February sees me still struggling with a ‘flu/virus that I cannot seem to shake.
However, last Saturday I read Murtagh’s Meadow and she informed me that the first of February was Saint Brigit’s day and was considered by many in Ireland to be the first day of Spring. Physically this made no difference to my cough but it did considerably lift my spirits.
The hazlenuts outside of the garden are in flower and for the first time I saw bees gathering pollen from their catkins. I have never seen this inside the garden and I have a sneaky feeling that our bees prefer other pollen.
The Hellebore have started to open and get a lot of attention from the bees when the sun shines.
I started with dark purple ones from my sister’s garden and bought some white ones little by little.
The Hellebore self-seed liberally and I do my best to recuperate as many as I can. I am hoping to get lots of crosses like the one above, but it takes time for the plant to mature and flower. I am just getting to the fun part of the exercise.
They seem ideal plants for me as they provide ground cover and will survive drying out and quite severe conditions during the summer.
I’ve struggled growing snowdrops but I now have an established clump in a very strange uncared for spot at the bottom of the garden. I’ve never managed to grow them close to the house where they could be seen and enjoyed even in inclement weather. Fickle flowers!
The plum tree is beautiful at the moment and full of all sorts of pollinators on the sunny days. It is good to just stand underneath it and listen to them.
It feels so good to go underneath it and look through the canopy of flowers – but it does not cure a cough.
I think the easy pickings on the plum tree distracts them from the less generous hazelnut trees.
In the meantime, I will take the example of our little green tree frog that finds a comfy spot to enjoy the winter sun whenever he can.
I still keep an eye on the Speedwell which is growing in the grass, happy in the moist spring conditions and untroubled by the lawn mower, yet.
I have not seen the pretty grey wild bee again but this bee looks like an Andrena flavipes but if it is, she is flying a month earlier than Steven Falk suggests they might fly in the U.K.
Any comments or identification will be welcome.