As I stroll through the garden, I love to note the small evolutions that have taken place from year to year. Letting the lawn grow naturally into predominately clover and violets has been an effort but worthwhile. It took a few years of digging up nut sedge and plantain by hand, but now the clover has filled in nicely. In early spring, tiny purple violets bloom and accent the daffodils. I love the tiny white clover flowers in summer so much more than a pristine green lawn. And, the bees and butterflies seem to agree as well.
As always, my garden helpers, Ellie & Max, keep an eye on me as I move about the garden. They are extra good squirrel chasers and delight in dashing from one end of the backyard to the other.
It’s the second year of adding to the back shade garden. Slowly my efforts are softening the impact of a neighbor’s fencing. While I love the added privacy the board fencing provides, it was all you could see for awhile. Now it is looking less obtrusive.
A tiny trike planted with Marigolds has joined Old Blue, my original bike planter. After years of service, the old Sears Suburban yard cart has been retired and turned into a planter for growing! Patio tomatoes and lettuce are now planted in this old trusty rusty.Best of all, I can move and park it in a sunny location that the tomatoes will thrive in!
The side garden that leads into our gazebo is looking much better two years after a storm dropped a pine on it. Nature has a tendency to heal itself gradually and I helped that along by adding more sun-loving plantings. Filled in now, our privacy from the street has been restored by this little oasis.
After taking many of the plants outside for their summer vacation, The greenhouse looks quite empty and so much larger! I gave it a good cleaning while I could get in all the nooks and crannies. You can be assured that I’ll still have my coffee here each morning. Now there’s room again, I need to get my watercolors out and take advantage of the wonderful light.
For the last couple of months we have delighted in watching two fox kits romping and playing in our backyard. Their mother made a den under our gazebo! Of course, each time I have tried to take their picture, they dashed off. When I was out gardening without my camera, the little fuzz balls came and watched me from about fifteen feet away! The picture below was taken by our neighbor. It shows the mother fox on her way to rustle up some dinner for her little guys. Now that they have matured a bit, the kits are off learning to hunt and staying put in the den when mom isn’t around.
This HUGE Pileated Woodpecker showed up the other evening to peck out his dinner from a decaying tree trunk. He was so busy digging into that bark that it took thirty-some pictures to get just one where his head wasn’t a blur! With many feeders, birdbaths and native plant food sources in our garden, we have constant birdsong. It is a lovely past time to sit out on our porch and watch them catch a meal, take a bath and tend their young.
These are some of the subtle changes as nature works its wonders on our little half acre. Each year brings something new to enjoy and challenges to work on at Our Fairfield Home and Garden.