My Life is really in the Garden

Enjoying and sharing the daily discoveries of the beautiful nature that surrounds me in my lovely garden and everywhere else!


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Dearest Diary .. I must share some little things that have been happening in my life ..

Awhile ago, I think it was a few months ago ..I was visiting the Yorkshire Tea fb page and saw that my favourite brew was available in a variety of sizes!  Since these were not available in Canada (sob) I discovered that they are available via Amazon!  So I quickly ordered two of the 480 bag size.   I might have written about this before, Dearest Diary, but seeing these photos again made my heart beat a little faster.  I recognized this feeling as joy so I just had to post it.   One of these bags is now happily living with a friend (who is actually a Brit, so she totally loves and appreciates YT)P1350609

Lo and behold, this bag does not easily fit into our pantry!  P1350612

I’m continuing with my fiddle lessons …making tiny progressions and now I find great pleasure in getting lost in the learning.  The journey continues.  My teacher is patiently teaching me the theory behind the music and that door is opening and the light is coming through.  Some tunes which I found to be high mountains when I began to learn them are now tiny little pebbles .. the journey for those is the work to make them sound melodious and this will happen   I saw a funny cartoon on facebook recently!  2 characters in each scene.  One person bemoans the other .. saying “I wish I had talent”  “I wish I could play like you” and steadfastly, the other person says, each time “I practice” “I practice” I practice”  And so it goes with me!  I practice!!!  Sometimes painfully, sometimes joyfully, but .. I practice!

Anyway, I went to my first ever fiddle workshop and this is a tune we Beginners were taught in one of the sessions!  Usually I’m a little shutterbug, taking many photos of my experiences, but .. that day was full of learning and dancing so I took just this one! It’s a good memory of my first workshop!  🙂P1350660

On the days that I have my German lessons, I sometimes have my fiddle lessons also and in between these two learning sessions .. I have time to visit the ocean at Dallas Road.  I sometimes meet lovely dogs and have great chats with people.  Sometimes I just watch the mighty Pacific Ocean .. oh I am one very lucky gal .. I know!P1350734

The power of the waves and the majesty of this ocean has such good energy to enjoy.P1350726

And the ducks ..here is a link to the ducks of the Pacific Northwest.  It is very peaceful to walk along the beach and enjoy the antics of these lovely winged beings.

 

Lovely bundle of twisted kelp along the beach .. all whirly and twirly and graceful.  I think of how this kelp arrived at this location on the beach!  The power of the water tossing it about and finally just bored with playing with it .. leaving it nestled on the smooth rocks … till the time comes for playing again.P1350648

Speaking of smooth stones and pebbles .. love the random placement of the beach stones .. so much beauty in this .. tranquility springs to mind.P1350654

I look at my watch and realize that it’s time now to continue on my way .. back up these stairs, to my little red car and off to my fiddle lesson.  I’ve enjoyed this oceanic break to my day … this is such a beautiful place to be and I welcome the opportunity to visit again and again.P1350659

Last week or so .. the beauty of the garden began to unfold… tiny gifts of delicate little flowers ..P1350791

Polyanthus flowers, planted years ago and forgotten!  Remember me? …. sings this little one, growing strongly through the mulch!  Polyanthus .. Primrose .. potatoes .. patatoes .. here is a link for more information on that subject!P1350632

My generous garden neighbour kindly gave me a fig cutting last year .. I’ll plant it out soon.P1350627

From a few weeks ago ..  a nice surprise suddenly appeared as if to say “summer is almost here!!”P1350625This city, Victoria, is simply mad with Snowdrops popping up everywhere, gracing  the tiniest of spaces with these delicate flowers… as soon as the snow disappeared, they  emerged from the earth.    Silent reminders of beauty and joy.P1350622

Aha .. the dwarf weeping willow … the Bewick Wrens choose the fluffiest buds to line their nests.  This is the third year I’ve seen them nest in our yard.  This year, I saw them gathering these and am mystified as to where the nest is being built.P1350620

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Lady JaneE Kat .. Queen of the Garden!  She’s actually meowing at me right now … “let me out” shes cries “I want my treats and I want to sit in the sun” .. ok, ok, as soon as I finish my blog!  Then it’s on with my gardening outfit and va va voom to continue my decluttering in the garden .. creating lovely gardens, planting up all of my potted plants.  P1350585

There are about 6 Stellar Jays that visit the garden ..looking for peanuts and birdseed.  I discovered that they make the most gentle little crooning sounds, that are similar to the European Starlings that visit during the summer.   Lovely music to my ears.P1350499

Oh darling little Chickadee!  The Nuthatches also visit and I’ve been lucky enough to observe them quite close .. as they peck at some dead tree branches, looking for bugs.  They were like tiny little woodpeckers at work .. this was a delight to see!P1350544

And the little Junco!!!  Sweet!  I have a large supply of birdfeeders and quite like this style.  Easy to disassemble to clean.    Provides a place for the birds to rest awhile.P1350511

Well .. my little boss demands to go outside now.  Time to make a quick YT brew and put on my Carhart bibb overalls, gather my gardening supplies and outside!

Today the weather is a mix of gentle rains and sunshine .. perfect for being outside!

 

 


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Happy photos taken during the sunny spring …..great memories and more to come! Yippee …

I was going through some photos that I’d taken during the year and the sweet memories started popping up .. my visual diary of happy days and things seen during my daily life!

Saw this sign posted at a garden shop and it pretty well sums up my gardening life when I’m out in the world, away from my garden!    I’m a magnet for perennial plant sales.

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From last spring .. beauty in all things ..frid-05

Cannors Nursery at the Sears Mall .. loving the decadence of their whimsical decorations.  Course I would never ever do that to my violin!!  🙂  This one looks like it has had a lot of adventures, wonder where it was played, by whom and what lovely music has been made when it was being used for its true purpose?  Did it go travelling or just stay in town?  Did the owners love it to death and practice every day?  So many questions.  Still, I like that it is a focus of the garden area.

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Last spring, Gold Crown Sparrow resting near a blue Camus flower – at Fort Rodd Hill.

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Miners Lettuce at Fort Rodd … lush and beautiful.  Great for snacking on .. .or make a salad .. lots of natural nutrition ..frid-03

Darling JaneE Kat .. sitting on the back stairs, her favourite catnip plant right beside her, ready for nibbling on ..frid-06

Salmonberry blooming away .. these plants are easy to propagate, grow quite tall and are very resilient.  The orange berries are tasteless and I think the birds love them as I rarely find any to munch on when I go searching.  That’s all right by me!   More food for them.   I do love the flowers though.frid-07

Sweet little baby Bewick Wren .. elusive little bird and happy to be able to get a quick photo.  They are nesting somewhere in the yard.frid-08

A few seconds later, he was perching on a branch of the apple tree .. listening to his parents calling and soon flew away.  Love these precious moments in the garden.frid-09

Delicate Rock Rose flowers …frid-10

Diminutive little flower growing along the ground ..frid-12

.. and a tiny little winged creature is dining out on an early Saturday morning in the sun ..frid-13

Magnificent Beaufort Mountain Range  and the stately clouds adorn it like a crown, how very fitting!frid-11

And so DH sweeps us away up to the clouds in the dear blue skies above … flying in the PW6-U …frid-23

Woo Hoo .. this is living …. miss this and looking forward to the spring when we can go flying up there again .. and again .. and again …frid-20

Travelling in the air is so magical .. it is truly another world and I am so very happy that DH takes me away to this special place .. Let’s see .. garden .. sky .. garden .. sky .. oh I have the best of both mystical and magical worlds I am so lucky!frid-20-2

Here is a great explanatory interview of the  PW6-U   The Pawnee is the tow plane, they were used for crop dusting years ago.

And this is truly .. truly .. so beautiful … enjoy this beautiful flying video, it captures the essence of ..sailplane flight up in Port Alberni … my most favourite video ever ..so perhaps you can see how magical this flying is and why I love it so much.

Anyone can go on a Scenic flight and have a taste of what it is like to glide high in the skies at the Beaufort Mountains ..

Sigh …

The fall winds have started and the leaves have started to rain down to the ground.  A change in scenery, wild and free.

I’m looking forward to going outside to see how the bean forest is doing .. and today will start leaving out a little bit more seed and suet for the birds who visit.  Yesterday I saw my first Junco so I’ll start leaving out the flax seed that they love.

The baby birds hatched this past spring will soon be experiencing their first winter.  I know that they are wild birds and will survive.  However, I can’t resist a little picture in my mind, of knitting them the tiniest of little scarves and sweaters from silky spider webs to keep them warm!

They will survive.  And I will support them by ensuring that I keep their feeders clean, give them good seed mixes and make sure there is a steady supply of water, even when the temperature goes down.

Well … time to go and start this day!!!

🙂


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Some rambles from the spring – willows, sheep, birds and all that sort of thing ..

Some days I just like to get in my little car and wander around … visiting farms, discovering new “eye candy” in nature and things along that vein.   Just me and my car.  Or just me and walking .. whatever.  Just me.P1230926So in the spring I went to visit the Fickle Fig farm .. an organic farm full to bursting with lots of crops, and farm animals.  Here are some of the goats.   As I walked across the muddy fields, a small group of them started to follow me .. not being a really incredibly brave person, I called to my friend “help .. they are all following me” .. how impressive is that.  To be unnerved by these little goats.  Nonetheless,  he swiftly sent them off in another direction.  whew!!  Still they do look very handsome (from a distance and on the other side of the fence, lol)6661aSome Canada Geese taking a rest in a nearby field.6673Then I made my way to the Wood Willow farm .. where I am the #1 customer!  Here are some of the cuttings that I brought home with me and planted.6670Here is  a handwoven willow basket .. how beautiful ..6667Some local landscapers were creating a habitat for the French Lop-ear rabbits (rescue rabbits).

6664I forget the type of willow used in this project, it is supposed to be a type that the rabbits do not like to nibble on.  However, this little guy chose to try it anyway.  He chewed away a bit and then left .. guess it works!6666A round opening is made so that the rabbits can enter at will.6665The project progressed ..6683Carefully allowing space for the trees to flourish ..6684Proper coppicing of the willow ..6680The cuttings are carefully tied  together.6681Inside Rosemary’s kitchen .. she kindly gives me a bouquet of the heritage daffodils, they are beautifully scented.    And I choose which cuttings I would like as she displays a variety for me.6686And I came away with some gigantic goose eggs .. have never had these before .. they were delicious and quite rich!6678And also some Swedish Blue duck eggs!6676

6677Back home and time to admire my feathered visitors .. here are the darling little Bush-tits.  I know they must be nesting somewhere in the yard and the location of their nest is a mystery.  That’s ok with me.  they need their privacy .. don’t we all.6669The Juncos are frequent visitors in the fall/winter/spring and fly elsewhere for the summer.   They love flax seed so I bought a huge bag of it for them!6672And where there are birds, there are hawks .. this is in one of the fruit trees in the back yard.6674Dear little Nuthatches .. nesting somewhere nearby .. I’ve been lucky to see some of the babies in the spring ..this is an adult.6660Female Downy Woodpecker .. this is my favourite suet holder ..and the birds sure like it.6668And the arc-en-ciel was a beautiful scene to see  ..6671

As I haven’t been blogging for such a long time – and I have not stopped taking photos .. I will start to upload them here!  Creating good memories for me to look at during the winter months!


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Thursday … time spent looking at the birds in the backyard .. and.. yea .. my new garden cart!!!

Friday, December 27, 2012

Yesterday, Thursday, slightly overcast with lots of sun shining through.  The kind of day that teased with promises of sun till the rains came down, sun still shining through.

Lots of visitors to the yard, though.   Heard the steady chirping between Mr & Mrs Downy Woodpecker.   They were chatting away, flitting among the branches and then each settled down on separate suet feeders .. quietly nibbling away.

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Skies overhead …. mostly like this:

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I’d filled up the hummingbird feeder .. it was quite empty .. lots of little Anna’s flitting about.  Funny, last week I’d noticed two of the young ones flying around.  It was obviously schooling time for them.  The parents, much slimmer .. sat on branches nearby, issuing orders.   The two youngsters perched nearby.  Heads constantly on alert status, looking quickly to the left, right, left, right – never still.  Then they would zoom overhead, tiny wings touching as they did so … resulting in little thwap-thwap sounds.  I couldn’t help but laugh at these antics, which they repeated over and over.

Really, this is deadly serious life training for them … however, this is the first time I was privy to such schooling and I was totally unprepared for the their activities.  I felt honoured to be there, quite frankly.

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Then I happened to look over at the Downy on the suet .. he seemed to be king of the suet, the way he stood so proudly on the top!  Quite a noble pose.11

Wandered over to the garlic beds and happy to see the sweet-peas have continued growing.  I’m not one to pluck everything out of the ground once summer is over.10

The birds are still daintily nibbling away at the fallen apples .. they are very thorough in their pecking away .. leaving a graceful outline of the apple base.  Garden art at its best!

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and the darling little Bushtits .. yesterday they were everywhere, it seemed.  Groups of them visited 3 of the suet blocks.   Many of them awaited their turn … sitting patiently above the blocks.

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And of course squirrels have to eat.   This one is a resident, I believe .. having seen him (or is it a her?) throughout the yard at the front, sides and back.05

Oh .. a beautiful Spotted Towhee.   Not sure if this one is nesting nearby.  There have been a few tall trees cut down in the neighbourhood.  Not in our yard, though.  Lots of perching room for everyone.  I’ve seen the Towhees at the bird feeder, nice surprise.  This one is resting in the old plum-tree by the kitchen window.  Nearby (but not in the photo) were some Junco‘s, a golden-crowned sparrow and a house sparrow.04

The roses are still blooming at the side of the house …03

Some ducks enjoying the quiet tidal waters by Spinnakers Pub …

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The log created a breakwater for them .. a place to calmly settle in for the morning.01

I must share this with you .. DH surprised me with this most wonderful, tilting wagon!  And he spent hours on Christmas morning, putting it together for me!  I could hardly wait to take it outside to use in the garden.  Here is my first trip yesterday .. time to take the geranium filled pots to the back yard, to rest in a frost-free zone for the balance of the winter!

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Next it was time to test a load of the Miracle Mulch .. so I loaded up the wagon .. it holds quite a bit.  And see those tires?  No more do I have to worry about being careful going from point A to B in the yard .. these sturdy tires just roll everywhere.  And they turn on a tight radius also!  yea!!!

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Another bonus to this lovely cart!  I can easily dump the contents by simply pulling on the handle at the back of the base and .. voila .. no more shovelling!  I love this!  Then I just pop back the box and it locks in place!

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That just took a few minutes and now the mulch covers this area of the yard.  Well done and with little effort.  Now I’ll have time to do more things in the yard!

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And as I wandered around the yard .. .looking up .. .seeing these glorious rays of the light at the end of the day …

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So beautiful

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Peaceful15

 

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And thus ended another lovely little visit to the backyard .. more today!

🙂

 


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Enjoying watching the eagle activities high up in the sky .. and seeing the Juncos dining on the Joe Pye flowers!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Quite a downpour of rain today .. the yin and the yang of weather here .. as yesterday we were treated to a lovely sunny day!  Which I spent outside, potting up lots of plants.

Lots of time spent looking up at the skies.   Saw 2 eagles soaring in a thermal ..then a 3rd, and by the time I saw the 4th, I ran into the house, grabbed my binoculars and was soon out on the sundeck, gazing skyward.

I didn’t take any photos, as I would only see dots in the sky … with my binoculars I was able to get a much closer view.

At one point, there was one eagle fast approaching the other .. so close I could see the white feathers blazing against the sky.  I know, white feathers don’t really blaze, but I wanted to put some action there!

I remember the last time I saw this behaviour, it was courting time and the eagles had locked talons together and tumbled through the sky.

But, this is November .. so I was puzzled.   They soon were out of sight, so I scrambled down the stairs, along the sidewalk, through the gate, out to the road and down to the large empty lot down the street.

Here I stood for a long time, looking at the eagles soaring majestically (ok, they always soar majestically, it’s a given!) overhead.   All of a sudden I saw some frantic activity and noticed a seagull dipping and diving .. at this point, they were flying around some tall trees and I couldn’t exactly see what was happening, but guessed that the eagles were looking for lunch and the gull was handy.  The time was in the late morning .. and this is the usual time that I’ve seen the eagles out looking for food.

Along came a flock of crows .. and I’m not sure at this point if they had any influence on the eagles flying away, but I lost sight of them.  The long line of crows continued .. there were hundreds.

Oh I just love these moments.

Anyway, back to the yard.  And what did I see there!

Juncos in the Joe Pye Weed (aka Eupatorium maculatum)

There were some lovely Juncos .. sitting quietly atop the Joe Pye Weed, happy as could be.   This plant is supposed to top at 6 feet, but my plants are much higher than that!

There is a line up already

They vied for space … preferring the top of the flower heads.  See, there was even a lineup!!

Can you see the little Junco in flight, left side?

I was trying to get some action shots .. and I like the flow of the wings as this Junco determined where he was going to fly.

This was the “height” of fine dining!

They look so happy, all nestled in place.  I’m glad that there are quite a few seeds for them to eat.  And so, there is lots of food for the birds to eat, all throughout the yard.

Here is a close up of the seeds that the Juncos loved

Here is a closeup of the fine little seeds …. along with the fluff that helps transport the seeds through the air .. ready to be planted elsewhere in the yard.  Perhaps I’ll be lucky enough to have more of these beautiful, tall flowers.  Butterflies love them.

My circle of treasured beach stones encircling the cherry tree

I stopped for a few minutes .. to admire the Calendula plants seeds strewn a few months ago … slow-growing, usually I’d have lots of bright orange flowers by now.  Notice the circle of potted plants behind .. well, I do have a lot of plants, don’t I!!

And here is the “peace sign” ..

Ok, I got this idea of a “peace” symbol from another blog site:

http://debsdiscoveries.wordpress.com/

She has a great site!  Go visit .. go on!!

Such lovely times to be had in the garden ….so many magical moments!

Always  … remembering .. to look up on the sky …for special surprises!

It’s been a lovely day!  Despite the rain .. I like the cozy feelings of being inside while the rain pelts down.

And I also love walking in the rain . . with my cheerful, blue skies & puffy white clouds lining the inside of my umbrella.  Happy walks.

🙂