WELCOME TO MY GARDENING BLOG!

I obviously hope you enjoy browsing through the postings on here - do feel free to leave comments as it's always good to see who's visiting and to hear about other people's experiences - after all you never stop learning do you?

If you've any gardening questions or you live in Brittany and are looking for some gardening help - be it design work, planting or general gardening or you simply would like some advice, please don't hesitate to CONTACT ME or call me on 0033 661 77 23 89 (from UK) or 0661 77 23 89 (from France).

Happy gardening!

Friday, 30 October 2009

Wonderful autumn days...

What an amazing fortnight we've had here in Brittany with temperatures topping 21 degrees this week and so many flowers still around too. It's been an opportunity too good to throw away for getting all those hedge cutting and pruning jobs underway before the wet and stormy weather arrives on Sunday...

It's a very satisfying feeling at the end of an exhausting week with all my clients' gardens with their grass cut and many of the seasonal jobs well underway too... and after completing our own grass late afternoon and finally coming in just as it was starting to get dark for a very welcome mug of tea and a Mars Bar :-)

After a good soak in the bath this evening, I must admit I felt a bit like a child wandering out into our garden clad in pyjamas and fleece top, in search of our resident Hedgehog and any other wildlife that happened to be lurking... well it didn't take long before I could hear that typical snorting and sniffling noise that the hedgehog makes before I found him or her foraging for a welcome snack! Earlier this week I found it's hiding place amongst my hardy geraniums - a well woven nest about the size of a rugby ball made of thin layers of vegetation and dry leaves normally - the dying leaves of Crocosmia are also a favorite - as they arch over they provide a natural canopy of protection over the winter months... so do take care when clearing beds for the winter, not disturb a very welcome garden resident! There really is something magical seeing this little creature wandering in the garden and the woodland... something that always causes me to smile at the end of an exhausting day - it makes all the hard work worth it really!

Over the past week I've loved seeing the quantity of butterflies in our garden and in the surrounding fields and species that I've not spotted before either, which is always great to see. The late flowering Asters seem to be a real favorite with them, as well as flowering Ivy, Sedums and the Sunflowers which are just going over now... quite amazing for this time of year when so much normally would be frosted.










Butterflies: photo 1 - Brown Argus, photos 2 & 3 Common Blue, photos 4, 5 & 6 is a Small Copper.
Last weekend we had the second of our two annual plant swaps in a nearby village - organised for the Sunday morning of the weekend when the clocks change - that way they can never be forgotten.... this one is always the easiest to get to what with gaining an hour! No money ever changes hands - just the chance to meet up with like minded people and take plants that you have excess of in your own garden and you end up coming away with a whole array of things you've not got - just great!




On a seasonal note - I'd be interested to hear of other people's experiences but we have had the most amazing crops of fruit and nuts this year - I've never seen so many walnuts on our one tree, the acorn numbers have been more than ever as well as the brambles, apples and I could go on...

Hope you all have an enjoyable rest of the weekend....

11 comments:

Karen - An Artist's Garden said...

We have had a wonderful Autumn here too - I think all my clients have wanted shrubs moved and perennials divided it has been the busiest month of the whole year!!

What a wonderful looking plant swap, and such a good idea.
Have a good week
K

easygardener said...

We are having warm temperatures too - very unnatural. The blue butterfly looks very pretty. I think I've only seen one a couple of times.

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Karen and Easygardener - what a contrast to the weather we've been having - lots of strong winds and rain has arrived :-(

Thank you so much for your comments -

Karen - it always makes me smile at this time of year when friends enquire if I'm winding down my work for the winter and they seem completely perplexed at the thought that this might be one of the busiest seasons for gardening!! Hope you're managing to get some r & r in the midst of it all...

Easygardener - all these little butterflies were new visitors to our garden this year - it's lovely to see some new ones - you can see their size relative to the small flowers of the Asters.

Bon weekend... Miranda

Bay Area Tendrils Garden Travel said...

Hi Miranda
Gorgeous weather in Northern California, where there actually is fall color, which surprised me when I moved here from Chicago.
I was trying to link back to your plot on Blotanical but had trouble doing so. Looks like you haven't completed a profile, but I don't know if that causes problems.
At any rate, I love your blog. Glad to found you there, on Blotanical, Cheers ! Alice
aka Bay Area Tendrils Garden Travel

Cheryl said...

Hi Miranda....I walk my gardens every morning in my jim jams....such a delightful thing to do, don't you think?
I have never seen a hedgehog nest......they usually hibernate in my leaf pile.......I have two hedgehog units, which I use for any that I find in distress, during the winter.

My old apple tree did not produce any apples this year. I think the squirrels got to the cob nuts before I did. Plums were fabulous....far too many for me.....they were beautiful and sweet. Average amount of acorns....


Happy November to you......

Miranda Bell said...

Dear Alice - thanks so much for popping in for a visit... I've done a bit of updating on my account on Blotanical - so hope this helps - it's hard trying to run a gardening business and keep up with blog sites and other websites too... I always find given a fine day I'd rather be outside :-) Glad you're having good weather - ours has raphidly gone down hill and we've had a very wet and stormy day... the garden seriously needed some rain though so not all bad. Have a good week - Miranda

Miranda Bell said...

Jim jams were made for us who love the garden :-) Hedgehog nests are interesting especially if you come across one as the hedgehog makes a kind of puffing noise - a good warning that it doesn't want to be disturbed! I wandered out this evening into the woodland and there he or she was again... which was wonderful. Interesting about what you were saying about the fruit in your garden too.. hope you have a great week and that the storms blow over soon - Miranda x

Patsi's 'Garden Endeavors' said...

Roses still blooming this time of year. Just got my first roses this past summer...so happy how long they bloom.
I'm sure we have a plant swap sometime,somewhere around here.
Must find out.

shirl said...

Good morning Miranda, hope it’s a nice sunny blue sky one for you too :-D

I have thoroughly enjoyed this posting… great mix of photos. Just love the butterflies (especially the blue) but also to see your plant sale in action… I remember you telling me about this and it is such a good idea :-D

Sorry … no nuts here so I can’t comment on them ;-)

Ah… now you’ve made a good point re tidy-ups and hedgehogs . I always wondered what hog’s own nest looked like and now I’ve just read about them in two blogs (catch ups with coffee). I’d just love to see one of these rugby ball nests… never seen one in my garden. Any chance you could post a pic on your blog?

Have a good day and week ahead :-D

Miranda Bell said...

Good morning Patsi thank you so much for visiting and my apologies for not replying sooner but when it's not been raining this week I've been busy trying to get on top of all the gardening chores both here and for clients - not many roses left now! Hope you're having a more sunny weekend where you are!

Miranda Bell said...

Dear Shirl - always a pleasure to get a visit from you and so pleased you enjoyed the posting - how the weather has changed - SO wet and windy now and not many flowers remaining -saw the last butterfly - a Speckled Wood yesterday(posting to follow!). I've actually tried to photo the hedgehog nest but as it's in such a dark corner it's really difficult - will post what I have but it is hard to see what it is! I've infact covered it over with some straw now as quite a bit of the original vegetation has died off and don't want it getting wet and too cold! He's not been out now for about 3 days - wether that is it now for the winter I really dont' know - any thoughts?

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and will visit your blog again soon Miranda x