It's Spring! Birds and Gardens and All Things Now Growing.

Dog Janitors
It is spring of 2013 and goodness I thought it would never come.

I lost my husband of 25 years last week. I will be enjoying spring this year by myself. He is in heaven filling his lungs with fresh air and meeting his Dad once again.

It's a bit sorrowful (and I HATE sorrow) in that my beloved Billy adored the birds and backyard birding was my passion.

The cardinals are back as they are every year. Last year they nested in my winterberry bush. Goodness the thrashers are back. He sings like a mockingbird but he's a handsome thrasher and his songs are beautiful. He does a wonderful wren song.

Speaking of…..just this morning I awoke to the loud fruity sound of "witchity, witchity, witchity". There are no more funnier birds to have nest in your surround than a wren couple. They choose the most unlikely places for their nests. And their children are content to sit in the nest, stacked like cute little logs, impervious to human peeks.

Billy loved to peek into last year's wren's nest, which was in a potted plant that I could not water for the wren family's nest. He'd tell me "the baby wrens don't mind if you look into the nest. They look like bird logs in there." He'd follow this anecdote with a happy chuckle.

As for the gardens, first and foremost, the moles and voles are under control. It was a job and there's still activity but last year those creatures damn near destroyed some of my beautiful hedges. The voles are opportunistic little critters that avail themselves of the mole runs and chew your plants from the bottom up.

The cure involved juicy fruit, purchased "clatter-stakes" that scare the critters that danger is a bout, they should scoot, and, in some cases, the dog.

The voles got themselves all in an uproar over the clatter-stakes that they scattered everywhere; many of them ended up in the house to the delight of four indoor cats. Those voles are no more.

So below, beginning of hedge rose growth. I like to capture its growth as it heads towards a full bloom by the end of May.

Below is the beginning of my fern growth. I always think they look like tiny alien forms of life. Soon they will be very tall with a leafy bloom.

Below, my lily-of-the-valley bush. I want to bad to move that thing because it's now growing below a huge Wigelia. I have a plan.

Below, my cactus plant which blooms gaily every year even though it is growing in a swamp. I consider it adaptation of the highest order.

Finally, below a pic of my house BEFORE the great landscaping project. I don't know if it will look better or even if it will be effective. I only know that the front of my lot has a real nice sloping berm that will hold lots of low-level bushes and my own annuals.

We need to get rid of some of the lawn.

Billy wasn't all that interested in my gardens so they will continue to be mine. I am having some professional landscaping done, some tree-trimming and such.

Gardening will go on without the sorrowful memories. Those bird fellows in my surround, however, will bring a bitter-sweetness. Billy would have loved them so.

Ending With a Smile

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