Thursday, May 05, 2016

Being Lazy brings Delight

Last year through my laziness I saw my large garden get overgrown, I kept the lawn in a reasonable state but gave up mowing early in the year. The fences became swallowed up with ivy. My pond filter was choked and hardly kept the water clean and healthy. All the fallen apples, which never got swept up have slowly disappeared throughout the winter.

This year I just couldn't motivate myself to get started on the massive task of returning it to the picturesque garden that fanatics would be happy to pay to see. The very best I can describe it is wild looking. I no longer have the joy of sitting in it and admiring the beautiful shrubs and flowers. Come to think of it, I never sat long admiring it anyway, always getting up and fussing with anything that wasn't perfect on the eye.

The garden has been taken over by the wildlife. I now have so many birds nesting in the ivy, 2 Blackbirds (that just sing and sing, I could listen to them all day,) 3+ Bluetits and many other birds that I don't recognise, all busy darting to a forth from their chosen sites. They perform acrobatics on the teasels, which were usually cut down.

The frogs have taken advantage of the slower movement of water and laid tons of frogspawn which will, I'm sure, supply the fish with some tasty morsels later. The water lilies appear much healthier too, looks promising to get some flowers on them.

Last week I spotted 4 baby foxes playing games down the bottom, absolute heaven to watch them jumping about and testing their survival skills on one and other. The vixen has supplied them with 3 different locations to go to ground but I guess the babies don't know we are their potential enemy because I can stand just feet away from them in their playtime. The joy my garden has given me so far this year has certainly compensated for all the hard work I've not put in.

Ron King
Buckhurst Hill


  1. I'm glad you are enjoying your wild garden, and I get the impression that you never were a keen gardener, just what my dear old dad used to call a 'cut and control' gardener. But for those of us whose garden is a source of joy for other reasons, i.e. for growing flowers, fruit and vegetables, the increasing number of foxes over the last few years has caused a lot of headaches. They dig for worms in any newly turned and prepared earth, namely where you have just planted your seeds; they leave smelly little deposits all over the lawn; and to add insult to injury, they howl and scream under your bedroom windows all night. So go on enjoying the baby foxes in your untamed wilderness garden, but you may well change your mind when they are adults seeking mates and keep you awake all night. And of course, whilst you may be very happy for everything to just keep on growing, your next door neighbours may take a different view.

  2. Well Patsy you're quite right about the foxes, agree with your comments and I can honestly say that I have never left food out for foxes or any other creature come to that. As I see it we have spread housing into the the foxes domain, now if I was a fox and people left food easy for me to get I would stay put and live with them. I couldn't kill the baby cubs, could you?
    I guess I will return my garden to its glorious days but I'll have to wait until the fox cubs are gone and the birds have left the nest, meanwhile I'm forced to put my feet up. Just watched one of the blackbirds see off a magpie that was getting too near its nest, now there's a creature thats not welcomed in my temporary wilderness.
    Ron King

  3. Thank you Ron, I appreciate the points you make. It's really interesting the way we choose which creatures we encourage and which we discourage. I don't like foxes but I love to see any variety of bird - we haven't seen a thrush for years, which is very sad. You enjoy the foxes but don't like the magpies. Strange creatures, aren't we? And no, I couldn't kill baby foxes or any living creature in its own habitat. But I spray against moth in my wardrobes. It would be quite interesting to do a study of which animals and insects people who live in towns are prepared to tolerate in their homes and gardens.

    1. That is indeed an interesting question. For me anything wild is welcome in my garden, even Magpies and Crows. Mice are fine as long as they don't come in the house, but rats aren't. My Missus has a war going on with snails, slugs and vine weavels.

      But the one animal that REALLY does bug me is the domestic cat. I don't mind the cats themselves, it's the owners who are quite happy to get all the pleasure while passing all the mess off onto their neighbours.

  4. Ron your garden looks and sounds beautiful.

    Magpies - I hear from an RSPB friend that though magpies are maligned, they are nature's garbage disposal, and moreover cats (in other words cat owners, who are responsible for all their cats do - unlike foxes) kill many times more birds not to mention other small animals i try to attract to my garden. And it really irks me to have to clean up their mess. I think cat owners should be charged by anyone who needs to catproof their garden.

  5. Patsy mentioned about Thrushes. Over the pond, giving it shade and hidden from the eyes of Herons I have a very large Cotoneaster shub/ tree?All the birds seem to love it. Around March, every year, I get between 15 - 20 Redwing Thrushes, they come for the red berries and polish them off in a week, Wow this year, because I didn't trim the tree it was loaded with berries and the Redwings left without eating them all. I do get other Thrushes, not so good on their names but not many.
    I can't be 100% sure but I think I've got a hedgehog behind the pond, there is a very tiny recognisable path leading there. I wouldn't be surprised in the least as I didn't wage war on all the slugs and snails last year.
    Oh my delights go on. I think I'll advertise turning people's gardens into wild habitats,I'll charge enormous amounts and I won't even have to go out of my house to do it. I'll be a millionaire this time next year.