Signs of regrowth

 The colour should be bit more purple.
Wet Violet

No more sulking. I mustn't spoil early spring any longer. It's not fair on the tiny blossom, or the early rhododendrons, or the little purple violets, or the Hellebores, whose subtle colours I adore. Such uplifting signs of regrowth. Time to get over myself. I might miss something!

Monday 24th August

Today, mood suitably uplifted, I had a Catching-up with Friends day. Arrived home after visiting. Eek! My house smells! Flashed the 'No-Pet Deoderiser' around and vacuumed the floor. Eek! My house still smells! Which dog? Winnie! Into the pond for a quick'n'easy dog-bath. Back inside. Eek! My house still smells. Is it me? This is always a bit of a worry. The old lady with too many dogs smell?

No, it must be big brown Escher, but I've never bathed him, and he's far too much of a girl (sorry) to leap into a winter-cold pond. Scared him witless by spraying 'No-Pet Deoderiser' down his back. 'Always test in a small area first, no bleaching agents or aggressive solvents'. Oops.

 A sweet shrub, now as tall as me.
Cinnamon Cindy Camellia

Well, tomorrow I'm not going anywhere, so my new 'hopeful, enjoying the tiny joys of early spring' mood can be garden-tested.

Tuesday 25th August

Have just wiped Escher all over with eco-soap (much kinder), showered self, and put on clean lounging clothes. I smell better, at least! It's been lightly raining, and we are now off, a little late in the morning, for a garden walk with the camera. A list!

Things that I love at the moment

  1. Cinnamon Cindy Camellia. Pretty little flowers.
  2. Yellow Narcissi.
  3. My new wriggling stream. Water to reflow this weekend.
  4. The white Daphne, planted yesterday. Such a glorious smell.

And now a reflection upon the realities of life and Camellias in the garden. Two adjacent shrubs, both towering higher than the glass-house, one on the wane (lots of ugly brown mixed in with pale flesh pink), the other in full flight (shining yellow stamens, brilliant, dazzling pink petals). First instinct - I wish they could flower together. But that's greedy, and unrealistic. Better to celebrate one thing following the other.

 I love them.
Freckly Hellebore

I've just taken the dogs for a garden walk in the drizzle, keeping a wary eye out for unmentionables that they might roll in. Hmm. I did find a squishy rat carcass and a long deceased magpie - both have been sneakily dispatched down the water race. You can find a lot of smelly things in my country garden when you look closely. It's a bit too wet to work outside. The plan is to do some light weeding when we get back from the dog park.

Much Later...

First I weeded right along the Driveway, pruning the 'Flower Carpet' roses, trying not to stand on any bulbs or Bergenias. My patches of Bressingham's pink grow along the edge of this garden. Then, hoping that Winnie wasn't watching too closely, I planted some clumps of miniature irises, minimally spreading top-soil over their roots. I had to tie Escher to a post because he kept wandering next-door - all those new smells were just too tempting.

Wednesday 26th August

I've just come home from book group. As I drove up the driveway I heard the garden calling. 'Weed me some more! Weed me some more!' Aargh!

 Hmm... This smells good...
Two Dogs - Escher and Winnie

And I've answered the call. I've weeded fairly thoroughly around the dogs' kennels and in their Lavender Garden. Whenever I've checked Winnie and Escher they've been rolling around on the Frisbee Lawn, legs in the air, a delighted gleam in their eyes. Upon closer investigation they run away with what looks like a droopy fetish of feathers and flesh. I think they've been sharing it. Hmm...

 Beautiful brown dog.
Escher in his Feral Chair

Doggy Day-Care...

Escher's parents must despair of my laissez-faire doggy day-care. His mother rang this morning to see if he'd been good. Oh yes, I assured her gaily, he was having a wonderful time. He was really stinky, and had just eaten the remains of the bird feeder - lard ball, seeds, elastic mesh bag and all. This is not what an anxious parent wants to hear.

OK. The Potato vine by the dog kennels. There are several versions of it, since as well as setting roots it seems to produce youngster seedlings. The white flowers are welcome in winter, but I grow it to cover the mess, not to create its own. I am going to chop some of it down.

Much Later...

Oh dear. Escher went missing, not responding to my calling, for fifteen minutes. Stomped around the property, steam coming out of ears, pitchfork in hand (well, almost). Imagined series of country horrors - the neighbour's offal pit, sheep with new born lambs, farmers with rifles, and so on. Then heard a delicate crunching sound. There he was, munching hazelnuts in the orchard, tummy filling by the second, totally unconcerned. Tied him up to the Adirondack and furiously dealt to the potato vine. VERY cross I was!

Thursday 27th August

Today Escher has been on a short leash, garden-wise, and I've continued my early spring weeding, worry-free. I remind myself of the prettiness of little things - the rich purple violets, the miniature trumpet daffodils flowering, the tiny little snowflakes (not real, thankfully, not real). One notices and appreciates these tiny treasures when one's nose is at ground level.

 Now almost finished flowering.
Big Azalea in Island Bed

First I tied Escher to the wheelbarrow and we trundled down the Allotment Garden, taking advantage of no men working next-door to weed in peace. The roses are just starting to sprout, and the orange Calendulas are amazing. They just keep on flowering, no matter how frosty the mornings are. I'm so impressed. Then I tied Escher to the pergola and burnt the bonfire. I explained that it was for his own safety - he squeaked a bit, and put on his saddest face. But that's OK. He knows I love him.