Supreme Winter Gardening Cat
In the frosty depths of the mid-winter garden, one week before the shortest day, a pale ginger fluffy gardening cat is busy keeping the Moosey Head Gardener company. Forget the toasty warm pet-beds in the house - this cat is weatherproof.
Winter gardening only appeals to the most resilient of cats. An exceptional attitude is required to plod behind the wheelbarrow in the driving rain, or sit in the mud underneath a wet tussock grass. A fireside chair is so much more comfortable - and, if you're Tiger, so much nearer the kitchen and the fridge.
Hello, Fluff-Fluff the Cat!
Big ginger Fluff-Fluff is being a brilliant winter gardening cat. He's a particularly active participant when I'm trying to dig holes in the wet winter dirt - fascinated by what's down there, and why there's suddenly air space below ground. If the hole is big enough he'll flop into the hole and lie with his legs in the air - evoking rather startling memories of posthumous cats and past burials. Get out of the dirt, FF!
A Passionate Nose-Smooch...
Say I'm kneeling in the garden with my hands at ground level. Naturally Fluff-Fluff sees this as an invitation to be patted and stroked. Why else would my hands be at cat-level? He will present himself as close as possible, purring and rolling around on the cold wet soil. Perhaps there'll be a gentle head-butt, or a passionate nose-smooch. Can you see how grubby his fur will be getting?
If I'm standing up in the garden (raking leaves, for example) he likes to be slightly higher than me, to check out the action. He'll zoom up into the nearest tree and casually lie between the branches. I can say hello as I pass, and he'll roll over (and almost off), flexing those huge fluffy front paws. What a sight!
Ever Constant Cat Companion
When winter rain-gardening is required, Fluff-Fluff is an ever-constant companion. His fur darkens with the water and breaks into wet spikes, his body shape gets thinner and thinner - but he stays on task. And still he'll roll around in the earth and purr. Pat me! Tickle my dripping wet chin!
Fluff-Fluff - Supreme Winter Gardening Cat
I must be on guard if I take a break inside when winter gardening. With leaves, twigs, and mud stuck to his body, a wet Fluff-Fluff is not a pleasant cat to have sitting on the lap. And yet, without much obvious washing and grooming he's clean, fluffy, and dry an hour later. Ready to go back outside and brave the winter weather...
All these photographs of Fluff-Fluff were taken on a typical mid-winter's gardening day. But I've chosen his cleanest, fluffiest winter gardening face. I just couldn't let pictures of his grubby face and fur spoil his image!