A hot end to May

A hot end to May

The left hand side of the back garden has shade in the afternoon.  Today the temperature in the shade went up to 34 degrees Centigrade but I was able to work in the shade as there was a light breeze too. Shady sitting places are needed in these temperatures. There were a lot of weeds … Continue reading

After the rain

After the rain

These past few days we have had rain.  I’m happy, the garden is happy. The garden smells so good too.  As I watch the bees on the Veilchenblau rose, I can smell an incredible mix of the rose, honeysuckle, Philadelphus and warm leaves. The rain has been in such short supply this year that the … Continue reading

The loss of a beehive.

The loss of a beehive.

On 7th May, we lost our brave Violette. For those of you that might be interested to know, in April I wrote that our favourite hive, Violette, swarmed.  The swarm arrived happily in a nuke that we had placed on the roof of the old chicken coop and subsequently we transferred her to the end of … Continue reading

We give Nature a home…usually

We give Nature a home…usually

We plant flowers that all the bees like – not just the honey bees. It is not too difficult finding the flowers for us and the bees. I love Wisteria and it was good to see that a female blackbird has chosen the Wisteria growing on the wall of our outbuilding to make a nest. … Continue reading

Saints de Glace

Saints de Glace

At 7:30 am today 27th April 2017, the temperatures dropped to minus 4.5 degrees C (24 degrees F).  We see around us many vineyards devastated by the frost.  The vines that had just flowered were frozen. The last few weeks of really warm weather (up to 27 degrees C), have advanced the vines 12 to 15 days, compared with … Continue reading

An April to remember

An April to remember

The one strong feature of the garden in April is the perfume of the Wisteria as it pervades the garden and the house. Of course, there is the noise of the Carpenter and bumble bees in the Wisteria that is part of April as well. The Cerinthe is well established in the front garden now … Continue reading

Honey bees Update April 2017

Honey bees Update April 2017

We were so pleased that our four hives came well out of the winter.  On warmer days throughout the winter the bees were active, even bringing in pollen.  As Brother Adam had suggested we had placed a super under the hives to lift them a little above the damp earth and provide a layer of … Continue reading

A confused spring

A confused spring

For the past couple of days we have had sunshine and temperatures going up to 26 degrees centigrade.  Sitting outside (in the shade in the afternoon) it feels more like summer. The large plum tree has finished flowering and yet many of the trees like the Ash and Poplar still look skeletal from afar. The … Continue reading

A good spring for Osmia cornuta

A good spring for Osmia cornuta

Originally posted on Bees in a French Garden:
My bee houses have been rewarding me with lots of activity from the Osmia cornuta in the past weeks.  I’m sure they don’t need any help to find hollow nesting places but when they choose my hollow bamboo canes or drilled-out wood I have the pleasure of…

Not such a daft old bat

Not such a daft old bat

Sadly our annual bat visitor left us two days ago.  It was sad to look and find an empty space behind the shutter.  I checked the shutter on the other side of the French door but I knew he did not like that side.  No bat on the wall or on the shutters. Then it … Continue reading