It’s Beginning!

April 27th, 2020 | 7 Comments »

This is a strange year. Like most of you, I’ve been spending far more time than usual at home, inside, seeing almost no one apart from my husband. I’ve wasted time and saved my sanity by reading, baking brownies and doing jigsaw puzzles.

This 1000 piece jigsaw of a pointillist painting by Georges Seurat was particularly difficult to do.
This 1000 piece jigsaw of a pointillist painting by Georges Seurat was particularly difficult to do.

 

The weather has been strange too. Spring came about two weeks earlier than usual but overall the  month has been cooler than normal. This means that snowdrops came early and are only now, a month later, beginning to fade.

I took this photo one week ago. Thanks to yesterday's warm weather, the snowdrops are beginning to fade.
I took this photo a week ago. Thanks to warm weather on Saturday, the snowdrops are now finished for the year.

 

I picked the first daffodils on April 12, the earliest I can remember, but the cooler weather that followed stopped their development. Stopped them short, I could say, since many are now blooming on shorter-than-normal stems. On the positive side, unless the weather suddenly heats up, I can anticipate a month or more of blossoms yet to come.

 

One end of the berm by the Skating Pond is warmer than the other and the daffodils always bloom earlier there.
One end of the berm by the Skating Pond is warmer than the other and the daffodils always bloom earlier there.

 

Saturday was wonderfully warm and sunny and I took advantage of the weather to check out how things were doing in the woods. Much to my surprise and delight, the wild garlic was up, colouring the floor of the woods with its bright green leaves.

 

Our woods are covered with wild garlic. As soon as a plant is disturbed, it begins to scent the air.
Ramps, or wild garlic, are a common sight in our woods in the spring. But they seem to be earlier than normal this year.

 

I didn’t have a shovel but with the help of a stick I found, I dug up a few.

 

I ate these, cooked along with store-bought mushrooms, for dinner last night. Delicious!
We ate these, cooked along with store-bought mushrooms, for dinner last night. Delicious!

 

Wildflowers are beginning to bloom, including colt’s foot (Tussilago farfara) alongside the road.

 

Yellow is such a cheery colour in early spring.
Yellow is such a cheery colour in early spring.

 

These tiny bulbs haven’t bloomed in a few years but are now lighting up a dark spot near the front door.

 

wildflowers (1 of 2)

 

Stuck at home and with cold and unpredictable weather — we had snow on April 10! — I’ve cleaned out cupboards and finally, after ten years, am tackling the boxes of family memorabilia stacked in the barn.

 

The first job was organizing the stuff in the barn -- a huge job. (Thanks, Lex!) This stall is full of boxes, many of which came from my parents ten years ago.
The first job was organizing the stuff in the barn — a huge job. (Thanks, Lex!) Many of the boxes in this stall are full of paper saved by my mother who thought everything worth saving. I’ve filled several garbage tubs with duplicate copies of write-ups and genealogical material. I will probably fill several more.

 

The barn isn’t the only place that needed attention. Winter ice on the lake wrecked havoc on our dock, damaging all the top boards beyond repair. We’ve removed those and will replace them soon.

 

Municipal regulations no longer allow permanent docks to be built but ours which was first built over a century ago is grandfathered.
Municipal regulations no longer allow permanent docks to be built but ours which was first built over a century ago is grandfathered.

 

We built a new bench for the Sundial Clearing, part of Timelines, and once the words are burned into the wood, we’ll put it in place.

 

The new bench is exactly like the old one, made like a pine box to remind us that we are always in transit.
The new bench is exactly like the old one, made like a pine box to remind us that we are always in transit.

 

I’m still searching for the right stone to use to replace the tall pine tree whose shadow marked the hours. But that job will have to wait until our local quarry re-opens.

What’s keeping you busy and sane during these tough times?

 

Hunting for Treasures

April 10th, 2020 | 10 Comments »
A few days ago, I started out to take a walk in the woods. First I passed snowdrops and crocus blooming along the drive.   Most of the crocus were yellow but there were a few pale violets, whites and deep dark purples.     Then I spotted daffodils threatening to bloom.   I passed alongside an open farm field and saw some unwelcome visitors.     Then I crossed the road, intending to go to one of my favourite spots. But just as I was about to enter the woods, I noticed

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Visitors to the Garden

April 6th, 2020 | 4 Comments »
Tidy work!
In the last few days, we've had visitors in the garden. Some didn't knock on the door, but they did leave their calling cards to let us know they came around. [caption id="attachment_8585" align="alignleft" width="5184"] Tidy work![/caption]   I can guess who made those holes, but what creature did the work below? [caption id="attachment_8583" align="alignleft" width="3456"] Did a bird strip these trunks bare?[/caption]   Birds are always welcome in the garden. Ducks, too. [caption id="attachment_8582" align="alignleft" width="5184"] I think these mallards are just getting acquainted. But shouldn't he be following her?[/caption]  

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