Welcome to the website for our picturesque Essex village.

May 2018

Posted by admin on May 8, 2018 in
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After a particularly cold winter spring is here at last, breaking records as the hottest May day in history!

There’s all sorts of activity in my garden, a nest of blackbirds have just fledged, bees are busy and everything seems to have grown a foot overnight!

It’s sad to keep reading the reports of how badly the bird population is doing, the Tree Sparrow down by 95% , no that’s not a typo, 95%!  The Starling 71%.  I don’t think my daughter has ever heard a cuckoo- which was a common sound when I was growing up.

There are lots of reasons for the decline; the use of pesticides, loss of habitat, climate change, changes in farming are just a few.  There are little things you can do to help.  Cleaning your bird feeders regularly is important, here are some tips from the RSPB

 

  • Keep your bird tables and surrounding areas clean and free from droppings or mouldy food, which can provide breeding grounds for parasites and bacteria. Try to avoid accumulating large amounts of droppings.
  • Clean and wash your bird table and hanging feeders regularly (ideally, using a 5% disinfectant solution), and move feeding stations to a new area every month to prevent droppings accumulating underneath.
  • Water containers should be rinsed out daily, especially during the warmer months, and allowed to dry out before fresh water is added. Droppings can accumulate in bird baths.

Read more at https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/advice/how-you-can-help-birds/feeding-birds/keep-your-bird-table-healthy#UDmsDih6ltpdiuh2.99

Putting up bird boxes can help protect from predators , see link for advise https://www.bto.org/about-birds/nnbw/putting-up-a-nest-box

 

December 2017

Posted by admin on December 4, 2017 in
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The cold weather has finally come and with it the birds are flocking to my garden to fill themselves on the feeders I have put out.  This week I’ve seen coal tits, blue tits, great tits, a lesser spotted woodpecker, chaffinches, sparrows, dunnocks and robins.

If you put feeders out for the birds, please don’t forget to wash them regularly, otherwise disease can spread quickly among bird populations.

Happy bird watching!

November 2017

Posted by admin on November 1, 2017 in
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So far this Autumn has been dry and fairly mild.  However, nature and our gardens need the cold, frosty weather over winter.

The garden never sleeps, and all winter there are subtle but vital changes taking place. Under the soil, the cold is working its magic on seeds, bulbs and roots. Even the chill winds have a role to play to ensure flowers and fruits appear later in the year.

Without the winter cold, gardens would be less beautiful in the summer.

A period of cold weather is essential to many plants and crops. Without it, some would struggle to grow at all, while others would not flower or produce crops.

One example of crops that need a cold spell are fruit trees such as apples, plums and pears. If temperatures remain high, these trees would not come into growth in spring, nor produce flower buds. In a process known as vernalisation, the reduction in daylight initially induces the trees to go dormant. They shed their leaves, which would require too much energy to maintain in winter when they make less food. Then the trees must be exposed to a certain number of days with a minimum temperature, usually less than 7°C. Only when this has happened are they ready to burst into growth and bloom when temperatures rise. This process is designed to ensure this happens in spring, and not in autumn.

So when we start to feel chilly outside, just remember- cold weather over winter is good thing!

September 2017

Posted by admin on September 11, 2017 in
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The warm weather has been replaced by wind and rain and it’s starting to feel Autumnal!

The end of the summer also means blackberries. It’s been a great month so far for blackberries, I’ve been out picking and have made some fantastic crumbles.   The birds have also enjoyed feasting on the berries.  The hedgerows are brimming with hawthorn and all sorts of other varieties which the birds love to feed on.

To see some gardening tips for September on how to best garden for wild-life, see the RSPB website link https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/bird-and-wildlife-guides/a-z-of-a-wildlife-garden/atoz/s/september.aspx

 

 

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