A bit sad...

 One of the first to flower.
Freckles Hellebore

Rule number one of garden blogging : have something garden-ish to write about. Rule number two : never blog when feeling tired, or grumpy, or sad. Oops.

Wednesday 14th July

Am a bit sad at the moment : about the state of the world's climate, about the rotten stuff that some of the world's people get up to, and about Lilli-Puss, shut in the sewing room for so much of the time. OK, so here's a balancing sentence. Plant more shrubs and trees, be the best person that I can be, and let Lilli spend more time in the main house, keeping me and the dogs company. But then the Fred cats have to be absent, and they rather like snoozing on comfy chairs when the days are frosty and cold.

Have been walking off my blues with the dogs, each separately trotting off down the road. Dogs find joy in the littlest things : barking at a rubbish bin, staring at next door's goats, licking bird poo off the patio beneath the bird feeders... Gross!

 Lolling in the driveway.
Red Fred

Today I've filled the trailer with more rubbish for my bonfire, which I will light tomorrow. I've planted a green Phormium in the side house border, and cleaned gum leaves etc. off the surface (carted off two barrowfuls). And impossible to stay sad when I look at the first Hellebore flowers. They are just so wonderful.

 Looks great!
Phormium Planted

There's also space for a shrub. Not a tree, but hey! I'm trying my best. Crikey it's cold! Even with the sunshine the temperature barely scraped into double digits. We are having some huge morning frosts, too.

 Wax-eyes, feasting on the crabapples.
Spot the Wee Birdies

Friday 16th July

Right. Have balanced out the sadness with a wonderful Bach chamber music session, lunch with a dear friend, and two long dog walks. Lilli has enjoyed her compulsory socialisation, and I've dropped off my car at the garage to try for a warrant of fitness. So I am also feeling very responsible. Now I need some extra patience, for the minor behaviour difficulties I'm having with my young dog. And some positive onward and outwards energy, with which to crank up the bonfire. Aargh! Keeping up with the winter garden maintenance always makes me feel proud, though. So what's not to like about this great day? Smoky hair? Not a problem - I look forward to washing it!

Aha! Lilli-Puss has been outside for a wee sniff and snoop around (she didn't notice, but Buster the black spy cat was watching her every move). I've been swimming and socialising. And now I'm off into the water race. The inflow has been shut down, so this is the perfect time to clean up the banks, weed and trim, clean up the bottom etc. Back soon.

Much, much later...

Oh joy! A whole trailer load of hedge trimmings burnt - plus six barrowfuls of gum leaves and dry mess. I cleaned up a stretch of the water race, slicing off some ever-creeping gunnera roots, and a lot of old green Carexes. They'll sprout again, clean and green. A huge afternoon, finished off nicely with some refreshing rain at dusk. And, of course, a shower and clean hair.