Late winter in the garden with a little helper

It is very cold today, but the bright sunshine and clear skies make the garden irresistable. Warmed by cups of hot tomato soup, we check the vegetable plot’s progress.

All of our onion sets are now sprouting. The seed company have just sent through a delayed order of giant garlic bulbs and, as I usually plant my onions in November, I am wondering whether it is too late for them to go in?

I have an eager helper with me today. I show her how to pluck out small weeds from the raised beds and she places them in her wheelbarrow.

I keep a weather-worn gnome, bought for me when I was little by my late grandparents, tucked safely into a sheltered corner of the vegetable garden. My daughter thinks he is a real elf, and always pauses for a chat. His hat was chipped off long ago, as she is the fifth of our children to play with him.

The first of our primroses are flowering. Tomorrow, if the promised rain does not appear, we will put them into a terracotta pot beside the playhouse porch.

Whilst I work on the bedding plants, my little one watches the birds in the tree. Our most regular visitors, a couple of gold finches and a robin, are still trying to work out if they are safe to hop down onto feeders when she is near.

My third son was playing in the stream this morning and I go over to “fix” it. As I start to put stones back, I realise that actually, it looks more natural, and the reflections and sounds of the water are far better now with the stones that he has dropped in. I leave it just as it is ๐Ÿ™‚

31 Comments

    1. Thank you, thatโ€™s so kind! โ™ฅ๏ธ Itโ€™s such a small space and the Iโ€™ve been a bit overwhelmed (in a nice way) by the lovely responses and all the encouragement. ๐ŸŒฟ

    1. Thank you Gerard – we have a local timber yard that supplied everything. A brilliant chippy built that gate – the older raised beds that we built ourselves (also from the same timber yard) are recycled as the compost bin ๐Ÿ™‚

      The stream has been great – itโ€™s totally safe for floating boats on and paddling, but itโ€™s in front of the kitchen window so I can keep a watch ๐Ÿ™‚ Fortunately, the more itโ€™s messed with, the more natural it looks ๐ŸŒฟ

    1. Thank you NanaCathy โ˜บ๏ธ I have my fingers crossed, most years they do really well but struggled last year and were very small – I think they didnโ€™t like all the rain. Mind you, the fushias loved it – one grew to be 12 foot ๐ŸŒฟ

    1. Thanks very much! Itโ€™s meant to look like a cottage garden/Potager but the pathway doubles very nicely as a scooter/bike track too ๐ŸŒฟ

      Yes! Weโ€™ve started her working early ๐Ÿ™ƒ

    1. Thank you so much Laurie! It was a tricky thing as we only have a small garden – in the end we were guided by our children, and the little winding runs that they had made in the grass we had paved – which is why the paths loop around so much ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Thank you Derrick ๐Ÿ™‚ It might look a little more ramshackle come spring when all the plants go wild! Itโ€™s lovely to have my daughter with me, she prefers to be outside even on the coldest days ๐ŸŒฟ

    1. Thank you Elen ๐ŸŒฟ I love primroses too, I have wild English ones in pots and in my front garden – but the ones pictured are the first to flower this year. Iโ€™ll remember to post more for you when they all open ๐Ÿ™‚

  1. I love your helper and your raised garden beds. I laughed because it’s stupid hot and humid here in South East Queensland and I just pushed a cane toad (ugh) out of my parsley.

    1. One thing I love about blogs is that I can always enjoy summer when it is winter here ๐Ÿ™‚ We get toads here but I have never seen any as large as a cane toad! It’s mice that hide in my veg plot (a downside of living next to farmer’s fields) and they have huge appetites for such a tiny creature.

  2. Just wonderful to see you daughter enjoying the garden and your onion seedlings are about the same as ours at the moment too..
    I smiled even wider as your daughter speaks to the Gnome.. I have a very tiny one in my garden that would move around and stand still when ever my granddaughter who then was about 2 at the time looked at it… It somehow then ran to another part of the garden unseen… She loved to go play hide and seek with him..
    And our primroses are in full bloom.. the only colour in the garden at the moment..
    Your garden looks lovely…
    Keep teaching your daughter those gardening skills… She looks right at home with her wheelbarrow.. <3

    1. Thanks Sue ๐Ÿ™‚ We also have a plastic toad figurine that, since we had the stream put in, now lives at the top of the waterfall. I keep telling the children we went to a lot of trouble to make it look like a Scottish stream and it doesn’t quite look right with a plastic toad on it ๐Ÿ˜€

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