an image of someone holding something in their hand

Mussel – Sunday 7th April, 2024

The pond has been taking our attention over the past week. The tadpoles are eating the remnants of their jelly. There are black masses of them, so thick, you can hardly see the individuals but for the wriggling of the mass. All the tadpoles are out of the jelly, and eating like crazy. There are unfertilised eggs remaining, but they …

an image of a child generating power on a bicycle

Pedal Energy – 13th April, 2024

A beautiful, sunny day for our Spring Celebration. There’s plenty of cakes, pizza, and drinks. We have done away with plastic cups, using washable ceramic, and today washable plates too. This takes more work to wash them each time, which is why throwaway cups and plates are so popular, but we must green our lives if we are to evade …

image of tadpoles in the pond

Tadpoles – Saturday 30th March, 2024

It is a warm, sunny day, 15 degrees, with a slight breeze. Yesterday, it was a little colder and felt more so with a sharp wind. I came in then, and found a few free tadpoles, but today there are many more. Nearly all of them are within the earthenware pot, on its side in the pond, half full of …

an image of Spiereae in the garden

Spiereae – Sunday 17th March, 2024

It’s raining as I open up the garden. This morning doesn’t feel like spring at all, as if spring is all frolicking lambs and pussy willows. But rain too is spring. Without the showers, no spring flowers. A shivery breeze too. One of those days. After 40 minutes, the rain stops and I wander the garden. The spiraea by the …

an image of mating frogs in the pond

Mating Frogs – Sunday 10th March, 2024

I saw the first mating pair of frogs in our pond on 18 February. The male lays on the female’s back and grasps her, holding on for many hours. A breeding pair can be spotted by the two heads, his and hers, and you can see more legs than a single frog would have. She’s bigger than he is, especially …

image of Iris spears in the garden pond

Iris Spears – Sunday 25th Feb, 2024

Twice I have seen mating frogs in our pond. The male is on the back of the female clutching her with the nuptial pads on his hands. On both occasions, I thought there would be frogspawn the next day, and, in both cases, there wasn’t. So the matings came to nothing. Obviously, the female didn’t lay the eggs. It could …

picture of a pregnant frog in the pond

Pregnant Frog

Along with a couple of garden visitors, I was looking at a stationary adult frog in the pond. Hey – said a woman, there’s an extra pair of legs, one frog is on top of another. What had seemed a single frog was in fact a breeding pair. Prior to fertilisation, the male gets on the back of the female, …

image of a squirrel

Sparrows – 4th Feb, 2024

Before the red squirrel became rare, it was regarded by hunters and farmers as vermin. They ate the seeds in the fields and grouse-feed too. And much less well known, they added to their diet with birds eggs and chicks, Game keepers shot and trapped the cuties. The grey squirrel was introduced from the US by Thomas Brocklhurst, a rich …

image of sparrows at a bird feeder

Sparrows – 28th January, 2024

On Sunday 28 January, we did the Big Garden Birdwatch. For one hour, over this weekend, the public is asked to spend an hour watching and recording the birds in their garden or local green space, and then send their results to the RSPB. We chose the hour between 11am and 12 noon on the Sunday morning. With 1 in …

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Acanthusigloo – 13th Jan 2024

2024 came in with rainy days that soon ceased, and the temperature dropped. The cold days have kept the garden quiet, but the low temperature is no bad thing. Frost kills bugs, such as greenfly, who would otherwise survive the winter and reproduce in greater numbers in the spring. Daffodils and our apple trees need a period of cold weather. …