I found the first Andrena fulva – tawny mining bee – whilst weeding the garden today. This is a solitary bee which nests underground, building a volcano-like mound of soil around the entrance to its burrow. They generally emerge in April, so this one is a few weeks early.
The tawny mining bee, Andrena fulva
I also found a queen wasp and two honey bees emerging from hibernation in our conservatory, where they have spent the winter.
Spring is definitely in the air; tomorrow is the Spring Equinox so we can look forward to longer days and next weekend 26 March, we move on to British Summer Time when the clocks go forward an hour.
Spring is the time of year when it is summer in the sun and winter in the shade.
Charles Dickens, Great Expectations.
© 2017 Lavender Hedge
The RHS Malvern Spring Festival, is a great place for gardeners to find inspiration. Held on the Three Counties Showground it benefits from having the glorious backdrop of the Malvern Hills.Continue reading
It was jolly cold today and we even got hailstones.
If it wasn’t for all the spring flowers, the garden would have looked like it was in the depths of winter.
Traditionally, lawns are cut between March and October, when the weather is mild enough for the grass to grow. But there is no hard and fast rule about when to give your lawn it’s first cut of the season, it depends on the weather conditions in your area and the type of soil you have.
Between Christmas and New Year I always like to wander round the garden to see what is in flower in the middle of winter. This year, as well as the usual winter flowering plants that I would expect to see, there were some unexpected surprises like lavender and roses, that shouldn’t be flowering in December!
I can’t get enough of Acers! In the Spring the fresh young leaves light up the garden with youthful promise; the leaves dance around in the summer breeze like colourful handkerchiefs and in the Autumn their fiery colours give us the most spectacular natural fireworks display. People think they are difficult to look after, but all you need to do is protect them from cold winds in winter and strong sun in summer.
Over the last few days the leaves on this sycamore tree have started to unfurl. I adore the crinkly copper-coloured new leaves – a sure sign that Spring has arrived, albeit accompanied by hail storms.
Set in a hidden Cotswold valley, Painswick Rococo Garden is home to one of the best snowdrop displays in Gloucestershire. It was originally the garden of Painswick House which was built in 1735 for Charles Hyett. He died in 1738 and it was his son Benjamin who created the garden in the Rococo style, which was the height of fashion at that time. Rococo gardens incorporated a mix of the formal garden style, mixed with natural landscapes and decorated with ornate follies, temples and other structures. A Rococo garden symbolised decadence and pleasure, a place where the aristocracy could show off and entertain their guests. The Rococo style did not last long and few gardens from the period survived intact.
I rescued this little beauty from the garden today and brought it inside to photograph, out of the wind and rain – raindrops on snowdrops.
I have always admired topiary hedges clipped into animals, people or other sculptural shapes. So I decided to clip one of my box hedges into a topiary man. His eyes and buttons are dried Eryngium seed heads.
When it snows, we have a ready-made snowman!