Tuesday, 14 June 2011

From my garden

I have been cutting the grass today but although we had quite a lot of rain on Sunday afternoon it is still very dry and the grasscutter stirred up clouds of dust. I am writing this after 9pm and it is still light enough to watch a thrush tugging a worm out of the lawn.

I have been looking at the fruit trees and think we may well have a good apple crop. The Laxton Superb tree which has sometimes been barren has plenty of fruit - it is a lovely crisp eating apple. The pears and damsons look good too but the Victoria plum has lost many of its leaves and is not happy. It used to be a reliable heavy cropper but has recently died back.

But my greatest surprise is the peach tree. It is quite young - maybe 6 or 7 years old - and for the last couple of years has suffered from peach leaf curl - I think that's what it's called. This year the same thing happened but now it seems to have grown through it and looks quite healthy. And best of all it has a crop of peaches. I hope they will grow big enough to be edible!

The fig tree continues to produce a few more leaves but is still looking bare, as is part of the privet hedge. We are eating our radishes and have eaten some of the pak choi. It is a new crop for me but has a good flavour and seems to grow well in these dry conditions.

Two nights ago my daughter saw a barn owl, gliding like a ghost along the road outside the house. I had heard that barn owls had suffered heavy losses in the bad winter so it was good to know they are still around here.

And finally a few words about Norman. He is still a lonely bird, unable to keep his wives with him and spending the afternoons wandering about on his own. I have taken to feeding him bits of bread near the house - probably a mistake but I feel sorry for him.

Norman the cockerel

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