A Halt To Proceedings

Today I worked on the far end of the invasive vegetation. Turning left from the new arch and working in the opposite direction from the house was the most difficult stretch yet. It looks as if my predecessor gave up the task of keeping next door’s produce at bay. There remain root clusters and stumps of holly, elder, and, of course, lonicera, to dig out from our side.

All these plants were giving thick brambles a lift over to our side. I was having to toss the bits I cut off higher and higher into the air to send them back home. Jackie tells me that snail throwers have to eject the creatures sixteen feet over their fences to stop them returning. I don’t think my tangled masses travelled that far, so maybe they’ll be back. But I’ll be ready for them.

A blackbird’s nest containing two eggs occasioned a halt to proceedings, just as I could see the light at the end of the tunnel, although it doesn’t look like it from the photograph  of the path. There are many derelict avian properties in this choking mass, but this one was high enough to provide light and oxygen. Even though they were on enemy territory I thought I should not frighten their mother into abandoning her babies. Well, that’s my excuse, anyway. I don’t know how long it takes for the eggs to hatch, nor the length of time chicks must be fed before leaving home, but most of the clearance is done, and it is not as if there is nothing else to do in the garden.
I satisfied myself with more tree pruning.
Jackie has continued to make excellent progress on her pathway, making creative use of various iron artefacts along the way.

We are particularly pleased with the wheels.
As usual for each of us, she took a diversion or two. The kitchen garden is very overgrown at the moment, so much so that it was difficult to walk under its entrance arch. In clearing this ingress she

discovered a beautiful ballerina rose. We made another trip to Walkford this afternoon to collect more plants from Shelly and Ron’s.
After this we pottered about, pruning here, weeding and digging up brambles there. In the process Jackie brought another beautiful rose into the light.

This one, despite its colouring, bears an accurately illustrated label from Home Base naming it Pink Abundance. The previous owners’ habit of leaving the labels on plants has proved useful when they haven’t disintegrated.
Ashleigh fish and chips provided our takeaway dinner. Jackie went to fetch them and I laid the table. We ate them, with pickled onions, from the perfectly serviceable cardboard containers supplied. I drank a glass of the Languedoc.


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