This cheeky chap is one of four squirrels that spend their day plundering the bird stations for food each day. The worst time of the year is the Autumn when these furry tailed critters dig holes all around the garden and pots. I split several polyanthus at the end of the season, on more occasions than I care to think of, I had to re plant roots sections that had been dug out to bury nuts.
Here he is sitting in the bird feeder eating all, undisturbed he will be there for hours feasting on food supposed to be for the birds.
Although Squirrels can be a bit of a pest, you can not help but laugh at them trying to get the food out of the feeders, Squirrels are very acrobatic and get themselves in all sorts of positions. They do offer a spectacle to watch, some regard squirrels as pests, there are of course merits for that argument, driving out the native red squirrel as the main reason, the fact they can be quite destructive is another. Love them or hate them, you have to laugh at the antics that they get up to.
Its that time of year when the winter is beginning to fade away, this is one of the busiest times of the year for the garden. The start of the sowing season. Sweet peas will be going into the pots in the next few days. The rest will follow on in the coming months. If planting seeds the sowing dates are a guide, most annuals will grow and flower for a certain amount of time until they exhaust themselves and die off, this is normal, so you can sow later on to have them flower later, for example if you have 2 packets of the same seeds and it gives the sowing date of March, sow the first at the start of March and then the second packet at the start of April, this way you will have a longer flowering period.
You do not need to have a Greenhouse to grow your seeds, a kitchen or bedroom window sill is just as good and will yield good results, Once pricked out and potted on remember to harden them off before putting outside. If your not sure then there is a guide to sowing seeds in the guide section.
Most seeds are easy to grow, there are some however that are a little tricky and need a little more than just chucking in a tray and waiting for them to grow. Always read the instructions on the packet and if your not sure, ask me or research it before you start. The same goes for any plant you want to buy from a garden center. We can all make that impulse buy, read the label and follow what it says in regards to planting. Research if your not sure.
The garden a few years ago, you can see next to the shed at the bottom the ground being made ready to build the greenhouse, these two pictures are great as they show the garden fully, the space i have to work with is clear to see and easy to see in relative size and dimensions. So much has changed over the years and in the next few days i will publish similar pictures to show the differences
Finally today I get the chance to plant out all the over wintering annuals, Wallflowers and Bellis being the two main plants, with a few foxgloves and evening primroses, hopefully the weather will hold out so I can get them all in.
As you can see some Wallflowers are already in and hopefully it's not to late for them to spread roots before the winter finally kicks in. Realistically they should be fine as they have already been hardened off, they just need to be planted.
Even the garden bench has trays of plants on it, shows how far behind I really am. On the bench there are Hollyhocks, Wallflowers and orange Evening Primrose, hopefully they will be in the garden by the end of next week
All he dead foliage on this picture shows that, I am so far behind. Hopefully now should be catching up.... As you can see in the picture there is a lot that needs to be done behind the Sedum, a lot of dead foliage and also just general cutting back.
Gazania"s still flowering and today will be dug up split and prepared for winter to come back outside in the late spring, the path is also in need of a clean
Today after spending too much time in the garden it seems to resemble a sense on normality now, although there is still so much to do. Why is that? I hear you ask, well these last few months I have been caught up at work and neglected the garden a little to much, to the point that I have been putting bedding plants in today. Yes i hear the groans from you to say, what are you doing, call yourself a gardener? Mine have been in for weeks. Well yes usually mine have been in for weeks but today was catch up day. So after doing the mundane lawn mowing, it was time to tie back some of the plants that had been knocked over by the wind and rain of the last week. So after tying back, it was time to plant the bedding, Cosmos, Aster and Calendula was the pick of the day to plant. I grow all my own so i have over a hundred of each plant. I managed to get a lot in but not nearly enough, still 6 trays of plants to go in.... 50 plants in each tray. So many more hours to go.
I hope you like the pictures and enjoy what I get to see everyday
Finally it rained...! All the plants in the garden have breathed a sigh of relief that finally we have had some rain. Over the few days I have running around the garden with a watering can providing much needed relief to the pots and tender plants I have just planted. I was thinking about getting the hose pipe out as the soil was so dry, even the well established plants were beginning to look a little droopy. Luckily though today it seems that the clouds filled the sky and poured down with lots of the precious nectar the plants all needed so badly.
It appears that we have had a really dry winter and certain people are saying that there is the likelihood of a drought being enforced this year. Well my plants surely hope not as after saving in the greenhouse for all those hours planting and potting on the thought of just leaving them to die of thirst.
Well hopefully the sun will be out tomorrow and dry everything off as the rain is not good for the flowers, although it seems that in the Uk, once it starts to rain it never knows when to stop....
It's that time of year again when for us in the garden is the busiest time of the year. It is also the most exciting part of the year, we see all the seeds appearing and in the garden, the plants are starting to show themselves again. I have to say growing seeds is so rewarding, although sometimes back breaking in leaning over a tray, pricking out all the little seedlings, placing them into pots. That said the rewards of labour show in a few months, those small seedlings then become beautiful flowers which are around the garden. It is much easier if you have a greenhouse to house the tender seeds, but you can do it with a tray on the window sill in the house.
Today after 6 hours of bending I have over 100 Zinnias, this would cost at least £100 at your local garden centre. Growing them myself has cost a fraction of that, I have so many that I will be able to share with neighbours, still having enough for my own needs.
It is so worth the effort and also so rewarding, so I say give it a go and if you need advice then please just ask
I thought I would add a new category to the site where I publish pictures of birds that will visit the garden, all the birds that I will publish here will visit your gardens too, well that's if you are in the UK.
Today you can see a Dunnock sitting looking for his next meal. In the early morning winter sunshine food is scarce so the birds will forage further into the garden than they would in the summer months. So please if you can put some food out for them to help the birds in the winter months especially when the temperature drops. Water is another help to the birds, either in a purchased bird bath or if you can not afford just a small bowl on the ground. Bear in mind to change the water every few days. You maybe thinking that you do not get many birds into the garden, but really, do you look for them? If you put food out for them they will come.
My name is Jonathan and I enjoy working in my garden in my spare time. I am no professional, just an amateur. My second love is photography, shooting the flowers in my garden and of course sharing them with people who share my passions.