Warm, sunny, still - almost Summer here today. Tess and I had a wander round the fields after lunch. (this morning is usually a trip into town with friend W for our pensions and coffee). Everything is burgeoning. The farmer is out 'dolling' (to use his dialect word) thistles and nettles in our newly-bought field. He always leaves a few patches in scrubby land for the butterflies, but this field is to be a pasture for milk cows and they need nice, luscious grass.
My hens were taking full advantage of the lovely day, scrabbling about and having a dust bath in a dry patch. We walked down the big pasture (see how green it is and how quickly it is growing). In the distance the silage field is golden with dandelions and the hedge in between is covered in blackthorn blossom. Maybe, if the frosts hold off, we shall have a good crop of sloes this year.
In the grass I find the first few flowers of stitchwort; soon the fields will be full of it. And soon I come across the first of the giant thistles which litter this new field. Patches of daisies and patches of grape hyacinth spring up in the middle of nowhere and - planted in our garden - a magnificent patch of red tulips, which give us pleasure every year. We never lift them, they just seem to like their place and multiply every year.
A friend has suggested why we might be getting nightly visits from those tawny owls. We feed the birds close to where they are and she thinks mice might come out at night after the remaining seed on the ground. She may well be right as mice are their staple food.