Spring is here

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Rain, it makes buds swell and leaves unfurl in the spring. We had to wait for it to rain this year. The trees took a while to come into leaf, and although most of the trees in the garden are covered some are just coming out.

I don’t know what to do though, we have a lot of trees in the garden. If you Google map us you can’t see the ground. It does make for a lot of shade! DSC_2003_optimized (2)

But that doesn’t mean you can’t grow interesting plants. The ones in the foreground are wild garlic. We also have some new Zealand plants from a plant fair, and tomorrow we should be getting a few Woad plants!

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The only unshaded part is South at the back of the garden. Apart from a massive laurel Bush that has turned into a bit of a thug of a tree. Sadly it needs cutting back. I’ve got someone coming to do it just not sure when. What I don’t want to do is disturb any nesting birds.

I will take some photos when it’s tidy? Which might be by autumn!

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Six trees painting

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Inspired by the Rode Hall bluebell walk we did a week ago. The vertical trunks that were so evenly spaced with the darker fence in front made a striking photo. I’m not sure if I’ve managed to capture that here. Bluebells are a difficult colour to capture. I tried mixing ultramarine with white, then when that didn’t work I used a bit of deep magenta, and also pale Windsor violet. I used a bit of metallic blue to give them a sparkle.

The trees are mainly sap green with yellow and white added.

About 12 x8 inches, acrylic on canvas.

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Bluebells work in progress

DSC_1976I saw bluebells in the wood and wanted to paint them.

I saw bluebells in the wood and wanted to hold them.

I saw bluebells in the wood and wanted to smell their scent.

The bluebells were so intense in colour.

They were so bright, like a cloudless day.

Shimmering like a Mediterranean sea.

Blue of intense hues

Blue of fairytale dresses and butterfly wings.

Blue sparkling under tall trees.

I saw bluebells in the wood and felt free.

The old wood

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Step over into the wood and you will be lost forever. Keep this side of the fence. That was what she was always warned as she grew up. There are wolves, bears, screech owls. Spiders big as dinner plates. The boogy man lives there.

For twenty years she kept out. But she knew one day she would have to climb the fence and go and look.

She was twenty one today, she had been to a birthday party at the village hall. Now she was walking home along the lane. The sun was setting and the wood loomed up above her rising up the hill, shutting off the sunlight.

One step led to another. Pine needles softened her footsteps, tree roots started to tangle round her ankles. She looked back to check where the path was, but could not see it through the trees. She tried to retrace her steps, but could not find the fence. Fear crept into her, she trembled as the cool night air touched her skin.

The night was darker and a cold rain fell, still she walked, tripping and falling into bushes, scratched from thorns.

It was early morning when the ranger found her wandering. She could not speak. Her eyes were staring into space, out of focus. No one ever found out what happened to her that night. But the Green man of the woods smiled to himself as she was taken away in an ambulance.

Nest building

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We have a couple of magpies in the garden. They have decided to build an untidy nest in the top of a tall sycamore tree. I know their reputation for collecting things to line their nests with, but today I witnessed both of them picking up twigs over twice their body lengths. I watched the resulting tangle with amusement. Both of them had the long twigs held horizontal in their beaks. The trouble was, like a dog with too long a stick trying to get through a door, the sticks got caught on branches as they tried to fly up to the nest. Once the twig fell back to the ground and it took the magpie a few minutes to get it firmly back in its beak and properly balanced.

Seeing them both high in the tree top trying to tuck bits into their nest was fascinating. I do worry for other local birds as they have been known to steal baby birds but I do admire their tenacity.

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