25 March 2018

Dorset Garden Diary - British Summer Time Begins

Evening everyone,

Well the clocks went forward this morning, darker in the mornings and lighter in the evenings and, as I'm writing this, the sun is streaming into the conservatory. I can smell summer.

Once again I've not been out in the garden much over the past couple of weeks as it's either been too wet or more snow and ice, but this week it started to get milder. Not mild as in warm but milder than below freezing. And today is a no coat day!

This morning I spent quite a while in the conservatory watching the blue tits in and out of their box with nesting materials. I have put out small strips of wool, moss and cotton wool but they are managing to find enough natural material. The sparrows have spent most of the day jostling for position on the feeders with the magpies looking on disgruntled.

The frog spawn (yes, it's definitely frog and not toad) is thriving and the surface of the pond is rippling with the miniature tadpoles wriggling in their jelly cells and there are air bubbles on the surface.

Most of the seedlings I've sown over the past couple of weeks have put on a spurt. I've re-potted them and put them in the greenhouse as it's not warm enough to plant them out.

These are the three sunflowers
This is the kale, spinach beet, mixed leaves and rocket before re-planting
Now they are in holding pots until the weather warms and I can plant them out
I also re-potted the dill, razzmatazz chillies, padron (hot) peppers, aquilegia red hobbit and aquilegia giant, sowed more mustard and cress and planted out the purple poppies in the garden. The sweet peas are raring to go but it's still not warm enough yet

I started to clear the area by the side of the pottering shed. Most of the containers have either soil from growing the potatoes last year or home produced compost in them. I top fed a few of the flower beds from the containers

but there's still a lot more to clear and most of the remaining compost will need sieving.

Some of the fish put in an appearance this afternoon and ate the food I put in...rather that than the tadpoles!

And at last the garden is getting some colour - white hellebore
forsythia starting to flower

The daffodils and hyacinths are putting on a good display together with the aubretia

This has started to flower in the cottage garden but can't remember what it is - pretty though

 And the quince tree is budding, hopefully we will get some fruit on it this year

That's it for this week. It finally feels like it's all starting to take off again. I watched Countryfile this evening and I'm glad I managed to get out in the garden today because the forecast is wet and cold leading up to Easter. Catch up soon.



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