Venturing into the back garden


Jeeeeezzz! Where on EARTH to start?


The back pond is under all that growth….. somewhere.


By comparison, the front pond will be a piece of cake to sort.


Apples and leaves now raked out, along with lily pads.


Just look at all these bulbs, they will be so much happier without a shedload of apples sitting on their emerging shoots.


Looking a little tidier.


Hellebore, shooting star, about to blossom.img_2759I finally wrapped the lemon tree, better late than never!


Rose hips are everywhere, they do add a little Christmas cheer.


A much happier orchid. The dye is slowly disappearing.

And finally….


After all that gardening, I walked into the kitchen, only to spot a robin perched on my little tree, a real, live, robin!

I bought this little tree recently, in memory of my wonderful sis. I didn’t expect to find a live bird acting as a fairy though! Whatever next???

It had no intention of leaving, despite me putting brushes through each window, hoping it may hop onto one and go, it took me over an hour to get it out.

  46 comments for “Venturing into the back garden

  1. December 17, 2016 at 11:10 pm

    Bulbs shooting already! I love the idea of the tobin choosing to sit at the top of your tree. Did he/she sing for you?

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:02 pm

      I was surprised to see all those bulbs Sue, they are even higher now. That robin was something else….no singing I’m afraid!xxx

  2. Jo
    December 18, 2016 at 11:49 am

    It does make me laugh how birds and animals gravitate towards you. I’ve never had a robin, nor any other bird, visit my kitchen, I think you’re a real life Dr. Dolittle.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:03 pm

      Lol….Dr Dolittle eh? Thanks Jo, I hope all is well in your

  3. December 18, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    Good pictures. Rather you than me clearing up pond areas at this time of year. The robin made me smile. xx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:09 pm

      Thanks Flighty. Clearing that pond is certainly a messy business, I still have the back one to sort. Thank goodness the days are going to gradually lengthen. The robin had me smiling too!xxx

  4. December 18, 2016 at 2:23 pm

    How sweet is that Robin. Someone once told me that when a robin enters the house and stays a while it is a loved one who has passed away visiting.
    I am always open to all views, so if I am blessed with one in the house it always makes me smile……and I wonder .

    Have a lovely Christmas.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:17 pm

      What a lovely thought, that a robin could represent the spirit of one who has passed. That is so comforting and certainly has me thinking….thanks for that Cheryl. Wishing you and yours a marvelous

  5. December 18, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    I would love to beg those apples from you – I don’t have anymore here and all my animals plus the local wildlife love them! The Christmas robin is adorable. They are such cheeky birds and I suppose he /she felt that you won’t find a better alternative for the top of your tree!

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:24 pm

      How I wish I could pass all those apples on to you, I try to use as many as I can and pass them around my neighbours, but there are thousands. The birds enjoy them though. Robins certainly are cheeky chappies! How tame they are! xxx

  6. VeggieMummy
    December 18, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    What a perfect fairy on your Christmas tree! Apart from when the ducks come wandering in in the summer, the only time I’ve ever had a wild bird in the house was when a starling flew down the chimney years ago. I don’t know who was the most frightened, the bird or me. Your pond is looking much tidier. I could do with you in our garden – plenty of leaves to sweep up here too! xx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:27 pm

      We had a crow fall down the chimney once, it was most annoyed and wasn’t up for being caught at all! I think it will take me months to clear all the leaves. Thanks

  7. December 18, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    My beloved friend, if you can believe it, it’s -5 here today for a high. (In Centigrade, about -20.5). We have lots of beautiful snow, and it will be comfortably warm as the week goes on, so it’s the kind of Christmas I love, but wow, do your yard, gardens, and blooming flowers look lovely!

    I’m guessing your sister’s spirit and love were very present in that robin’s visit; how very precious! I’m happy for you that such a sweet blessing came to you.

    I think the orchid looks beautiful, especially with the varied tones of color. Just breathtaking!

    I will be thinking of you this week, and sending a special hug on Christmas.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:32 pm

      Oh….your snow sounds just delightful. We now have lashing rain and gales, I don’t think we’ll be having any snow for Christmas. I remember you gardening on Christmas day last year, so glad your weather is back to normal. It is such a lovely thing to imagine that little robin was my sister’s spirit, she is more than welcome! Thanks Kitty, huge hugs to

  8. December 18, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    I think it is just beautiful, how sometimes nature comforts us when we’re really sad. With my parents, it was a blackbird which perched on a post in the churchyard and eyed me very wisely as I walked really close to him, and didn’t bat an eyelid.

    Oh my goodness … you have your work cut out in that garden, girl! The very best of British and a good swig of mulled wine should pep you up!! xxxxx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:38 pm

      How lovely to hear of your blackbird…the mysteries of life eh? That robin incident certainly was a little odd! I shall be clearing the gardens for months to come methinks! Thanks

  9. December 18, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    Love the robin on your tree…. you do seem to have a great affinity with animals & birds, so this is a lovely Xmas visit. Also nice to see bulbs pushing through in the middle of winter… that always cheers me on a winter’s day. Happy Christmas!

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 9:39 pm

      Thanks Gerrie, yes, it was a pleasant visit, robins are such sweet little birds. Our bulbs seem a little early this year, as usual I have no idea what I’ve planted or where, so bulbs are always a marvelous

  10. December 18, 2016 at 8:19 pm

    See? Trees with bare branches really are waiting for birds to come and decorate them! I’m tickled beyond words that it happened for you — and in your kitchen, no less. My goodness.

    That top photo of your garden pretty much looks like my life just now. But I’m going to get organized, I swear! I was especially interested in your orchid. You were spot on. It is going to lose that color, and it ought to be very interesting to watch it all — for you and for us!

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:03 pm

      Ha! Yes, that little tree sure beckoned the robin, I thought it was a decoration at first.
      Here’s to you getting organised, finally, I am. It’s great seeing the orchid gradually recover it’s natural colour. Thanks

  11. December 18, 2016 at 8:36 pm

    Talk about unbounding energy, how about spreading the abundance of gardening in my direction, there are wet bits I haven’t the foggiest idea what to do with. 😉

    Your manor is looking most attractive.

    Love the Robin crowning your tree. It may return. Bless.

    Happy Christmas and wishing you a healthy and good 2017. Xxx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:11 pm

      Oh dear, your wet bits sound as bad as my fallen apple and leaf areas….we’ll just have to do a little here and there and hopefully all will be sorted by spring. I am on the lookout for that robin now…
      All the very best to you and your Menhir, hope you have a lovely Christmas and New

  12. December 19, 2016 at 5:11 am

    Back to work. great images. Have a marvelous Christmas

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:15 pm

      Thanks Peter, wishing you and yours a wonderful

  13. December 19, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    Good work on clearing round your pond it looks great now, amazing to have bulbs coming up must go and have a look in my garden and see if there are any signs. Oh joy, love the cheek of that Robin. You’ve got to love them. I’ve got one which I try and go and have a chat to when I can get out in the garden. They are so tame and really look at you. Have a Happy Christmas Dina xx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:18 pm

      It felt good seeing at least one pond cleared….there is still so much to do. Slowly, slowly seems the way to go. I was surprised to see so many bulbs shooting up, and more and more are coming through. I too love robins, they follow gardeners around as tame as tame can be….love you have one to chat too. Wishing you and yours a wonderful

  14. sheryl aka Freeasthewind
    December 19, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    What a good thing to have has a robin giving its love to you in such a different way. Have never had a robin in the house. But, can see it happening to you. Love how you continue to work in the garden. xxx

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:30 pm

      Thanks Sheryl, it was certainly something, seeing that little robin. I have to start the clear up in the garden now to try and get it ready for spring, otherwise all my poor bulbs would remain buried. Hope all is well with you. Take good care of you and have a lovely

  15. December 19, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    A big improvement! What are you going to do with all those apples?

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:31 pm

      Thanks Jason. Most of the apples are rotting now, the birds have certainly feasted on them though. Any decent ones will be left for the

  16. December 19, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    I think you’ve done a brilliant job on the garden. It’s great to see the bulbs coming through.

    Simply amazing to see the robin on top of your tree … love it!
    I think Robin’s are quite territorial, so he may be around for some time to come – but perhaps better in the garden and not the house!

    All the best Jan

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:32 pm

      Thanks Jan, I was surprised to see those bulbs so far on! Goodness, I do hope that robin doesn’t try to dominate my kitchen!!! All the very best to you and

  17. December 21, 2016 at 4:42 am

    It is good to let all living forms find their own rest and regeneration in the winter. Even now, your garden seems rich. My best wishes to you and your family, Dina, for a very fine Christmas holiday,

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:34 pm

      Hi Shimon, so nice to hear from you, I hope all is well with you and Nechama. Thank you for your good wishes, sending good wishes to you too, my

  18. December 21, 2016 at 8:42 am

    It is hard to make yourself get out into the garden at this time of year, so we’ll done you. Fancy the Robin coming in to decorate your tree, very nice of him. Have yourself a merry little Christmas my friend.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:36 pm

      Oh yes, venturing into the garden at this time of the year is no fun, but it was good to see those bulbs and clear the apples from their shoots. Having a robin sitting on top of a tree is a first! Hoping you and yours have a marvelous Christmas my

  19. December 21, 2016 at 8:05 pm

    A real robin perching on your Christmas tree? It could only happen to you. Actually I had a tame robin once who used to eat out of my hand. They are the best of companions in the garden aren’ t they? I wish you could come and start on my leaves and apples. You have made such a good job of yours. And I seem to have lost my gardening mojo.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:41 pm

      Your robin sounds just wonderful! Oh yes, robins are the gardeners friend, I can’t think of a single occasion when gardening that a robin or two wasn’t hopping alongside, snatching at exposed insects. I have only touched the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sorting leaves and apples….we’ll all get through the clearing before spring….it’s hard having a gardening mojo in awful weather, at least you have marvelous things

  20. Keggy
    December 22, 2016 at 9:26 am

    You will be making lots of apple recipes I bet my neighbour has 2 apple trees which have been abundant this year and she has been giving me loads of apples. Apple turnovers are simple to make and I love them.
    Seeing your pond reminds me of the post where you had frogs in the pond and you and your daughter sat outdoors listening to the croaking. Lovely !
    And that robin ! They are so brave. What a wonderful surprise. I like the suggestion in some of the other comments that it could be your dear sister paying you a visit.
    Best wishes for Christmas. I know it will be bittersweet for you this year but I hope it is also full of blessings.

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:47 pm

      Sadly Keggs, I’m no baker, so all apples go to neighbours who return them as pies and crumbles. The birds are loving them though. Glad to hear you are enjoying your neighbours apples…apple turnovers sound lovely. How lovely that you remember that post, this year has to be a record for frogs and toads, they are absolutely everywhere.
      I too love the idea of the robin being a message from my beloved sister…what a lovely thing to think. All the very best to you Keggs, hope you have a marvelous Christmas, 2017 will be the year we meet, I hope, I finally met Janet, will post about that soon. xxx

  21. December 22, 2016 at 10:03 pm

    So amazing that a robin came inside to top your tree! It seems even more significant that it chose to land on the very tree you bought in your sister’s memory.
    My garden is under about a foot of snow, so no gardening for me. I am always envious of you Brits who have flowers about to emerge just as we enter a new year. Blooms are a long way off for we Canadians!
    Have a wonderful and merry Christmas! All the best for 2017!

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:54 pm

      It was most peculiar, that entire robin incident… sure is full of mysteries isn’t it, I would be delighted if that was my sister’s spirit, it’s the sort of thing she would do!
      I am envious of your snow, how it transforms the landscape, so mysterious and magical. All the very best to you and yours, have a wonderful

  22. December 23, 2016 at 9:39 pm

    That robin knew a good egg when she’d found one, which is why she choose to stay with you a while. Merry Christmas!

    • Snow Bird
      December 23, 2016 at 10:55 pm

      You do make me smile, thanks Casa, all the very best to you and yours. Have a lovely

  23. December 31, 2016 at 4:58 am

    Goodness, Dina, that pond looks positively daunting. I’m very impressed at how well you’d cleared out all the detritus and readying it for the new season. And… of course a robin would come in and stay a while. All the wildlife know how hospitable you are 😉

    • Snow Bird
      January 1, 2017 at 6:41 pm

      I’m afraid all the gardens are daunting at the moment, they will have to be dealt with slowly but surely! xxx

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