As always, my first duty is to welcome a new 'follower', Molly Printemps and her very interesting and entertaining musings on her blog can be found here.
There comes a time every spring when I venture into the garden with trepidation ready to start the year's preparation for the spring and summer. Although I put the compost on the borders a few weeks ago, I've done very little other than a watching brief. The weekend has been pleasantly warm because there's been no breeze, but a thick jumper was still needed.
Surprisingly, the garden's not looking too bad; a little tatty perhaps, ragged round the edges, but a bit of elbow grease will soon sort that out.
On Saturday I semi-cleaned both my fish ponds and gave it a good examination. I found one dead goldfish that had become trapped behind a basket, but other than that - all appeared well and indeed today, I saw a few tiny black fry swimming about the large pond - we've had babies! The water is warm enough (10 degrees C) to feed them a little wheatgerm food and they are tentatively playing with it.
Today saw me clean my greenhouse ready for some plants coming and some spiders are now looking for new homes. I have some different varieties of lavender bushes in pots and after a trim, they were re-potted along with some other plants including two geraniums which had survived all winter uncovered in the greenhouse.
I have noticed the huge number of ladybirds in the garden and the midges are flying over the ponds already, highlighted in the weak late winter sun shine. The lady birds vary both in size and in colour - some are pillar box red and some are even shinier slightly darker red and the number of spots vary too. I must take some pictures and check the varieties out - I just thought there was one type of ladybird and that was it!
I have noticed however how relatively dry things are which I suppose I should be surprised at but considering there's a drought already officially announced in South East England, it's understandable. We haven't had sustained rain here for a long time.
The spring flowers are showing nicely - snowdrops are in full bloom and the hellebore is just starting to flower. Shoots are well advanced on the roses and the grass is tufting in places so I guess the first high cut is only a couple of weeks away.
I hope you have a great week.