A dirty job but somebody has to do it ....

Thankfully this time it wasn't me... It is usually me who dons the waders and steps out into the unknown, but this time Alistair was keen to get in there and clear the weed out - which is incredibly heavy and full of squirmy things. Any newts found get gently placed back into the pond (Alistair says some were as big as crocodiles but then he is prone to exaggeration!). Don't tell anyone about our newts in case the heavy mob from the EU descend and want to know how many we have and are they all accounted for! And while they're here they will no doubt want to check on the bats, one of which Alistair found under the bed a few weeks ago (Boudicca the killer cat had got it). That cat has got to go. We put a collar with bell on her but she has managed to remove that, no doubt while climbing trees looking for nests - I just can bear her murderous ways anymore. Alistair did ring the cat rescue centre where she came from originally but they are full at present, most probably with other killer cats.

Anyway the pond is looking better and the organic nematode things that I put in seem to have cleared the algae bloom and hopefully the bit of rain we had yesterday has flushed through some fresh water from the stream.  The film below was taken on Sunday when we had a family BBQ, the first of the year. We have used the summer house for the first time which involved us having to stock it and get things moved up to that part of the garden; it's quite a trek and we were pleased and relieved when the younger members of the family cleared the plates and dishes with several trips back down to the house. Next time it should be plain sailing. 

So much to do in the garden and if you have watched the film below you will see that we have been overwhelmed with dandelion wishes/seeds, which have blown in from the neighbouring fields. We are going to have a serious dandelion problem at some point!

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 Kiki watching Alistair

Kiki watching Alistair

Week Three of film course

On yet another bright and sunny day I find myself having to water plants - it seems almost a novelty after all the rain we have had.  I'm sure we are going to curse later on in the year but this weekend we were covered in dandelion wishes which must come off the surrounding fields.  The theme for this weeks film is slow motion so here is my try at it.

Film 2 of my film course

I must admit this seems a bit dark and sad but I just liked the song, I wasn't sad at all - Alistair was away down south watching rugby so I just went with my instincts.  I must admit I like the emotion of photo's and film and am not a happy clappy photographer - the black and white seemed to work better with this film and I did pot more than a couple of new oxygenating plants yesterday and yes Kiki was in the pond again.

Films

I am just starting a ten week course on how to make films, and thought i would share my first week film.  Its not amazing but it is a start and I can only get better

Barrels planted

I just love the new Spring plant growth -- apart from the weeds of course! The remaining plants for the three half barrels arrived and I wasted no time in planting them up: Pimpinella major 'Rosea', Astrantia 'Buckland', Geranium phaem, Actaea simplex 'Brunette' and Orlaya grandiflora. I will of course take more photos as they establish themselves and show off their pink, white and dark purple flowers.

We have been working in the ponds to solve the problem we were having with algae growing on the surface where pond grasses in the water were preventing proper movement. Alistair rowed the boat to the problem area while I wore my waders to pull up the grasses and put them into a large container to be ferried across to the compost area. That and a temporary pump seem to have solved the problem -- but next time I plan to be in the boat and Alistair will be in the waders!