Herefordshire Week 075: Tuesday 01 – Monday 08 June 2021

Socialising. Mega Mow. Ledbury. Eating out, twice! Solihull and Temple Fields.

Forty Acres and the front lawn
Forty Acres and the front lawn

Before I get stuck in (catching up – it’s Friday of week 076 now):

  • It’s been 2 weeks + since Phil and I had our second jabs, so our COVID-19 vaccinations are fully  effective.
  • In Bird Feeder News, not only has not one but two squirrels discovered the seed feeder, but a MOUSE has become very adept at climbing the trunk of the Pear Tree, scurrying along a branch and dangling down to snaffle peanuts from the peanut feeder!! It has to be seen to be believed.

I spent Tuesday morning catching up on admin after my sojourn in Pembs: Flickred the photos (is it possible to have too many of puffins?), wrote weeknotes for Herefordshire Week 74 and settled up various IOUs.

To add to the excitement, Dŵr Cymru / Welsh Water arrived to start work on fixing our mains supply too – ie the fault the local water engineer had reported back in February. Sadly, this meant that the exciting “road closed for 3 days from 02 June” signs were theirs, rather than Balfour Beatty’s Herefordshire Highways Road Resurfacing Crew … so, we still live in the land of potholed roads.

LED Trustee Meeting in the evening followed by KMCA June Drinks over Zoom.


No VWW or Family Zoom this week as Phil and I headed over to Dinedor for a tasty BBQ on Weds evening and on Thursday, work done, Thea and Joe came for dinner, which lasted well into the night.

Feels like we’re getting back to a semblance of normal.


After a busy week at work, Friday was spent in the garden. The front lawn looked like a hay meadow after all that lovely sun and so plans for a big walk were set aside in favour of making the most of the dry weather for a big mow.

A good half day job to mow the orchard, front lawn and side lawn, using all the mowers (ride on, strimmer and Honda). It took all of Saturday afternoon on the ride on mower to collect all the cut grass and take it to the various composting locations. The slope down from the big pond, the solarium and the path around the trees remain untouched.

Pre-mow, the lawns were full of buttercups and clover, daisies and dandelions, carpet bugle and more. The early purple orchids were almost done.

Side lawn, filled with daisies
Side lawn before the chop, filled with daisies
Front lawn, before the chop
Front lawn, before the chop
Front lawn, after the chop
Front lawn, after the chop

Mushrooms had materialised by the conservatory and down by D&G’s rhododendron, which has revealed gorgeous deep red / magenta flowers. We foraged the mushrooms – St George’s Mushrooms we think, but we weren’t brave enough to eat them.

Mushrooms foraged from the front lawn
Mushrooms foraged from the front lawn

We did scoff a few of the super fruit scones Phil made though.

Waiting for the grass to dry off a bit first thing, I’d also tidied away the wooden planks from the garden railway and had a small bonfire for the worst bits of that and various tree trimmings.

Garden Railway removal
Garden Railway removal

And on Friday afternoon I excavated the four oak tree seedlings that have sprouted from acorns abandoned on the lawn by squirrels – not even buried!

Four Oak Trees-to-be, extracted from the front lawn and chive bed
Four Oak Trees-to-be, extracted from the front lawn and chive bed

We drove to Ledbury on Saturday morning, to see if the Repair Cafe could work any magic on Jean’s Kenwood Chef – I’d blown the motor trying to mix cake mix with the whisk. A picturesque town to potter around, and we felt brave enough to eat out for the first time in … over a year? The Malthouse provided a tasty brunch in a quiet courtyard surrounded by flowers. A good choice. And when I returned to collect Jean’s mixer from the Repair Cafe, it was good-ish news – it’s repairable, I just have to get a motor and they can do the rest. Back to eBay….

Dad and Jean popped over on Saturday afternoon, and their arrival provided a handy pause in the grass gathering and an opportunity for tea and more scones. They’d come to see the wisteria and for a tour of the other garden delights:

Jean’s wisteria is in full bloom and smells lovely.

Jean's wisteria in full bloom
Jean’s wisteria in full bloom

Down at the large pond, the irises and lilies are coming out – and I’d spotted some dragonfly larval shells, a lot more than last year.

Dragonfly larval shell
Dragonfly larval shell

Over in herb bed and veg patch the broad beans, sage, marjoram and thyme going strong, the peas are doing OK (but put to shame by the size of the broad bean plants and their flowers) and the lettuces look to be recovering from their nibbling.

Broad bean flowers and lettuces
Broad bean flowers

There are plenty of fruit on the cherry tree, apples and pears too, and taking a closer look at the four strawberry plants Jean gave me I realised they’re now sporting actual strawberries! I thought they were the flowers once the petals had dropped off….

Strawberries
Strawberries

Spent 4 hours on the computer Sunday morning and feeling a bit grumpy / frazzled all afternoon. Even a good book – Kathleen Jamie’s Surfacing – didn’t perk me up. With hindsight I’m pretty sure it was an emotional pre-reaction to Monday’s trip to Solihull to inter R’s ashes.

So, Monday. I got stuck on the M5 for 40 mins by Droitwich but had plenty of time to get to A&M’s for a lovely lunch and chat beforehand. Really good to see them both.

The interment went fine – Temple Fields is a beautiful place with hay meadows all around and a river along one side. There are birds and butterflies galore and otters and badgers too.

Dinner and chat with C, J&I and mums J and M, and then a night at the Premier Inn – another first and another meal out. Drove back early Tuesday morning.


TV:  Ozark (more of season 2) and Moneyball.

Podcasts: The History of England, History ExtraThe Essay and You Must Remember This.


Photos: Herefordshire week 75 on Flickr.

Phil: w/e 2021-06-06.