Happy New Year

2014 has arrived! And with it, it has brought more rain and wind and general greyness. So no fresh start for the weather in this brand new year – just a continuation of the damp and stormy winter that we’ve had so far. I don’t fancy venturing out with my camera today, but I did pop out yesterday when it was a bit brighter so I can illustrate this post.

edit-7832One of the main features of my garden at the moment is a lot of brown soggy leaves, and the grass is frequently covered in raindrops. The back garden is rather soggy underfoot and I squelched around while looking for interesting things to show you. I wonder if our addition of the pond has made it worse, or perhaps it’s just that it has rained so much! More about the pond in later posts hopefully. It needs some work to finish it off but I’m hoping that it will attract some insects and frogs as the year goes on.

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As you’d expect with all this damp weather, the mosses are very happy at the moment. The bird bath is looking very nice, all decorated with moss. I wonder how it regrows … in the summertime it seems to dry up and looks dead. I must investigate that this year. I can’t remember if it just sits there looking dead or falls off. If it falls off, what does it leave behind to enable it to regrow again? Anyway, right now it’s looking lush and green and the sporophytes are standing tall.

While I was pottering about I was looking to see if there was any colour left – any stray flowers hanging around. I was quite surprised to find this Ragwort in flower as every other one is long gone and just the skeletons remain. I wonder if the weather is confusing it, as it’s probably not as cold as normal with all the rain – there have only been 2 or 3 frosts this winter so far if I remember rightly.

edit-7847Another spot of colour was this lone Dandelion – not really meant to be here either I think. I’m not really complaining, as its nice to have some colour but I do wonder if they’re meant to be flowering or not. I’ve not really kept a record before, but I don’t think we normally see Dandelions and Ragwort at this time of year, do we?

Some of the more usual things to find around at this time are these below. I love the brightness of the Dog Rose hips in the hedgerow. In fact I love Dog Roses generally! In the summer time you get the beautiful pink flowers and then in the autumn and winter this lovely splash of red to brighten up the bare hedges. It seems strange to see the blackberry like this – just the seeds without the berry round them. Usually the whole berry would be gone. Looks like a blackberry skeleton without its flesh.

Looking at that gallery above you’d think it was autumn really, not winter. It doesn’t look very wintery. I wonder if there’s snow and ice to come this year. Perhaps there will be snowy photos to come!

Hope you’ve enjoyed my first proper blog. I’d like to blog regularly here, but I’m not promising daily blogs or anything. I know that once I’m back at work after the Christmas/New Year break I will be a lot busier so may not be able to get out and about looking at nature as often as I’d like, but I’ll blog when I can.

Have a lovely 2014 🙂

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