Brighten up your day with Sue Grant’s weekly updates of what’s happening early doors in her garden this spring.
“In these strange days the early morning skies tell their story. One single fluffy white streak across a clear blue sky where there would normally be dozens, from planes carrying businesspeople and tourists high above northern England.
“Air travel cancelled, human contact restricted, and the news from around the world may be grim, but nature has a way of pressing on regardless. This Easter week has seen both death and life in our garden: First the discovery of a broken blackbird’s egg, probably the victim of the marauding magpies, scavengers who live at the top of the Douglas Fir at the front of the house. Then there was the demise of our tadpoles, or so I thought, followed by the very necessary dead-heading of the daffodils.
“But, it is April, and all around brilliant colours are bursting out from green buds: crimson and cream, purple and orange. My early morning watches have revealed great tits nesting in the re-vamped box on the trunk of the oak tree, with a pair of nut-hatches choosing the old woodpeckers’ hole a couple of metres higher, wrens in and out of the Cupressus bush below and woodpeckers high in the branches above. From my strategically placed chair I have watched with delight. Mr Great-Tit was pecking carefully round the entrance to the bird box when Mrs Great -Tit arrived with a beak full of moss – well, I assumed it was that way round. She pushed him out of the way and popped into the Des. Res. Out again, and hard working hubby was back at work, only to be displaced one minute later. He gave up, flew to a higher branch and serenaded her.
“The next morning the shrill trills of the nuthatch focussed my attention on their activities. Somewhat cheekily they have taken over a ready-made home but there is still work to be done. Intrigued by the frequency of flights between this residence and the spruce tree in another corner I zoomed in with my binoculars. The bird was pecking off some of the flaky russet coloured bark and transporting it back to the hole. They continue to announce their presence all day with a variety of calls.
“The tadpoles? Early in the week there was no sign of survivors from the mass of jelly I had tipped back into the pond after refilling it. Four days later a passing friend, observing from a suitable social distance of course, proved me wrong. I have at least ten (!) little black wrigglers who will have to hide when the heron pays his annual visits.”
See all articles from Sue Grant’s column about what’s happening early doors in her garden.