With many of our gardens showing signs of spring, lots of us will be keen to get outside and begin clearing our borders and pruning back those wayward shrubs.Continue reading
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.
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
Who needs to buy a bee hotel? This leafcutter bee was busy making a nest inside a recessed screw hole in my hosepipe reel.
Have you found tiny little caterpillars munching away on your Aruncus Sylvestris leaves? They are the larvae of the sawfly.
Arbutus unedo, one of my favourite trees is flowering in my garden at the moment. Also known as the Strawberry tree, it has pink tinged white, bell-shaped flowers which hang in clusters from the branches and which are magnets for bees and butterflies.
These flowers will become next years fruit, which unusually appear at the same time as the flowers. The fruit is said to be edible, but doesn’t taste like a strawberry, and can be used to make jam or liqueur. The birds eat them before I get chance to!
Arbus unedo is an evergreen shrub with a bushy habit. However, you can prune the bottom branches off so that it reveals the brown-red bark which peels rather attractively. It is a member of the Ericaceae family so the leaves go yellow if it is not on acid soil – I give mine an Ericaceous feed.
Hedgehogs are known as ‘the gardener’s friend’ as they eat slugs, beetles and caterpillars and do no damage to plants or crops. Continue reading
The bright yellow faces of the sunflowers are such a cheerful sight, but the dilemma facing gardeners is whether or not to deadhead the spent flowers.