Broom had disappeared , but with good deer management it has returned in abundance.
|New birch, goat willow, wood sorrel and ferns are sprouting next to the cabin.|
The bird and wildlife friendly informal hedge, planted 6 months ago on the verge along the roadside boundary is doing surprisingly well. Everything is thriving except for the blackthorn. Outgrowing everything are the field maple and hazel. We had our doubts about the success of this hedge given how shady the situation is in late Spring and Summer, and how inpenetrable the sandstone and clay soil is in places, but now we can see the encouraging results of last winter's labour we'll continue to augment the hedge during the next planting season. Although the ground is drying out on top after the recent prolonged dry spell, it's still damp underneath, so we hope we won't need to bring in the watering truck just yet.
|Wild Privet (Ligustrum Vulgare)|
|Viburnum lantana (wayfaring tree) is blooming already|
The weather has been perfect for bringing on the young broadleaf trees, planted 17 months ago in the thinned Scots Pine plantation.
|The Hornbeams are doing well|
|The first chestnut appears|
|The first oak to grow out the top of its tube.|
Sarah was sitting a few feet from the cabin, enjoying her coffee overlooking the pond, when she spotted what she thought might be a dead mallard duck. It was extremely well camouflaged, but on closer inspection proved to be not dead, but sitting on a clutch of eggs. It returned her stare quite calmly. Lately we've seen a large number of duck egg shells in the wood clearly taken from nests and eaten by mammals, foxes I expect. I wonder how on earth any ducklings survive. Ducks sit for 28 days and then have to lead the ducklings to water which in this case is a journey of about 20 feet. I don't hold out much hope for the survival of this brood, but it would be nice to be pleasantly surprised
|Sitting on her feathered nest|
|Fine dark grey toad by a woodstack|