Well a stroll around Tumbledown Farm is long overdue. I have finally retrieved my laptop from the strange mumbling techy guy in the darkened little shop somewhere on an industrial estate in Peterborough, but alas he could not save my hard drive. I lost everything on it. Luckily most things were saved to disk although I fear some were not. I am trying not to think about those. I am extremely happy to have it back. However since its return, I have barely had a chance to use it.
Blossom on the Greengage Tree.
Spring has arrived at Tumbledown kicking and screaming this month, and I really mean SCREAMING!
It all started last week. I had been visiting friends in the West Country at the weekend and I did not return until Tuesday. The Aged P's had gone on a jolly outing to the district Hospital for Aged P No 1's weekly
What I found was that Delovely, one of mums favourite milkers had rather sneakily decided to have her kids a week early whilst everyone had gone out for the day and since no one was expecting her to kid she was out in the day area with the rest of the herd. So there she was in the middle of the goat house having carefully removed all the straw off of the floor trying to clean up four babies on a freezing cold stone floor. So before I even had a chance to think about unlocking the house and relaxing from the long drive etc. etc. there I was in the middle of it trying to help the poor girl out who to be honest was somewhat in shock.
She kept counting one, two, three, four.... then looking at me as if to say, "I can't cope with that many." So she made an executive decision, she cleaned up the boys and ignored the girls. This is typical goat behaviour and I expected nothing less! She tried her best, but well, four is hard work you know, and working out where is safe enough to put your feet without stepping on one of them is even harder!
All the babies are doing just fine. They get along together very well, there are two boys and two girls. One of the boys is booked to go to a herd in Scotland already, the other we are planning to keep as a stud male here at Tumbledown. The girls we shall keep here at Tumbledown and see how they develop. If the are promising then they will remain here, if we find that they are not quite up to show standard we may look for pet homes for them later in the year.
At the moment they are growing faster than I can keep up with them. I am having to be their mummy now. Delovely decided it was all a bit much like hard work and left the bottle-feeding to me. So now I am in a constant state of tiredness and slightly nibbled around the edges.
I told my little brood yesterday that they now have blogging obligations and a photo shoot would be required. So at just a week old the quads went for their first stroll outside for your benefit yesterday. The sun was shining and the grass they tell me was rather good. Although they seem to prefer nibbling my trousers more.
Stilton of course came out to supervise us, although he didn't think much of the nibbling kiddies and kept his distance.
All was going well until Delovelyson (don't talk to me about the name!) decided to do his best Forest Gump impression and started running, running to where I don't know, but he did not want to stop, he just kept on running. I've never had any formal Rugby training but I must admit I am rather proud of the tackle I eventually caught the little
The garden is springing to life so quickly I am not sure I can keep up with it now. It just explodes at this time of year. There is so much to see and do, and what with mum and the babies to look after now I seem to have even less time. There are a few things that have caught my eye so far though that I must share with you. Things I really love...
Aquilegia viridiflora "Chocolate Soldier"
O.K. So this is not going to be everyone's cup of tea but I am thrilled with it. This is the first flower just coming out on my Aquilegia "Chocolate Soldier". I have fancied this plant for a few years now and never managed to find it in a garden centre so had to grow it from seed. It feels like I have been waiting a year and a day for it to flower -I sowed the seed the Christmas before last and this is the first year the plants have flowered for me. I just adore the delicate, sweetly scented chocolate brown flowers and the green sepals. To me this is a really special little plant, all the more so as I have been waiting so patiently for it.
I do love my greens and browns. Spring can be so brash with its Kerrias and Forsythias bursting through and frolicing all over the place. Sometimes it is plants like this little Euphorbia cyparissias that really make me smile.
Even the new growth on this heuchera is looking good with the sun behind it at the moment.
Helleborus x ericsmithii
I must admit I am rather partial to this hellebore too. It is a beautiful pale white that turns to the most wonderful dusky pink over time. I love its dark stems, gorgeous!
Pulsatilla...and another favourite!
Everything in the greenhouse is still merrily growing away. I love to go in there and see how everything is doing. I also have a small collection of Auriculas in there I have not yet shown you. They really jolly the place up. I am rather fond of them, and they smell surprisingly good too. Just don't ask me their names...
Of course the most beautiful thing in the greenhouse without a shadow of doubt is dear Stilton. He tries to keep up the pretence of making himself useful, but quite frankly he is fooling no one!
So I have rambled on for long enough, yes indeed I can here Destiny calling. He's a noisy little git! He must be wanting another bottle, a mother's work is never done. *Sigh*