Sunday Safari

I did it!

At long last!

Friday was a lovely day, I almost ran out the door at work, the thermometer in the car red 16C (61F), so the first thing I did when I got home?

Mowed the grass, of course!

6 months since the last cut, no wonder it’s been driving me crazy.

And then, on Saturday I even managed to rake the moss and thatch out of the grass! Woo, go me.

I’d like to know why raking the thatch is so tiring???!!! My arms are like jelly by the end. Yet normal raking up of leaves etc is no problem at all. One of the many unsolved mysteries of life…

You may be wondering why I’ve left the raking on the lawn? Well, the birds will be more than happy to use it for their nests. Either that or on the next mow I’ll cut it up with the mower instead.

Also, check out this little beauty:


Yes, that’s my first rose bud on Harlow Carr. I’m certain this is the earliest I’ve seen buds on it before. I did have some on Tess of the D’urbervilles way back in February but I cut her back, including the blooms knowing it’s for the best so I have more later. After checking Gertrude Jekyll, I found more buds! Gertrude is the right most image above, she is a little behind Harlow Carr; this is no real surprise, especially as Harlow Carr is in full sun and Gertrude is climbing up the fence in perhaps the shadiest part of the back garden.

I’m so thrilled that I have so many Tulips. I honestly didn’t expect to see them again. The show is even better than last year after late snows in March and April 2013, I barely had any Tulips and had assumed they were dead. Then with the masses of rain in January and February this year, I was certain they would most definitely be dead. But no, I have both the white and ‘black’ (deep purple) ones! Last year the blacks were all gone, so I assume they have risen from the dead.
Photos will have to wait, especially with Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day in two days.

Copyright 2014 Liz.
All rights reserved. Content created by Liz for Gwirrel’s Garden

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12 thoughts on “Sunday Safari

  1. I did have a cursory check for rose buds yesterday without success, but I shall go and have a proper look tomorrow now that I know you have some 😉 Well done for your lawn efforts!

    • Hi Cathy,

      I should think that if I have rose buds, you most certainly will! I hadn’t expected to see any buds at all for a while yet. I happened to take a photo of the border in general and when looking back at them on the computer I thought I could see a blurry bud in the background. Sure enough, there are a few.

  2. Hi Liz, yep raking thatch is exhausting…..I think it is the pressure we use to remove it that makes the arms ache so much…..love the fact you left it for the birds. I do to!

    Look forward to seeing your lovely roses…..they are such beautiful blooms.

    All my tulips failed to bloom this year…..not one, plenty of leaves though 😦

    Have a good week……..

    • Hi Cheryl,

      I’ll be having my brother rake the front garden for me when he visits over easter! He should be OK as the front garden is much smaller than the back – but it’s also boggy, so no doubt there will be a lot of moss to get rid of.

      That’s a massive shame to hear about your Tulips, I’m really surprised that mine are the ones to have survived in my terrible clay soil and yours aren’t??? Strange.

      Saw my first white butterfly today, I assume it was a small white but I’m secretly hoping it’s a female orange-tip. I didn’t manage any photos of it, but it was near my bird’s foot trefoil and I know they’re a larval food plant for orange-tips… Fingers crossed.

    • Hi Pauline,

      Raking is one of those jobs that sounds so easy… Yet I know it’s always going to be awful. I should really stab it too with the rake, but I’m not so sure I’m up for that. I might give in and buy one of those scarifiers; they sound so much easier, but I bet they’re not!

      It already does feel like summer, that’s the problem! I’m just waiting for the weather to suddenly turn, just in time for easter and it to be miserable for a few days just as we get a few days off work.

      Is that me being cynical??

  3. Raking out the moss is exhausting, which explains why our grass is full of it! Congratulations on getting the weather – and the energy – to give it the first cut though, how very satisfying. I have no buds, just blackspot. I’m not convinced that I am cut out to grow roses.

    • Hi Janet,

      I really need to give the grass a second cut now, this time lower the blades as I left them on high so the lawn is still clumpy and patchy. If it doesn’t rain today then I’ll give it a go; thankfully we have barely had any rain after been promised two days of it. So I think it should be dry enough to cut today (assuming it doesn’t rain).

      Some of my roses have black spot, but they always still flower – I think they’re mainly the roses which were here when I moved in. Don’t think any of the David Austin ones have it… Will have to look. Generally I think it’s tea roses which get it, either that or I’m just lucky with the shrub roses. (Just had a look on the RHS site and indeed it’s hybrid tea roses, floribundas, climbers and patio types which suffer. Mine have all been shrub roses or old types that I’ve added to the garden so will explain why I haven’t noticed black spot on them.)

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