Has spring arrived yet?

The conker tree has unfolded his bright new green leaves over the past 2 weeks and the light on the balcony is now so inviting  and invading the kitchen with its fluorescent glow…

Below, the old wild plum trees are covered in white blossom and it’s particularly comforting this year, may be because the winter rain went on for so long here.

The newly planted plum trees from 2016 looked as if they had had it, but as I walked down the lavender path to check on the sage plants, here they were pushing out their tiny shoots. There were just green dots but they are alive unmistakably . I was so pleased because they had not been watered at all since first planted and had suffered a lot with last summer’s drought. Nature is so resilient isn’t? Amazing.

The wild peach stones buried in milk cartons in the autumn are showing off their first leaves too. The cobnuts, apricot and cherry stones have not shown anything yet, but the kiwis have already started uncurling their pink buds that could easily be mistaken for promises of flowers…but no, they are still too young to produce fruits yet.

For the first time this year we’ve had wild flowers showing up here and there, sign that the ground is now free of pesticides and fertilizers after eight years.

Our neighbour, farmer Robert has finally turned his back on chemicals and for the last three years has cleaned his land and experimented with different crops. Sunflowers are good for that purpose as they do just that: clean the land.

So the insects are returning and with them the birds. I hadn’t seen those small light blue butterflies since my childhood, and they are around. A few of them. How gorgeous is that?

The best thing I can think of doing here is planting, planting, planting.

Someone from the village who walks regularly past our field and gate stopped the other day to say: Why are you planting trees along the road? Your beautiful fence won’t be seen soon….Who cares about that, I thought but I said nothing. I didn’t want to be rude; she was trying to be nice after all. Then I said because trees and bushes are more important for the hedgehogs, and hares and moths and creepy crawlies….

We’ve got a male pheasant below the green house that has made its home there. I hear him call for a mate from time to time and I get a glimpse of him between the trees, walking cautiously looking this way and that just a few metres away. Then time stands still for a very precious moment.

Why would anybody want to go and live on Mars when we’ve got it all here, the wonders and the beautiful……


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