The month has started with a glimpse of sunshine after days of greyness and low cloud. Yesterday was particularly miserable with rain all day. Its been a dry January on the whole, but the recent rain has caused the snowdrops and irises to accelerate into flower. And very welcome they are too. Snowdrops, hellebores and primroses seem to be essentially untroubled by pests but Iris attract a range of munchers. The little Kathryn Hodgkin Iris in the border by the barn are being munched as they come through but potted specimens like this bright blue one are better protected and just starting to bloom.
I’m always pleased to move into February- it marks the start of the flowering season and brings ever lengthening days. More time to enjoy being outside, which is just as well as the tasks proliferate too. There’s still apple pruning to do and we really need to thin out some of the vegetation in and around the pond. That’s a task we have been putting off and if we leave it much longer, will have to leave again as the amphibians become active. And still there are borders to cut back and refresh and new ones to make. And lovely new plantings to do. Fingers crossed that the weather provides a few clear days to get out and get on.