February 2018 – and more snowdrops

On the 2nd of February we woke to a heavy frost, a little more snow and the Raebrook covered in a thick layer of ice. A cormorant was a welcome but unexpected visitor to our river garden.

Unable to keep away from snowdrops, we made three more visits to the valley of the Cound Brook. Each time there were more flowers in bloom and we both took dozens of photographs.

Neither of us had ever seen such a wonderful display over such a wide area.Then it was time to make a start on renovating the garden. It had been badly neglected and we knew there was a lot of work to do because the borders were slipping into the paths and the paths were slipping into the borders. Richard started to edge the borders with timber in readiness for laying landscape fabric and gravel on the paths. I suspect it will be a long hard job as there are lots of paths and little available time.

The bird feeders continue to be busy with a steady stream of blue, coal, great and long-tailed tits, nuthatches, robins, and even a goldcrest. Blackbirds and house sparrows, dunnocks, starlings and a jackdaw are frequent visitors too. Song thrushes seem to be very scarce. We miss them because there were lots on Islay, so many that I once counted seven singing in the short distance between our house and Kilnaughton Wood.

Wanting to get back into a writing routine I had offered to co-ordinate a new U3A Writing Group and we had our first meeting in the Pontesbury Community Library. The intention is to meet on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month and to develop our writing skills though prompts and discussion.