Sunday, April 11, 2010

Spring Gardening

Spring is finally here. Gorgeous weather this weekend. I dusted off my bicycle, pumped up the flat tires, and went for a great ride on the Cheshire/Hamden Greenway. I also browsed the garden section of Walmart and wound up with $30 or $40 worth of bulbs to plant. I got a few in the ground yesterday; the rest will go in next weekend.

Meanwhile, here's the latest result of things I planted two years ago. Front yard:

(If only I could get the grass to grow!)

Back yard:

When I planted the fern two years ago, it was small, just that large clump you see in the middle of the photograph. All the other little bits of fern are new, off-shoots of the original planting.

I was so excited by the success of that fern, I bought three packages of fern roots at Walmart. Some of them had already started growing in their plastic packing.

While I was planting the ferns, I was chirped at by my new "friend", a brave little chickadee. Look closely and you can see him in the tree overhead, just at the roof line in the photo below.

Now I can't, of course, tell for certain that it's always the same chickadee being brave, but he's always alone and I can't imagine that all chickadees are so brave. How brave is he? Towards the end of winter, there was one day when he was so excited to see me refilling the bird feeder that he swooped down and perched on it the instant I took my hand off it. I was standing one foot away.

Whenever I refill the bird feeder, I can hear him (or another chickadee) call out loudly, apparently alerting all the other birds to the refilled feeder. They converge within minutes.

This particular chickadee must nest within sight of the feeder. He spends more time in my yard than any other birds. I'm tempted to see if I can get him to trust me enough to eat out of my hand.

I have also discovered a critter who is not as welcome. There is a bee (I hope only one!) who keeps flying in and out of this hole in the mortar. I'm definitely going to have to do something about that.

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