The extra bits...(Under construction).

Sunday, 5 April 2015

A busy day....

      Bloody hell fire am I glad to take the weight of my feet today! I am absolutely well and truly knackered and aching in places un-ached in before. The day started off easily enough with the usual getting the terrible twosome out and fed, then a sit down with a brew catching up on your wonderful blogs. With the Sun out and the temperature actually rising I decided to have an easy 'potter' in the garden, that's when the trouble started.....

     Firstly I planted my freebie 'Tumbler' tomato seeds. The plan is, hopefully, that I'll have enough for three hanging baskets on the shed giving me some tasty fruit to chomp upon in the Summer...


     After this I finished laying the extra floor layer in the shed to make it easier to brush out and to strengthen the existing floor...

Ahh enough room now to swing a cat-o-nine tails...

The view from the shed window

Bear likes the tidier shed
   
     Then it was time to get dinner on the go and slam in the lamb...

They just live in hope

     Whilst the lamb was slowly cooking to perfection (even if I do say so myself) we decided to make the most of the Sun and headed to the small country park at Cefn Mawr. I'd never been there before and was pleasantly surprised, especially when we got to park under the shadow of a wonderful piece of Victorian engineering...



      Built in 1846-8 and designed by Scottish engineer Henry Robertson the Cefn viaduct was constructed to provide railway access to the local area. It stands 100 feet high and has 10 arches and more information about it may be found here.

     The short circular walk follows the viaduct and then along the river Dee before climbing to a small 'farm' which has a selection of animals and events for educational purposes. I have to mention my despair and frustration at this point of the lack of even basic knowledge amongst many of the families of things that as a child I took for granted...a cockerel was loudly identified as a turkey, a couple of ducks were "geese or maybe they are swans?" and so on. What chance do we have of educating children to preserve our wildlife when one adult was trying to prise the lock off an enclosure of pigs for a closer look telling his child that "yeah it's ok to feed him your chocolate bar wrapper", for fecks sake! Sorry ranting a tad, moving along, on the walk more signs of spring were showing including my second Bumble Bee of the year and a Small Tortoise Shell Butterfly, and no I didn't get pictures of em cause I'm like a bloody elephant when it comes to getting close to Fauna.

     Having said that I did take some pictures of stuff that moves far more slowly than moi...


Lesser Celandine

Wood Anemone

Colt's-foot

Willow (I think)

Hawthorn

Mahonia


Primrose

     There were a couple of flowers I struggled to identify...

Perhaps not a wildflower?

Now I first though Gunnera but now I'm leaning to Butterber?

Yes I know it's a fungus but that's as far as it goes..

     After the stroll we returned home to consume the lamb dinner with much relish and enjoyment, it were bloody delicious in fact. But then I had the idea of clearing the area to the side of the house in preparation for the building of my storage lean-too which led to a surprising amount of reusable materials....



      All this from a surprisingly small space in which I can now start building my storage space complete with a living roof....


     Oh and whilst leveling the ground I unearthed some interesting glass pieces which I will investigate further when I have cleaned them up..


     And of course whilst I was running myself ragged the terrible twosome supervised from afar...



     So there we have it, a busy day indeed not to mention writing this drivel and looking up the various plants. Oh and one last thing, I have started a handwritten journal for the wildlife garden and for the walks. Todays entry (the first entry) is simple enough telling me I planted the tom seeds, pruned the roses (did I not mention them!), only two different avian visitors to the garden today - Chaffinch & Sparrow and when pottering around my third B.Bee of the year and second one in the garden. Do you keep a journal to help keep track of things?

Til the next time, take care..

John

33 comments:

  1. Certainly a busy day for you John ! The scenery of the bridge is very nice and interesting . Good to see the floor of your shed,,.well done it must feel good to see so much progress in and around your garden .The "mahonia" reminds me of a plant we have here ,I don't recall seeing it around anymore, maybe I will go to the nursery and have a look for it ...lovely pics .Good to see you all enjoying the sun .yummy roast ,my favorite!
    Heard an unusual bird call in the park next door to mine amongst the Casarina pine trees this morn so I am going to try and look out for it .There are cookaburras, cockatoos .sparrow ,blue wren ,2 different honey eating native birds ,peewees , doves ,minor birds ( nuisance) and occasionally a white owl makes an appearance near my fence . I love to listen to them especially early in the morning waking up. ...oh and frogs when its raining just by my bedroom window ..
    I started keeping a journal of my planting ,just have to find it .
    take care * Bron
    Good luck with your tomatoes!

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    1. I love the sound of frogs calling Bron, part of nature's music.

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  2. Good luck with your tomatoes John! They are the one thing The Ravishing Mrs. TB requests year after year and the one thing I have not been able to grow here in New Home with any success. Beautiful pictures as always, and especially taken with the Hawthorn - I have read of such things but never seen them. I am incredibly impressed and inspired by your ability to take the space you have and make something out of it. Puts me to shame.

    Yes, the fact that a whole generation is growing up not really knowing what agriculture is and where their food actually comes from is alarming. This does not end well for us, I think.

    Lhiats, TB

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    1. Alarming indeed TB, targets not survival seems to be mankinds mantra these days.

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  3. Such a lot going on in your life.... as it should be. When the Hawthorn is in flower it changes its name to May, hence the old expression 'Ne'er cast a clout till May is out'. People often think it refers to the month of May, but of course it's the flowers. You may now cast your clout!

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    1. Now I did not know that Cro, consider my clout cast :-)

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  4. People's knowledge of the country side makes me despair. I can't believe they thought feeding a pig a wrapper was alright! I'm making sure my girls know the difference between certain plants and trees, my three year old already knows nettles and docks and what to do with the latter if she's stung by the former! If timmes everget hard there are going to be many tgat suffer due to shear ignorance!

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    1. Good for you Kev, what hope do children have of learning about and appreciating the value of living in harmony with nature when the adults are so ignorant? Oh by the way the rather alarmed adult was errr...corrected in assumption this time, quite amusing for moi being the correctie.

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  5. The tomato variety you have should bear a good amount of fruit, the white flower is a white violet, It looked familiar so I googled it. I don't keep a journal but I do alot of lists. Please show us if your treasures turn out to be something interesting.

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    1. Ah now I thought violet and have taken your lead and now just googled it myself, several varieties out there especially in the Americas. I will indeed keep you informed about treasure unearthed .

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  6. I am knackered just reading your blog today!

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  7. I did grow similar tomatoes in a basket but despite water gel granules, it just dried out too much - hope you do better. Lovely pictures as always. A good tip for a shed is to put up strong batons and hools and hang as much stuff on them as possible - helps keep the floor empty!

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    1. Ah I have a cunning plan m'dear and because of my approach these days unfortunately water gel granules are not an option. I'm going to try and avoid hanging stuff in the shed as I'm hoping that the 'living roof store' will take care of stuff that requires being hung. Workbench and shelving will be the order of the day for my mancave.

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    2. No longer an option here now!

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  8. So much plant life to see on your walk. Oh, how I love the smell of hawthorn - the smell of a hawthorn hedgerow after the rain is one of my very favourite things.I think it reminds me of my childhood.

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    1. Ah the smell of the garden or the forest are also lovely after warm summer rain, it's always honeysuckle that makes me dream of childhood days though Scarlet.

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  9. Very interesting post John. There are so many abandoned railways. Love the picture of the old bottles.

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    1. Cheers Dave, the Cefn viaduct is still in use to this day which just proves that back then things were built to last, although it would have been nice to see a steam locomotive hurtling across at full pelt. Have admit to being chuffed with the bottles, looks like the two taller ones are from a long gone Wrexham brewery..we shall see in time.

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  10. Def White violets - we have loads this year, must take a photo.
    The schools round here have special days in co-operation with the Suffolk Agricultural Association when they run events at the Suffolk showground to show children about farming. But that's just a few hours so probably doesn't do a lot to educate them or their parents

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    1. Thanks 'Triple S' ;-) Every little helps in trying to educate children but perhaps more emphasis is required in the classroom and also hands on. We had a school farm back in the day and several excursions to the outdoors doing things such as checking the local river for wildlife, geology trips to places like Snowdonia all manner of stuff to be honest. But it would take a massive government change of direction to change a population's knowledge and then hopefully viewpoint on such matters. A shame as the human race ultimately is killing the very web of life that it needs to survive. Sorry rant over....for now.

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  11. Gosh - you've been busy John. Feel very sad and angry too about lack of knowledge about farm animals and nature in some families today. And what do they learn at school? Natural history should be on the national curriculum in my view. Your plant is Butterbur - all being well off this afternoon to look for some on a local nature reserve. Yes, I keep a handwritten journal mainly about natural history but I put garden stuff in there too. Enjoy the rest of your Easter.

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    1. Thanks Robin, tis sad indeed the state of future generations waning knowledge about nature.

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  12. The white flower is Sweet Violet, John, and the other one looks like Butterbur to me. Your Willow is Sallow, or Goat's Willow.

    Liking all your hard work and the pics of the girls are gorgeous, as always :o)

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    1. Thank you CT, not such a busy day today but still something to post about tomorrow.

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  13. I tried growing tomatoes from seed once....total disaster! lol...I don't seem to be green fingered at all. Plants get a 50/50 chance with me...50% they will survive - 50% chance they will keel over!

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    1. Not exactly green fingered myself Ann but I keep trying not to kill what I plant :-) I've never grown toms from seed before so I'm not expecting much success :(

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  14. Looks very much like Spring over on your side of the pond. Some nice shots of the local fauna. Nothing like a good lamb dinner. Now I'm hungry.

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    1. Certainly has felt like spring the last few days Mark, and left over lamb casserole tonight ;-)

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  15. oh my! no wonder you were aching...a Day Moste Productive indeed! and what a lovely view from the shed....

    i love the expression on the face of the bench lounger.....sublime contentment, i think. :)

    i've just started keeping a written garden/nature journal....it fills me with all sorts of earth-nerd delight.

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  16. I adore mahonia! And I do think that is butterber. I am a true sucker for primrose....I LOVE it that you know all their names. I will now send you many photos of flowers in my garden that I have no name for!

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  17. Feel free to do so m'dear and I will do my very best to oblige Maria, though I'm only learning myself. E-mail is wooly2165@outlook.com

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