A photographic tour of what is blooming in the garden now:
I am fond of moss, and one of the few places it grows with any sort of luxuriousness is at the pond edge where the water flows into our tsukubai. While watching the antics of the ringed turtle dove last weekend another bird fluttered down to the pond’s edge. With his red breast appeared to be stained with mud,It was the most unkempt male robin I had ever seen. I imagined he would be going down to the usual perch on the pond to take a bath – something he sorely needed. Instead of moving down to the bathing spot he hopped down to the base of the tsukubai. His head disappeared out of sight for a moment and then he raised his head, hopped to the edge again and flew off. The photograph shows what he was up to…
As I mentioned in last weekend’s post, for a short time we had a new feathered visitor in the garden. The bird had noisily fluttered into the birch directly over the pond. When I went to look closer, I found a familiar face, but not one often seen in Canada.
The bird moved down to the pond to take a drink, and then flew up into the Russian mountain ash. This is a dove I knew as a child in South Africa, and to confirm it gave a quiet “kook-karoo“, which was echoed from a yard a few houses up. That call was the ubiquitous background sound for most of my 7 years in that country. As these are native to Africa, I can only assume that someone had intentionally or unintentionally released their pets into our northern realm. Lets hope they have a magnificent summer, because it is unlikely they will survive the winter to come.
Between various musical events with my daughter, cultural events with my wife and trying to catch up with resulting backlog of photographs, I have managed to do only a little bit of gardening. It is amazing how quickly things have taken off. Apple, Mayday, Pincherry and Amelanchier trees and related shrubs are in bloom and the spruce trees are spreading pollen like mad. Most trees are in leaf in this neighborhood, except for the oaks. Ferns that were 6″ tall just 3 days ago are now at 18″ and alpine clematis is stretching 3′ up the garage wall. Our Korean lilac is showing bloom buds and the first wind flowers are open. As winds buffet the garden today, the pond has become strewn with yellow petals from the marsh marigolds and a dusting of pollen. I think we’re here.
The vegetable garden, usually the domain of wife and daughter, is still unplanted. I have a few perennials still to plant, and more to purchase for the area once dominated by the spruce. This weekend I was hoping to re-mulch the garden and the area around the new birch tree but this may have to be put on hold as more events are in the works. It is only when the mulching is done that I feel I can slow down to enjoy the garden fully, and I can then lean back and relax (albeit with a curse or three) as the neighbours noisily go about mowing their lawns.
When the trees and shrubs are fully in leaf the houses in the background are barely visible. In the urban or sub-urban garden there is rarely a view to tie the garden design into, so using planting and structure can help hide undesirable views.