It's with a great deal of trepidation, and full acknowledgement that I've been known to drift away from such things as easily as I drift into them, that I plan to attempt an ongoing series, of sorts, pertaining to garden-ish things, to the state-of-the-land-ish things -- of which this is the second installment. :)
Here we are then, a bit late in posting, but it's been a work-in-progress all week...the first part of the week being rather too glaringly sunny to get decent photographs, then the balance of the week being gloomy and sodden....and then wind-ridden. :O
As I type, it's blowing a hooley*....we have a severe thunderstorm watch in effect and so far, the casualty count is a tipped-over barbecue, several medium-sized branches down from the old ash and a massive limb from one of the willows lining the driveway..which is now blocking the driveway! Also, my two-Christmases ago gift of a 'greenhouse'** is still only in this county because I tied it to the fence the other day. It is, however, no longer resembling it's original structure.
A glorious week of unseasonably warm temperatures. Which is to say, it was too bloody hot. I actually had to suspend my garden jobs by Wednesday because it was just too humid to be comfortable. Honestly, just a gentle transition from winter to spring and then to summer would be such a happy diversion.
As a result, though, everything is launching into life.
Working in the garden, I was surrounded by the happy drone of bees. Bee-song has to be one of my very best favourite sounds at this time of year. That, and the frogs.
My main focus just now is the garden path I'm building. Is 'building' the right word? It's been a strip of grass getting increasingly more narrow as the flower beds encroach upon it, and trying to get a mower in there is an exercise in contortions that I'm just not up for any longer. So, the vision is a simple, stepping/flagstone path, filled in with pea gravel with pollinator-friendly, native flowers frothing across the edges. Very cottage garden. But first, in the interest of trying to do a Proper Job, I'm lifting the "sod" and making an attempt to level the rather tilty angle of the path. Lifting sod is really, really hard. Really. I'm almost having a tiny bit of regret for having started. But I shall persevere....chipping away, a bit at a time.
Below, you can see what I hope the path will eventually look like....re-did a rather weedy and overgrown 'landing' space where I keep pots of herbs and whatnot. I cut the landscape cloth around the ox-eye daisies that like to grow there....sort of like how I worked around the daylilies that simply won't be dissuaded. I'm all for compromise. Of course, I ran out of gravel when I was 3/4 of the way through the project...but there you have it, I'm not particularly skilled in visualizing space and area. Bit too math-based for my right-brain. :)
The Ladies are extremely delighted with the greenery...they barely touch their feed these days. They launch out of the coop at first light and are foraging merrily away until the sun goes down. Such a happy sight, I must say.
We've had some of the usual migratory visitors...Canada geese, assorted ducks etc. We had a visit from a bird which defies identification at this point...I know I've seen it here before, but the WhatBird site has become bloated with search filters and I lost patience with it. Whatever it is (and do chime in if you know!), it stayed for a while and did some fishing. Poor soul dropped the one s/he's got in this photo.
And of course, one of my personal Messengers, the swans....*happy sigh*. This group consisted of two tagged birds, but they were all quite wary so I didn't want to get too close and risk scaring them off. I got these photos by crawling around in the undergrowth.
They stayed for about two days and then were on their way....and oops! there goes the greenhouse past the window....*snigger*...back in a mo'...
I had a bit of a wrestling match with the wind but I've moved it within the confines of the fence...it's a bit worse for wear. Hmmm.
Nothing much else to report, garden-wise. My seed starts are of mixed success....marigolds and cherry toms are well underway, along with some yarrow and black-eyed susans (miraculously!). I really need to start some greens and I haven't got my peas in the garden yet. Every year, I say I'll get a head start on them, and every year I find myself, in May, saying that every year I’ll get a head start on them...
Here's where our power went out. It was out for almost two days this time, a giant limb of a tree down on the lines, just up the road. There was a great deal of wind-damage all around us, and getting The Electrics restored as quickly as it was is something we're feeling an acute sense of gratitude for. On the one hand, I dearly LOVED the silence (well, except for the rumble of our neighbour's generator -- we seem to be the only ones on the road without one and I'm of two minds as to whether getting one is something we should do) and the fact we were quite without electronic interference for all that time. On the other hand, I felt a terrific desperation for a cup of tea. In my perfect world, we'd be totally off-grid and reliant only on the energy provided by the elements - wind, sun -- we would heat our home with wood and these weather events would be much less of a worry and it would just *feel* more like me. But, the reality is that we don't. So we learn each time, how to do better and be less impacted, how to be less reliant. That's a start, I think.
(Oh! And the oddities of the font in this post are due to my panicked scramble to copy/paste my text into a Word document before the battery in my laptop gave out.)
Right...that'll do for now. I have one more, Very Exshiting photograph to show you...I'll let you guess who our latest visitor is and then I'll tell you all about him in my next post. Let's just say, it's been a humbling and holy experience having this particular wild thing visiting with us (they rarely - never? - venture this far south and are a great part of the joy in our visits to the more northern parts of the province). As of this writing, he's still here....and for every moment, I am grateful.
Until next time, then....
* turns out, those were hurricane-force winds. I find it amusing that the ice-storm of a couple of weeks ago got about a five-day build up of dire predictions whereas this was a relative blip on the weather-media, hardly worth mentioning, and yet did far, far more damage. Truly, one must shake ones head.
** bless his heart, it was a lovely, thoughtful gift but I had my doubts as to its suitability for our particular patch, prone as we are, to rather robust winds (hence, Wuthering Heights Farm). But I didn't want to hurt his feelings by mentioning it, and hoped for the best. Sadly, it's in tatters now. I'll find a use for it...it worked very well to dry my herbs last year so there's always that. ;)