Friday, 25 December 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from a snowy Lancashire. Enjoy the holiday!

Friday, 18 December 2009

First Snow

I've had a few days away, walking and birdwatching on the Dee estuary. The photo above is of a female kestrel which we came across hunting on what used to be the foreshore. Throughout the 19th century and for the first couple of decades of the 20th, the place in the photo was beach, and old pictures show kids building sandcastles here. But now instead of sand there is a very extensive and mature saltmarsh, full of life. Amazing how quickly plants move in and change a landscape.
When we got back, we found a few centimetres of snow had fallen. Not being southern softies, this did not cause the "chaos" it did in the south east, and after doing the shopping we went out for a walk in the late afternoon sunshine. This is the old railway line, now a bridleway and footpath.
And here is the scene beside the river (our shadows are bottom left!). A nice afternoon.

Not sure when I will get back to the garden, the soil will be frozen for a while now so instead I will finish the seed order and planning for next year.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Back to Work

The constant rain of November and early December has finally abated and so it's back to work time. The ground is still wet, but not saturated as it was and it will continue to dry out as the forecast is good for the next couple of weeks. So today I started on the winter pruning - taking out the autumn raspberry canes, which produced masses of fruit this year. Here's the pile I removed.
There are still some winter vegetables in the ground - above is the purple sprouting broccoli, with a solitary kale plant to the left. The leeks are also doing well and we will start eating them after Christmas. I also have some parsnips to dig up. But for now the main jobs are weeding and bed edges.
Here is the current pile of old paving stones which are awaiting placement on the vegetable plot. The pile is still growing, with two more added yesterday. This morning I moved four up and placed them as edges to beds. I plan to do lots more using some forced labour from my Other Half over his Christmas holidays...