SixOnSaturday March 9th. Vixen.

A Foxy little work-around. Still very cold here, my plan B this week was icicles in their many forms….

IMG_61841. Snow and Ice. Again. But wait, who’s that behind Fat Lady number 2?

Now becoming a regular visitor, worthy of her own whole ‘Six’. I’m sure she’s looking for a place to have her pups. At any rate she’s working on the resident water rat and squirrel population. And perhaps the groundhogs later in the season…..

IMG_61862. The Fat Ladies. Started as  2 very adorable little topiary at the entrance to my vegetable garden. Now they are ginormous and scheduled to get the chop. Sometime between ‘shelter for the birds’ time and ‘nesting’ time.

IMG_6192 crop3. Phragmites. 25 years ago there were none here. Now they are overtaking the marsh. I’m in 2 minds – obviously they provide shelter and cover for all kinds of birds and beasts. I tend to think they prevent erosion of the river banks to some degree. However, they also occupy space formerly filled by goldenrod, sea lavender, thistles and milkweed.

img_6194.jpg4. The Bass Rocks. My mostly absent neighbour has attached an un-permitted dock. I’ve never seen a boat. The wildlife enjoys it as a roosting spot. The vixen is on her way to check for leftovers.

img_6201.jpg5. Sumac. Another wild invasive. Pretty all through the winter with red seed heads that can be made into a refreshing ‘tonic’.

6. Vixen herself. Isn’t she beautiful? In a month or so we will start to hear wailing at night. Unimaginably terrifying, loud, sounding like a tortured soul. Hopefully a few weeks later, fox cubs.

Six things from your garden, each week on a Saturday. Take a look at the Propagators blog for gardening inspiration.

www. thepropogatorblog.wordpress.com.

Garden Guests: #SixOnSaturday February 9th

There is no winter gardening in New England without a greenhouse or poly tunnel. Once the cold sets in, the ground is frozen like a rock. There are no overwintered veggies, no early sowings of peas. Winter interest is in the form of structure, coloured bark and weather ‘happenings’.

And garden guests, who somehow deal with snow and ice and gales in preparation for the Spring to come.

Here are a few from this week.

IMG_6137 - Copy1. First in the pecking order, Carolina Wren. This tiniest of birds is definitely the Boss. Loud, pushy, always earliest to the suet feeder. They nest in the rafters of my shed most years, which is fine except they rule the roost and won’t let me in!

IMG_6149 - Copy2. Tufted Titmouse, the sweetest bird of all. Shy and quick, hard to photograph. Happily I’ve seen a lot of them this year.

IMG_6169

IMG_6173 - Copy3. Nuthatch, who cleans the suet from his beak by wiping it on the rough Redbud bark.

IMG_61364. Mr Cardinal. Man of many songs and funny antics.

IMG_61105. Oh, who’s this? Resident Hawk. He’d dropped his (dead) squirrel and is looking for it. IMG_6131He soon recovered it and flew off to a nearby maple tree to finish the job.  I think he is a Red Tail Hawk but if anyone out there knows better….

IMG_6101IMG_6104IMG_61036. Finally, just passing through today. Sitting in the sun, having a stretch, sniffing around, marking a few corners. Happy fox, happy me!!

That’s my Six for this week.

I don’t contribute every week, especially in the Winter. I do get a bit of weather ‘envy’ knowing that some of you are out in the garden when I have weeks of snow and ice to endure. However, the deep cold of the last few weeks has broken and we are starting to see a few signs.

In the meantime I can always join you all for #Six On Saturday on the Propagator’s website:

thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com