I have been playing with the new camera which takes very good closeups.
These are the insides of tulips. the second one is a Parrot Tulip which
is yellow and red stripey. I prefer to look inside them using the photos
rather than kneel on the concrete path!
I am really pleased with this dandelion closeup and I was surprised to
see all the little curly bits. Dandelions would be really good garden
flowers if only they didn't spread so much and take over the flower
beds. I like to see them on the grass verges, especially when they are
mixed in with lots of daisies.
Someone had a good time designing this cushion. The butterflies are as
good as flowers. This robin was following us round the garden as we were
digging, waiting for a chance to dive in for the worms.
We went back to Hall Place to get photos of the blossom trees. This is
my favourite, a double almond. Even the trunk is flowering! Brown
Teddy's favourite is this flowering crab apple, with dark red buds which
open to pale pink flowers.
Here is more of the double almond blossom. Most of the other blossom
trees were very nearly my favourites as well and I am glad that I didn't
really have to choose between them. When you have got a field, you can
put them all in! If I had these trees at home, I would sit under them
all day and never go indoors until it was dark.
These daisies looked like the remains of a heavy hail shower. The
overflow channel was still full and quite colourful with all the
different browns and greens. In summer it is dry and you can walk
This is a dunnock in the flower border. He didn't fly away as we walked
past. I am not sure if he was about to have a dust bath or just settling
down where it was warm. This is the best place to sit, as it is
difficult to spot him when he not moving. I checked out the topiary
again and now I am sure it is a peacock, with its eyes and beak.
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The big storms and rain stopped quite a few weeks ago, but it is still
all coming out of the ground in the park, and flowing into the pond.
There are new little water channels all over the grass, and everything
is very muddy. There are big holes at the side of the paths and I think
the parks people are not going to repair them until everything is dry.
I had to dig out some daffodils and this is what they do when they are
not planted deeply enough. Just like the bluebells, they grow big thick
roots so that all the goodness is stored deeper down in the ground where
it is not going to get dried out. I put them back in a lot deeper of
Some more double almond blossoms in Priory Park. I could look at these
This is the best pot in the garden at the moment, with white and pink
daffodils and mixed tulips. Later on we put lots of criss-crossing wires
over the pond to hold up the sagging netting. It looks really neat now
with no sags collecting dead leaves. We put the netting over last year
when some ducks visited.
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It was my job to fill up the fountain pens. I had a lot of trouble
filling this black one as the bottle is nearly empty. I had to hold the
pen upside down, move up the plunger and suck up bits of ink up several
times. I don't think I can get every drop out of the bottle, so tomorrow
I will get a new bottle of black. Later on, we all sat and worked in the
greenhouse, and stayed warm even when the clouds came over. It is a bit
difficult to work when there are so many flowers all around and fishes
This is the bedding at Well Hall Pleasaunce with pink bellis daisies and
forget-me-nots. I have box balls like that in my garden, but not as big. The
wisteria pergola was in full flower and I have been looking forward to
seeing this since last year. The leaves appear after the flowers have
This is the woodland glen part, with some mown paths and either side are
bluebells and primroses, with the daffodils all finished now. I like
paths and I always want to know what is at the other end.
Brown Teddy likes the moat and there are always a few ducks about. This
crow was sitting in the tree as we walked underneath and I think he
thought he could not be seen, as crows usually fly away.
This is my favourite part at the moment, as the greens are very
brilliant and the blossom trees completely covered. Inside the low box
hedging the parks people have hidden the waste bins and I was very
pleased someone had that good idea for hiding them.
This is the boggy pond corner and this plant is called Bear's Breeches.
It is quite decorative in the park but not for a garden as it puts roots
and shoots everywhere. Up the slope the boggy corner has lots of mossy
rocks and pondy bits, but there was only a little bit of water. It is
supposed to overflow and trickle down to look like a little mountain
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is We went to Hall Place. We saw a display of Romanian painted Easter
eggs with lots of tiny detail and very colourful. The best part of the
gardens at the moment are the rhododendrons and azaleas and I now have
this picture on my computer desktop.
I think this is the last daffodil clump, all the others have gone over.
Brown Teddy just loves this white blossom tree, especially as the
branches are drooping down so we can see it close up.
This is an edging of nettles, a good idea to stop people going towards
the edge of the river. These little ducklings were swimming as fast as
they could, but with the fast flowing water they were getting nowhere.
Eventually they found out that the water was flowing more slowly at the
edges. Their legs must have been quite tired.
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Today is definitely a bird day, and I wonder what my real birds would
think if I brought one of these home. I think it might frighten them
This blackbird was eating whatever was left in the little tub. I am sure
he enjoyed the food but I am glad I was not there when the person left
all this rubbish, I might have had to hand it back to them to take home!
Brown Teddy had a good time admiring this blossom tree, which is just
like his favourite one in Hall Place, with the red buds that open to
This duck family in Priory Park were feeding on the weed in one of the
corners of the pond.
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The same ducklings, all having a rest in the early morning sunshine. I
like to visit this tree in the park, especially when the petals are
blowing down in the wind and making pink snow on the ground.
We have had a few starlings visiting our lawn recently, and this one is
making the most of the new clean water we put in the birdbath. We have
to replace the water regularly, as it can get murky quite quickly which
I would not want the birds to drink.
These egg shaped decorations in a shop window would look good any time
of year. I really like this nest cake, and I am sure all the twigs are
made of chocolate. I wonder how long it would last in our house - not
very long at all I think.
Here is our very handsome blackbird who is nesting in another garden
nearby. He works hard getting food for his family, but he found time for
a bath in the shallow birdbath that is by the fence.
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We went through the park quite early in the morning, and all the birds
are just sitting around and sleeping. I don't think the pigeons are
bothering to count the daisies.
Another early morning walk through the park. The ducks seem to stay
asleep but I think that many of them just open an eye to check up on
safety as people walk past. On the way home, we saw lots of these
hedgerow flowers at our countryside bus stop - the white one is Jack By
The Hedge, and the blue one is Bees Borage, which of course had a busy
bee on it.
This robin has been watching us work in the garden, and he got a few
more worms than usual as we were digging a hole and moving things
around. Later on we saw two young wood pigeons eating the cherries off
the tree next door. Sometimes one or two of the cherries turn red but
most often they get eaten before they can ripen.
More gardening today and here is the resident robin with his prize worm.
He came very close and did the usual thing of sitting on the fork and
spade. He is very pleased with the gardening that is going on!
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Today started very wet and rainy but our birds still prefer the birdbath to
all the puddles. The wood pigeons like to sit and soak for a bit,
although he did have a splash after a while. The second one is a
starling being very energetic. He will find a warm chimney top to sit on
and dry out. Sometimes loads of starlings all have a noisy bath at the
same time, and then I have to be quick to get the camera. The weather
dried up and the sun came out, so we went on a walk and came back via
the river pathway.
Rain again, but it soon cleared away, and we were able to sit down the
garden in the sunshine. Someone was testing the shorthand dictation
recordings and I was helping to find them on the Ipod and press the
button to start. When they are tested, it is my job to put them on the
website and I am very careful to make sure the right files get
transferred. Brown Teddy found a wallflower in the garden left over from
last year, which we were all delighted with, as we didn't plant any new
ones last autumn. This year I am going to plant as many wallflowers as I
We moved to the more comfortable seat in the greenhouse. The sparrows
like to sit in the greenery, watching and waiting. I threw some bread
but one or two pieces bounced off the doors and back under my seat. They
had to wait while I found it. They come quite close, as they have
learned it is safe in our garden.
Later on, Brown Teddy thought he saw some spots of rain on the glass,
but it was not much. We were all hoping it would be quite heavy, as it
is fun being under glass when the rain is beating down. The sparrows
flew off when it started raining, but they don't stay away for long, as
they have nestlings to feed.
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This robin landed on a black plastic bag which began sagging under his
weight. He looked quite surprised as it slowly collapsed and he had to
fly off in a hurry. We planted these lovely fuchsias and I can't wait to
see them all in flower. They will be hanging over the edge of a brick
wall, so we can admire the flowers which will stay dry and not get dusty
Same robin staring at a piece of ground that has just been dug over. He
is waiting to see a little something move or wriggle, and then he will
go straight down to get it. He eats little things straight away, but if
it is bigger, he grabs it and flies away very quickly to somewhere
This morning was very thick fog and I thought I might have to cancel my
plans to go out, but by mid-morning it cleared and brightened up. Blue
Parrot is delighted with the double amaryllis flower, and there are lots
more buds to come. It was a Christmas present of a bulb and pot in a
box, so now we can enjoy the last part of our Christmas four months
In the garden centre they had hedgehogs and flying pigs planters made
of wood and twig scraps.
The owls are my favourite, but really I prefer the real birds in the
park. The ducklings are now getting much bigger. This is the first early
batch, due to the very early spring weather we have had.
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