Monday, 8 December 2014

Winter approaches...

After the snow, 2013
It's December 2014 and we should be well into our dull 6 month period in the garden but the mildness of this year left a few things in leaf and flower. But a sharp frost the other day is probably going to end all this... and snow is forecast.

Here are some images of 2013 of the garden in the snow. The Exhochorda was in the garden when we moved to this house. It must be over 30 years old. Its strange horizontal form, looking a bit Japanese, is because loads of old trees and shrubs flattened it when it was young. These have gradually been removed by us. And I rather like its 'large bonsai' appearance. The large garden pot is deep purple and is made by Errington Reay. It is properly frost proof. The few vulnerable pots I leave out have been wrapped in hessian sacks. They don't look as bad as it sounds.

Exochorda × macrantha 'The Bride', 2013
Goldfinch feeding in snow, with squirrel proof suet feeder left & squirrel feeding box above, 2013
Female pheasant on roof of summerhouse, 2013
Squirrel getting peanuts from squirrel feeder, 2013
It is impossible to prevent squirrels feeding when you put out bird food. But you can direct them to their own supply in a feeding box where they have to learn lift the lid. I 'train' them by wedging the lid open for a few days. Afterwards when in position they lift it and it then drops to close safely so no little birds can get trapped. Once trained they are great fun to watch and don't then interfere with the expensive seed.