It’s a while since I wrote my last blog, as I’ve been too busy enjoying myself!
The weather has certainly improved since I last wrote a post; finally, we’ve been able to get in the garden and crack on with some clearing up and make a start on the growing season.
I spent an amazing week in Llangrannog, Wales over the Easter holidays, where we visited some of our favourite places and checked out some new ones too:
- On the way there we checked out RSPB Ynys-Hir nature reserve on the search of a lesser spotted woodpecker, unfortunately I didn’t see it, but I had a really lovely view of a treecreeper
- Me and my Dad did our usual coastal walk, where we got to see a seal swimming about at the bottom of the cliffs. I managed to get a photo of it and with the help of the marine volunteers we were able to ID it as a female
- The Welsh Wildlife Centre is a family favourite; I saw a water rail fly past. It’s a bird I’ve not seen that often, so it was lovely to see, even if it was a brief glimpse
- We enjoyed a second visit to Sculpture Heaven, where I checked out Terry’s new sculptures and Rosemary’s home-bakes and I bought a glass sphere and stand
- I went on the chase of a snowy owl, which had been spotted at St David’s Head; sadly I didn’t get to spot it, but we did have an amazing view of 2 peregrines catching and passing food mid-air, which was quite special and we saw a firecrest, which is an new species for us
- The lesser celandine was only just poking through, evidence that spring has been really late this year
- I had a very quick dip and swim at Cwmtydu beach and later we had our obligatory fire, with sausages and marshmallow s’mores
- On the way home we called in at the Dyfi Osprey Project where I watched Monty flirting with his new girlfriend, 3J, as Glesni, his long-term partner has sadly not returned from Africa
We spent loads of times talking to the Cardigan Bay Marine Centre volunteers at New Quay harbour, who were there on dolphin watch and our perseverance paid off in the end, when we spotted – very briefly – a porpoise and then later, a couple of dolphins.
But my holiday highlight has to be, BADGERS, which we spotted at their set, near the farm. We set up the camera trap on a few occasions, it took a few video clips and this is about the best photo. I was absolutely made up! It was great ‘cos they came really close to us and we got fabulous views and we also saw a fox!
When I visit a beach I try to do a #2MinuteBeachClean but you know what, I struggled to find any rubbish on Llangrannog beach, it was so clean! What’s great too is how cafes are getting really good at using paper straws, biodegradable coffee cups and wooden disposable cutlery. Everyone seems to be making an effort in the fight against plastic
I may have been on holiday but there’s always time for a nosey at some plants and it was great to visit Gwynfor Nursery, which is just round the corner from where we stayed at Penlon Farm. Angie and Steve who own the nursery spent loads of time showing us round their polytunnels and growing space.
We bought 5 different varieties of mint plugs and a sweet pea for my Grandma. They were so kind to do some succulent and bromeliad cuttings too. Since returning home, I’ve planted the mint plugs in a large colander and theyre doing really well.
Latest news from the RHS Campaign for School Gardening
Here’s my ‘I Can Grow’ update:
- Growing your own food – at home the first of the veg have gone in the raised beds and we’ve planted out our ‘chitted’ Charlotte spuds, onion and shallot sets
- Wildlife gardening – well the insects are all over our garden at the moment, the bees are buzzin’, the butterflies are bloomin’ lovely, whilst the birds are busy building their nests
- Gardening for good health – well my tip of the week, is, if you’re feeling sad or stressed, do some seed planting! I did a session with my Mum the other day and we both said how much we enjoyed it, it’s like really therapeutic
- Climate change – so the message is to reduce, reuse and recycle anything you can when gardening; as I said I’ve done some seed planting recently I planted Greek basil in a cream pot, sunflower seeds in a milk carton, coriander seeds in a repurposed seed tray and tomato seeds in an egg box. We need to be as #PlasticFree as possible in the garden
There’s still time to sneak in an entry in to the School Gardeners of the Year Competition, closing date Wednesday 25th April
It’s just over 4 weeks until I go to RHS Chelsea Flower Show. I absolutely love Chelsea and I’ll certainly be blogging about that soon!
I’ve been down to Manchester City Centre where peregrines nest near the Arndale. RSPB Manchester were set up there with telescopes and I had a really good view of one
I’ve also filmed a spring gardening clip for Blue Peter, with Radzi. As always, I really enjoyed it; this should be aired at the end of May, I’ll let you know the exact date.
Buddy couldn’t come with us to Wales, but since we’ve been back, we’ve had some nice walks and he’s enjoyed being a nuisance in the garden!