. It is also extremely shy and it took me around 15 minutes to get this photograph (which isn't that great). Everytime I went to click, it flew away!

Robin Redbreast.

Who doesn't love the robin, he is such a cheeky little chap. Often found in the garden shed watching for anything that drops when I restock the feeders. They are such friendly birds where humans are concerned but very aggressive towards other birds. They nested in the garden last year and as far as I am aware one survived.

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Thank you to all that visit my blog

To leave the world a bit better ........ whether by a healthy child........

a garden patch