The Goji Berry plant that I bought earlier in the year has started to flower. I am therefore hopeful that I’ll get some fruit from it in due course. My major concern is that they will be taken before they are ready by the local squirrels. They do seem quite picky about what they will take as they tend to ignore the blueberries and the blackcurrant, but it will be a case of waiting and seeing if anything survives.
The photo above is probably a little baffling as it’s totally unclear what it is. It looks like a blob of something on a wall. In fact it’s two things. For me it’s the remains of a bulb from a flowerpot outside my back door. To the squirrel I that was sat on the wall with the bulb in it’s mouth it’s the leftovers of it’s early breakfast! I was less than impressed and as I opened the door I was hoping that in it’s surprise the squirrel would scarper, dropping the bulb in the process. Instead I witnessed a squirrel doing a sprint across the garden with a bulb in it’s mouth bigger than it’s head. I’ve learnt my lesson though and the pot is now in the garage where it can overwinter and it will come back out in spring for what is left to bloom.
Despite what is happening to my lawn, it’s not all doom and gloom in the garden. One thing that has flourished in the weather we have had is the grapevine that I have. Happily I have quite a number of large bunches of grapes growing well and these are just two that that were easy to photograph. I do have a slight level of caution as last year the local squirrels ate just about all the grapes before harvest time. I’m hoping there won’t be a repetition this year as there are still a few months of growing time left.
With the weather as nice as it has been the last few weeks I’ve managed to get a lot of garden stuff completed, but there was one project that had left me scratching my head for a while, and it was that of how to have the bird feeders out but not dominated by the squirrels. I therefore decided to experiment. I put together this rather rough bird feeding station with the sole intention of seeing if the hard plastic netting half way down would provide a block (or baffle as they are known) to the squirrels. Its done entirely with left over wood from other projects and is not permanent. If the project works, then I’ll either find a nice feeding station to buy or will make a better version of this one.
The bird feeders didn’t seem to be attracting a lot of visits by anything other than the squirrels so I’ve done some thinking and have placed them in slightly different locations which hopefully won’t be as visited by the squirrels having them hanging near the hanging baskets in the garden. I’m still not totally convinced by one location (not pictured), but hopefully I’ll have a brainwave in due course.
Having set out the bird feeders a few days back I noticed an unintended dinner guest at the table. I’m going to have to think about how to prevent the squirrels from getting to the feeder which will probably mean relocating it. In the mean time I was left wondering how easy such a meal was on the squirrel’s digestive system as I’m sure that if I was to try to eat something while hanging upside down I would both make more of a mess of it than the squirrel, and probably my digestive system would be complaining too. (The picture was taken through a closed door in early morning light so I apologise that the picture is of a poor quality).
As well as the bigger projects in the garden, I’ve also been making some minor changes too. One of these was that I bought a new pear tree to replace one that hadn’t been doing well and despite being the old of the two that I had, showed much less growth. I’m not one for throwing things out thought and wanted to find a new place for it. I have decide to return it to what it originally started off as, and that was a patio based tree in a very large container. The root system was such that this wasn’t an issue and since then it has started to produce fruit. Maybe it would have anyway or maybe it likes the container better. Hopefully the squirrels won’t each them all and I’ll have a mini harvest this year.
No, I’m not moving, despite the meaning of the phrase. However I have quite literally been pulling up sticks. These ones formed the animal deterrent by being stuck en masse into the new flowerbed I created towards the end of last summer. They seem to have done a fairly good job and there’s only been a couple of times where I’ve seen evidence of some digging. The flowers and plants are now establishing themselves and I’m hoping with that with the area having been difficult to walk though, that the foxes and squirrels continue to leave it alone.
There was more snow overnight but once it had stopped it was clearly play time for others. I’m not an expect on who’s prints these are, but given the visitors I know I have to the garden they are likely to be either squirrels or foxes. Given the foxes often come out and play at night and the number of them I’m leaning towards them rather than the squirrels, but whatever they were, they were clearly having a lot of fun.