He’s started. Hammering. I heard him whilst I was out watering in the greenhouse a couple of days ago. So far he has spared the bathroom soil pipe and hence our early morning call (remember this?) but he is certainly making his presence felt in the woods. Drumming out his claim on his territory no doubt. Or perhaps Mrs W has specified urgent pre-Spring structural modifications to the nest. An excess rainwater drainage hole would be top of my list if I was her.
Woodrow Woodpecker is not the only one with wood front of mind.
I need to get the ground prepared for Operation Hedge
If we cast our minds way, way back to the far reaches of oh…. last year, you’ll recall that copious consumption of alcohol and/or nocturnal perambulations of the lawn are not currently to be recommended chez rusty duck. Not since the day someone wilfully demolished the hedge. An immediate replacement would have been the sensible way forward but ‘things’ have been getting in the way: the row of rather scrubby looking things at the forward edge of the lawn to be precise. Brutally hacked but mercifully re-sprouting rhododendrons that now need to be shifted.
And where exactly are they going to go?
Although it looks a bit different now because Mike, and a couple of lads who came in to help us, have cleared it.
My theory is that the rhodos, assuming they continue to grow having been plucked from the lawn, dragged unceremoniously up the hill and surrendered to new holes in the ground, will eventually help screen the back of the outhouses and give us some seasonal colour where only a tangle of brambles existed before. It’s a big ask, given how large the rootballs must be. But as soon as we get a decent break in the weather, move them is what we will attempt to do.
An alternative angle on the same area
The trees here were heavily congested and had grown into an awkward shape, spreading to one side in an attempt to secure every last scrap of available light. The density of the canopy also meant I’d have little chance of getting anything underneath it to thrive.
A whole new part of the garden now enjoying the benefit of light.
This latest bit of cutting back marks a halt to tree surgery for the time being. There are definite signs that the birds are out prospecting for nests and I’d rather leave them to it. As far as I know we didn’t disturb a single nest in the course of the work last Spring and Summer, but the thought was always at the back of my mind. Now that the most urgent stuff is done we can wait until Autumn before tackling any more.
As it is we’re in danger of disappearing under a heap of felled wood. Mike needs to start wielding the axe. Or does he?
Another New Toy has found its way into the tool shed. This one though is worth its weight in gold. The task of splitting wood has become as effortless as peeling back a banana and, it would appear, rather addictive.. what you see in the background comprises only a fraction of the new firewood that has already been stacked there.
DANGER! Keep Clear of Moving Parts!
At the last count, all fingers were still present and correct. Touch wood.