Friday, 24 April 2009

Slow worms in the pond

On Tuesday I saw my first slow worm of the year whilst planting some annuals in the wildflower border. Around this time last year we had to fish two different adult slow worms out of one of the ponds. I've been searching through my natural history books and on the internet, but there's very little information on slow worms and water. They clearly can swim, but whether or not they entered the pond intentionally and whether they were capable of getting out on their own I've no idea.

Monday, 20 April 2009

A frog blog

Today I was given a frog by a kind man and his two children. They found it a couple of days ago and had been "looking after" it. Whilst looking for somewhere to release it they happened to see our pond (lucky we haven't managed to put up our last fence panel yet) and so they offered their treasure to me. The frog seemed very relieved to be in the water and this evening he could be seen sitting on one of the ledges in the pond.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Squirrels need hugs too

I love the squirrels that visit our garden, but they do like to cause trouble with their antics. I learned long ago not to put nuts in the feeder nearest the house as I keep all my pots and seedtrays by the house and the squirrel loves nothing more than to dig up my little seedlings and replace them with peanuts.

A few minutes ago Ian pointed out that one was digging in a pot of rosemary. I opened the back door to shoo him away. He proceeded to what we call pond 2 (the smaller pond that we put in at the end of last year) and I thought he was looking for somewhere to bury something, perhaps a nut he had dug up from the rosemary pot. Just before dinner I divided the bugle in the larger ponds bog garden and planted a piece in the pond 2 bog garden. The squirrel proceeded straight to the newly planted bugle. Since we have clay soil it's pretty normal for the squirrels to bury things where I've recently been gardening as the soil is much easier to dig. To our absolute astonishment, rather than bury something in the soil, the squirrel got up on its hind legs, put its front paws round the bugle flower and gave it a hug. The flower is now sadly leaning, but I wouldn't have missed it for the world.

Saturday, 18 April 2009


I had a lovely surprise when I went down to the pond today. I'm proud to say that our first damselflies have emerged from the pond - large red damselflies.

Upon further investigation of the surrounding vegetation I found another damselfly and a further 8 exuviae.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

A week away

I'm always surprised how much the garden changes whilst we're away. In particular, the plants round and in the pond have grown substantially and started to flower for the first time.

I love marsh marigolds

Dad gave us this bugle in the bog garden

and the pendulous sedge.

Yesterday I divided a large clump of red campion in the bog garden and disturbed two small frogs in the process. They were the first frogs I've seen this year.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Across the pond

The larger tadpoles have made a new home at the shallow end of the pond, presumably because the water is warmer there.