Spring continues to be mild with plenty of rain to support the abundant new growth. The large plum tree on the right has finished flowering and has started to put on leaf.
The willows are still bright but I am keeping my eye on them as the leaf buds are just visible and soon they will have to be reduced to stumps providing lots of canes. More than I will be able to use.
The flowers of the apricot trees stand out on the bare tree discretely.
I have seen the first flower on the Cornus mas. My plants are quite young but I am hoping for a better show this year.
The Coronilla glauca has more flowers and the ever green leaves a good addition to the hedge.
The Eleagnus ebbingei has produced a good crop of berries this year. I have read that all the Eleagnus varieties have edible berries (I said edible not tasty) so I will have to have a nibble when they are ripe.
We have another plum tree in flower at the moment. It is only small and is a shoot from a yellow plum tree that died and had to be cut down. It is probably a shoot from the root stock and it will be interesting to see if we get any plums from it this year and what kind they will be.
We removed the vines from an area at the top of the garden to create another sitting area. In the autumn we planted a Pyrus calleryana “Chanticleer”. This tree has long been a favourite but we had not got a good position. With the removal of the vines, we decided we could at last have this tree. It has already produced some flowers but it will take some years before it will put on a show in the spring and shine in its autumn colours.
We have also been tempted to plant the ornamental apple tree Malus coccinella. It too is quite small.
The little tree has managed to hold onto the little apples that are both decorative and hopefully feed the birds in winter. I would be interested to hear from anyone with this tree on how keen the birds are on these fruits.
I grew this Loncera nitida from some small cuttings I took some years ago. I have been very pleased with it as a ground cover plant and I have been transplanting rooted growth to areas I want to cover. I hope these rooted transplants will take more quickly as the little white flowers are very attractive and much appreciated by the bees just now.
Elsewhere. the Hellebores continue to provide lots of colour.
They mix well with the heather and daffodils and provide good ground cover in the summer time.
The male Osmia cornuta continue to patrol the bee houses but it will be at least another two weeks before the females will come out, I think. In the meantime they keep dry in the empty bamboo tubes when it is cold and wet and take nectar breaks when it is sunny.