The past few days have been very Spring like with lots of warm sunshine which has shown the Daffodils in all their glory. The whole garden has been coming on a treat over the past two weeks - there is still no sign of the apple blossom though. In some ways that is a good thing as the nights are still chilly and close to being frosty. Because of this I am having to cover the Peach and Cherry trees which I have growing against a brick wall. I think the bricks probably hold enough heat to hold off the frost but I cover them just in case.
In the picture I posted yesterday you probably noticed a chimney pot on the border. This is my attempt at forcing rhubarb which apparently tastes better when forced. You can get properly made pots for such a purpose but I managed to acquire a couple of chimney pots last year when they were refurbishing the chimney's on the big house. The makeshift top is a clay tile that I found lying around the potting shed yard.
As you can see there isn't a lot of action just yet but I'm sure that now the chimney pots are in place things will soon start to move.
I was asked yesterday how Tommy is doing, my initial reaction was to say that he's doing fine but on second thoughts I'm not sure he has ever been doing just fine. Anyway he is still as cantankerous as ever, still barks when I leave him for any length of time, still has stiff joints, more recently though he has become deaf as well which in someways is a blessing as he is no longer terrorised by bangs and such like. His latest affliction is to suffer a stroke, I'm not really sure what effect this has had on him, there is nothing that really stands out. Having said all that he seems happy enough and like to come out in the garden with me although I only take him now when the weather is half decent as I don't like him to lay around in the cold on wet ground. Of course he has competition now as Tess has also discovered the delights of gardening, she thinks it's all about playing ball, to her a garden is not a place of relaxation. As much as I like to take Tess I feel that in favourable conditions that Tommy should get the first choice because he has done some good work in the garden in the past and I don't think he has that much time left to spend in the garden so best to make the most of it.
Today has been the first spring like day that I can recall so far this year and it was a pleasure to crack on with some proper garden work. I can always find plenty to do but when the weather is not so good it's not always a pleasure. Recently I've been busy forking over some of the borders, the one below is what I know as the east shrub border, there is a west and middle shrub border and as the name suggests they are mostly occupied by shrubs of various kinds although the odd flowering plants does manage to find a home among them from time to time. Also in this border there are three old apple trees and some rhubarb.