We said we would limit ourselves to one picture a day so here it is
We have a love hate relationship with bracken, although mostly love. These uncurling fronds, embryo shaped, combine delicacy with power. Later, the bracken smell is laden with childhood memories of moorland walks and leafy dens. Any hate is down to keeping it in its place as it tries to invade the meadow. We have drawn a red line. Well, a green line actually in the form of a mown path with any eruption beyond it being condemned to snapping and stamping. We fear they are winning.
Oh, and this
The first yellow rose that rears high up on the front of the house.
The tree heather is like… a tree… made of heather
The red hawthorn is Muriel’s memorial tree and its flowering brings back her smiling.
The Arts and Crafts Movement believed that Beauty and Utility were inseparable.
Plants’ only motivation is Utility, and in accomplishing that they achieve more Beauty than can be imagined
We used to think that Wild Garlic was an exotic to be experienced through sight and smell when passing through daleland woods. Now we have it outside our back door
And talking of olfactory beauty, please do sniff our Azalea
and bask in the heady aroma of the Hawthorn
If this was made by people would you pay to see it?
and this art print
Here are some more utilitarian beauties
Sometimes the Laburnum is imprisoned is suburban clichés – but let it free…
And you thought you could get away without a tulip
But we save the best until last. Our Meadow is improving year by year. We scythe off the grass and take it away to decrease the nitrogen in the soil. This plant works against that
But this one is winning
The whole area is now filled with Yellow Rattle. It is partly parasitic on the grass roots, sapping their energy and weakening their vigour allowing a greater diversity to rise up. We did not sow any seed, it came up from below after who knows how many years of dormancy.
We have quite a variety of hen breeds at Gribin Isaf but one of our favourites is the Partridge Orpington.
That is Lazy Susan, one of two young birds of the breed we bought from Lynhall Orpingtons earlier this year. Not fair to call her Lazy really. She was younger than her friend and quite young to be introduced into the flock. She had a hard time at first but is now well integrated.
Our first Partridge Orpingtons came as hatching eggs from a member of our family who breeds them. Part of the outcome from that was George, one of our cockerels.
Last month we got some hatching eggs from Lynhall Orpingtons to try and increase our number of this breed. They went in the incubator but at the same time we were on watch for broodies as it is much easier for us if they take care of the chicks once they are hatched. Unlike when we had to borrow Brenda we have had a number of our birds showing inclinations including a young hen called Amy and Speckled Sussex Claire. Claire is a seasoned mother and has successfully brought up a couple of broods in the past.
We gave both birds a few of our eggs to get them happy until they were needed. On Wednesday one of the eggs under Amy sort of hatched. Sort of, because it looked as if Amy had crushed the egg but when we gave a hand the chick was fine.
As Amy’s mothering skills were in doubt we moved this chick up to the incubator where the following day she was joined by the hatching Orpingtons
Poor old Amy was evicted from the maternity quarters and today Claire was installed and given the brood to take care of