Sunday, 6 April 2014

Tree Watching 2 - Garden Crab Apple on a Wet April Sunday

We had about an hour without rain today. It rained in the night and it has rained for the rest of the day.
During that brief reprieve, I grabbed my camera to record my John Downie Crab Apple for the second month of Tree Following.

There has been a sudden breaking of bud in the last week and new leaves are small but unfurling more every day. The week has been damp but mild and early spring is moving through the garden.

The next photo shows my tree as the small one on the left. On its right are two horse chestnuts and in the border in front of them is another John Downie Crab Apple. Both crab apples are probably the same age, but the second tree is overshadowed by the horse chestnuts and is not such a distinctive shape.

In the background are Jay and the Grey One, eating their morning hay. Behind them is the ancient overgrown hedge, now a line of oaks, beeches, hollies, elders and hawthorns that stretches down along the field boundary.

Almost monochrome, new crab apple leaves open against a grey sky.

The mass of intertwining branches at the centre of the tree, in fresh, new, lime green leaf.

Crab apple branches meet horse chestnut branches........

......where fat sticky buds are breaking open more each day.

Looking the other way, there is a background of weeping willow, well into new leaf, behind the crab apple.

In contrast, old oaks in the hedgerow are still in their bare winter shapes. 

There is loose moss on the lawn in front of the tree. Magpies, jackdaws and a green woodpecker have been pulling moss this week. They may have been looking for food in the soil beneath, but the moss will be perfect lining material for other birds still building their nests.

Other trees and shrubs are in bloom this week. 


...and beneath the tortured willow, the bush form of cherry is full  of delicate pink blossoms.

I love these little daffodils, which look as though they are standing in a wind tunnel with their petals flowing backwards.

The Amelanchier tree is in glorious blossom and just needs a blue sky behind it to look at its best.

The crab apple has been overtaken by a pear tree that grows near the shelter of the house. Its white blossoms are waiting to open in the sun.

Beside the path, an old flower pot is full of forget-me-nots that seeded themselves last year.

 I found a blackbirds nest this morning. The swallows should be home from Africa before next month`s Tree Watching post.


Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

I've not heard of an amelanchior before.

The trees as a group make a lovely shape - and I always enjoy the silhouettes of trees and plants on a grey day.

Countryside Tales said...

The leaves are really starting to come on now round us too- a sea of burgeoning green :-)

The Weaver of Grass said...

We have seen various birds fetching moss from our lawn we presume to line their nests. They are more than welcome to it.

We too are watching for the first swallow. The earliest we have ever seen one has been April 11th.

Wendy said...

Everything is looking green around us too, suddenly there seems more green than bare branches! Perfect for all the new nests. I have forget-me-nots everywhere. I need to remove some as I've new plans for the area they are in - but I can't do it just yet!

Bovey Belle said...

Spring seems a tiny bit further along with you - my young pear trees are still holding tight to leaf and bud although one of the established apple trees is putting out tentative leaf tips.

Your garden looks beautiful whatever the season - mine definitely has "gaps"!

Down by the sea said...

It lovely to see these signs of Spring in your garden the buds here have started to develop with the encouragement of some sunshine last week! Sarah x

Vintage Tea Time said...

What a wonderful garden you have - lots of lovely trees. We downsized 4 years ago and now have a tiny garden compared to the acre we had before - I miss the trees. Great photos - thanks for sharing. Abby

Ragged Robin said...

Its lovely to see all the Spring growth and blossoms - what a beautiful garden you have :)

Em Parkinson said...

Lovely to see so much leaf. It's VERY slow here. Only the Guelder Rose really and a bit of Hazel. Give it a few weeks....or months for the Beech!

angryparsnip said...

Goodness what beautiful photos.
What a wonderful garden you have and Imist admit I adore the second photo.
I truly is my "tourist" vision on where you live.
I know your all tired of rain, snow and ice but I would love a few hours of rain. We had no rain this winter so we will have a very awful summer.

cheers, parsnip

Isabelle said...

So lovely. I do wish I lived in the country!

Crafty Green Poet said...

lovely spring photos, I love the way that some birds are digging up the moss which will then be used by other birds to construct nests,

Jane the Booklady said...

I love the sunny spring days but your photos show how the green of the new leaves glow on the grey days. What a beautiful selection of pictures. It is so wonderful to be capturing the Spring!

ahomespunyear said...

Beautiful photos of such a lovely time of year. The hedgerows have really blossomed this week...and my brother says he's seen his first swallow arrive...I've yet to see one.

Caroline Gill said...

What a lovely post ... and a lovely time of year with your Crab Apple bursting into leaf and bud. I expect you have had some sunny days recently ... it's certainly bright and breezy here in Suffolk.