We have been thrilled to see lots of spring sunshine accompanying Spring flowers and birds nesting in the garden. Only the other weekend I spotted a starling busily picking moss from the new hanging baskets, determinedly avoiding the pile of hay we left out as nesting material!
Until a recent sparrow hawk incident, a flock of blue tits had been favourite visitors to our garden, but since only one brave individual had been seen occasionally. Fearing “our” little group had been dispersed by the disaster and for the first summer in many, they wouldn’t bring their fledgeling broods to the garden, we were delighted to see our 8 tiny birds visiting the feeders once again this week.
We keep the garden wildlife friendly, with hedgehog tunnels through our back fence the line of trees retained behind it. This was made possible with the ColourFence that we installed over the winter as we don’t have to access the back to paint it and wider panels with fewer posts meant less disturbance to the tree roots. The trees allow the birds to approach from twig perches and check for cats or hawks before embarking on a “snatch and run” attack on the sunflower-hearts or cling to the peanut feeder, free a nut and retreat to safety to devour their prize.
My wife is the keener gardener, tending the shrubs and fragrant lavenders and honeysuckle for bees and butterflies, when not destroying the hanging baskets our bird visitors lend a hand, clearing unwanted slugs and aphids who would decimate our plants. With the nicer weather the garden maintenance starts, I always view this as the less enjoyable but necessary evil of gardening, the lawn mowing and the shed and garden furniture maintenance. Thankfully the ColourFence won’t need painting, although I suspect I will need to hose down where the bird feeders hang to keep it looking clean and tidy!
All in all, we are looking forward to Spring and Summer pottering in the garden, watching fledgelings launch from the fence, flicking their wings and chirping, beaks wide open; parents dashing around to feed the open mouths. As well as our own grandchildren coming around to play (who mercifully don’t launch from the garden fence but appear to have a similar attitude to snacks!) Hopefully you too are looking forward to what is probably the most enjoyable time of year for gardeners.
John Pilkington, 66, gardener and nature enthusiast.
Since retiring in 2014 John has been able to find time to indulge his interest in wildlife. John grew up spending summers playing in Richmond Park, helping his dad grow vegetables in the family garden and raising funds through ‘bob a job’ in the neighbourhood gardens. Now living in South Wales he volunteers with a local charity, helping to maintain a green flag reserve and enjoys looking for and photographing wildlife in the garden and in the local country parks. He has two young grandsons who love walking with grandad, stomping in muddy puddles and who already know the names of more birds and wildflowers than your average adult. John loves the fact that ColourFence is an environmentally sound choice, containing recycled materials, and is in itself fully recyclable. ColourFence is not maintained using harmful chemicals and can be installed with minimum disruption to plants and trees and with hedgehog tunnels and hangers for bird feeders.
ColourFence is the all-seasons fencing which won’t fade in the sun, or fall in the wind. Contact us for your free quote.
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