I’ve been watching the birds on the bird feeders. I’ve put out seeds and fat balls. The apple tree is full of tits and finches.
But they’re not eating anything. They can’t. Instead they’re watching the rooks.
In fact another 20 or so have just flapped into the garden like black, ragged witches and they’re sitting on the branches and the walls and on the garage roof. It’s like a scene from The Birds. There’s something quite sinister about the way they’re eyeing those fat balls.
And then they move in for the kill.
One of them has a go at the seed feeder, but he’s too big to perch, so he flies at it and head buts it and a load of seeds scatter over the grass. His friends flap down to feast.
Then one starts on the fat balls. These are easy. He clings onto the wire with his feet stabbing with his beak. More food falls to the ground and more rooks descend on my garden.
I’m going to do something about this. I pop down to my local RSPB shop and buy a nice new fat ball feeder that comes with an outer wire cage that the small birds can get through but the big beastie’s can’t
I hang it up and head inside to watch.
The rooks arrive, first one, then two. Then about fifty arrive at once.
“Ha,” I think, “Thwarted you.”
One of the rooks is clinging to the cage upside down flapping his wings and stabbing with his beak. He can just about reach and bits of fat ball scatter around him.
Then his friend lands on the branch above and starts to unpick the knot with his beak.
If I’m going to do this veg plot thing properly I’m going to need somewhere to bring on my seedlings, and that means I need a greenhouse – the kitchen windowsill just isn’t going to be big enough!
So off I trek to B&Q, The forecast says something about snow, but it looks okay, so I’ll ignore that.
And there they are, lots of lovely greenhouses to chose from. They don’t have any glass in stock, but hey, who needs glass!! The frame will do to be getting on with. So, with my new purchases I head back into the car park. It’s starting to snow now, but it won’t stick – will it?
No. I’ve got a far bigger problem to worry about. I drive a fiesta and…err… the greenhouse doesn’t fit!! Rats and bother!! Maybe I should have measured up before buying.
So I try to fit it in at all sorts of different angles. Nothing doing. People are beginning to stare at me and the snow is coming down heavier. I’m starting to feel like a right bimbo – I should be wearing high heels and a short skirt – then I’d look the part too!!
Then the phone rings. “Mum, they’ve shut the school. Come and get me.”
Whaat!!! Oh yes. The snow’s starting to lie quite thick now. I’m stuck in a car park trying to fit a too large object into a too small car and my fingers and toes are starting to freeze.
There’s nothing for it. I have to phone the hubby, drag him out from work to rescue me, and suffer the ritual humiliation of his teasing for the next few months.
Last year the bottom of my garden was a jungle of feral weeds - an unruly sycamore hedge and a pile of rubble the buidler of our house left behind.
Now that has all changed. We ripped away the dying trees, cleared the rubble and the weeds, and built a fence to keep the sheep and deer at bay.
At last, I have a patch of earth that I am going to turn into a vegtable plot.
So I thought I would start this blog as I muddle my way through this new project. Will it succeed? Will I be feeding my family on fresh veg later this year - or will the wildlife take control as it has in the rest of the garden?