On Wednesday afternoon we were hit with the Met Office red alert and it didn’t disappoint – after white-out conditions all afternoon we were soon cut off and officially snowed in. We’re used to getting plenty of the white stuff being at about 1000ft but this is the worst it’s been since moving here almost 5 years ago. Continue reading The Beast From The East
With the constant snow on the ground and freezing temperatures we’ve been well behind this year in terms of our garden planning. I’ve been out for a wander around a few times seeking inspiration but with everything frozen I’ve just not been finding it – most unusual. Continue reading First Garden Centre Visit of 2018
The garden seems to have been under snow for most of the past few weeks and Spring still feels a long way away. With more of the white stuff due over the coming days and itchy fingers I decided to do something more constructive and start keeping a note of some of the feathered visitors we have to the garden and I’ve created a new gallery page to log them. Continue reading Birds in the Garden
Introducing Blue, our new cocker spaniel puppy and nephew to Cosmo. Continue reading Our new family member…
Just as we were starting to get excited about the brief whiff of Spring we had, the snow returned – whilst it looks beautiful here when the white stuff comes down, it does rather dampen the enthusiasm a little.
Our new heated propagator has arrived – after much deliberation, I finally decided on one with six smaller trays as it seemed the best value for the most space (it was £40 from Thompson & Morgan), along with a load of seeds that I’ve optimistically ordered – our season is so short here that growing from seed is a risky business so hopefully the propagator should help things along.
I’m especially excited about some of the tomato seeds we’ve got – Indigo Cherry Drops, a dark purply colour that will go nicely with a mixture of other yellows and reds in a variety of sizes. We also bought some companion plants to help control pests – marigolds, calendula and cosmos – time will tell if this works but at east things will look pretty as well. It’s all about biodiversity this year…
The Avian Flu restrictions that were in place have now been lifted in Scotland, a low-risk zone, meaning that as long as extra biosecurity measures have been taken (removing bird feeders etc) that our birds are allowed back outside. I was very excited although with fresh snow on the ground they had to be coaxed with mealworms initially. Now we just need them to start laying again – another effect of them being cooped up for 3 months.
It’s exceptionally mild today and my thoughts can’t help but look toward Spring. Despite the freezing temperatures for a large part of the Winter, we’ve had very little snow in comparison to previous years. I haven’t forgotten the heavy snow at the end of April 2016 that brought the chicken run down though.
The rhubarb is bursting out of the ground just now and our seed potatoes have arrived – this year I’ve gone for Epicure (had to be really :o), Mayan Gold, a favourite with top chefs, Salad Blue – they’re actually blue all the way through and some Pink Fir Apples because I liked the name. This year I won’t make the same mistake I did last year – I put them out too early and a few late frosts meant we didn’t get great yields in comparison with the year before.
None of the Spring bulbs seem to be coming up – they were from two years ago and I replanted them using a multilayering method last year, guess they didn’t like it as they’re not playing ball. I have however ordered a load of summer bulbs for the front garden.
The hens are still incarcerated because of the avian flu restrictions – with an increasing number of outbreaks being confirmed down South the past couple of weeks I’m not sure they’ll have their sentences commuted on the 28th February either. I guess time will tell…
It’s fair to say that since starting University in September, everything else has been pretty much put on hold and while we have plenty of things we should have done to make the garden Winter-ready, very little has been achieved. The new chicken coop is looking pretty good, although the run is still far from finished but that’s about it.
So it should probably come as no surprise that Winter’s crept in with a flourish and taken over. We’ve had snow, gale force winds (enough to bring a tree down the other night) and a deep frost that’s painted everything white for days on end – it certainly looks very pretty.
We do now have a solution to our gas tank problem – we’re having a new, larger one buried underneath our (new) front lawn and the old one taken away, most of the cost being carried by Calor – hurrah. We’ll even have room for a new raised bed when the old tank has been removed – win!
Hoping to get chance to get things tidied up out there soon although I fear we may be a little late to protect some of the plants we’d wanted to this time round.