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Members' Blogs - Week 3 of Lockdown

Alex

Walking my dog this week I have been struck by how quiet it is compared to pre-lockdown. The other day I stopped in a sunny spot by the river. Sitting on a bench, put there by the fishermen, the only sound I could hear was the noise of the wind in the trees and birds singing. The usual distant hum of traffic roaring up the dual carriage way towards the A1 was completely absent - bliss. This week I have been playing around with a macro lens on my camera, a lens that allows me to get up close and personal. Below are a few of my favourite snaps or rather the ones that weren’t all blurry.

Elizabeth W

Photos of a small rockery with a memorial stone and a tree - malus.

Jacqui

I have taken a couple of photographs again of our garden. Well, areas that the puppy had not totally flattened. Of note in the first photograph which is mainly bulbs (just visible top left) are lilies which so far are only about 9” tall but damaged already by lily beetles. I found 5 scarlet adults on another plant in the garden.

There have been numerous strings or clusters of their tinny red eggs too. They managed to get squashed between my fingers.

Adults unfortunately usually get trodden under foot. Pity they are beautiful ‘looking’. A warning for all to check their lilies, as they can be decimated by these pests. On a more chest note I’ve included a photograph of an early clematis macropetala Markham’s Pink (I think)  growing through a climbing rose on the garage wall. This wall had been covered with Garrya elliptica tassels earlier this spring, not visible in this photograph.

The orchid is a Phalenopsis - Sweet Dreams, a hybrid and beautifully scented.

Christine

This photo was taken through our patio door.

The bulbs are positioned so the when I’m sitting in the chair with a drink in hand (coffee) I enjoy the the shapes An colours of the blooms.

I was rather slow going to buy bulbs last year, there was no choice. In fact I got the last 12 packets in the garden centre. I expected little, but I’m pleased with the look and the length of time they have flowered.

No idea what they’re names are apart from cheerfulness.

Gillian

Through the garden gate - the entrance to my garden. I love the euphorbia at this time of year although it’s a bit of a thug!

Acer just waking up.

Amelanchier in full flower.

Estella contemplating.

Margaret

I didn't realise I had so many 'animals' in my garden...

... and then just to show I do have flowers a white Skimmia, a double yellow daffodil and I think it's an Ixia.

Agnes

Mahonia popping through in the centre with traces of Brunnera, and the Cornus (wedding cake tree) coming into bud. Tiny bits of Bergenia adding a touch of pink.

The paving was covered in invasive weeds coming through the cracks. Whole area was taken up, weeds removed, weed repellent material laid, sand on top, paving stones ‘Karchered’ before being repaid and then the two chairs and table spruced up. Job done!

Bridal Wreath Spirea looking good.

Keith

Guess the number of daffodil dead heads in the bucket and win a prize! Is everybody doing this during lockdown?

Sun shining on daffodils and tulips.

Peter & Margaret

Our Clematis is still in bud.

Next door's Crab Apple is doing well.

The Primulas and Violets live in a pot outside our back door.

The Wallflower is by the steps down to our front door.

The Wild Cherry planted itself quite a few years ago.

Ann

A couple of photos of part of the garden this week. We copied the idea of “crowding” the tulip bulbs from the Botanic Garden!  They were always such a fabulous show. We have missed them this year.

The photo of the Amelanchier is a week old. I was quite pleased with the tree. This is year 2 after planting. Last year the leaves on the new shoots suffered premature leaf drop. I researched and decided fungal trouble.  It was watered regularly in dry spells and fed. I covered the soil in bark to stop rain splashing any fungal spores onto the tree and I sprayed with fungicide early in the season. Now I am a little concerned again. The new leaves are not a healthy looking green but have a brownish hue.

Should I be concerned or is this because the leaves are very young or the result of a couple of chilly nights? Grateful for any thoughts.

Dave

Another week of lockdown and it looks as though this may go on for some while. Our routine still the same but keeping to the daily walk is proving a challenge.

But the garden is getting a lot of my attention. Managed to reuse some polycarbonate sheeting that's been lying around the garden for some while to build a cold frame. Also managed to plant out the potatoes. The weather was so good and the soil is in good heart so thought that they were better in the ground than sitting chitting on the windowsill.

But work and no play makes Jack (aka Dave) a dull boy so took some time to stop, enjoy the spring weather and take a few photographs.

The camellia was a sight for sore eyes but unfortunately the hard frost on Monday night left it a shrivelled mess as well as the flowers on the garish (to my eyes) Rhodo.

For a number of years I have tried to create a smallish wildlife meadow. I do all the things I am supposed to do but its slow going. But I planted about 12 fritillaria bulbs a number of years ago and they have now increased to about 70 after seeding around. So be patient !!!

We have a number of epimediums in the garden. They are herbaceous perennials. The flowers are small and delicate and the early foliage is paper thin and flushed with bronze colour. They don't mind dry shade and once established they look after themselves other than looking better if you cut off the old foliage in the early spring.

The magnolia lilliiflora is now a medium sized tree and it flowers its socks off for a few weeks in early spring. I used to think the flower colour was a bit insipid but it has grown on me over the years. There are so many flowers that the frost damage is less noticeable.

And I will say it again even though I know I shouldn't - the garden could do with some rain.