I am back in Yorkshire again after a glorious week in Scotland, but straight back to work last Monday – so no time for blogging.
We had a leisurely drive up on the Bank Holiday Saturday stopping at Booths in Penrith for refreshments and our free drink, then a bag of award-winning chips in Castle Douglas (naughty but very nice) – and they make the best takeaway cup of tea.
On arrival at the cottage we found two white bunnies munching on our garden – by the end of the week I was convinced that they are someones escaped domestic rabbits. The wild brown bunnies on the hillside kept chasing them away and at night instead of diving into a burrow they were ‘nesting’ in the long grass as one might snuggle down in straw in a cage.
We had some pretty long days in the garden – at last the wooden compost bins have been completely emptied and moved back into place since they were pushed forward by the pressure of the flood water.
I spent my time and efforts getting to grips with the weeding, more weeding and more pruning, but there are some areas now coming together and looking much better.
This is the pond area when we first uncovered it a few years ago.
This is the same area now.
The Primula are out at last and I am quite pleased to see this area flourishing – the planting is softening the stone around the pond.
You can only just see the little seat we made on our last visit and the colour of the wood is starting to tone down already.
The pathways meandering through the lower wood are beginning to look quite inviting.
My Delphinium bed on the left is just starting to come to life – it was inspired by a visit we had to a garden where the Delphiniums grew wild in the wood – I had never thought that they would grow so easily in dappled shady conditions. I have planted mixed colours of sky blue, white and deep velvety blue and I intend to keep adding to them to form a large swathe across this bed – only the sky blue are out at the moment and I may even miss the rest of them flowering by our next visit.
I love the different shades of green in the wood and all the variety of leaf shapes but I find it can be tricky to balance this with dashes of colour here and there to give it interest without overdoing it.
You may remember the Daisy path…
You will see below it is a bit overgrown now and has been totally neglected since the flood and required some attention so the postman does not have to squeeze his way through to our letter box! So last week I set to and tackled the jungle only to have my
second encounter with the local wildlife. Unfortunately whilst pruning the Rosa Rugosa on the left of the picture I uncovered a bird’s nest hidden amongst the undergrowth near the ground. At first I thought it was some dead grass then realised it was a nest as soon as I saw the little yellow beak opening and closing.
I pulled away immediately hoping that the mother would not abandon her offspring – is this likely – I don’t know enough about birds? A little while later I crept back and put some of the prunings back to give it more cover again and before we left I checked again and am delighted to say mother (possibly a Chiffchaff) and baby are still doing well! The rest of the clearing in this area will have to be done another day.
Apart from one gloomy day of rain the weather all week was absolutely gorgeous and each evening we took the opportunity to have a stroll along the beach to the village. The sunset one night was amazing – my little camera does not do it justice.
Through all the horrific incidents that are happening around us at the moment these pictures remind me that the world is really quite a beautiful and awesome place and so I will leave you with an update about another mother and daughter who are also doing well – after a difficult couple of weeks my colleague and her daughter, who were in the Manchester Arena bombing, bravely attended the free concert One Love Manchester on Sunday night and after a few anxious moments did enjoy being there, able to share the experience and emotion with other people who had been involved that night in the terrorist attack.
Her story is frightening – it has changed her in a way that makes her constantly looking out for every possible danger in any situation but her daughters resolve not to let it affect her life is admirable. When they decided to go to the free concert they contacted a local family taxi firm to book transport there and back and at once were offered the service free of charge. The owners of the taxi firm also took them for a meal before the concert and looked after them delivering them home safely – a clear example that there are still so many more good people out there who rally round to offer help and support at times like this and we have to hold on to that.