Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Blossom time

Blackthorn in flower near Wicklow town (c.OOS)

Its been a great spring for blossom in the hedgerows: Blackthorn putting on a fine show since March, defining the lines of hedges with brush strokes of white flowers spilling down the field boundaries, up to just a few weeks back.  Now its the turn of the May Bush, or Hawthorn, just coming into flower with us.  It augers well for autumn berries, that's for sure.

Japanese Cherry, before hitting the deck! (c.OOS)

In the confines of the garden, the showy Magnolia and Japanese Cherry are all frothy white with a haze of pale pink.  Well in truth, they are all blown out over the last few days, with the display lying like confetti on the lawn.

My favourite flowering tree is the June berry, or Snowy Mespilus: a tidy tree, its blossom is very short lived and well gone, but its berries are due in the next month or so, first in the procession of fruit for birds.. 

The bird population in our garden has taken on a different composition at this time: Siskins are now regular and Redpolls too, presumably nesting in the nearby Birch and Spruce forests, but happy enough to pick off the fine Nyjer seed on offer. 

Male Chaffinch, persistent singer (c.OOS)

Bird song is well developed, from 04.30 each morning, usually a Robin first followed by a Blackbird or two, and then the noisy elements: Chaffinch and Great Tit can be particularly persistent! 

 Dawn Chorus day is this coming Sunday, 18th May.. well worth the effort to attend any one of the numerous  BirdWatch Ireland events taking part around the country.

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