Unexpected happenings


It is here again. I saw it in the garden just before we went away and there was nothing I could do. It is a rabbit in our garden once more. I would not mind but it nibbles away at our vegetables and I have been trying to grow a tree peony for years, but the rabbit keeps digging underneath and exposing the roots. We could not find where the rabbit had broken in through the fencing so we had to cover our plants as best we could and hope for the best.

Once at the coast the sight of sea birds was amazing and sent all rabbit thoughts away. Here the kittiwakes were nesting on the cliffs. They were shouting their name ‘kittiwake, kittiwake’ as they teemed onto the muddy cliff face and pulled up grass for their nests. Kittiwakes are on the RSPB red list but there was no shortage here. They appear like other gulls, but these have black wing tips and look just as if they have been dipped in the black Quink ink bottle we used to have at school.

The nest making of the common gulls continued back at the harbour but this time it was a frenzy of fighting and they were not building on the cliffs. These gulls were on the sand and they were picking up huge chunks of seaweed. They set off into the air with the brown seaweed trailing followed in hot pursuit by other gulls intent on stealing the nesting material. I do not know how much nest building went on, but I do know that they are not welcome back in town because they nest on ledges on buildings. There are spikes and nets everywhere put up by shopkeepers and house owners often in vain as the gulls find their messy way in through the barriers.

Back at home I see that my house plants have not done well. The trouble is that my compost is not very nutritious after a few weeks in the plant pot. It is made of seaweed, coir and bark. We have been using peat-free compost for some time now. Peat is full of nutrients but of course, we cannot keep using it forever and releasing carbon. So, I had better give my plants liquid food to help them on their way.

The good news is that my tree peony is flowering after all these years. It has one huge yellow globe hanging in the green foliage. The other good news is that that I saw a rabbit-eating stoat in the garden and the rabbit is nowhere to be seen, maybe it has escaped through the gate. 


My tree peony is flowering after five years


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