Sunday, 26 May 2013

Guess what I found in the potager

No, not Peter Rabbit..... Pierre le Lievre

This tiny little hare was in the potato patch this afternoon.  So cute and soft and warm. 

Had a cuddle and then released him where I found him.  He was so small that he would still be milk fed, so didn't want to disturb him too much.  Hopefully his nest wasn't far away.

Hares make a nest on top of the ground and there is one baby per nest.  The mother comes by a few tiles a day to feed the the baby and it stays in its nest the rest of the time.

Will have to check out exactly where he lives and keep an eye out for more babies.  Luckily we hadn't trimmed along the drystone wall yet, so it will now be left for another few weeks to give him and his brothers and sisters a chance to grow up and move out of home first.

What a lovely thing to find on French Mothers Day!

Saturday, 25 May 2013


One of the things I love about the fermette is the fossils that are everywhere.  Either embedded in the stones that make the fabric of the buildings, or tucked into gaps in the stonework.

They are mainly ammonoids, but from time to time there are other sealife fossils as well.

I like the little snail nestled against the fossil.... kind of like he is hoping to be disguised by it.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013


On my walk a few weks ago, I came across a field filled with these beautiful flowers.

Do you know what they are and why they are so important in the ecosystem?

They are fritillaries, a bulb which only grows in grassy flood meadows that are free from pollution and fertilisers.

A patch of these means your land is in good condition, and everything is as nature intended.  If they disappear something is wrong.

Quite often these flowers are disappearing from nature as intensive farming techniques and excess use of chemicals is becoming the norm.  They are considered an endangered species nowdays.

We are quite lucky to have fields with literally hundreds of them.  A testiment to the farming techniques which have been practiced here since the beginning of settlement ( going back a few thousand years on this particular spot!).

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Scents and scenes of spring

 I have had my first peonies burst into flower.  Absolutely gorgeous!  I was playing around with monochrome and colour images and so here is one of each, taken a few minutes apart.
The quince tree is flowering at present, and the flowers are really pretty.  Similar to apple blossom when fully open, but the buds are a tight swirl.  It is a very attractive tree to have in the garden.

I have white, lilac, and purple lilacs blooming in the garden.  Quite a heady sensation to walk between the orchard and the boundary hedge.  You are sandwiched between apple trees in full bloom, and lilacs, with bees busily buzzing back and forth between the two.
Not sure if these are going to be red currants or gooseberries..... We shall just have to wait and see.  I asked my neighbour if he knew and he said "groseille" - but which type of groseille he couldn't say.  Hmmmm, personally I am hoping for groseille à maquereau (gooseberies) as we both love them and they can be eaten in so many ways.... but I think they are going to be red currants from the way they are in sprays off the main stem.
Tomatoes, zucchinis, capsicum, aubergines and corn were all planted today.  The potatoes, beans, carrots, garlic and onions went in last week.  Once I have decided exactly where to place the asparagus beds they will go in also.  Already have 5 plants (all a few years old so ready to plant now and most importantly we can pick next years growth with no waiting!) so need to get moving on that this week.  Thank goodness I have many willing and able helping hands to get things done this year!