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February doldrums

Early February and my garden has been waterlogged since my last post back in December. Every now and then we have a day or two without rain, but the ground is still very wet and our heavy clay soil is easily compacted by walking on it so I'm doing the minimum. I'm really looking forward to some drier days when I can get to work on the weeds, which don't seem to mind the wet conditions.

I did manage to get a few photos last week, but there's very little colour out there at the moment:

Left to right and top to bottom: variegated foliage (not sure of type), Rosmarinus "blue cascade", viola, Viburnam bondantense "Charles Lamont", Hebe "Silver Anniversary", Berberis darwinii, Heather selection, Nandina domestica "firepower"

Interestingly, the white viola pictured above was sold to me as "Delft Blue". I'm not sure whether the label was wrong, or whether it's one of those plants which changes colour depending on the soil conditions.

I've started my fist set of seed potatoes off chitting in my greenhouse. In the past I've bought pre-packed bags of one or two varieties, but this year as far as possible I've purchased loose seed potatoes from a local shop. They're a lot cheaper that way, I can select the healthiest looking specimens, and I can buy a wider selection of varieties with different harvest times so that I don't get a glut at the end of August. These are "rocket" which is a 1st early variety, I've also got Maris Peer (2nd early), International kidney (early Maincrop), King Edward (Maincrop) and Cara (late Maincrop). Hopefully those will see me through from June until September:

Finally, there's been the usual wildlife activity in the garden. I took part in the RSPB Great British Birdwatch on 26th January, logging numerous wood pigeons plus magpies, collared doves, blue tits, great tits, a herring gull and a blackbird over the course of an hour. And while I was taking the photos for this blog post look who came over to check me out:


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